Ok so I have always prided myself on testing as many products and chemicals I can before they hit the shelves. So when a customer came to me last weekend and asked me for some background glue and then started enquiring how it worked, can you take the background off or is it permanent and is it easy to use I thought doh! I have never even tried it.
With this in mind i decided (not that it takes a true aquarist much coercion mind you) to not only setup an new Nano aquarium and test the product but test a few more and even setup that mini aquascape for my shrimps I have been meaning to do. So here it goes the first testing and review which is obviously the ...
JBL Background Glue:
Packaging in my opinion is a tad dated and nothing like the rest of the JBL packaging however its still has all the infomation you need and its still lively enough to pass with other more upto date on the shelf.
In the box you get the glue its self which is plenty for even the largest Juwel aquarium setup and a high quality piece of triangular plastic used for pushing the air bubble out.
Right lets get down to the testing I am using a custom made aquarium 30cm/12"/1' cube made from opti white glass which first I placed on the background paper and got a sharp stanley blade and cut round the tank, it does say on the instructions to cut the backing 1cm smaller however I would say each aquarium will be bifferent. For example a Juwel aquarium would be cut different due to the top and bottom rims from say a custom made where you may not have either, basically make the backing paper a neat fit to all the edges.
I then placed the aquarium on the front face on a flat surface with a piece of clean cloth as not to scratch the front and placed 1 capfull of the glue directly in the center of the back pane (obviously for a lager aquarium use more glue to suit). I gentley placed the previously cut backing paper on the pane very slowly adjusted the backing so it was aligned then proceeded in small firm but gentle pushing movements from the center of the backing paper using the tool provided to the corners first and then to the rest of the edges to spread the glue evenly. After I was happy the glue had covered the whole of the backing paper I placed the aquarium onto one side as to see inside the aquarium for bubbles I then just gentley again used the tool (FIXOL text to the top)to push the bubbles to the nearest edge.
So is that it I bet your wondering well no as it was soooo easy I thought why not do all 3 sides and just have the front pane visable so I did. I repeated the the same process of placing the side down on the backing paper cuting round it and 1 cap of glue spreading using the tool etc etc, this is where the cutting 1 cm shorter became slightly apparent. If you was to cut the backing paper as suggested in the instructions and you wanted to do it as I have done all the sides or even 2 sides covered then you would have been left with a gap though a logical person would cut it to suit but I think the instruction should have been a bit clearer even so side 2 went on without a hitch. At this point I saw a slight beam of light where the 2 covered panes of glass meet but a bit of black electrical tape sorted that (Though I recommend that you leave the glue to set first before using the tape as I shall explain).
Here is the finished aquarium.
After I had removed all the bubble from all 3 sides I used the black electrical tape (say's on the box to use clear however as I was using black backing I thought black electrical tape would look better) to seal the edges like it says, after you have wiped away the excess glue. This is where I recommed waiting for the glue to set as I found that when trying to add the tape to the edges to get the seal you can end up pulling the backing off, now I know a bad workmen blames his tools well i have been called a tool on many occasion so it could have just been me, however getting the bubbles out after you have pulled the backing off is damn hard and I left a couple of edges without tape (as I was getting annoyed) by the next morning the backing was perfectly adhered to the glass and all the bubble had gone and I finished off the sealing of the edges without any hicups.
In short the product works exactly as described it doesn't take a brain surgeon to do this (I have proved that) and the end result is amazing. I know I have only used black backing but if you are using a picture backing then I would highly recommend using this over just tape. I know that it seems a high price £5-40 (Our Price) just to stick some backing on but the end result is a crystal clear picture backing without all that camouflage effect you can get when just using tape. However the packaging is slightly dated and the instruction could do with a refresher course on simplicity, but I do find this is usually the case with most German products as the translations go slightly wrong.
Hope this review has helped you in some way and I will be doing more reviews later on to keep you informed with all the latest and greatest products in the aquatic trade.
See you soon