I have a 55g (48x12x21). The rim is cracked/split. It is a turtle tank so it is only half full. Can I de-rim the tank to clean up appearances? I don't plan to ever have it more than half full again. Here is a link to a few pictures of the split. http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ge...tank-okay.html
What do you think. Can I safely de-rim a half full 55g?
There has been much debate on this subject. One says the rim is there for structural reinforcement. The other says its there just to make gluing easier and aesthetics.
Ive seen a guys do it to a 10 gallon on youtube. But it looked like a lot of work and does not make a much better appearance. You still have the gobby glue in the corners and the thick sloppy seams.
One thing to is the glass is not beveled so It will be razor sharp.
If it were me I would take it off, clean it up, bevel the inside edge. Place an order with your local plastic/acrylic shop. Have them cut to size. (id go black to match the bottom) then caulk the top place the new rim on and solvent weld the corners so you got a nice new brace.
At half full, its probably not needed, but you're the one taking the risk, and the one who has to make that decision.
I've got a 55 in the basement that has a blown seam(front right). It holds water fine as long as there's less than about 15" of water in it. As soon as you go higher it starts leaking again... the seam seperates enough that water flows out the top.
When I researched my Rimless build I learned the engineering concerns are based on HxLxGlass thickness. The stress center is 1/3 up the front middle of the front/back paines of glass. The longer they are the more leverage the water has to place pressure on that paine.
I would be happy to bet that if you de-rimmed a standard 55 with 1/4" glass and filed that it would fail. I would be very confident tat it will hold 1/3 water level w/o problem.
My 41 gl is 36 long x 15 h with that length & glass I could have gone to 23 h, according to a spec sheet I found. with my 3/8" glass.
If all you seams are good and you won't go about 1/2 full I would run a test on it. Of course the lower the water level the safety factors goes up.