How to make a background?

JaceW/Lifer-Log

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I’m sorry this isn’t a tank post, but I figured this forum would have the most knowledge on this topic. I am preparing to make a BioActive vivarium for my tiger sal. I want a custom background with a built in waterfall into a pool. (I was thinking spray foam would be easiest for this.)

I want it to be black or darkish grey like a rocky cliff face since I feel it would make the white and cream colors in my tiger sal “Pop” more. How can I make a spray foam background appear like rock instead of the dirt most are? Would sand work? Should I use another material for the outside?

I hope my question isn’t to difficult. Thank you in advance.
 

E. Sylvanus

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I just finished my first fake rock background for a gecko habitat. I had reasonably good success carving Styrofoam and spray foam to get a rocky texture, and am planning on using a similar technique for my newt’s tank as well. I’m planning on sealing and painting the foam with Drylok mixed with concrete pigment.

I would imagine that putting a layer of sand over the top while the Drylok is wet would adhere it to the foam (it worked on the polycrylic in the gecko tank). Another alternative might be using clear silicone and pressing the sand onto that.

Hopefully someone who has more experience can give you some better suggestions, but that’s all I’ve figured out so far. I’ll know more in a couple weeks when my tank is done.

Pictures are of the rock texture in the gecko tank:
 

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JaceW/Lifer-Log

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Thanks for the help yours looks great, just what I want but a dash to light for my idea. I could definitely make it work! I’ll keep it in mind.
 
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