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  Topic Review (Newest First)
02-05-2013 04:55 AM
driftwoodhunter Thanks BJK - I see you only have a few posts, so let me take this time to welcome you to TPT! You're going to love it here, I've learned so much about aquarium aspects I didn't even know existed, and I have so much more to learn too - lol.

I need to catch up on the thread, the tank's been up & running since last summer. I may have a solution to my brace problem, too, thanks to the unexpected kindly efforts by another TPTer. More news on that later in the thread...
02-05-2013 03:46 AM
BJK Tank looks like it is going to be awesome! Best of luck with repairing the frame good buddy! PS love the diamond plate lighting
-Fellow 125g'er
01-14-2013 03:16 AM
driftwoodhunter Can you post a photos of that? My brain can't grasp it. Are you gluing the wire to itself? lol I am soooo challenged in so many ways...

2 flat 90 plates for clamps and a threaded rod in turnbuckle arrangement is easy too
I don't know what language you're speaking here, my decoder ring broke

I'll will pm you if I don't hear back from the other guy! I might pm you just because this sounds so interesting - lol
01-14-2013 12:34 AM
wkndracer Mine was only a standard 55g.
Broke the center brace on my oldest dirt tank, I wanted to pitch the old scratched up thing but I can't LOL. It's the poster tank for those that say dirt doesn't last so I have to keep it.

1/8" 316L bare tig wire bent 90 to wrap the frame front and back at the exact measurement then glued in place is plenty strong.

Anything over 1/8 thickness is overkill but flat plate warps badly in narrow strips is why I used the wire.
1/4" x 1/2" is a bit bulky but stiff enough not to warp.
2 flat 90 plates for clamps and a threaded rod in turnbuckle arrangement is easy too.

If help fails to appear shoot me a PM. We will get measurements taken within 1/32" that easily transfer and I'll make it up out of 1/2" if that helps you sleep at night.
01-13-2013 09:05 PM
Originally Posted by driftwoodhunter View Post
Nothing personal, but I'm going to have nightmares now of ss wire wrapped around the top of my tank, snapping under pressure one night while I sit in front of the tank and decapitating me even as I take my last sip of coffe. LOL
Or as you lean up in bed wondering what that noise is your whole house is split in half by flying wire. You make enough money being featured on a TLC documentary to buy yourself a brand new tank.
01-12-2013 08:28 PM
Fishies_in_Philly Cindy, that tank is going to be awesome, if you can ever figure the bracing out. i think tom's idea is best, euro bracing with 1/2" glass. i have done it to 55's before. not that difficult. and if all else fail, you could always do a paludarium or riparium instead. lol

btw, i LOVE the dino head piece of wood!!
01-12-2013 03:23 PM
driftwoodhunter Hi there wkndracer!

I haven't done a thing about the ss brace yet. Spare finances just haven't been there, and Walmart cuts hours in January too. I'm taking Tom's advice and I'm not going to attempt to epoxy the T brace on, but wait for a ss U shaped brace that is one solid piece of metal that can slip over the top of the tank. But this may be my lucky day - another member just pm'd me saying he may be able to help me get a ss brace made to slip over the existing rim, just like I'd want. Fingers crossed! If it doesn't pan out I'm fine with keeping the steel clamp on the tank awhile longer. I've gotten so used to it I don't even notice it.

I'm curious, how did you use wire to mend a tank? Nothing personal, but I'm going to have nightmares now of ss wire wrapped around the top of my tank, snapping under pressure one night while I sit in front of the tank and decapitating me even as I take my last sip of coffe. LOL
01-12-2013 11:53 AM
wkndracer OK read the thread finally LOL
What did you decide to do on the center brace?
Asking because I fixed a smaller tank with SS wire and maybe can offer aid if it's still needed.
12-29-2012 04:37 AM
driftwoodhunter I admit that's my fear too, I think the stress on the patched overlap will be too strong to hold. A U shaped brace is one of the ideas I had and I think it's a good solution. Relatively inexpensive too, compared to the cost of a new setup without issues. - I will still be calling the fabrication shop to inquire about one, that would put my mind at ease completely because there will be no joints, adhesive, etc to fail. I want to sleep at night, not half listen constantly for a pop or a crack! I admit Euro bracing gives me the heebie-jeebies, even though I have seen the tanks here done like that and I know they hold. I certainly wouldn't try it myself on a 125, I'm not skilled enough.

However, tanks must be cheaper where you live. I cannot work PT at a minimum wage Burger King and make enough $$ to buy a new 125, stand, canister, lights, heaters etc. I know this for a fact because I work FT at Walmart, and I still can't afford that. I certainly don't have the energy to work two jobs, I applaud those that do. Regardless of the cost to repair the rim, I still think I got a deal for $75.00. (I may simply leave the clamp on until I get the metal U brace to slide over the outside of the rim- the clamp doesn't bother me and it's worked fine for 7 months now)
12-29-2012 04:16 AM
plantbrain That is not.....going to hold.

Short of buying a new frame and replacing(a tough job), a U shaped brace, small, strong and discrete would be the best solution going front to back on the outside of the frame. The other option is to remove the top frame and eruo brace with 1/2 glass slats

I've repaired and removed all sorts of tank issues and been given free tanks like these for a long time, I've fixed each one, but.......they are PITA.

I could have worked PT at Burger King and made the difference for a nice new ADA tank for the same time and energy.
12-29-2012 04:07 AM
driftwoodhunter I'm not worried about aesthetics at all, I plan on building a canopy for this tank in time to block the lights from my eyes as I sit below the level of the light.

I'll have to take a close look to see if I can get screws into the rim without hitting the glass based on where the screw holes are in the T brace, but I know I could get screws into the part that runs along the plastic brace over the top of the tank. Thanks for the advice! Adding the screws would be a huge plus, instead of relying on the epoxy bond alone.

BTW, you guys have been awesome with your ideas and help - I really, really appreciate it!
12-28-2012 09:24 PM
UDGags Your description makes sense.

I would clamp it on each side like you described. I can't see your bracket completely but I would consider using some 316 SS screws to attach the metal bracket along with the JB Weld.

I would also spray paint the T-bar before attaching it if you are worried about aesthetics.
12-28-2012 09:03 PM
driftwoodhunter OK! Tomorrow I'll try the new fix! This is what I bought for my mad experiment;

It's the Original JB Weld, and it had the highest PSI, the longest drying time, and is good for metal, pvc, and plastics - so it should work providing the force of the bowing isn't too strong. Being a chicken, I'm going to leave it clamped to dry for a week, not 24 hours - haha.

I bought the 4" x 4" T braces for the most coverage (that was the largest they had, and any bigger would have been wider than my rim anyhow). The flat brace left a big gap between the rim and itself, because my rim is formed in such a way that the braces dip down below the level of the actual rim. I took a hammer to the brace & reformed it as closely as I could to conform to the plastic. Hopefully it's good enough. The pic shows it laying over the good brace. Excuse how filthy the top of my tank is!

Now my next question; the way the steel clamp is, it pinches the plastic in onto the glass just because of it's sheer force to stop the bowing - the plastic is weak so it bends to conform with the clamp pressure. I have two of these long clamps and I'm thinking I could use them together - just far apart enough that the plastic rim isn't distorted while the whole thing sets up. If I just leave it clamped like it is (one clamp dead center over the brace) I worry that when I take the clamp off the "release" as it were will put extra strain on the joint and it may pop again, since the outer rim isn't straight now. (that may be part of my previous fail too). Does that make sense or was my description as clear as mud? lol
12-28-2012 07:26 PM
driftwoodhunter Hey, that's a good idea! I never thought of using a metal T - that's definitely worth a try.
I had also thought about having a ss strip cut to the same width as the plastic brace (so my versa tops would still fit in the rim's recesses) but have the strip cut long enough so it could be bent at a 45 degree angle at each end and simply slip it over the existing rim/broken brace. The bent ends would go down & overlap the front & back of the rim. It would be much more affordable than having a whole rim made.

I'm heading out to Lowes right now to buy a shelving unit - I'll pick up a metal T while I'm there.

What epoxys are strongest? Any preferences? I think I'll post that question in the General Forum too and see if I get a consensus. Would it help to also sand the T to help the epoxy grip?

Thanks for the idea! I want to work on the tank right away with your idea, but I'm going to see the Hobbit tonight with friends - that's a bit more exciting right now - lol
12-28-2012 07:12 PM
jarvitron re: the brace - If you sand the whole top of that brace junction, you can two part epoxy (jb weld or permabond or whatever) a metal T to it (preferably one on top and one on bottom), and it'll be stronger than that plastic brace ever was to begin with.

Or you could get a piece of 5/16 plexiglass about 3-6" wide and weld-on across both the front and back of the tank at the brace, gluing then clamping the new brace to the rim and the tank front-to-back (so the new brace is under slight tension). The only worry with this is it might build up some crud between the old brace and the new plex and be ugly. But it's also at the top of the tank, and nobody ever said you had to use clear.

I think it's an awesome deal, I am always looking for cheap tanks, but in my area I only seem to end up with hexes!
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