FAQ #1: What do you recommend to paint the back of the aquarium? | 52 FAQ


Today on brstv we are doing something new! Hi I’m Ryan one of your hosts of BRSTV.
For those of you that are following along recently my wife is about to have our baby
at any moment and I am going to take a quick break to go enjoy that with her. While I am
gone RT turner is going to is going to start a fun new series with all of you. I will see
all of you in just a few weeks. hey guys while Ryan is gone we are going to
start the 52 FAQ where we answer all of your frequently asked reefing questions from our
popular 52 weeks of weeks of reefing. Today we are going to answer rebeldeasupoder92’s
question from week 5 “ what would you recommend to paint the back of the aquarium? i want
it black” Like most things in reefing this is a fairly
simple question to those of us who have done it before and learned from our small mistakes.
Most of us actually started off our first reef tank by trying to apply some type of
black plastic film or other material to the tank. that can work ok but almost always eventually
peals off and you are just better off painting it the color you want which in almost every
case is black. People normally use black because it doesn’t
promote or show algae growth on the back of the tank and most reefers agree just looks
best unless you have some pretty specific atheistic desires. lets start with the type of paint, we want
something that will adhere well to glass , goes on easy , low cost , easy to find and hopefully
provides complete coverage in two coats. Everyone here at BRS uses rustoleum enamel paint which
is also probably the easiest paint to find in any market. Flat or gloss doesn’t matter
at all so get whatever is cheapest, both will have a glossy look from the glass. Only reason
to select one over the other is ifd you care what the back looks like. I guess my personal
preference is gloss in that case but it really doesn’t matter much. it comes in a typical can as well as a spray
can. Both work and have individual advantages. With the can you don’t need roller or other
tools which makes it the lowest cost however you absolutely should do it outside so you
don’t get get oil base enamel pain all over your house and air. You can obviously find
ways to control the paint but I personally would never spray black paint inside my house. I will also say that unless you are good with
spray paint its easier to get drips, uneven coverage. and frequently requires a few coats
to get a nice even black coat on the back of the tank. Id say spray paint is best for
small tanks where it is easy to bring them outside and is also the cheapest solution
but easily the most messy, requires the most protection and easier to mess up. For that reason I always use the traditional
can of paint and roll mine on. The roller applies the paint in a nice even coat, doesn’t
get in the air so it can be done indoors easily, more notice friendly and I think the overall
simplest solution with the highest success rates. You can almost always get complete
even coverage in two coats. We do have a few tips starting with make sure
to tape off the parts you dont want to be black, most people don’t care that much about
getting some on the trip but it you do tape it off with painters tape. but I would tape
off the edges of the tank so no paint gets on the side pannels. Rather than applying
the tape flat leave the edge tapered out so drips end up on your drop cloth rather than
the glass side panes. I also like to paint it with the back of the
tank facing up which limits drips, you wont see the drips on the inside of the tank but
it makes it look nicer if the back side is ever exposed. Also be somewhat stringy on the first coat
and try to just apply a thin layer. This is more or less just a primer or tach coat which
drys quickly and provides something for the second coat to easily adhere too. Its common
to try and put it on thick with the first coat in hopes that you might only have to
do one but in in almost every case you will have to do a second and all you did is add
drying time to the first coat. Last piece of this is the roller itself. select
something for ultra smooth surfaces if you can. This will make applying the paint to
the glass evenly easier and reduce the chances you will need a third coat. in most cases I try and use a 1/4” or 3/8”
nap roller that says smooth surfaces on the outside and I prefer these mini rollers which
gives me a lot more control over the application on a small area like an aquarium. I also try
and get a decent brand which wont leave fibers behind. Trying to save a buck or two here
just isnt wise. You can normally get a kit with a frame, roller and tray at any big box
hardware store for less than ten bucks. If also advise picking up a 99 cent foam brush
with a sharp angle which allows you to get the edges right next to the trip. A lot of
people like to do the trim with the brush first and then roller after. Hopefully this was helpful for those of you
who were wondering how to paint their tanks. If it was let us know with a quick thumbs
up and if you have any questions or tips for other us or the BRS community let us know
in the comments area down below. In this weeks poll we are also asking all of you what you
treated the back of your tank with so vote and check out the results to see what others
are doing. Ill see you in the next BRS 52 FAQ where we
answer Alex De Michieli3’s question.”In a calcium reactor if you are dissolving old
coral in isn’t it also going to dissolve Mag as well ? Why do you need to add extra mag
?”

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