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Old 06-10-2006, 07:25 PM   #1
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55 gallon missing middle brace

I recently got a used 55 gal tank that had a broken middle brace. The tank otherwise is in good shape. Only half of the middle brace is there, the other half has been broken out. I am considering either cutting off the current frame and purchasing a new one to silicone on, or silicon-ing in a glass brace in the tank. The only advantage to silicon-ing in a glass brace is its cheaper, and the I don't have to remove the current frame. But I worry about how strong that would be. I would not want to wake up to a broken tank in the living room.

Anyone familiar with either option?

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Old 06-12-2006, 06:35 AM   #2
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i have had the exact same problem before, i ended up ordering a replacement from my LFS for about 18bucks and using silicon to secure the new one back in place, it took about an hour to remove the old, clean the edges and replace.

putting in a glass brace is a good alternative if you don't want to go through all the work. strength will depend on how tightly the glass fits into place, and how good your silicone application is. but if you get the glass cut to the right size, clean all the edges well, and put down a good amount of silicone you shouldn't have a problem.

going with a plastic brace would be the best idea, there will alot less questions or concerns in the long run. if you do go with glass, just make sure every inch of the tank and the glass brace are cleaned, and try to use a pair of rubber gloves when applying the silicone. cleaning is the most important step.

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Old 06-12-2006, 07:49 AM   #3
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Is this tank 48x13x21? If so, I've got one about ready to set up with no center brace, and no hood as of yet. Mine has tabs along one side of length, and just a single tab @ the 24" mark on the other side of length....looks like it's meant to accept a brace that just lies on the tabs from front to rear. Maybe to support a hood.

I like the idea of replacing the whole top frame, if that's how I understand JProx. Any known sources on-line?

Also should mention, our 90 gallon is 48x18x24 and has no center brace. Bought it new like that and have never been concerned about strength.

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Old 06-12-2006, 11:27 PM   #4
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our 90 gallon is 48x18x24 and has no center brace
whether or not tanks have a center brace depends on how they were designed....depending on the thickness of the glass, a center brace may not be necessary. However, if a tank had one originally and it breaks, it should be replaced since the tank was designed with the brace there to take some of the load. most likely the reason that many tanks have braces is that they plastic frame is cheaper to make than the thicker glass needed to create equal strength. It does have the advantage of making the tank lighter, too.
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Old 06-13-2006, 08:34 AM   #5
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I went during lunch yesterday and ordered a frame from my LFS. It was special order, but should be here this weekend. I have already removed the orriginal frame. It took over an hour to get it off of the tank. I found my best tool was an old fleixible bread knife. I used it to saw through both the silicone and the plastic frame. Since I am doing a full clean up I decided to cut out the old seals in the tank and clean it up for a complete reseal.
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Old 06-13-2006, 10:12 PM   #6
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well if you don't wanna go through all that trouble, just use a piece of drip edge, the thin sheet metal edging used on roofs, you can paint it black and silicone it down, I did that on a friends 55, can't even tell the difference honestly

I love my clown loaches and red tail shark!!! lol
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5 gallon, 55 gallon, missing

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