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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our endeavors to find new ideas and natural resources to make an aquascape at times lead us to some of the most unthinkable places.

This past weekend, Jay, Ghazanfar and myself explored the vast wilderness that is the Virginia roadside :wink:

Just above the broken beer bottles and shreads of truck tires lied a wealth of resources....



As Jay kept the natives occupied....



Ghazanfar and myself set out to violate what nature had so carefully provided us with....



Finally, our heros return to the safety of civilization with the treasures they set out to find....



Eventually our expedition had come to an end, we took one last glance at the numerous trasures we were unable to fit in the car, Ghazanfar trying to make a U-turn on the state highway in front of the local sherif, and we slowly drove off into the distant sunset in the safety of our own vehicle.

Back home, a tank was born and the memory of this trip and the Virginia wilderness lives on in our very own living room....


"Under the bridge"


:)
Giancarlo Podio
 

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Wow fantastic rocks! they are really nice.
Of what compounds are they?
The idea of the scape is pretty cool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Gotta ask the locals on that one...... all I know is that it didn't react to acid.

Ghazanfar, get one of the solid rocks that has little character and hit it with a hammer, works great!

Giancarlo Podio
 

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Can't wait to see the tank in the future. This rock makes the whole setting very powerful, and also gives off that same atmosphere as the ones in the pictures. I kindda think this is what Roger was talking about, regarding his 'Inspirations' topic. You see something in nature and then you try your best to recreate it in the tanks. Awesome!


Paul
 

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Jay needs to bring the guys up to NJ! You guys would love crawling around William Paterson University and Buttermilk Falls! The whole area is on one huge rock formation.

Mike
 

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And another great trip with great group of people.

Trip began at 8am in PA where we had a pleasure to begin driving H2 HUMMER to Virginia. We were planning to buy/collect a lot of stuff so my Maxima wouldn't cut it :wink: . We met John Wheeler, picked up some misc stuff from him (10lbs CO2 tank, light fixtures, fertilizers, wood etc etc etc). Ride to VA was fairly quick and it took us 2:45 hours vs. 3.30. You couldn't feel a thing in that huge car. We met Ghazanfar, enjoyed his tanks and went rock collecting. Next was Aquarium Center where we picked some stuff for my fish-room, other guys picked new tanks, fish, shrimp and other stuff.

You saw Giancarlo's tank, Ghazanfar will be setting up his soon. You will see mine in next two month. The project of my life :wink:

This "aquascape" is nature made.


Ghazanfar and Giancarlo taking picture and discussing use of local rocks in their next project.


Ghazanfar in action. Aquascaping LIVE !!!


Giancarlo setting up his equipment for team shot


This is how inside of a HUMMER looks like after 10 hours of collecting, equipment exchange and LFS visit.
 

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I hate to say it but that rock in the tank looks 'soft' to me. Are you sure it's not a sedimentary 'gonna melt into mud' kinda rock? It might be a metasiltstone, could you guys tell us where on the road you were? I've been looking at the geological maps for VA and I'd like to make sure you didn't get something bad for your tanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It doesn't have the consistency of sedimentary rocks however if hit with another rock or hammer it will break into square blocks like the photos above. Not sure if these fault lines are sedimentary or just exposure to the elements and ice. They are not going to melt but they will crumble a little, even while washing them many small pieces broke off. But that's what makes these rocks so interesting. It's brittle but definetly solid.

I had never considered looking in such places, but now that I have, I see several places on my way to work that would be great sources for rocks. Basically anywhere they had to blast or dig away at a hillside to run a road through it you are most likely to find interesting rocks.

Hopefully they will last
Giancarlo Podio
 

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gpodio said:
It doesn't have the consistency of sedimentary rocks however if hit with another rock or hammer it will break into square blocks like the photos above. Not sure if these fault lines are sedimentary or just exposure to the elements and ice. They are not going to melt but they will crumble a little, even while washing them many small pieces broke off. But that's what makes these rocks so interesting. It's brittle but definetly solid.

I had never considered looking in such places, but now that I have, I see several places on my way to work that would be great sources for rocks. Basically anywhere they had to blast or dig away at a hillside to run a road through it you are most likely to find interesting rocks.

Hopefully they will last
Giancarlo Podio
I had our geologist looking at the pictures before I posted and he was spouting a lot of terms that don't mean anything to a fish guy like myself. But he seemed to think that they were a meta-sedimentary something or other, which means a type of metamorphic stone. Some of these are OK and some aren't, but I need to know where you guys were to beable to pinpont the location on the geologic maps and offer any more opinions.

There are areas in that part of VA that have a lot of dolomitic rock that is stained with magnesium and is too 'hard' to react to acid without being pulverized into a dust. I'm not trying to be an alarmist, just trying to help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Some of the rocks were green, that may indicare metals in them... The others had stains on them such as the one in my tank, looks like coralline algae :wink:

Giancarlo Podio
 

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Nice find! Now I wanna take another drive down to the Allegheny area of PA. Theres tons of areas where the highways & roads are cut through the mountain, with rocks everywhere.

The stuff we have local (Erie, Pa) is mostly all slate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, first of all you judge by the look of the rock if it's something pourus, sedimentary or solid. Solid is better, sedimentary could crumble however some sedimentary rocks are fine and are hard enough to last a long time. Then you should test to make sure the rock does not contain calcium which would alter your water hardness, this can be done with a mild acid, some people use vinegar but I've found it to be too mild in many cases. Most test kit reagents are acids, I use a drop from my nitrate test kit to see if it bubbles on the rock, if so then it's no good.

I guess other tests can be done by leaving the rock in water, test the water before placing the rock in it and again after a few days. But most of us don't have all the test kits nor want to spend the money on such kits to test for metals and other toxins.

Like all changes in a tank, one at a time. If anything negative happens after adding the rocks....

Giancarlo Podio
 

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The rocks look remarkably similar to ones i collected near the site of the Hope Slide here in British Columbia last year. The green colouring would indicate Olivine, and from what i remember these rocks would have been safe in a tank.

Geology is by no means my major :D but i had a geology prof I know take a peak at them.
 
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