Garden Slate/aquarium Slate - What's The Difference?

Proxo

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I did smash a big 'rock' of slate up a few months ago for my tank and it has been fine :good:

The only thing you have to watch for when you are smashing your own slate is to be careful of the edges which can be razor sharp and dangerous for you and your fish!
Lol yeah i should of mentioned that, it was pretty sharp on most edges so i quickly rubbed the slate together to 'fade' them out abit!
I'd suggest wearing eye protection maybe a hard hat (dont want a sharp bit stuck into ur head, slate was flying everywhere when i done it..
I did go all out with a massive sledge hammer though :good:

Slate & wood imo make perfect for tanks :fun:
 
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Athena

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Thanks for the comments - once I've made something with the slate, I will try to put a pic up.

Has anyone ever used shale in their tanks? I bought a pack of it from an online aquarium shop - seemed reasonably priced and I liked the look of it. At the moment it's in a bowl being soaked for a few days prior to me using it in the aquarium.

My query with it is I've been reading mixed views on shale - some say it's safe, others say it's not, and then some say it's ok so long as it doesn't have any metallic bits in it... well the stuff I bought DOES have metallic sparkly bits in it, that's how it's advertised. If you Google "Natural shale tiling with amazing metallic effect" you will see what I mean.

If an aquarium shop is selling it, do you think that means it's been tested as safe? I don't want to add something if there's an obvious danger with it. And if it is dangerous why on earth are these shops selling it for aquariums?

Anyone have any experience of using it?


Also - what about pebbles? Can these be used in aquariums? Aren't they just bigger versions of aquarium natural gravel? :unsure:

Sorry for all the questions but I'm really not clued up on rocks. :blush:

Thanks, Athena
 

lilfishie

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i have a few large pebbles from the beach that have been in my tank for about a year now with no problems, i gave them a good scrub and left to soak for a few days before adding
 

Lufbramatt

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No difference at all, although one may possibly be cleaner than the other! Given a good scrub/soak any slate should be suitable, although I know some people will advise against slate with obvious 'rusty' streaks caused by iron compounds in the rock.

Edited to remove unnecessary chemistry!
This is interesting- I have a few lovely looking bits of slate in my little 10g which have orange streaks on them, is it advisable to take them out? the tank is in the middle of a fishless cycle and hasn't got any fish in yet. Obviously pretty bits of rock are no good if they are going to potentially harm the fish!
 

micko

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I'm not sure about shale, I have used shist before and that's fine, works well for building caves as it comes away in wee layers like a quartz.

Pebbles are find as long as they're cleaned, there's a river not to far away where I collect mine, I'd prefer not to use ones on a beach (just my personal opinion) its illegal apparently to get stones from a beach.
 

L_Plates

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its illegal apparently to get stones from a beach.
Taking sand is illegal as well. I have lived on the coast all my life and have never heard of anyone being fined for taking from the beach though.
 

micko

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No difference at all, although one may possibly be cleaner than the other! Given a good scrub/soak any slate should be suitable, although I know some people will advise against slate with obvious 'rusty' streaks caused by iron compounds in the rock.

Edited to remove unnecessary chemistry!
This is interesting- I have a few lovely looking bits of slate in my little 10g which have orange streaks on them, is it advisable to take them out? the tank is in the middle of a fishless cycle and hasn't got any fish in yet. Obviously pretty bits of rock are no good if they are going to potentially harm the fish!
I'd get them out of your tank asap. Orange streaks usually means iron ore is coming out of the stone. I'm a stone mason and wouldn't even use a bit that had signs of iron for building a wall.

Iron ore is dangerous to fish. You can pick some up from any stone mason as they always have a copious ammount left. I wouldn't use a house roof slate unless it was true slate, a bangor blue slate or something similar.
 

micko

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its illegal apparently to get stones from a beach.
Taking sand is illegal as well. I have lived on the coast all my life and have never heard of anyone being fined for taking from the beach though.
I have yet to hear of anyone being fined or worse because of taking anything off a beach either but just though I'd make people aware. I wasn't aware of it myself until a while back.
 
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Athena

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LOL I live near a beach too and kids on holiday often put a few pebbles in their little buckets even though I'm sure they're not supposed to take them home. I don't know of anyone getting into trouble over it so maybe they are not that bothered where I live - there are no signs up to warn visitors not to take pebbles.

I know some beaches have very strict rules, like that time a few years back when an author mentioned on a BBC interview that he had taken a couple of handfuls of pebbles home for his mantelpiece (Cornwall/Devon area?) and the next thing he was facing a huge fine of around £2,000!

I have a large bag of pebbles that someone gave me when I bought a tank from them recently (I think she mentioned something about buying some of them in garden centres) and I was just wondering if they were ok to use in my tank. They are all different types, some are black, some grey, some are silky smooth and opaque white (like a marble), there are brown, stripey red/brown and black/white...oh just so many varieties and I haven't a clue whether they are all safe or not.

Still none the wiser over the sparkly shale rocks, too.

Athena
 

micko

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There was a pinned topic somewhere on the forum regarding different types of stones. I can't find it now to give you the link.
 
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Athena

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Oh, thanks Micko - I will have a search to see if I can find it anywhere...

Cheers!
 
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