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    Emaco R400 Architectural Cement Is An Aquascaper’s Best Friend

    One of my favorite Aquascaping tools that I’ve ever used is Thorite Cement. It has proven to be reef safe in small quantities (still use caution and your brains when adding to an aquarium). Many people, including public aquariums, have used this with success to create large, stable rock structures. Simply put, it is a […]

    One of my favorite Aquascaping tools that I’ve ever used is Thorite Cement. It has proven to be reef safe in small quantities (still use caution and your brains when adding to an aquarium). Many people, including public aquariums, have used this with success to create large, stable rock structures. Simply put, it is a great tool for creating dramatic overhangs, caves and pinnacles.

    emaco r 400 cement aquarium

    When paired with rockdrilling and / or rod supports, the rock shapes can be literally gravity defying. Over the years I’ve admittedly lost track of the original Thorite and hydraulic cements I’ve used in the past. A large part of this is because the brand name Thorite is no longer used, and the parent company BASF is now the branded name.

    A new offering from the guys at Marco Rocks has rekindled my interest in hydraulic cement  / mortars for aquscaping. Their E Marco 400 aquascape material is an obvious play on the more recent Emaco R 400 Architectural Cement that is the new “Thorite”. Literally. It is the closest thing BASF offers to the original quick setting Thorite. While I have not yet used the Emaco 400 in a filled aquarium, the safety data sheet [pdf] is near identical to the original.

    acryl 60

    In addition to the Emaco 400, some aquarists like to pair this with BASF’s Acryl 60, an acrylic polymer liquid that mixes in with the cement and helps create a stickier, stronger, and more flexible bond. The use of additives like Acryl 60 has been done for years per the advice of BASF and other cement companies. When added the consistency is much improved and makes “sticking” rocks together much easier.

    The good news is Marco Rocks (and surely others will join suit) offers this exact combination of products in smaller, ready to use sizes. Their EMarco 400 is paired with two 16oz  containers of a liquid polymer. The 10lb kits will run you $30, with the 20lb kit coming at $20. Yes, you can buy the stuff cheaper in larger sizes (~$60 for 50 lbs depending on your retailer. 12lb cans are also sold), but for the first time that I can recall this is available: 1) Online 2) From an aquarium related company 3) In reasonable sizes.

    If you’re considering a new aquascape, look into Emaco 400 / Emarco 400. It can be the difference between a rock wall and a reef.

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