View Full Version : something a little different?

reefscape boy
12-20-2006, 05:14 PM
Hi, Been doing some work sculpting concerte into reefs in the last few years. This was a 6 foot long by 4 foot deep tank. Before coral and after....

12-20-2006, 05:40 PM
Welcome to RF!!! Very nice work! That came out really nice! Thanks for sharing and hope you enjoy the forum:)

spongebob lover
12-20-2006, 06:11 PM
welcome to RF dood !!!

wwouu that came out very good :) ... i wish i was that crafty

01-10-2007, 05:39 AM
How you you manage your corals and LR in a 4ft deep tank?...scuba gear? I need to know..I would love to have a deep tank.

class clown
01-10-2007, 11:08 AM
wow - looks great. Out of curiousity. how much does the concrete sculpture weigh? did you have to seed it with regular live rock to get the biological filtration started?

class clown
01-10-2007, 11:08 AM
sorry.. one last question. Is it just regular concrete or some special extra porous type?

01-10-2007, 12:12 PM
I would like to know where you are located and what kind of pricing you get? Your work is very nice:)

01-10-2007, 12:28 PM
yes,i really like it myself,,looks like the real reef,,wow

01-10-2007, 01:20 PM
sorry.. one last question. Is it just regular concrete or some special extra porous type?

Another question:

(Not wanting to you to give away any trademark secrets) but what kind of mix are you using?

Wouldn't regular Portland Cement leech lots of nastiness into a tank???

01-10-2007, 02:11 PM
Another question:

(Not wanting to you to give away any trademark secrets) but what kind of mix are you using?

Wouldn't regular Portland Cement leech lots of nastiness into a tank???

I have never attempted this, but looks like it could be a very neat project, especially after looking at those pictures!!!

I do know, that on the GARF website, they tell how they mix their "Aragocrete"... and they use "White cement that is a low alkalinity type of cement. At GARF we use Riverside white cement that cost about $22 per bag"

reefscape boy
01-10-2007, 02:39 PM
Hi guys, sorry I didnt see all ur replys. :oops:

The whole tank weighed 175kg and was made in sections that clipped together, allowing me to fit it through the support bars of the tank.

I use normal portland cement to make. Its ok once cured. It does leach free lime and so needs to be leached of most of it before being put in the tank.

I dont seed the rock with LR as all the filtration happenes in the sump. I did clad part in the photos as I needed to hide the drain. Im dased in London UK so a bit far...
Id put some more pics up for you but It was a while since I put the last ones up and having trouble remembering how!

thanks Jonathan

reefscape boy
01-10-2007, 02:55 PM
Ah think this is what I did...

reefscape boy
01-10-2007, 03:19 PM
A few more photos


class clown
01-10-2007, 04:15 PM
beautiful. do you sell them commercially? or just make them for fun?

01-10-2007, 04:36 PM
Very nice man...You're very talented!:)

reefscape boy
01-10-2007, 06:30 PM
Thanks guys.
My job is to looking after marine and fresh water tanks for clients. ie tank maintenance and installation, and i make these reefs and install the tank and filtration. I trained as a sculptor at uni so this helps with the making side of things. My passion is keeping fish/ coral though but the sculpting allows me to create really natural and unique looking displays.

01-10-2007, 11:21 PM
Nice work! I am in Hawaii and trying to figure out how to do something similar. Here liverock is illegal without a permit which nobody gets... and I do tank maintenance which has it's own even worse laws like we can't put livesand in tanks.
We have been trying to figure out how to make artificial rock/coral since the ones on the market are pretty cheesy and ugly, and the ones done nicely are really expensive (and I still say they are colored poorly). People will pay several thousand dollars for something the size of what you did, up to 6 grand for one. Crazy... of course the 2 people making it won't tell anyone how to mix the plastics. They have had the formulas custom engineered for them by a couple plastics companies to make something that is moldable, flexible, takes pigment, and supposedly is non toxic though algae won't grow on it so you gotta wonder.
For 5 or 6 thousand dollars they don't even clean off the mold release. I went to college for painting but thinking of switching to "sculpture" (:

reefscape boy
01-11-2007, 03:53 PM
Hi Kate, the ban on live rock sure makes it more difficult to do a lot of tanks. All the work I make is hand made except for the cast coral which is attatched while the cement/ concrete is still wet.
The 'rock' is not porous in the same way as LR so will not denitrify, it is only decrortive with the sump containing all the filter side of things ( deep sand bed/ plenum/ alge turf scrubber or enclosed denitrifing filter with normal media )
The large reefs I make are also renforced with stainless steel for extra support. When you use portland cement to make rock you will need to cure it before it goes into any aquarium.


01-14-2007, 07:39 PM
How to make your own and have them look good:


11-18-2007, 12:26 AM
i made about 50# of rock out of portland cement and oyster shells. looks good but the big ones are still curing after 2 mo. i'm gonna search out and buy some white low-pH cement and see if its faster. the big rocks are the ones that are taking forever...

11-18-2007, 09:37 AM
freetareef, the larger sculptures do take longer to cure. In my experience, if you place a power head or a bubble stone in the curing tank this will help as it forces water through the rock.