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Old 08-29-2010, 05:41 PM   #11
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Crepe

Flame baiting you'll ignore??
Your miscalculations 'bolsters your point' ??
'strawman fallacies' ??

You gotta' be kidding me.
Some people can simply never be wrong.

I don't want to get so far off topic here so let's let it go, shall we? I'm sure readers aren't interested in your or my 'misunderstandings'.

One correction. I never said cross braces and top braces didn't support a large tank. I was referring to the 'decorative' plastic perimeters.
As I suggested, it would be better to fill the tank 'outdoors' than indoors, in case of a spill. That's all there was to it.
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Old 08-29-2010, 09:10 PM   #12
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Not trying to aggravate the wound, but those plastic perimeters are well more than "decorative." They keep the tank together, albeit in conjunction with the silicone...

If you look closely at most tanks, the glass DOES NOT TOUCH on the vertical seams. There is actually a 1/8th inch bead of silicone in between the panels. This is how they are built, and the silicone does indeed provide structural integrity. That stuff is VERY strong, but not strong enough to last without the top, bottom and side bracing on a large tank....
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Old 08-29-2010, 10:58 PM   #13
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Ok, let's see if we're on the same page here.
My original reference to the plastic tank frame (and it's alleged supporting role), was for my 38G tank. My bottom frame was broke. After I filled the tank 'outdoors' and left it for a day (without the broken frame) I found no problems. Once I leveled the tank on a nice solid base indoors and filled the tank, I took black electrical tape and ran it around the base of the tank, for it's decorative effect.
Here is an actual 180G tank.



The top framing is quite extensive and certainly needed - but is the bottom framing piece? If the concensus here is that you can't operate without the bottom frame, then I'll certainly go along with that.

My whole original post was merely to suggest filling the 180G tank outdoors if the OP was leery of it leaking.
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Old 09-04-2010, 02:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgossett9 View Post
The building process: I placed the bottom glass on the basement floor with no spacer. I taped the sides up around the bottom piece. (You know how the bottom piece should be flush up against all of the sides? It wasn't. When the sides were placed around the bottom piece, there was a 1/2" gap between the bottom piece and the lengths. In other words the bottom piece was the appropriate length for the tank, but it was about 1" shy on the width.) After the sides were taped into place around the bottom base, and the gap between the two length pieces was even (about .5") I laid a bead of silicon on all of the inside edges. I used an extra thick bead on the length sides where the gaps were. After it dried, I flipped the tank over and filled those gaps on the bottom with silicon. Later I glued the support glass across the top.
I believe that you need to disassemble your tank. There should have been 1/8-1/4" gaps that shouldn't have been gaps they should have been filled with silicone. It sounds to me like you took the aquarium apart and then put it back together differently. It is possible that the sides of the tank get placed on top of the bottom slab instead of around, and the gaps were probably about the thickness of the glass. I don't know if you took pictures of the glass when you took it apart but I would suggest taking the tank apart and then doing a little more research prior to putting it back together. One important thing to note is that no glass should be put directly on glass. There should always be a layer of silicone between them. There are some good clamps out there to help you do perfect 90 degree corners and hold them till they are dry. A tank should be built in stages and not all in one sitting. But you should be certain how it all goes together prior to applying glue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgossett9 View Post
My concerns: The tank sits on an iron stand, it doesn't have plastic frames on the top or bottom, the bottom surface of glass is flush with the bottom edges of the tank, and there's gaps along each bottom length of the tank which are filled with silicon and have extra thick silicon beads inside the tank. ALL GLASS WAS PUT TOGETHER, THEN THE SILICON WAS APPLIED AS AN INNER BEAD, SILICON WASN'T PUT ON THE GLASS EDGES BEFORE SETTING THE PIECES TOGETHER. I'm concerned that if I fill it the seam along the bottom length will rip and it will pour water.
The plastic frame from most of the tanks I have seen (including my 320g) are there to cover up the unsightly silicone edges as well as protect the silicone. They don't add to the strength of the tank, but they add to the aesthetics and possibly the longevity of the tank.
The biggest concerns here are that you didn't build the tank the same way as it was originally built, and you didn't silicone the glass edges before setting the pieces together. Silicone is not exceptionally strong, the strength is in its bonding power. The surface to surface with a thin amount of silicone between is where most of your strength is. The interior bead of silicone is to ensure that there are no minor leaks and to help protect the structural part of the silicone. On some larger tanks (like mine) they have an extra piece of glass about 1/4"x1/2" that they glue to the bottom/sides of the tank for that extra holding power.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgossett9 View Post
Questions: If I put Styrofoam between the tank and the iron stand will that be sufficient to fill the tank and would I be confident it wouldn't leak? If not, what do I have to do to make this tank work?
No the Styrofoam will not be sufficient... although once you have "rebuilt" the tank then Styrofoam is good.
I am confident it will leak.
To make the tank work you need to do a complete tare down and rebuild I would invest in some corner clamps ($20-$80 depending on what you want) and either ask for step by step instructions or do some research and find some step by step instructions.

I hope that I have been a little more help then the bickering that has been going on... most of the people on here want to help and are not as concerned on "flaming"

Welcome to AA and I hope you enjoy the time you spend here.
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Old 10-18-2010, 03:01 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crepe View Post
YES you do need cross braces and top braces in a large tank. I don't know where you're hearing that you don't.
Not necessarily. My 150 gallon has no bracing.
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Old 10-18-2010, 05:17 PM   #16
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There is a lot of misinformation being diseminated here. So much so, I'm not sure where to begin. I can't understand how this tank existed with the bottom half an inch narrower than the side spacing, unless it was incorrectly assembled, as shown in the drawing in a previous post.
Large tanks don't need plastic trim to hold them together (nor do small tanks). Most really large tanks dont have any trim along the bottom.
A tank should be assembled in one operation, not in stages as suggested. If built in stages, you are pretty much guaranteed to have voids, which are places for leaks to materialize. A properly assembled tank will not leak even without the inner fillet seam.
Whether a tank needs any bracing depends on the thickness of the glass. If thick enough, no bracing is needed. Sometimes the braces are added to facilitate adding glass tops, rather than for reinforcing.
The plastic frames most commercial tanks are built with (the one piece ones) are to facilitate the assembly, and lift the bottom off any solid stand. If the glass bottom were to sit on a single grain of gravel it would break when filled. or even before. This was soon discovered by the originators of the all glass aquarium. They added a frame to raise the bottom to avoid this.
All glass aquariums do not have a 1/8" space between the panes on the butt joints that hold the tank together.
Angle clamps are not needed to assemble a tank. Tape will work, although if you are concerned, small 90 degree angle brackets can be used if you want, along with plastic clamps.
Contrary to what was also stated, styro is essential under a tank with no trim to lift the bottom. A tank with the bottom supported is stronger than one that is suspended. The stand takes the bottom pane out of the equation as far as strength goes. It also make the bottom less likely to break if something falls on it, such as a rock. If the glass can't flex, because it is fully supported, it is unlikely to break.
Getting back to the original question, a tank can be built with sides flush with the bottom, although my preference is for the sides to sit on the bottom.
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Old 10-21-2010, 01:21 AM   #17
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I aggree with billd. He hit the nail on the head. Having said that, I would rebuild and be certain it is right.
Aquarium Fish Tank Build Aquariums

Here is some info. There is also a video but I couldnt find it. Pm me if you want more info. I have built several tanks from sheets of glass.
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Old 12-14-2010, 05:31 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crepe View Post
YES you do need cross braces and top braces in a large tank. I don't know where you're hearing that you don't.
I have a 150 gallon all glass tank that is braceless from the factory.

Also.. I believe that the person you are arguing with was simply saying that the tank should be tested outside to see if it fails.

I thought this was common knowledge and sound practice when rehabbing a tank. Why your initial reaction to his post?

As for the OP. Sealant is not made to span gaps, but rather provide a water tight seal as previously stated. If during reassembly, you have spaces in the tank at the bottom, then I have to assume that you assembled it back incorrectly. The attached PDF by another poster is a good example of the potential error. I wouldn't risk it, but testing it outside on the lawn probably isn't a bad idea.
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Old 12-16-2010, 12:42 PM   #19
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One thing needs to be mentioned about setting up a tank outside for testing. the same care needs to be employed as if it were set up inside. That is to say, the tank needs to be well supported on a level, flat stand. To do otherwise is to invite failure, or cause strains that may result in failure later.
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