didip (didip) wrote,

Fluval Venezia 190 + self made 3D background

Wanted to share my do-it-yourself 3D aquarium background. Fails included XD
And pictures of the result:

I was partly following this german tutorial to create the background.

Stuff I bought in the hardware store:
- two 120x60cm Styrodur (something like styrofoam, only much more durable and higher density, you can cut much more details into it). Thickness: 2cm
- rapid-hardening cement (that was a mistake..)
- a cutter
- aquarium silicone (for glueing)

Stuff I already had:
- acryl colors
- sand paper
- brushes

Ready-made 3D backgrounds for the size I needed would cost 120€. I only wasted 20€ in the hardware store.
After seeing this super awesome 3D background (more expensive than my aquarium itself.), I wanted to create an artificial tree for the corner aquarium too.

So, this is how it started:

The left overs of the styrodur were enough to make some artificial wood:

The parts were glued together with aquarium silicone. It didn't hold well, though, they came apart when I tried to squeeze it into the AQ.

This is how it looks like in the AQ, without any colors.

It's necessary to paint the Styrodur with cement, because it gives it a more natural structure and the acrylic colors seep into the cement and look much clearer.

My first mistake was though that I bought fast hardening cement. I wasn't fast enough xD before I could get to the wooden parts, the cement was already dry and too hard, so I had to mix in a lot of water and the result was unsatisfying...

Painting it was much more fun. I should have used much more dark colors to create some nice contrast. The other wall looks much better

Color version in the AQ without the wooden parts:

When everything dried, I started filling it with water. I was almost done, when suddenly the wooden part in the corner shot up withe a SPLASH out of the water and came apart x_x so much work wasted on it, for nothing! It never occurred to me that Styrodur could swim xD I couldn't push it into the water again x_x
The places where I applied AQ silicone were ripped out of the walls and now there are holes. I cannot fix this. The only thing I can do is buy some REAL wood and hide all the mess behind XD

Took this picture after putting in the fishies from the old AQ:

This is not finished though. Like I mentioned, I need wood. I will also add more small plants in the foreground. The black pipes will be hidden too, with pieces of the background poster of the old AQ tank.

Juwel Trigon or Fluval Venezia?
That's the question everyone is asking when they want to buy a corner aquarium.
I ordered the Juwel Trigon 350, because many people praised its quality and whatnot.
When the AQ arrived here, I discovered a huge crack in the glass upon unpacking it. What I noticed first though was the big ass black box in the corner.
I doubt that anyone could successfully cover the filter completely. It's just too big.
In the hardware store, some people told me that I could take it out and scratch off the AQ silicone and use an external filter.
But then I'd have the same problem again like I had with my old AQ: lots of pipes and tubes here and there, a total minus point when you compare it with Fluval Venezia.

Because the dimensions of the 350L were too much for me, I went for the 190L and bought the Fluval Venezia. The Juwel was sent back again (it was broken anyway).
Fluval comes with a external filter, which pipes go through the cabinet and connects to the bottom of the AQ. The big plus here: There's a switch, that completely shuts off the waterflow, so whenever you want to clean the filter, you just turn that switch and clip the pipes off.
This also comes in handy when you want to change the water: just put some buckets underneath, turn the switch and let the water flush into the bucket.
Instead of a ugly black box, there are two big pipes. Like I said, it's totally easy to hide them by just using a AQ background poster. Cut out some pieces, roll it around the pipes :P
Juwel also offers something to hide the black boxes, but that doesn't change the fact that it takes too much space...

About the quality: The cabinet of Venezia really sucks. Some wood parts came off here and there, totally cheap material. But as long as it can carry 190L, I'm fine with that. The defects are not visible from the outside.

Price of it all:
Fluval Venezia: 449€
Background: 20€
Additional plants: 38€
CO2-System: 130€
If I'm lucky, someone would be willing to buy the old one for 50€.

Some more pictures of my fishies:

That's it. Creating the background cost me a lot of energy and time and caused chaos and dust in my room, but it was totally worth it.
Tags: aquarium, do it yourself

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