The month of February and the first week of March were spent slowly buffing scratches out of the inside of the acrylic tanks using 6 different grits of sandpaper and two different liquid grits. This was a slow process; each scratch can take up to an hour, depending on its size and depth. Since these scratches were inside the tanks and weren’t all at eye level, it took some creativity to get a correct position and a good view of the scratch.
Jess and I buffing the piling tank
Jess curled up in the cluster tank to be at eye level with the scratch
After all the major scratches were buffed out, we used a special attachment on a power drill to polish the inside and outside of the tanks to give them a finished look. Once the acrylic was done, we moved onto the stainless steel bases of the tanks and, with the help of two awesome volunteers, buffed all the rust off the steel using synthetic steel wool and a liquid grit.
Using the power drill to polish the inside of the piling tank
Heather, Jess and I then designed habitats in our newly finished tanks using rocks, wood, superglue and wood pilings. The challenge with designing exhibits is that you want them to be visually appealing, but also stable enough to allow us clean without causing them to fall apart. With the wood we used, we had to make sure it wouldn’t float when water was added. It took some trial and error, but we eventually mastered those designs!
Jess and Heather carefully stacking basalt rocks
Jess and I supergluing clumps of mussels onto the pilings
A longfin sculpin we collected at the marinaCome check out our new animals Friday-Sunday, 12-4pm.
Marine Exhibit Education Coordinator