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Gibbletest
09-21-2015, 11:33 AM
I was cleaning my tank last night and I noticed the center brace was staring to separate from the frame. The tear is forming on the frame of the aquarium right above the center brace. Is this repairable or should I replace my tank. I watched a few videos on YouTube but wanted to see I anyone had any suggestions.


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Tangfan
09-21-2015, 12:34 PM
I have tried to repair the brace before (glue it back together) with no success. I have always ended up draining the tank and replacing the top frame. If you do not replace the frame and keep tank filled with water, you will notice the tank bowing out in the center and leaks will form.

Now as to replace the top frame or to replace the tank, it appears as of late, the only replacement frames you can get are black, so if you have a woodgrain tank, the frames will not match (frames can be ordered on-line or from non-chain pet stores who will special order it for you). Cost can also play a part into the decision, and if you can find a replacement tank fairly reasonable, then the choice is usually made for you.

As for how difficult it is to replace top frame, it is rather easy, just remove the old frame (usually comes off in pieces) and the old silicon holding it in place. Than use aquarium safe silicon (non-arsenic silicon - used for mildew control) and place a small bead around top of tank. Press new frame on to tank. Let cure for ~24-48 hours.


Hope this helps.

Gibbletest
09-21-2015, 12:47 PM
It does thanks


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Demonfish
09-21-2015, 01:37 PM
I've had success using a piece of aluminum and epoxy to hold a split center brace together. You can't just glue the split, you have to splint it with something. I've also heard of people using glass.

The lid never sits right after, replacing the top frame would be a better solution.

Tangfan
09-21-2015, 01:41 PM
A replacement frame can range from $10 to $20 from my experience. Tube of epoxy should be less than $5. I am sure that one of the people from a pet store on here can give you better estimate of prices. Least expensive tanks are typically at the $1/gal sales the chain stores have. To my knowledge, none have one going on at this time.

A used tank needs to be inspected to ensure they do not have center brace damage, or else you will to add in the cost of frame replacement.

Hope this information helps.

Gibbletest
09-21-2015, 01:56 PM
Yes. It has been helpful. Thanks. I am thinking about breaking down the tank now. I may eventually fix it or buy a new one. I am planning on selling most of the fish at the auction anyways. I can't afford a new one but maybe I will luck out and find a replacement at the auction. It is hard to do, it is the last thing from my fish room.


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aXio
09-21-2015, 04:54 PM
According to Central Pet(Aqueon), Marineland(Perfecto), and Deep Blue Professional the plastic trim has absolutely no role in the structural integrity of the tank. Those braces are only used for having something to sit glass lids on.

This is really the only place to get replacement frames...

http://www.aquariumframeswholesale.com/

Any store you go to will just order it off of that website and charge you 20% on top of the price the website lists.

Once again I have only confirmed this with those 3 companies. Might not be the case with cheaper quality tanks such as Tetra or TopFin. Also the olds chool Oceanic tanks DO use the frame structurally.

Demonfish
09-21-2015, 05:12 PM
The old style, drill-able thick-glass tanks don't need a center brace, but the cheap petco all-tempered glass tanks do. I filled up a tank and heard a "snap" and when I looked the center top of the tank was bowed out almost an inch. Not good. I drained it ASAP.

Watch the gap where the center brace was connected. No gap is good. Big gap is bad.

Gibbletest
09-21-2015, 05:18 PM
I guess I won't take any chances. The crack isn't to bad it is still attached to the top frame so I am hoping it will hold through the week. I am trying to figure out if I want to wait till after the auction and see if I find a replacement. Then I can just move it all to the new tank. If not I have two thirty talls to replace it with on a double stand.

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Gibbletest
09-21-2015, 07:38 PM
I took a picture after work. As I look at I more closely I think I might be able to fix it. But I thought get some feedback on the picture. Pardon the mess.http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/09/21/99eee51bc64f00a25e3ef073d3404f29.jpg



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mountainman36
09-21-2015, 10:46 PM
thats totally fixable/fine. use a strong clamp and a piece of wax paper. the wax paper is to put on the outside of the epoxy so the clamp doesnt stick in it. If you have a bar clam you could clamp the center of the tank to get the bow out....if there is one...Try using a tape measure to see if there is a difference at the corners and the middle.

good luck

Gibbletest
09-22-2015, 09:28 AM
I checked it this morning. It bows out about 1/8" in the middle. I assume it shouldn't be that way, is there a specific epoxy I should buy? I know you have to be careful about the type of silicon that can be used I wasn't sure about epoxy though.


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aXio
09-22-2015, 10:57 AM
I checked it this morning. It bows out about 1/8" in the middle. I assume it shouldn't be that way, is there a specific epoxy I should buy? I know you have to be careful about the type of silicon that can be used I wasn't sure about epoxy though.


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Silcone works the best when gluing to glass. You can use GE Silicone 2 (B) from Home Depot or Lowes. Or some fish stores such as us carry Aquarium Silicone from Aqueon.

Jakub

Tangfan
09-22-2015, 11:12 AM
To repair current center brace, you'll need an epoxy or glue. I am nature of the type of plastic, but it's probably a rigid PVC or possible abs. Id look for a type that could handle multiple types of plastic and includes the ones I mentioned.

When you do repair, using a clamp of some type is an excellent suggestion that I never thought of.

Leave it on until epoxy is fully cured.



Silicone is used to attach top frame to glass. Not what your looking to do at this time if I read correctly.

mountainman36
09-22-2015, 12:34 PM
yes, silicone has some flex to it, epoxy does not...check the epoxy in a spot first. some of that stuff can melt plastics, but if its safe for plastic it shoule be fine. the only thing to think about is that most epoxy doesnt like direct sunlight for extended periods...so the light fixture directly on the epoxy repair may not be so good.

Gibbletest
09-22-2015, 12:46 PM
Ok thanks everyone. I found a bar clamp and I have some epoxy made by gorilla. I think it is safe with plastics but I will check again. I think I will try fixing it tonight. When I put the bar clamp on do I need to remove some of the water in the tank first, and how tight should I have the bar clamp? Sorry for all the questions just new to aquarium repairs and I'm not to handy.


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Demonfish
09-22-2015, 01:21 PM
You want the tank the same width all the way across. I would take the water level down far enough you aren't in danger of getting epoxy in the tank or getting the repair wet. This should also reduce the bowing. It should be fish safe once cured, but water will mess up the cure and you don't want amines (the curing agent) in the tank.