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Old 10-30-2003, 05:49 PM   #1
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Why use acrylic for SW rather than glass?

I've never had a SW tank so I don't know much of anything about them. Most freshwater folks use glass so I'm wonderning what the advantage would be for using acrylic?
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Old 10-30-2003, 05:59 PM   #2
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Acrylic is lighter, stronger, clearer, and is a better insulator than glass.

The downside is it scratches REAL easy. But at least you can buff out the scratches so it is not too bad...

If I had to do it again, I would go glass. Especially since my tank is in a high traffic area is is extremely prone to scratches.
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:08 PM   #3
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I watch this TV show where they make acrylic tables and they don't take the protective paper off the table while contructing it or until the table is in place because they don't want to scratch the table. Is buffing a scratch out difficult? I have cats who love to watch my fish. I bet they'd just destroy acrylic...
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:13 PM   #4
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To add, all acrylic tanks that I have seen are warrantied for life against leaks. Scratches are easy to buff out.
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:19 PM   #5
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I have never understood the "lighter" argument. How often do you move the tank for weight to matter. Unless you were just at you spaces weight limit or something, that seems kinda unimportant.

However I understand the advantages, especially if you are gonna drill your tank!

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Old 10-30-2003, 06:23 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by MACATUA
I have never understood the "lighter" argument. How often do you move the tank for weight to matter. Unless you were just at you spaces weight limit or something, that seems kinda unimportant.
I was thinking the same thing :} I guess that might be a factor if you're shipping it.
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:31 PM   #7
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My problem would be scratching the INSIDE of the tank with crushed coral, live rocks, etc

I would be concerned about something like this.... a big determined crab causing a reef avalanche, and waking up to see a huge scratch front and center (on the inside)

Me: AUUUGH!

Crab: scuttles away, chuckling..
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:43 PM   #8
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Yeah, that would not be cool! My 55 is glass, and I like it fine. But like I said, I can see the advantage if you needed to drill the tank. Much easier there.

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Old 10-30-2003, 06:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Is buffing a scratch out difficult? I have cats who love to watch my fish. I bet they'd just destroy acrylic...
Not sure how difficult it is. From what I hear, it is pretty easy to do. Unless your cats have claws, I doubt they would damage the tank at all. Unless they like to bite the tank.



Quote:
I have never understood the "lighter" argument. How often do you move the tank for weight to matter. Unless you were just at you spaces weight limit or something, that seems kinda unimportant.
Glass tanks are extremely heavy when empty. Anything over 60 gallons, you really need to two people. With acrylic, one person can move massive tanks with relative ease because they are so darn light.

Also, when getting large tanks, you save a ton on shipping...

Quote:
My problem would be scratching the INSIDE of the tank with crushed coral, live rocks, etc

I would be concerned about something like this.... a big determined crab causing a reef avalanche, and waking up to see a huge scratch front and center (on the inside)
Yeah this was a concern to me when I set the tank up. Just have to be very careful when placing the LR. Glue helps stop the avalance...

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Old 10-30-2003, 07:00 PM   #10
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What kind of glue do you use? Somebody was asking about using hot glue on another forum.

Also, why would you need to drill your tank?

Well my two boy cats do have claws. I'll be declawing them if I can keep them (long story). I'm not sure they even use their claws. They love to sit on the hood, which is not allowed, heh. And my little Noah loves to chase the fish, especially my burmese loach :]

Thank you all so much for taking the time to answer. I'd love to do sw one day so I appreciate it :]
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Old 10-30-2003, 09:18 PM   #11
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What kind of glue do you use? Somebody was asking about using hot glue on another forum.
Don't use hot glue. That stuff is garbage. We use it at the store just because it is dirt cheap. But other than that, it is totally worthless.

You can use any glue that has Cyanocrylate in it. I used the Duro brand from Wal-Mart the other day and had good results.

Quote:
Also, why would you need to drill your tank?
If you want to plumb an overflow to the back of the tank to the sump. You don't actually have to drill the tank for this. You can use a hang-on overflow just as well. That is what I use.
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Old 10-30-2003, 10:53 PM   #12
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You drill your acrylic tank to better install the filter system under the tank. With glass
you have the pre-filter and skimmer box hanging on the back of the tank. With drilling the acrylic tank you can drain from the bottom and the water will flow more efficiently.Plus it hides everything.
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Old 10-31-2003, 01:10 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by triggers
To add, all acrylic tanks that I have seen are warrantied for life against leaks. Scratches are easy to buff out.
I'm fond of glass but I'm thinking acrylic would be best if this would never happen:

"The 225 gallon community fish aquarium, which held over 150 fish, had it's bottom seem bust and it began to leak out everywhere! In the middle of the night we found ourselves putting the fish and the humans through a great deal of stress as we captured all of them and placed them into rubbermaid tubs. The tank, now cleaned, old silicone removed, and new silicone placed within, sits on the porch curing. It'll be another 48 hours before we will be able to put water in it again, praying it doesn't still leak, and likely another few days beyond that before the water will be remotely cycled to put the fish back in the aquarium. We are loosing a great number of fish to this disaster and only pray that of those remaining, they'll be strong enough to wait a bit longer."
http://www.picolio.com/
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Old 10-31-2003, 01:20 PM   #14
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Another thing that is great about acrylic is you can get all sorts of shapes and sizes that are just not possible with glass. such as a completely round tank.
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Old 10-31-2003, 02:13 PM   #15
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Just an odd quastion ? I got a tank from a guy and just filled it up and got it going and it'ds been a year now and it's fine but I never asked myself the question if it was glass or acrylic ! How can you tell ?
Non I don't wnat to take my 10 carats diamond and scratch it so...
Any suggestions ?
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Old 10-31-2003, 02:18 PM   #16
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Are there any rounded edges, or all they all right angle corners? All right angles would probably be a glass tank.

If it is acrylic, I am sure you would know. It looks a lot different than a glass tank. Nice and clear all the way around the tank. No nasty silicon sealant in the inside.
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Old 10-31-2003, 02:24 PM   #17
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Thanks it's glass then !
I was wondering because it has a lot of scratches inside where the previous substrat was so....
Thanks
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Old 10-31-2003, 02:34 PM   #18
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Everyone scratches the inside bottom of their tank one way or another. The most common way is by removing old sand and gravel using a little gardening shovel or something similar. My acrylic tank's bottom is scratched badly. But it doesn't matter since I have 5 inches of sand on top of it...

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Old 10-31-2003, 07:16 PM   #19
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Now I am really rethinking glass.. One last question for you salty guys :] When you buff a tank does it not create indentations and buff away the acrylic? I mean, you can't do that all the time, right?
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Old 11-01-2003, 05:46 PM   #20
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Hi Sati,

Don't worry about your cats. I have two cats, one male and one female. They both take turns watching my fish and I have caught them swatting at the tank on more than one occassion.

They both have their claws and have never left scratches on the acrylic.

Biggen wrote;
Quote:
Acrylic is lighter, stronger, clearer, and is a better insulator than glass.
Which is correct.
However, if you are still on the fence between glass and acrylic. Let me make it a touch harder. There is also "Starphire" glass. I am not sure whether it is a company name or a special process but I have seen some starphire glass tanks and they are VERY clear. So let's just say "Acrylic is lighter, stronger and is a better insulator than glass." Clear may no longer be a factor.

HTH
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