FAQs on Glass Aquarium Repair, Frames/Moulding/Trim
Aquariums, Marine Tanks, Stands and
Covers, Used Gear for Marine
Systems, Designer Marine tanks, stands and covers,
Glass Aquarium Repair 1,
Glass Aquarium Repair 2,
Glass Aquarium Repair 3,
Glass Aquarium Repair 4,
Glass Aquarium Repair 5, &
FAQs on Repairing Glass Tank:
Scratches/Blemishes, Cross-Braces, Leaks, Chips/Cracks, Whole Panes, Tools: Cutting Glass, Silicone; Techniques; Olde Tank (Slate Bottom, Metal Frame, Pecora...) Repairs,
Acrylic Aquarium Repair,
Used Aquarium Gear,
This material is largely non-structural (unless
part of bracing)... useful for for assembling tanks... However,
it is necessary to hide water lines, and must be complete or
entirely absent for the bottom rim for supporting the
"floating bottom" within it.
Aqueonproducts.com (used to be
55 gal. top frame 12/20/17
hello, could you help find a place to buy a 55 gal. top fame with center piece?
<Possibly... they differ by company... do you know the maker/manufacturer here?
Perhaps sending a pic along will help us identify... and the dimensions of the
top's outside. Bob Fenner>
Top frame 4/1/16
Looking for a top frame for 84 in long 24 in width can you help or no
where to look
<...? See; as in READ on WWM re.... IF you can find out who the
manufacturer was.... Otherwise, one can fashion their own. Keep reading;
don't write. Bob Fenner>
bottom brace. On a glass tank; cut it away?
I did find what I was looking for (see below); but it is such an old post and
products have gotten less well made so I wanted to reaffirm. I want to paint the
bottom of my 75 gallon Top Fin aquarium. The bottom brace is in the way. Can I
safely cut it off?
<I would NOT do so. Likely IS functional, and if there should be a catastrophic
Isn't the bottom glass just one big "euro-brace" anyway?
<Mmm; most are more ornamental... useful for building the tank itself (holding
the panels in place while the Silastic is curing mainly>
Was going to use a Dremel. Finally I get to ask EXPERTS! Everybody keeps telling
me it will burst and I am scared.
Thanks so much,
<Again; leave it in place. Bob Fenner>
"Tank Bottom Brace 1/20/08 Well I was in the process of loading my 125g tank
into my truck earlier today, and wouldn't you know the center brace on the
bottom of the tank caught my bed liner and snapped in half. <Ooops!> I was
wondering if this will affect the tank in any way. <No.> I've been reading
most of the posts and only found issues dealing with the top brace. My
personal solution was to just super-glue 1/4in Plexi to both sides of the
brace and silicon it to the bottom of the tank altogether. Could you please
give me your advice. <If you feel like repairing it look for 'plastic
welder' type two part epoxies available at most hardware or automotive
stores. The only reason the bottom frame even has the cross brace is that
the use the same frame for the top, cutting production costs. These cross
braces help (minimally) to reduce bowing of the glass on top, but do
nothing for the bottom.> Thank you< Welcome, Scott V.>"
Drilled 180 trim question
<Brad; had to strip away the HTML code sent along; and your image file
is an order of magnitude too big>
Hello! First timer here but I have used your site a lot for information.
I am upgrading my reef tank to a 180 72"x24"x24" unfortunately when
unloading the tank one side (24"side) the bottom trim broke off in one
piece at the corners (imagine a rectangle missing one short side if it
far side of the picture I attached) the tank is made with 1/2" glass for
the four sides and 3/4" on the bottom and has a fully intact top rim
with two plastic braces I can't find replacement trim for the bottom in
this size so can I epoxy weld it back together or is it possible to use
this tank without the bottom rim and place it on 1/2" to 3/4 foam?
<I'd try the first repair... most important that the braces areas are
And if I did place it on foam it's drilled in both corners do I just cut
the foam in those areas to run my plumbing? Thanks in advance!!
<Again; I'd leave the bottom trim in place. What's the brand name
(manufacturer) of this tank? They most all will sell replacement trim.
T'were it me, I'd go w/ your proposed repair for mainly looks. We have
"trim" FAQs files on WWM if you'd like to review others
Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: Drilled 180 trim question 4/29/14
Thanks for the quick response. As far as the manufacturer I'm not exactly
sure I bought this tank off a local reef club member and friend of mine for
$100!! It does have a sticker that says (built by Cl march 2007 and has an
<Oh! A Perfecto....
I've tried contacting my LFS to order me one but they insist they can't.
<Contact the manufacturer as above>
If I do decide to epoxy I would plastic weld at the corners and use
<Mmm; s/b okay for looks... not much for strength; but this should be okay>
on the bottom and side to reattach to the glass. Forgot to add that the
bottom frame is the same as the top with the 2 braces and all of the tanks
structural seals are in excellent shape thanks again!
ORDER. Looking for aq. braces
Am Mr. Bartel, Emailing you to ask if you have (Cross Brace) In stock
and if Yes you do Have, I will like you to mail me back with Types and
Prices you do Have so that i will let you know how many Order, And let
me know if you accept Credit Cards as Payment and Allow Pick Up at your
Location..Hope to hear from you soon
<Look up the actual manufacturer/s of the brand/s you have and contact
them re bracing. Bob Fenner>
vertical cracks in plastic trim around 29G all glass
Hello. I have an all-glass 29 gallon aquarium which was purchased in
about 1996. I have had it in storage for about 13 years, in my attic.
The temps range from about minus 10 to about 120 degrees. I recently
noticed some vertical cracks on the corners of the plastic trim, at the
top and bottom of the tank. I am guessing this is from expansion and
contraction in the hot and cold. I haven't put water in it yet, but it
worked fine back when I put in storage. I can send you pictures of the
cracks, if you like. I am wondering if this plastic trim is necessary,
structurally, in order to hold the water?
<Mmm, not really; but let me be more exact. Such frames basically
perform two non-aesthetic
functions: They hold the glass in place while the unit is being
assembled/Siliconed, and they protect the edges, corners from incidental
damage. And yes; some folks find them attractive. You don't need the
frame, but if part of the bottom is overly damaged or missing, the whole
of it should be removed; so that the tank is supported evenly (level and
on the bottom>
Or are the silicone joints and the glass all that matters, structurally?
(apart from the stand, which I
have a very sturdy stand).
What are options for repair, if necessary?
<Leaving as is; maybe trying to fix (epoxy?) the present frame; removing
and leaving off, or replacing the frame>
Thanks in advance,
<Welcome. Bob F>
Re: vertical cracks in plastic trim around 29G all glass
Thanks a bunch, Bob.
I look forward to getting back into aquaria, now that the kids are a bit
Hope you enjoy the Holidays,
<And you. BobF>
Considerations in short-term storage of glass aquarium 7/3/12
I recently purchased a new 75 gallon Visio glass tank. It was drilled over
the weekend and I painted the back the next morning. Since Sunday
morning, I've had the tank sitting in my garage on a furniture dolly (at
least I think that is what they are called - has four 2x4s in a square
Anyway, I noticed this morning that some of the silicone has
deteriorated/come loose where the top trim pieces meet the glass (but
I'm only seeing this at the top of the front and back panes on either
side of the center brace, not the side panes - and the center brace
silicone looks fine). All other seams appear to be in excellent
condition. I can't say for sure that it wasn't that way to begin
with (i.e. when I bought it) because I don't remember looking up under
the top trim pieces in the store.
I'm probably worried for nothing, but that's normal for me. Could this
have been caused by leaving the tank on the furniture dolly for a couple
Of course, while on the dolly some of the bottom frame of the tank was not
supported, but the tank is empty and had nothing in it, not even a piece
of paper. I've since taken it off the dolly and set it flat on the
garage floor, just in case. What about the heat of the garage
deteriorating the silicone? Weather has been mid 80s outside and pretty
hot in the garage by late afternoon. I'm also thinking (maybe?) that the
small amount of, but constant, vibration caused by drilling the holes
caused the issue, especially considering that it's the top trim.
<Possibly, but not from the vibration, but more in terms of handling the
In terms of storing this tank, it would continue to be in the garage until
I'm done building my stand (probably 3-4 weeks). If you have any other
suggestions for best short-term storage of the tank?
<Nothing to worry about here. The top trim is just that, trim.
Has nothing to do with the tank's ability to hold water.> Thanks! Matt
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
45 Gallon Used Tank - Center Brace And Bottom Trim --
Good evening crew,
I just bought a used 45 gallon tank (36x12.5x24tall). The previous
owner had a MH light centered on it and the center brace, at the top,
<<Mmm, yes'¦but be aware that over time even seemingly
innocuous 'standard' fluorescent lighting will harden and make
brittle these plastic braces>>
I have been reading your site and found to put a piece of glass under
the brace and secure it with silicone.
<<Yes'¦likely the most simplistic approach. Another
option is to contact the tank manufacturer and try to obtain a new trim
Being as I have some understanding of physics (engineering degree that
I don't use), this does not make much sense to me.
I believe the center brace works in tension (hold the glass from bowing
The glass you recommend placing under the (broken) plastic brace would
do a bit in compression (holding the tank glass from bowing IN) but
nothing in tension.
This leaves all of the tensile force depending on the silicone.
Can the silicone really take the same tensile force that the plastic
<<Think about it, this is what holds the 'sides' of
your/a glass tank together. Very large glass tanks use glass braces
'siliconed' betwixt the panels as we describe. If the brace is
properly sized and installed, the silicone allowed to cure, it will
hold. You can 'beef it up' a bit by affixing a second small
piece of glass (layered) to the ends of the glass brace (do this first
and allow to cure overnight) to increase the attachment surface
Also, having searched the site, I cannot seem to find a definitive
answer regarding the bottom "trim." One corner on the trim of
the tank I bought is broken thru and it slides off the tank. Is the
trim a structural component of the tank?
<<No...Generally a decorative component and/or used to protect
the edges of the glass>>
Do I need to replace the entire thing?
<<Up to you'¦assuming you can find a
Can I use it as is?
Or can I repair it in some way?
<<Perhaps a bit of 'black' Duct Tape?>>
Thank you for your patience and answers.
<<Happy to share'¦ EricR>>
55 Gallon tank repair 12/18/11
<Hiya - Darrel here>
I just bought a used 55 gal tank in order to do a little expanding.
<I seem to expand every time I eat a cheeseburger>
I began to fill the tank and about 3/4 of the way, I noticed it
had major leaks (thank God I tested in the garage).
<You are wise, Jeffrey. You'd be AMAZED how many experienced
aquarists fail to take these very basic steps>
So I marked the leaks, drained it and began taking off the
bottom plastic frame.
<Marking is ANOTEHR thing many of us fail to remember to do until we
have it all apart and in our hands>
Unfortunately, I pulled a little too hard and cracked a side
portion off (12 1/2 side).
<I hate when that happens>
My question is do I need to replace the frame now also or can I just
use super glue or some other glue to make it hold or is it necessary to
purchase a set of frames?
<That depends on exactly HOW it cracked. Let me explain:>
<The hard plastic rim on the bottom does three things: (1)
it looks good (2) it can hold the glass in place while the silicone is
curing (3) it distributes the weight of the tank around the
<The first two are of no interest to us at the moment: (1) You can
repair it and won't see the difference (2) the REST of the silicone
is still holding the glass in place - you'll be digging out old
silicone and injecting new silicone into specific areas and NOT
removing an entire glass side or bottom. In fact -- after injecting the
silicone and then SLATHERING the broken frame area with extra material
- and then pushing that frame piece into place & allowing it to
cure, this section will outlast the rest of the tank!>
<Which brings us to part 3: If you broke the SIDE portion of the
plastic and the part that the glass rests on is still intact - go ye
forth and think not of this again!>
<If you broke the BOTTOM portion '¦ such that the frame
piece that rests on the stand and in turn supports the frame has been
broken off - then you'll need to exercise a bit of care to get in
placed properly, sealed well -- and then allowed to cure in the
tank's "natural" position '¦ with the glass
pressing the silicone which is pressing the broken plastic which is
resting on the stand. Even placing some weight on the top frame of the
tank to pre-stress it is a good idea.>
<Done with reasonable care, which seems to be your hallmark and a
bit of common sense, you'll be fine.>
Top frame question 11/19/11
<Hiya - Darrel here>
Found an older 100 gallon tank (72x18x18) with 1/2" thick
<Just laying there? Wow, some people have all the luck.>
The closest thing to a manufacturer's mark I found was a vaguely
fish shaped label about 1/2" long and 1/4" tall that looked
like it was white writing on a black background.
<The aquarium manufacturing industry has always been populated with
small companies and what we call "Mom & Pop" operators
that come and go '¦ You'd be surprised how many use a fish
as a symbol.>
Leak test on the (flat and level) front porch went fine. Cleaned up
<Excellent!!! You have NO IDEA how many people skip that step and
end up with significant water on their living room floor!!>
There is a slot for a center brace, but there wasn't one
with it. I bought a glass lid for it.
My question is: Is it structurally necessary, or just for supporting
the glass cover?
<It's probably OK, Becky. Normally no one would manufacture a 6
foot long tank without a center brace however, 18 inches tall is
unusually short for a 6 foot long tank and 1/2 inch glass is very
thick. Measure the exact width (right at the center) when empty and
again when full and see if the glass bows outward at all. My guess is
that it won't in which case you don't have to worry. >
If it's just for supporting the glass hood, can I just cut a piece
of acrylic that fits from one lip of the rim to the other?
<yes. The biggest concern I have is that 72 inches is a long stretch
for the relatively thin material of a glass cover. Acrylic will work
Thanks in advance,
De-Rimming a 29 Gallon Tank 11/14/11
Before I get into my problem, please disregard the last e mail that I
sent you guys, as it was blank and was a goof up on my part.
Now, I am starting a 29 gallon tank and have built the stand and gotten
everything ready, but I want it to be rimless. I have been following
someone else's build off of DFWMAS and he removed the rim off of
his 29 gallon and it has been set up for a while now with no
I removed the rim off of my 29 gallon and water tested it. It did not
leak, but I did notice that the front and back glass panels bowed about
1/10 or 1/8 of an inch.
I love the rimless look and my build has been coming along very nicely,
but I want some reassurance that if I set this tank up rimless it will
not explode on me! What do you guys at WWM think?
<I would add a "Euro Brace" along the front and back
inside glass near, or on the very top>
I look forward to hearing from you.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: De-Rimming a 29 Gallon Tank 11/14/11
Could I use an acrylic brace and just silicone it to
the inside of the front and back tank walls?
<Mmm, no... Silicones don't adhere well to Acrylic... Read here:
and here: http://wetwebmedia.com/glstksilasticf3.htm
Aqueon tank frame removal, poss. replacement
Subject: Hello Crew
Hopefully you can help me. I came across your site while researching a
question that I have. I recently bought a 125G Aqueon Reef Ready tank
second hand from the original owner. According to him the tank was
bought less than 2 years ago brand new and he has had it running ever
When I went to pick it up, I noticed that the bottom trim was very
brittle and half way off. According to your site, this bottom trim is
mainly for putting the tank together and for cosmetics. I have sent an
email to Aqueon regarding a replacement trim.
<Yes, not too hard to replace. Do take care when cutting the extant
off... the glass edges are quite sharp... and make sure you're
doing this work on a clean surface... any hard material under the glass
may result in a crack>
My question is if I chose to leave the bottom trim off, could I use the
tank as it is?
<Yes; given it is set on a strong, level and planar surface. Please
read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/aqstands.htm
I assume that without the trim I would need to use a stand with a
plywood top to evenly distribute the weight of the bottom of the
<And perhaps a piece of foam: http://wetwebmedia.com/aqstdleveling.htm
The stand I have is made by All Glass Aquarium. The tank rests on
it's border and there is no plywood top to the stand. Could I just
screw a plywood top to this stand and use as is?
<Do read the above. Yes to the plywood, and likely a piece of foam
twixt... then measuring empty and as it fills to assure/shim the stand
at the bottom, to assure all is level>
Thanks for your time.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Hello Crew 9/26/11
Thanks very much Bob. I appreciate the response. I will wait to see if
Aqueon gets back tome regarding the trim,
<Am very sure they will>
but it is good to know that I have another course if I choose.
Crack in Plastic Base Trim of Glass Aquarium
24"x12"x24"/Tank Repair 6/8/2011
I bought a 30 gallon tall glass aquarium
(24"x12"x24") from someone on Craigslist. I filled
it up in the backyard and there was no leaking and kept it full
for about 6 hours. When I brought it into the house to start
setting up, I noticed that there was a crack in the plastic base
trim in the center of one of the long panels. It looks like it
was previously filled with some rubbery type substance. Should I
be worried that the base will fail when the tank is filled with
substrate, gravel and water? I have read sites that say that
it's purely cosmetic yet others that share my concern. Is the
plastic trim replaceable? If so, where would I be able to get a
<No worries, is cosmetic. As far as replacing the trim, you
would need to know the manufacturer of the tank and write to
I'd appreciate any advice that you can give me.
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Kind regards, Allen
|Re Crack in Plastic Base Trim of Glass Aquarium
24"x12"x24"/Tank Repair 6/8/2011
Many thanks, Salty Dog! :-)
<You're welcome, Allen. James (Salty Dog)
Chip in Fish Tank and Cracks in plastic
I just bought a 125 gallon fish tank off craigslist after wanting
to upgrade from my 55 gallon. Between the stand, the tank, and
everything that came with it, it was a complete steal. But of
course, as usual, you don't find things that are wrong with
it until you get home, or it happens in the transit....
There is a chip on the corner of the tank...sad face. The glass
is about 1 cm thick and the chip is on the back panel. I am
attaching pictures and I hope that you can see well enough to see
what is going on in the pictures, however with the dark color of
where the glass joins it's really hard to see. I will try to
describe it as best as I can. It is about four inches from the
bottom of the tank in the back panel.
<Mmm, I wish it were four inches from the top.>
With the glass being about 1 cm thick, the chip is about 2mm deep
and touches the side panel, but does not affect the side panel.
I'm not sure how thick the side panel is, but it honestly
seems like it is thinner than the front and back panels,
<Mmm, I hope not. The sides should be the same thickness as
the front and back>
so I don't know how close the chip is to the inside of the
tank. The inside of the tank doesn't seem to be affected, I
ran my fingers over the silicone seal and there are no cracks
anywhere. The tank was made in June 2002 and I'm not sure how
long ago it was up and running. Currently I have the tank sitting
on my front porch filled literally to the brim and almost
overflowing to test its water-tight integrity and there are no
leaks (7 hours later). I guess I just wanted your opinion on
whether or not you think this chip is something I should worry
about. I have read every one of the pages you have on chips and
cracks and I am leaning towards it being ok.
<I would likely go ahead and use this tank, however, I would
definitely "fill in" the chipped, missing area with
Silastic (any variety, color as it's outside the water) to
prevent cuts from hands/fingers should they be in this area...
You can "glom" it on, let it cure, and trim it later w/
a single edge razor blade>
Also, the plastic on top of the tank is cracked in quite a few
places and I was wondering if that is something I should be
worried about and if I should replace it, leave it alone, or
maybe fill them with silicone or something.
<I would fill these gaps with a medium-bodied acrylate
Thank you so much for your help and this great website!
<And you, BobF>
Re: 120 Gallon Plumbing -- 11/07/10
Thanks for your detailed response!!!
<<Quite welcome, Brent>>
When I went by to pick up the aquarium it was a 75 gallon with a
'Glass Holes' overflow kit.
<<Okay'¦a big difference from the 120 you mentioned
The overflow had two 1" holes. I still ended up buying it from
him. I would like to make my 75 gallon rimless. What would be the best
way to take the rim off?
<<With 'much' caution and patience...use single-edge
razor blades/a razor knife to cut away the sealant and then carefully
pry off the trim piece. But... There's likely a center brace
component of the trim piece that if removed, will compromise the
structural integrity of the tank and lead to bowing and possible
catastrophic failure of the seams>>
Would you need to euro-brace the top?
<<At the very least, yes>>
I have no experience with glass work.
<<You can have the glass cut for you, but I suggest you find
someone (another hobbyist in the your area, maybe) who is more familiar
with doing what you propose - at the very least, to oversee the work
and advise you with sizing and installing the bracing>>
I have searched Reef Central and Google but I have not come across a
<<Check with your local fish shops as mentioned before - a shop
that does tank-builds/setups might be willing to assist you, though not
necessarily for "free">>
<<Always welcome... EricR>>
How To Remove Tank Trim 10/28/10
I have a 72-Gallon BowFront Oceanic aquarium. I've read much of the
FAQ's about repairing such issues with the cross-brace on larger
tanks. I've been fortunate that my tank hasn't exploded yet.
I've had it over a year and the cross-brace was broken when I got
it. Consequently, I didn't know the dangers and when I top it off
with fresh water, I fill it to the brim. All that being said, I
purchased a new trim piece. For the life of me though I cannot seem to
get the old trim off. I tried heating a portion up with a blow dryer
but to no avail.
By the way, there is still gravel in the tank with a few pieces of rock
and about 5 inches of water in the tank. I could move the two clown
loaches I have in there if I absolutely have to.
<May have to... remove most of the water... in order to
"squeeze the tank vertical panels in enough to get new frame on...
So what exactly is the best method of removing the old trim?
<Sharp tools, gloves, patience and wrist strength... Cutting under
the existing (bad) frame to remove most of the olde Silicone...
carefully, make that CAREFULLY pulling frame off with a
pliers/pliers-like hand tool... cleaning up the rest of the olde
Silicone with single-edged razor blades and appropriate solvent (and
When it comes time to install the new one, do I just turn the new trim
piece upside down and run a bead of aquarium sealer in the track where
the trip meets the top edge of the glass?
<Put a thin bead on top and one on either side near the top... of
new Silastic... AFTER all the olde is removed completely... Press the
new frame down entirely>
Do I also need to run another bead along the inside edge of the trim
piece AFTER it is in place?
<No... not after... will just be a mess, and non-functional... the
continuous bead on top is most important... to prevent drips...
Thank you for your wonderful answers to dealing with these issues!
~David in Springfield
<Mmm, you might benefit from reading here:
and perusing the linked files above. Bob Fenner, who urges you again,
to TAKE YOUR TIME!>
Re: How To Remove Tank Trim 10/28/10
Thank you for the prompt reply. I got brave this morning and I slid a
hacksaw blade between the side glass and the trim.
<Yikes! Take care not to scratch the glass>
There was enough gap/play there to use a sawing motion to cut the trim
piece at the corners. Once I cut that one end piece, I used the hair
blower to soften the Silastic and with some steady, strong force I was
able to prise it up. Once I got one part to break loose, the rest kind
of came along and dislodged as well.
I used a straight blade razor like for scraping paint to remove all the
Silastic. There are still ultra-thin traces. Am I understanding I need
to use a solvent to remove even those traces down to just bare glass.
What solvent works best?
<See where you were referred to please... Toluene, Xylene...>
The new trim piece fits quite easily with no pressure needed. I did a
pre-fit check. I purchased three each 3oz tubes of Loctite Clear
Silicone that is aquarium safe. Do you recommend that I take that back
to Lowe's and try to find Silastic?
<... 100%... reading>
Thanks again for your help with this project!
75 Gallon Hex Front Aquarium/Aquarium Repair
Well we bought this hex front aquarium and the frame / top &
some bottom frame braces are cracked thru. The center and 2 side
braces are intact. The question I have is how bad is this and how
can I go about repairing it?
What are my choices for that?
<If I'm looking at what you are referring to in the
photos, those are trim pieces, purely cosmetic, and have no
effect on the integrity of the tank.
In future queries, do resize photos to around 200-300KB. File
size of your photos are much too large for our use. Thanks. James
Question regarding the trim base on a 150 gallon tank
<Yawnnnn! AM here now, sorry>
I purchased a 150 gallon tank that was in incredible condition in
November of 2008. I did not have a stand for it until this past
weekend. Yes, it sat on my garage floor for almost 1.5 years. The
silicon was still very pliable, so I didn't fear any problems.
I had the stand bad <made?> by a wood working cabinet maker. When
the tank was placed on the stand the bottom trim sat flush on both ends
of the six foot tank, but in the middle the tank was maybe 1/8 of an
inch above the stand surface. I hoped this would not be a problem.
<Mmm, could be>
I placed about 100 pounds of pea gravel and then filled the tank about
80% full. The tank is for an aquatic turtle. I had no issues that
night. The next morning I awoke with maybe 1/2 gallon of water in the
floor. It was running along the trim on the bottom of the tank and then
down onto the floor. No water was coming from anywhere higher than the
<Leaks can/do originate elsewhere... just "make their way
out" at the bottom>
I drained the tank, removed the gravel and have dried the tank. The
tank is currently on the stand with shims under each corner so that it
dries completely underneath. I have inspected the tank closely, but
find no obvious leak. I did find a small hairline fracture in the
plastic bottom trim. It is near the corner on the front. It goes from
top to bottom of the 1 inch visible trim.
<Mmm, these cracks are usually not problematical. Read here:
I also noticed that a few inches from that crack is another one that is
under the tank, the same thing a really hairline crack in the trim. It
doesn't appear that the two cracks are connected making for two
distinct pieces of framing, but I can't tell. The top and bottom
trims both have two middle supports running from the front to the
I have done some searching today and from what I can gather these trims
do not support the tank? Is this correct?
<For the most part, yes. Are more for "holding all
together" while being assembled, "floating" the
Since there are girders in the middle connecting the front and back I
am assuming they do have structural support to the tank.
<Not much, no; though can be important if not supporting the bottom
about evenly all the way around>
Right now I am perplexed as to what to do.
<Likely there is a "split seam" in the Silastic somewhere
along a joint>
I am thinking that probably the silicone needs to be replaced since the
tank sat in the garage and was in temperature extremes. If I were to
simply reseal one corner, maybe a foot each direction from the corner,
would that do anything to help? I would remove the old silicone and
wipe down the glass
<With a solvent, after cleaning thoroughly w/ single edged razor
before reapplying, but my question lies in the area where the old meets
the new. I really don't want to remove all of the silicone and redo
the entire tank.
<This is really the best approach... unless... do you want to try
partially filling it... let's say 50% and seeing if the leak
My other question is in regards to the frame. Will the slight crack in
the trim on the side/visible face or the one that is on the trim that
is under the tank cause me issues?
<Not likely, but please send along photos ...>
What about the fact that the surface of the stand doesn't touch
flush to all four sides of the trim uniformly. I read about putting
Styrofoam under the tank, but that would be unsightly, though I would
do it if needed.
<I would shim/support the under-surfaces of the two long/length runs
of this stand... with a piece of wood turned long end up, underneath
the current pieces... looking like a "T" from the end if you
understand, with drilling, long screws... And check the tank again for
leaks, possibly cut out, reseal>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Question regarding the trim base on a 150 gallon
Thank you for your help! Much appreciated.
I will try to email you some photos tonight. The micro crack that is
visible on the side of the trim will be easy to photograph, but the one
on the bottom might be difficult, since my wife won't be able to
assist in lifting.
<Do take care here>
I hate removing the perfect silicon job, but I think I will have to go
<Mmm, I would wait, hold off... see if "straightening the
stand" solves this slow leak issue. Commonly does>
I will go ahead and remove all of it along the four bottom seams and
the four vertical seams. The silicon that lies between the glass
joints, will that remain when I remove the portion that is within the
<Yes. I would definitely NOT cut this out at this
Also, I am uncertain about the shimming of the stand. The stand is made
of hardwood (oak) and has six legs that are 3"x3". the
surface of the stand is the only portion that is plywood.
<And this is "very" securely attached to the top of the
six uprights? The lateral runners? And still there is the
aforementioned 1/8" gap? I might shim another piece of ply atop
this, and screw down through the existing... to make the top level AND
planar. Please see here: http://wetwebmedia.com/aqstands.htm
and the linked files above>
The builder didn't have a planer wide enough and we decided to just
make the top out of plywood and he trimmed it with oak.
<This is fine>
Once the tank is on the stand you don't see the plywood only the
We thought this would take care of any irregularities on the surface.
With a tank of that size I was unsure how to determine if the tank
bottom itself is warped.
I am assuming that the 'sag' in the middle is the stand.
<Yes, almost assuredly so>
Are you recommending putting shims under the middle two legs to see if
that boosts the 'sag'?
<Not the legs, but twixt another piece of ply atop the existing
Doesn't need to be very thick>
I would feel much better if all four bottom edges of the tank trim were
flush with the stand,
<Yes... this is necessary>
but not sure how I go about doing it.
<Please read where you are referred, and do write back if my writing
isn't clear, complete. BobF>
Re: Question regarding the trim base on a 150 gallon tank
Thank you Bob!
I will speak to the builder and ask if he has ideas on making the top
The stand is very well made, probably weighs about 200 pounds.
Everything is mitered and jointed together. It could easily support 3-4
times the weight.
<An adequate "margin of safety">
I just need to figure out how to fix the problem without having to tear
up the stand I paid $600 for. The sag in the middle is probably less
than 1/8", but you can definitely tell it doesn't sit flush.
Would placing a small strip of cardboard under the trim along the
middle 3-4' of tank length do anything?
<Mmm, not enough>
The stand has a flat top, no border so anything placed under will be
<Perhaps adding a "decorative strip" around the front,
sides, after the leveling piece of ply is added...? B>
Re: Question regarding the trim base on a 150 gallon tank
Spoke to the builder and he is going to stop by
tonight. I am going to delay removing the old sealant and resealing. We
will see if we can get the top flush with the bottom of the tank and I
will fill it up again. You believe that it is possible that a leak can
be fixed in this manner?
<Yes... as I prev. stated...>
Not saying this will diagnosis my problem, but curious if a leak can be
stopped purely be adjusting the flushness of the stand surface and not
messing with the sealant.
<This is so... please see my resume, posted on WWM. I am an olde
timer in this trade, interest>
The builder said that when he attached the top (it is about 1.5"
thick) to the stand body the screws pulled the middle down slightly. He
loosened the middle screws and put a 1/16th shim between the top and
the middle of the body-length.
He thought that had created a flat surface. He used a 4ft level and
didn't notice a sag. We are hopeful that maybe when the tank
settled the stand that it created this 'sag'. He said it would
be easy to loosen the screws to see if the sag fixed itself or to add
another 1/16th" shim on top of the other.
If doing this doesn't fix our 'flushness' problem I have
Rather than attempting to put a new top on to create a perimeter
flushness what are your thoughts of inserting a 1" wide shim in
the middle of the front and back right at the center of the trim
length? This would not create a 100% perimeter flush trim, but would
create a strength point at the center of the 6ft length. Would that be
suitable or just a poor solution to the problem?
<Worth trying... but I would place a number of shims... thicker in
the mid-spaces twixt the uprights, thinner toward them...>
It would make my day if fixing the surface solves the problem. This is
my first tank great than 75 gallon and it opens up another world of
concerns regarding structure that so many don't even think about. I
thought I had all bases covered, but guess it only takes a small error
to expound greatly as the size increases.
Have a great day and thank you for all your help!
Re: Question regarding the trim base on a 150 gallon
tank -- 04/22/10
We attempted to create a stand surface so that the entire tank trim
would sit flush, but were unable to do so. After checking the stand
surface it appears level and flat. All that we could guess is that the
trim itself is not 100% straight. I have to wonder (I assume you would
know from your experience) that the trim is not glued on by an exact
science...even a little extra sealant on one portion could create an
We experimented with different combinations of 1/16" and
1/32" shims between the stand top and the stand body. We attempted
to create a surface that mirrored the tank, but were unable to do
<Mmm, have you "flipped the tank over" and used a six foot
or longer... or support for a smaller level, to check the levelness of
the bottom frame?>
We did make the gaps between the tank and stand smaller in thickness
and in length. I have not placed water in the tank yet. I am going to
cut some of the 1/32" shims down and place them directly under the
tank trim under the places that have the longest lateral gaps. This
will obviously cut down dramatically how much the tank could possibly
When we moved the tank from the stand to work on the tank I found that
water was trickling out of the empty tank from within the trim. I had
mentioned that there is a crack in the trim that is on the side
(visible face) and extends onto the bottom of the trim, under the tank.
I could press the area around the bottom crack and water would slowly
bead out. I do know now how large the 'void' airspace is within
<About half the total volume>
but it does have a small amount of water within. I am going to attempt
to get all of that water absorbed out so it won't deter from
determining if the leak is still present.
I do worry about the crack on the bottom. The stand builder is an
engineer by trade, but doesn't have the experience with aquariums.
He asked where does the tank load apply the most pressure downwards? Is
it in the corners?
All along the bottom edge... gravity. There is some translational
torsional force in addition at the corners, but this is generally
insignificant in terms of structural integrity>
It appears to me that the load should theoretically be uniform along
the perimeter of the tank (i.e. the trim) since that is the only area
that touches the stand.
<This is so>
The girders in the middle of the tank that connect the front and back
trim are flush to the tank bottom and do NOT touch the stand surface
That crack just makes me feel uncomfortable since the load will be
pressing directly on it.
<Mmm... I would contact the tank manufacturer... ask their
Perhaps request a replacement frame, cut away the old, Silicone on the
new. If it's possible annealing the present>
As mentioned, the visible gap between the tank bottom trim and the
stand was in the center of the 6ft lateral length. After making our
adjustments we now have to flush corners (diagonal from each other) and
BUT, two diagonal corners do 'hover' maybe 1/32".
<This should be fine>
I will place the shims under those corners and fill with water in
stages over the next few days and see what happens.
I will let you know. Take care and have a great Thursday!
<And you. BobF>
Aquarium Repair Question 1/20/10
<Hello Rick, James with you today.>
We have a 55 gal. aquarium and are replacing the top frame because of a
broken cross-brace that resulted in significant bowing. Thankfully
there were no leaks and we were able to acquire a replacement frame
economically (from glasscages.com). Removal of the top frame was easy
since it only seemed to be bonded at the corners (if at all -- removal
was too easy).
We used a razor blade to scrape the silicone sealant off the exterior
of the empty aquarium and expected to be able to rest the new frame
over the glass until we had the time to clean the rest of the glass and
install it <the frame> correctly. This is where we ran into a
problem. Not only would the frame not slip right on, attempts to cajole
it with a putty knife were unsuccessful -- we could get the corners on
the back or front (pick one) to match up but we could not get the
opposite side to fit simultaneously. I have three theories: 1) The
previous owners affected a repair that included resealing the seams and
breaking the center brace to gain the flexibility necessary to make the
top frame fit (the bottom frame fits snugly and the glass all seems to
meet, while there is a gap of silicon filling the space between the
adjoining pieces of glass); 2) We got a bad frame; and 3) our approach
is all wrong. Can you share your wisdom?
<A couple of things come to mind, obviously the width of the tank is
slightly longer than the norm and/or the side pieces were replaced at
one time with slightly wider panes.
A quick check can be made by measuring the width of the aquarium at
both corners, and to measure the outside dimension of the grooves in
the plastic frame at the corners.
They should be relatively close, within 1/32 of an inch or less. If the
difference is greater, there is not too much you can do here other than
replacing the side panes with the correct width. One idea I have that
may help, providing your bath tub is large enough, would be to submerge
the frame in hot water for 10-15 minutes to soften it somewhat, then
immediately try to mount the frame to the tank. The softness of the
plastic may allow it to be pliable enough to fit over the glass of your
tank. A little physical persuasion may be necessary, and do wear
gloves, I don't want your hand slipping off and possibly cutting
yourself on the glass edges. Bob may also input here with an additional
suggestion.><<Careful use of a rubber mallet in addition.
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Cracked Frame 10/15/09
I have one long continuous crack in the bottom black plastic frame of
my 210 gallon tank along the entire bottom of one side of the tank.
<From what I can tell you are talking about the black plastic frame
on an all glass style tank?>
The crack has also wrapped around the front corner and spread about 8
inches in on the front section. I filled the crack on the front section
with silicone and this seems to have stopped the crack from spreading.
also covered the cracked side section with JB Weld hoping this would
help stop future cracking. I would describe the cracking as hairline
since the cracks are not large, but what concerns me is that it is one
continuous crack along the entire bottom of frame and due to how All
Glass builds their tanks, the side section with the primary crack is a
weight bearing side.
<Doug, generally these frames are considered visually pleasing, not
so much functional, they are also helpful during the initial assembly
of the tank. If it was the center brace on the top I would be more
concerned. Please read here
Please let me know if I am overreacting or if this something I truly
need to worry about.
<Your likely in good shape, but it never hurts to call the
manufacturer and have them send you a replacement for you to fit on
when the tank is empty.
Good luck and don't hesitate to contact All Glass,
Repairing 55 gal tank, trim, brace...
<Hey DAngelo! JustinN here tonight!>
I recently received a used 55 gal tank that the previous owner had kept
for years outside. After giving it a good cleaning I found the top trim
very loose and cracked in half in a couple of places. The bottom trim
is also a little loose.
<Ah yes, the baking of the sun. This former boat repair/body man
knows it all too well.>
I decided to remove the old top trim and wanted to know if it could be
glued with epoxy or super glue and then use silicone to reattach it to
<Does this trim include a brace for the tank? If so, I wouldn't
bother... see below.>
After I removed the trim I thought about also removing all the old
silicone inside and replacing it. The tank doesn't leak, but I
thought it may be a good idea to do it due to the age of the tank.
<More so than the age, I'd be worried about the effects of the
sun and time.>
After reading some old post here I found that you recommend keeping the
top and bottom trim attached before resealing the sides and bottom
seams. If this is so, should I fix the top and bottom first and let
them cure before attempting to do the inside of the tank or can I do it
all at once? Thanks for any help you can provide.
<Resealing a tank is a tricky feat to start with -- considering the
deterioration of the frame (and potentially the bracing), I
wouldn't trust the tank as far as I can throw it... and leverage
for a 55 gallon isn't
real great in a wheelchair ;) Unfortunately, it really sounds like
you've got a lot of work involved for a relatively common (and
typically cheap) tank.. If you were to do a reseal job, I would likely
reseal every seam first, and perhaps even look into buying/building an
entirely new trim fascia for this tank. A less weathered tank might be
more optimal. Good luck! -JustinN>
Fish Tank Problem (72 gallon All-Glass
Bowfront)--------No Date on Purpose ;-P 05/26/09
I have a 72 gallon All-Glass Aquarium 72-gallon bowfront set-up
that I purchased in 2002. Recently the plastic top near the front
bow has started
to split (see attached photo).
<Unfortunately all too common with these tanks over
I was wondering what my options were to manage this (a) can I
order a replacement top plastic piece (if so, any suggestions on
how to install)?,
(b)any way to repair this without removing the top piece and (b)
do I have to replace the tank?
<Well, there are a couple of avenues. You can fabricate an
acrylic brace and bolt it in with nylon screws and nuts. Search
some of the larger aquarium forums on removing the center brace
and you will find much info on this. For my tank I would simply
call up the manufacturer and procure a new top trim piece. They
are not all that expensive. You will need to drain the tank down
somewhat, enough to where the bowing at the top is small enough
to fit the new piece. Replacing is fairly straightforward, you
will need to rip off/out the old trim. This can easily be done
with your fingers alone, they will just ache when you are done!
Then cut off what silicone you can with a razor, followed by
siliconing in the new trim.
Not all of the silicone needs to be completely off the glass as
the plastic does not truly bond to it anyhow.>
I've attached two photos:
1) - top view of the split in the top plastic piece
2) - left front seam (all other seams seem fine, however; when I
run my fingers along the seam it does seem to widen a bit toward
the bottom of the tank).
<I do not see an issue with this from the photo, has it
changed over time? Many times there will be larger gaps in the
seam on the top or bottom, no real issue for concern.>
Any advice you can provide would be very valued.
With warm regards,
<All above, Scott V., Fresno, CA>
Re: Fish Tank Problem (72 gallon All-Glass Bowfront)
Scott, thank you so much for the well thought response. I will go
with replacing the top piece!
<Sounds good. Best, Scott V.>
Re: Fish Tank Problem (72 gallon
All-Glass Bowfront) 9/3/09
I just wanted to follow up and let you know that your advice was
<Ah, good to know when one feels like they are losing their
I ordered the replacement top piece from Aqueon (All Glass
* I used a common moving strap that I put around the tank (about
10 inches from the top) as a safety net as I removed the existing
top piece (I used a Dremel and small hand saw to separate into
* After removal of the existing top piece and old silicone, I put
down new silicone and fit the new piece in fairly easily.
* I let the silicone set for 15 minutes and then removed the
moving strap....everything went smoothly and the tank is in great
Definitely felt good about spending $50 for the top piece vs. the
cost of a new tank and hassle of scrapping an old one!
Again, thanks for the sage advice.
<Thank you for the update.>
Aquarium frame replacement help 8/12/09
I appreciate the information you provide and have found it most
helpful. I have tried to find my answer all night and could not. I have
a 150 gallon tank I purchased with stand for 50.00. I am resealing it.
It has 3 cracks in the bottom frame, one in the middle and one on each
side ~ 1 ft from the corner and the cracks are vertical and only on the
front. With all I have read this is not a problem. The top frame
however needed replaced for sure.
I removed the old one, cleaned all of the silicone off and then the new
frame wouldn't go on. It seems to be just a little shy of fitting
<Mmm... you may need to contact the supplier, ask for one a skosh
larger... otherwise, if you have some practical way of heating up the
one have, you may find it will slip (with two friends pushing it toward
the free end and a rubber mallet's help) over the top glass>
Front to back and side to side are both too short by about a 1/16th in.
I am afraid to force it on. I thought about laying it in the sun for
awhile and see if the heat helped but then thought what if it shrinks
The tank frame is 72 x 18 in., the glass is 7/16ths in. thick and I see
an anchor on what's left of a little sticker on the bottom. The
original frame had one center brace the new frame has two and has a
number 91120 on it.
<Mmm... is this an old Atlas tank?>
Any help would be appreciated. If this frame won't work can you
point me to appropriate options?
<Well... FWIW, or rather for what the frame's are worth
structurally, I'd just go with something home made that is
ornamental around the edges, but of use in the middle, one brace or
two, or devise a Euro-brace (see WWM, the Net re) and forget about
straddling bracing... In other words, you are not "locked
into" using a conventional to brace... these are more for looks,
holding the panels in place while the Silastic sealant is setting up,
curing. Bob Fenner>
Cracked Bottom Trim On A 90 Gallon Tank --
<<Uh-oh, pressure/expectations [grin]'¦Hiya
I asked this question prior and received an adequate answer
<<Only 'adequate''¦ (just messing with
but I have a little more to the story now.
I have a 90 gallon RR AGA tank set up fully stocked and doing well. I
bought the tank used. The bottom black trim started to crack along the
back after I filled it and has now extended extensively all around the
base. Some pieces have even come off.
<<Not a concern>>
It hasn't bothered me (you guys reassured me it's only
<<Indeed'¦and a small amount of cushion/protection to
the glass edges>>
but I am breaking down the tank because I am moving to Connecticut. I
have a friend that wants the tank but I'm scared to give it to him
because of the trim.
I'm sure once it's empty the entire trim will come off. It
definitely needs to come off and it can't be glued back on as it
will be in pieces.
<<You could try contacting the tank manufacturer to see if you
can obtain a new bottom trim piece>>
The trim around the top is fine. Can the tank sit on the stand without
<<Sure'¦and though not really necessary, lining the top
of the stand with something like the thin fan-fold insulation material
from a home center (Lowe's/HD) may provide some peace of mind
I would hate for him to have a disaster so I'm looking for a little
guidance on what to suggest to him. I was going to just get rid of the
tank and buy myself a new one once I got settled in CT. I appreciate
any help you guys can give me! I want to do the right thing.
<<If the bottom trim is simply coming off due to brittleness of
the plastic/loss of adhesion there shouldn't be any
concerns'¦but'¦final decision is up to
<<Happy to share'¦ EricR>>
Re: Cracked Bottom Trim On A 90 Gallon Tank --
Thank you Eric!
<<Quite welcome Heidi>>
You guys always make me feel reassured!
I did try to contact the manufacturer back when it first started
cracking. And, to no surprise, there was no phone number and they did
not reply to emails. Go figure!
Thanks again for being a great resource for us needy hobbyists! No
<<Happy to help my friend'¦ EricR>>
Crack in Trim 7/2/09
I recently bought a used 72 gallon Oceanic bowfront tank. While
cleaning the tank, I noticed that the trim along the bottom is
cracked at the right front corner. I have checked the tank all
over, and everything else seems to be in good order (the braces,
the glass, etc.) I was wondering if this crack is a concern; i.e.
will this compromise the structural integrity of he tank, or is
it purely aesthetic?
<Nope, a purely aesthetic issue here, no worries.>
Please find attached a picture of the crack.
<Likely either from a drop at some point or the corner getting
Thank you for your time and help!!!
48" Bowfront all glass 5/14/09
I have a 48" all glass bowfront tank which is leaking from the
lower right hand corner, but in order to make repairs I need to replace
the plastic trim surrounding the tank. I <Are> there any place on
the Web where I might get those braces?
<I'd contact the manufacturer of the tank or an etailer that
carries All Glass aquariums. A Google search should give you plenty of
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Tank Repair, trim/frame 3/11/09
Hi I'm Dylan.
<Hello Dylan, James here today.>
I have a fifty five gallon tall fish tank that is missing the bottom
trim/molding, is it needed?
<No, just cosmetic.>
If so where can I get it some, one told me I should just make one out
of wood and dry wall screws?
<Too much work for me.>
You be the judge and how much do you think it would cost me for new
<I don't know the pricing of trim, but I'm sure it isn't
Better to contact your dealer.>
Thank you for your time!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>
Missing Tank Frame 2/7/09 Hello WWM crew.
<Hello Johnny.> I am a freshwater hobbyist and found your site by
searching the web for "fish tank repairs" That's right I
have a broken tank. I did find the subject in your site but continued
to have an error when on your site. I don't know why, I figure my
pc don't like fish. <I am a Mac guy anyway!> Any how this is
my situation. A friend of mine has given me a 100 gallon long tank that
he said was leaking and today I picked it up. WOW its heavy and it is a
mess! Now cleaning the glass is no problem and resealing the tank is
something I've done before. However the frame or most of it is
missing. This is the only thing that will keep me from having this tank
restored to its intended capacity. <OK, not life or death.> I
have the ability to have a stainless steel frame made and welded at
cost but I don't know if this is the best way to go with reframing
this tank. <No, not really. If the tank needs a functional cross
brace that may have been built into the frame there are better ways to
repair IMO.> I was hoping to converse with some one on this matter.
The tank has a recessed bottom and if it is necessary for you to see it
I can take photos and send them to you. <Well, the trim can be
functional it some cases. For many it is just aesthetic. So, my first
question to you is do you know if the frame has or had any kind of
cross brace built in? If not you need not worry about the integrity of
the tank. If so do search the web and WWM re crossbracing or
eurobracing. Either way you can contact the tank's manufacturer (if
you know who made it) regarding replacement frames. If the glass
thickness and tank dimensions are one of the more common sizes you may
be able to get a frame that will fit from about any tank
manufacturer.> I have had fish over 25 years and this is my first
tank over 50 gallons. And I'm as excited about this tank as I was
about my first tank. The child will never die and as they say BIGGER IS
BETTER. <Heee, know that feeling!> I'm looking forward to
your reply JOHNNY <Hope this helps out, Scott V.>
Re: Thanks... Missing Tank Frame 2/8/09
Thanks for your prompt reply on the missing frame. <My pleasure.>
Cross bracing, interesting. Never thought of that! It would be so much
easier to add that rather than the whole frame. <Yes.> And as far
as looks I plan on making my own hood for this one. <Good.> I am
going to do some more investigation on this as you suggested. And will
be reading more from WWM on the cross bracing and other things. I see a
lot of interesting topics in this site (one of the best I've
found). <Thank you, I think so too.> I will be sending all my
fish buddies to it too. Again I would like to thank you for your prompt
reply. And I have added you to my mail addresses for future use. JOHNNY
<LOL, thanks and welcome, Scott V.>
|Vertical cracks in tank trim
1/3/09 Okay, I'm sure that this question has been
asked a hundred times, but I just can't seem to find an answer
that is really applicable to my situation. So, sorry if you've
already answered this!! <Don't think we have... as yet!>
I recently bought a 75 gallon aquarium with lots of accessories for
just $60. <Way under a dollar per pound!> The only thing
lacking was the stand. I finally got one at the local LFS after
convincing hubby that $210 wasn't that much to spend on it and
would be much, much better than getting a cheap used dresser. In my
excitement, I quickly set up the tank and filled it (I had tested
it partly when I first got it but didn't fill it all the way up
then) to about 2" from the top. I left it overnight and for
the next day, and there was no sign of leakage or anything. Due to
all the silt from the play sand (gave up and got gravel instead), I
drained it and refilled it. I switched over the filters, decor, etc
from a smaller tank that was housing the fish that were to go into
the 75g. I also used some media from another tank. That all went
well, and this is day 4 with water and everything. I have not had
any trouble with leaking or anything. My concern is that the trim
is cracked vertically at 3 and possibly all 4 of the bottom
corners. There may be more cracks that I have not seen yet. Hubby
thinks they are hideous, but I don't even notice them because
I'm looking at the fish. But I am worried that they may cause
the tank to fail. <Me too...> I really don't want to lose
my fish and ruin my house! There is even a bit of a gap between the
trim and the glass on one corner. I'm not sure what brand the
tank is, but there is a symbol like a slightly tipped anchor on the
bottom of the tank. The symbol looks a sort of like the Perfecto
symbol on one of my lights. <May well be> I, unfortunately,
have not taken any pictures of these cracks. <Really need to see
these> The bottom and top middle braces seem to be intact. Also,
the silicone seems just fine. I do not see any chips or cracks or
even scratches in the glass. I know I was hasty in filling this
tank, but I was just so excited about finally getting the stand.
Also, I had posted on aquarium forums regarding this question in
the past (among others), but no one addressed the cracked trim.
Everyone focused on the other questions. I am finding conflicting
information regarding whether or not I need to worry about it. I
really, really do not want to attempt trying to replace the trim. I
don't have the time or patience to try this nor do I have that
DIY ability. I'd rather just buy a new tank if need be.
Especially since I do not know the brand of the tank and hence
would not know who to contact about it. Thanks for any help!!!
Bekah Loofboro <Where are the cracks? In the "front"
as in the vertical pieces? Do they run only horizontally? Did you
place anything under the glass, or the entire frame underneath? IF
the cracking is "only superficial"... i.e. it's not
splitting outward, allowing uneven pressure, you're likely
fine... but I might put a piece of foam under the tank, twixt the
stand and it, to even out the weight... Please do take, send
images... Bob Fenner>
Re: Vertical cracks in tank trim Thanks for
the quick reply! I was able to take a few pictures of the cracks
in the trim. <Nice ones!> I couldn't really get the
ones in the back of the tank. All four corners on the top and the
bottom trim have cracks running vertically (some slightly
horizontal, but overall vertical). So, I guess that's 8
corner cracks, really. I also took a look at the bottom brace in
the middle, and that also has a crack in it, though that runs
from the back of the tank to about the middle of the tank
(parallel to the ends of the tank, perpendicular to the front and
back of the tank). I was not able to get a picture of that.
Attached are pictures of the front bottom corners and one of the
top front corners. So, could I get by without replacing the
frame(s)? If the bottom brace wasn't cracked, would it be
safe? The stand is a Perfecto, so it is designed to take the
weight at the corners (that's what the salesman said).
<Correct> The middle is open, and we did not put anything
under it. <Agree> The glass sits on top of the frame,
rather than flush with the frame, if that makes sense. Bekah
Loofboro <These are strange cracks... unusual in that all are
about the same... I do think they are due to shrinking of the
material of the frames themselves... The best way I can express
myself re the use of this tank is: "If it were mine, and
knowing what I do re Perfecto and their fine history of glass
aquarium manufacture, I would continue to use this tank as
is." It is my opinion that this tank is unlikely to fail as
a consequence of these frame cracks. Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Broken trim, Center support 10/31/08 I have a
75 gallon aquarium that I purchased from PETSMART in 1994. The center
brace snapped at the back trim and took some of the moulding with it. I
am at a loss. Do you have any suggestions? <Measure the footprint
(width and length) of the tank. Just about any tank manufacturer with
the same footprint tank will be able to supply you with new trim, just
be sure it has the center brace too (most will at this size). Scott
Aquarium repair made easier, glass, frame removal
10/20/08 Good Morning Crew from Florida!! <Hello Tom.> I
hope all is well with all Crew and readers. <Me too!> I thought
that I would pass on some information that I learned trying to repair a
150G AGA tank. In taking down the tank in preparation for a massive
remodel project, I broke one of the braces. Lucky for us, we have a
125G long 'back up' tank to house our fishy family. <Quite a
backup!> Five weeks later the house is done and I have my garage
back, so I started working on replacing the frame. I found that I
wasn't getting anywhere trying to cut the silicone loose to pry the
frame off. Let me add that I have arthritis in the thumbs on both hands
and don't have the grip strength that I once had. <These frames
can be tough to remove.> After some thinking, I came up with a
better way to remove the frame. All it takes is a Dremel, a large
number of cutting wheels and a steady hand. Through trial and error, I
found that if I cut the frame along the top edge, the 'high'
part of the frame, not the recessed part that the glass lids sit in, I
was able to separate the frame into 2 pieces (the top and the side)
making it easier to remove. Naturally, I cut the silicone first. Even
though I took my time and was careful not to touch the glass with the
cutting wheels, the times I did resulted in no damage to the glass and
more often then not, a broken cutting wheel. Anyone trying this will
find that the wheel also melts the plastic, so multiple passes are
required to get down to the glass. After spending about an hour just
using the knife to cut the silicone and not making any headway, I
removed one long side and the 2 short sides in about 15 minutes when I
ran out of cutting wheels. Today it is off to Home Depot for more
cutting wheels and the Toluene for cleaning the silicone that I
couldn't scrape off (this I got from reading the archives, it does
pay to read!!!). I hope this makes a somewhat painful process (at least
with my arthritis) easier to get done. Once again, I want to thank the
Crew for their collective efforts. When you share your skills/knowledge
to help others, blessings come back tenfold to you. Thanks again!
<Thank you for sharing, Scott V.> Thomas N. (Tom)
idea for refinishing decorative area on hexagon
tank... Repair, frame -- 09/07/08 Hello. Firstly, I want to
thank you for operating this wonderful, and informative website. I have
learned much by reading through the countless questions and answers
here. <Ahh! It is for you, your benefit> My question today deals
with a 29 gallon hexagon tank that my girlfriend came by. It is made by
O'Dell, <A worthy manufacturer of the seventies, eighties... of
glass systems> and it is the type on which the top and bottom have a
border of some type of glossy black film. <Mmm, plastic> I am
sure that it looked really good in its day, but now the film is damaged
and peeling off, so I would like to rework this nice, if not the most
desirable shaped, tank. <This "surround" is useful... to
prevent chipping, directly damaging the glass> I was thinking of
peeling off this glossy black film, <Best to place something here
for the above reason and looks... though not structurally important>
and painting the underlying wood/particle board with glossy black
Rustoleum. <A good idea> The water in the tank does not come in
contact with this outside area; it is strictly decorative. I looked
into getting perhaps a glossy black contact paper, but all I found was
stuff that was selling for $65 per 49 foot roll, and I definitely do
not need that much. What do you think of my idea of using Rustoleum in
this instance? <Also a good product (line) and application>
Thanks for your suggestions. Best regards, Jeff <And you, Bob
Broken 55g top frame w/ support 8/16/08 Hi,
Love your site... very informative! <Great, thank you!> I found a
link in a post on where to purchase the top frame with support for a
55g tank. The link would not work for me. Any other suggestions?
<Most all manufacturers will sell these frames, it would be best to
contact your particular manufacturer directly. Most 55 gallon tanks are
made to the same specs, if you have no luck with your particular
manufacturer do check the dimensions vs. those posted at
Aqueonproducts.com (used to be AGA), they have been particularly
helpful/customer service oriented.> Warmest Regards! <Have a good
one, Scott V.>
Staining and varnishing tank trim, and live
rock pollution? 2/22/08 Hi. <Hello there.> I am refinishing
an old wood trimmed tank with mahogany stain and spar varnish.
<Sounds nice!> I am curing my live rock at the same time.
<Good way to do things.> When I had a chance to think about it, I
realized that doing both in my basement with the skimmer running on the
rock might be introducing fumes into the rock. <Unless you have the
can right next to the rock, I wouldn't worry. Do be sure to provide
sufficient ventilation for yourself and your rock will be fine.> Do
you feel that I should stop doing this work in the same basement?
<No, but by all means do if you are concerned about the fumes, for
your own sake.> Any suggestions on testing whether I have de-lived
my rock? <Your rock will be fine, enjoy, Scott V.>
Scared, please help! Tank trim gaps 2/2/08
Crew, <Hello Ben.> Thanks in advance. I'll preface this by
saying that I will call the manufacturer on Monday. My new Visio
240gal. was put on it's stand yesterday. If I crouch down and look
from one end down the length of the bottom plastic trim in front, the
trim separates from the glass in 2 spots about 1/8". Is this
normal? <It is not normal, nor is it uncommon.> It does not
appear that it has separated from any silicone, there's just this
gap. Where the front pane meets the bottom pane inside, that silicone
seems just fine. Are those 1.5" trims around the top & bottom
of tanks siliconed to the outside of the tank glass? <Yes they are
siliconed on. You are likely seeing this gapping due to the glass
deflecting a bit while the tank is full. You have nothing to worry
about here, this is purely an aesthetic issue.> Thanks, Ben
<Welcome, relax and enjoy your weekend, Scott V.>
Re: Scared, please help! Tank trim gaps
2/2/08 Scott, Thank You for your quick reply. I probably was not
clear, but the tank is empty and I haven't filled it yet. Do they
fill at the factory to test and that could have made it bow the first
time? I guess I'll clear the kids from the room and fill with a
hose to test. Thanks Again! <Even gapping when empty there is no
concern here. Your structure (sic, 's strength. RMF) comes from the
glass to glass bond. This is purely cosmetic, nothing to worry about
structurally. Welcome, Scott V.>
|Help locating aquarium trim 5/9/07 Hello
Sir, I am really hoping you can point me in the direction where I
can buy plastic aquarium trim like this. I think the pictures
explain themselves and I really can not give you any background on
the tank except it was purchased at a reptile show in California
2-3 years ago. Thank you for your time, jack <Mmm, am almost
certain this is one of Bob Mancuso ("Stay In Reptile")
units... Use the Net to try and locate him, the company. Bob
Tank Repair Question - 4/21/07 Crew, <Hi Chris> I
am fixing to repair a tank, and have a question for you. What is the
easiest way to remove the plastic trim from the top and bottom of the
tank, so I can remove the broken glass and replace it. Is there a type
of solvent, or will this just "pop" off with enough force. I
don't want to break it. <I'd use a single edge razor or
something similarly slim and sharp (maybe even a flexible sharpened
putty knife) to slip up under the trim and free it from the
silicon's grip, then gently pry off.> Thanks, Chris Harris
<You're welcome and good luck! -Lynn>
Question about 110 gallon fish tank-
please look , :) , Glass Aq. repair 7/7/06 Hi there I came across
your site and reviewed the many questions that were answered in the
aquarium repair sections. I did not see what I was looking for and was
hoping to get expert advice. <Good... we really need a comprehensive
couple of articles with good pix here... showing how to cut out old
beads, hold panels together...> I recently got a 110 gallon
freshwater aquarium from a reputable neighbor. They upgraded and I got
the tank pretty cheap. They included a low metal stand for it as well,
but it is rusting on the top. I plan to clean up and sand down as much
rust as possible. <Good... and coat the metal with a rust-inhibiting
paint... Do take care re support in turn under this stand...> The
fish tank is very heavy and it was myself and my boyfriend who brought
it into the apartment, its very heavy! <I know> There was a point
when bringing it in that it was vertical on its nose and was
"dropped" on its side in the grass, it was slowed down to not
shatter as it fell over but it did fall to the side. This did not
create any cracks or chips that I could see. Would this have loosened
anything? Structure wise? <Not likely, no> Most everything looks
pretty tight, no loose silicone. The only damage I see is the secondary
wooden trim and the primary hard plastic/metal? trim has come undone at
the base on one corner. <Can either just "push" this in
place while filling, or use Silastic to re-fit it permanently. Is more
ornamental than functional, but you want the tank to "sit"
evenly on its edges on the stand> There's also a
"chip"/shard about 1/2 inch on the outside of the tank near
the edge of the seam. The tank appears to have double panes of glass on
the sides, but its hard to tell, <Mmm... unusual. Some commercial
glass tank manufacturers over the years did make aquariums with doubled
bottoms. Never doubled sides as far as I'm aware> it looks very
thick compared to my 20 gallon. <Is> The chip doesn't worry
me, its the bottom where the trim has come loose along with the
silicone holding it onto the glass. Is this seen as a real problem?
<Not likely, no> I don't want 110 gallons of water damage in
my apartment. Also, is it a bad thing to store the tank on its side
vertically up? <Should be of no consequence. Not a problem> The
sides seem very strong and durable for storing it this way but I
wasn't sure if it compromised the structure or not. It has a black
hard plastic or metal panes around the top and bottom glued on and
additional wood paneling that's very thick on top of that, it seems
sound. Thanks for any advice you can provide me, hopefully it will be
good news so my fishies can move up in their world. Kristin <The
chip is more concern to me... I would try filling outdoors on the
stand... once the latter is spiffed up. Bob Fenner>
Re: Question about 110 gallon fish tank- please look , :)
7/7/06 Thank you for your quick reply! That's a good idea to
show pictures of the process of restructuring a tank- most helpful to
those who are visually inclined. I in turn will get you a photo of the
chip on my tank- it almost seems like its a inverted bubble more than a
chip, its so smooth. Hopefully I can get my camera back within the
week. Thank you again! Kristin <Thank you for the follow up... will
post your pic with our corr. when you send it along. Bob
Tank perimeter trim and back wall over flow vents
8/30/06 Hey crew! <Jean-T> I made a sump out of an old 55 gal
tank. I added silicone over the existing silicone <Not a good
practice... doesn't adhere well. Should be cut out, replaced...>
just to be safe. (I know this is somewhat useless since its the film
between the glass that does the job.. <Oh! Yes> but I feel better
still) I noticed that the plastic perimeter trim on the top and bottom
of the tank was cracked in all corners. <Mmm, this is more for
assembly, looks than structural...> I am having a hard time finding
replacements at local pet shops and have no credit cards to order them
via internet. <Make a deal with someone who does... send them a
check in advance...> Do I really need this trim ? <Mmm, very
likely not> I have 4 baffles in the sump so this may compensate as
reinforcement?? <To some extent yes... I wouldn't worry re...
you probably won't have this filled very high...> Also I have 4
drains across the top of my back wall (1 inch bulk head) and my pump
will be pushing 1200 gph. Do I need to pipe vents into the overflows so
they can draw air? <Mmm, likely a very good idea to have
"tees" at the down junctions... may well have to aspirate
these to cut the "gurgling" noise... See WWM...> I once
herd that if no vent is present it can greatly lessen flow? is his
true? <Mmm, in some cases these small diameter lines can/do operate
as siphons... but this is not a good idea all the way around... if the
size, number of drains is insufficient and one or more should become
occluded...> Do you think my drains will handle 1200 gph? <No...
all this is gone over and over...> my return to the tank is via 4
3/4 inch returns ? does this sound right for 1200 gph in a 90 gal tank?
<Depends on the pumping mechanism, but no... not real 1,200 gallons
per hour> tanks so ever very much for your precious time!
thanks!!!!!!!!!! Tristan!!! <Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marsetupindex2.htm
Scroll down to the areas on plumbing, overflows, bulkheads, noise...
and read... Better to re-drill, fit large-enough through-puts now. Bob
Fenner> Q?...55 gal. molding
12/10/06 Hey guys great site. <Thank you for your kind words.
Mich with you tonight.> I just bought an old 55 gallon tank, and the
top molding that connects the center of the tank in the middle/top is
broken off. I filled it up outside and it seems to bow out around less
than 1/4 inch so is this ok? <Mmmm, No.> This kind of thing
relates to my job a little and I believe the tank is in little danger
of (exploding outward at the middle?!!?)BUT I am a newbie aquarist of 6
months. <But with good sensibilities!> Someone told me they had a
tank like this and they box knifed the silicone and removed the top
molding (empty of course) and replaced it with a new part sealed it and
it was good. Is this likely and/or recommended? (no/yes 55 gal)
<Highly recommended. It's quite easy to do. The replacement
molding is cheap. You will enhance the structural integrity of the
tank. Really, there's no down side.> I'm very dexterous so I
could do this no problem but is the right thing to do?
<Absolutely!> I only saw one other inquiry like this but it only
pertained to damaged exterior edge of the molding whereas mine is
missing the middle divider. <Just do it! Just do it! Just do it!>
Thanks so much thank you for your time. <You are quite welcome.
-Mich> Larry b.
100 gallon saltwater aquarium A friend of mine has
recently given me a 100 gallon tank. The only problem with the tank is
the plastic trim at the top and bottom of the tank has been busted. He
was using the tank for a snake. Do I need to replace the molding?
<Yes, while the top molding is probably more cosmetic than anything,
it does provide some extra support, especially on longer tanks needing
extra support in the center. However, the molding on the bottom is what
the whole tank is resting on. If it is broken, the tank may or may not
be level, or could settle later is it breaks further. With the tank
full of water you will most likely end up with leaks.> If so, any
suggestions where I could get the materials... <I've never
personally had to track down parts, but if you can identify the
manufacturer, that would be the best place to start. Most of them have
web sites now and should be easy to locate. Is there a tag on the
bottom or any markings on the glass with the manufacturer's name?
Would your friend recall the brand otherwise? I hope that helps some.
Best of luck to you! Scott V.>
100 gallon saltwater aquarium A friend of mine has
recently given me a 100 gallon tank. The only problem with the tank is
the plastic trim at the top and bottom of the tank has been
busted'¦He was using the tank for a
snake'¦'¦Do I need to replace the molding. If so any
suggestions where I could get the materials'¦.. <The
plastic frames on all-glass aquariums have little to do with structural
integrity/function other than supporting the individual panels during
assembly, having a place for the top to be secured. The bottom piece
though, must be entire... to provide a level cushion for the glass that
"floats" inside it. If concerned, interested you can contact
the maker of the tank and likely buy, silicone a replacement top on.
Ask your friend re the manufacturer's name (there are only a few in
the trade). Bob Fenner>
Finding Aquarium trim 4/30/04 Crew, I am having a very
very hard time trying to local aquarium trim for the top and bottom for
my tank I am building. The size of the tank isn't standard (74L x
18W x 44H), so I need to buy stock lengths of it and cut it down
myself. I am looking for the something like Oceanic's trim. But
they will not sell any. So... I am looking to you to see if you know of
such a place that would sell it. Thanks for your help. Peter <the
trim is indeed available, but not always listed for how uncommon they
are in sales. Do ask some of the big mail order companies perhaps... I
recall seeing them recently at ThatFishPlace.com Best of luck,
Repair question Hi, My name is Michelle and I tried to
find my answer on your web site, came close but not close enough, I
have a 135 glass aquarium, I am trying to save it, the plastic molding
on the top I repaired with aquarium sealant and some old plastic edging
from some glass tops, it is pretty sturdy. The problem is the bottom
plastic is trash, bottom is the plastic molding for looks or for
support, (remember this is a 135 gallon aquarium, I have tried to find
any info on the net and I come up with nothing, is there something I
can make [without going to extremes of melting and molding one myself).
<You could fashion strips of plastic or wood...> Is there a
reason you cannot find these parts? <Not enough demand... however,
if you can find out the make (All-Glass, Odell, Oceanic...) of the
tank, you might contact the manufacturer and purchase replacement
framing from them> They make and sell the aquarium sealant to redo
your tank but not the molding? Maybe not enough of a demand or is it
that they want you to buy a new one? Why sell the sealant then? Can
anyone help? Thank you for your time, Michelle W. <Michelle, have
folks in the trade help you discern who made the tank... or settle on
DIYing something for the frame. These moldings are largely
ornamental... for looks. Though the frames do lend minimal support in
the process of assembly... Bob Fenner>
Cushioning Glass 12 Aug 2004 Hi <Hi
Mike, MacL here.> What do you recommend for cushioning glass from
being in contact with the frame, whether it is made of wood or metal.
If silicone is used by the time the frame is covered the silicone
already skimming over. <Gosh silicone is all I have ever heard being
used to cushion glass.> Thanks Mike
Aquarium trim - replacements 10/05/04
Hello, I am having a very hard time finding the plastic frame that goes
around the top and bottom of the tank. I have looked and made phone
calls but have had no luck finding any where to get them. I would
greatly appreciate it if you could help me out. Thank you Janel
<Janel... most any local pet store can order these for you. I do
encourage you to support your LFS. If for some reason this doe snot
work out, many mail order companies like That Fish Place sell these
items (if not visible on the website, do call them... I am certain they
have them). http://www.thatpetplace.com/ best of
Plastic molded tank trim?... Bob, I am setting up an old
30 Gal. tank that use to belong to my father like 30 years age.
It looks Identical to the newer tanks with the plastic molded
tank trim on the top. Before even considering using it I filled
it up and left it for a few weeks and it seemed to be tight, but
I did notice that the corners of the molded plastic tank trim on
one side were cracked. It appeared to be cracked a long time ago
and I was worried that maybe if they broke the tank would fall
apart. <Might> Then I found this article on your site and
it said the trim Ã¢'¬little or no structural
support'¬Â. So is this something I
don'¬"¢t need to worry about? <Actually,
yes... if the trim doesn't offer continuous support on the
bottom... If the bottom is not "free-floating" (i.e. it
rests on just a narrow, flat edge of the plastic bottom), you may
be able to just go with it as is, or patch the cracked piece/s
with silicone sealant...> And if that does not provide the
support to the tank what does? <The silicone between the glass
panels, at the edges where they are joined. In most cases, the
plastic "framing" provides a simple frame to assemble
the tank and "looks" only> Also I was going to use
an Eclipse 3 System for my filtration. Is that good enough for a
30 Gal tank? <A very nice unit. Fine for most freshwater and
with a skimmer added, marine set-ups. Bob Fenner> Thanks Eric
(Your Article) Tank Trim Sorry I was not clear. What I am looking
for is the plastic that covers the top edge of the tank. this
provides the lip for the glass top, which I have. Dwight Triplett
<ahhhh...yes. This is the molded tank trim. If your tank was
commercially made (Perfecto, O'Dell, etc) look up some of the
mail order companies on the net... many sell this tank trim. I
know that Perfecto makes a lot of them... but they are expensive
and offer little or no structural support. Many aquarists have
nicely stained/painted crown molding mitered and polyurethane and
silicone sealed in its stead rather than spend $30 for
replacement trim on a tank that is only worth $65. Try some of
the big dealers advertised on this site or That Fish Place if you
are near Pennsylvania. Best regards, Anthony>
|Re: Plastic molded tank trim?... cracks in
the top tank trim corner. Now that I look at it harder I think they
are from when someone pried it off to reseal the tank. <Ahh, not
an uncommon occurrence. Should be no problems... Do read here re
stands: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/tksstds.htm Be chatting, Bob
Fenner> Thanks again, Eric
Tank Trim Sorry I was not clear. What I am looking for is the
plastic that covers the top edge of the tank. this provides the lip for
the glass top, which I have. Dwight Triplett <ahhhh...yes. This is
the molded tank trim. If your tank was commercially made (Perfecto,
O'Dell, etc) look up some of the mail order companies on the net...
many sell this tank trim. I know that Perfecto makes a lot of them...
but they are expensive and offer little or no structural support. Many
aquarists have nicely stained/painted crown molding mitered and
polyurethane and silicone sealed in its stead rather than spend $30 for
replacement trim on a tank that is only worth $65. Try some of the big
dealers advertised on this site or That Fish Place if you are near
Pennsylvania. Best regards, Anthony>