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Pour cement into an old umbrella to make a gorgeous aquarium
Transform your old umbrella into a conversation piece.
Cherie Gozon
09.17.21

Turn your old umbrella into a cement aquarium for your fish.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Now, you might frown at the thought of cement since using the wrong kind can be toxic for your fish. You can use Portland cement since most of them are safest for aquarium purposes. However, be wary of those that say “polymer-modified” because that can pose a danger to aquatic living organisms. Other than that, you’re good to go.

First, get a basin and fill it with sand. This will serve as your aquarium’s foundation.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Open an old umbrella and flip it upside down. Bury the end tip to the basin of sand and make sure it is firm and secure.

Mix sand and cement with a 1:1 ratio enough for the base of your aquarium.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Add water and mix them until they’re well blended. Place the cement inside the umbrella to strengthen your base. Spread them evenly and let them dry.

Once dry, measure the umbrella panel and cut a metal mesh wire according to its shape.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Make eight pieces of these mesh wire cutouts. Position the cutouts on each panel. Get a metal wire and attach them to the rib tape using a zip tie. This will help secure the mesh wire in position.

Mix another batch of cement mix but make more of it this time.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Spread the cement mix evenly on each panel. The mesh wire acts as the ‘mold’ for the cement. You can also place aquatic rocks at the base using the cement to hold them in place. Again, let it dry.

Paint the surface with any aquarium-safe or water-proofer paints.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Note that you cannot use any spray paint in this project. Always check with your local hardware for pet-safe paints that stick to the cement to ensure they don’t peel or leach. Let the paint dry before moving on to the next step.

Once the paint is dry, move your cement aquarium where you want to place it.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

Position your water pump and start filling it with water. You can place a round floater that fits the size of your umbrella and place aquatic plants around them (this video uses a water hose). Add other decors that you like but make sure to leave enough room for your fish to swim around.

You can also add other aquatic plants and organisms that your fish can feed on.

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

You can place plants such as Moneywort, Hornwort, Pygmy Chain Sword, Java Fern, Tiger Lotus, among others. Again, always ask your local supplier if a plant is compatible with your needs, like the water you use, the aquarium material and size, and the fish you place in it.

Lastly, transfer your fish to your new aquarium!

YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects
Source:
YouTube Screenshot|CEMENT - DIY Projects

If you’re worried about the umbrella shaft rusting through time, you can apply a rust-proofing spray on it. Again, as with most of the materials we mentioned here, make sure it is safe for aquarium use and around fish.

You saved one umbrella going to waste and give your fish a new home. Win-win!

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Cherie Gozon
hi@sbly.com
Cherie Gozon is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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