The inspiration for this project was to be able to bring a piece of my aquatic
hobby to my place of work, so "small" was key.
Not willing to settle for a "Betta in a bowl" solution, I began work on this 2.5
gallon with the intent to accommodate not only a custom background, but all
things standard to a functional aquarium. Those being regulated temperature,
good lighting and filtration.
DIY Aquarium Background
Once the paint is dry, we're ready to begin the
30 day tap water rinse stage to remove excess
calcium and magnesium from the cement.
This step certainly takes some patience, but the
reward is a healthy and unique aquarium that
should last for many years.
Flash back to the concept stage for a moment,
this 3 oz, spice bottle was the originally intended
filter for our mini aquascape.
While in practice, it worked, but it didn't move
enough water to provide efficient filtration.
A better design was developed using the same
size bottle and a micro-sized powerhead. Click
here to go to the "3 oz. spice bottle power filter"
The black substrate is a 3M product called
Colorquartz. It's actually quartz sand with a
colored ceramic coating.
3M unfortunately has discontinued manufacture
of this product due to "business conditions in
the markets utilizing Colorquartz™. "
There are however, several other options for
black sand on the aquarium market.
The power outlet gives away the actual size of
this mini aquatic landscape.
Hidden air stones in the left and right
compartments behind the background promote
a constant cycle of water drawn thru the rock
During this tap water rinse stage, the water will
be replaced about every three or four days for a
total of one month.
Fast forward to one month later and our small
aquarium made its way to the office and has
been populated with a red Veil Tail betta and
Crypt aquarium plant.
We've not found a quality lighting solution yet,
but the Betta doesn't seem to mind the
flourescent desk lamp.
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do-it-yourself aquarium and semi-aquatic background designs beyond the traditional