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[APD] Cork tiles from the hardware store as tank background- no natural cork available in Aust.

Hello folks,

I'm considering the use of cork as a background because it can be altered to make bumps dips etc, can be siliconed straight onto the glass and I can use little U bits of wire to attach plants like java fern, anubias, bolbitis etc.

There is no natural cork tiles or bark available here in Australia.

What is available are cork tiles 35 cm by 35cm either light or dark.

The problem is I wondered if they would be safe for the fish so I did some checking and found
out about how they are made- they use corks from wine bottles etc dice them up and then:

Make the Slurry
After selecting the desired proportions of each granule size, the cork granules are mixed into a wet slurry with a curing resin. This curing resin includes extracts from the cashew tree and is used to bind the cork granules together in the baking process. The slurry is then poured into large steel moulds ready for baking.

Set the Density
The lids of the steel moulds are pressed down and locked in place once the desired density is reached. Obviously the more the cork slurry is compressed; the higher the density of the finished product. The moulds are now ready for the kiln.

Acclimatising the Sheets
The sheets are cooled off after being sliced and allowed to acclimatise and stabilise for a two week period.

What do you think? Would the curing resin mix be inert after the kiln or still
possibly leach poisons into the water?

I know, I know get a tile chuck it in some water with snails and fish and see how they
go- I will end up doing but I just wondered if any one else used the cork tiles from
the hardware store that are meant for tiling floors/walls or if people are only using unprocessed
natural cork as is.


Also the lighter ones are cheaper but the dark ones look much nicer-
would it possible to darken them by sticking them in the oven for a while?
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