Scratches in All-Glass-Aquarium - Any way to hide them? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
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Question Scratches in All-Glass-Aquarium - Any way to hide them?

Short of flipping the face-of-the-tank around, I'm trying to find a way to minimize these white scratches on the face of an older large tank.

These scratches appear as white strike marks, 2-3 inches in length.

Not visible from more than 3ft from the tank, however I like to stick my nose nearly on the tank.

I ponder if I could fill these micro-scratches with...?

My mind goes immediately to tire-shine. Does wonders for cracked leather, perhaps the liquid would fill the scratches to at-least minimize the appearance of them.

Tire-shine will make you slide off your car-seats though, and remains oily for quite a while. It may perhaps hide the scratch, but I must be cautious to avoid touching the outside of the glass aquarium and then put my hand in the tank!

Do you have any secrets for "hiding" or minimizing outer scratches?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 10:13 AM
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You get small bottles of glass polish powder on [Ebay Link Removed] It is used for polishing lenses, headlight, windscreens etc...

Edit... looked it up for you, its called cerium oxide. I see you can get it from amazon too...
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you, thank you!

I appreciate you taking the time seek out the right stuff!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-16-2016, 03:43 PM
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I might throw out some caution on using the polish.
I found no way to get it to work for me. If the scratch is deep enough to pick it with a fingernail, I consider it permanent.
Sorry but that it where I came to when I had a scratched 75. I tried all the "magic" that was suggested and failed totally. Folks said it worked but not for me.
I suggest looking for some net info before spending too much--time or money.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2016, 05:08 AM
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Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
I might throw out some caution on using the polish.
I found no way to get it to work for me. If the scratch is deep enough to pick it with a fingernail, I consider it permanent.
This is definitely true. Only very shallow imperfections can be removed with cerium oxide, and it often takes a power polisher to get any substantial result.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2016, 05:22 AM
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It will however take the sharp edge off the cut, and make it less shiny. I'd also recommend a polisher or maybe a dremmel, but I don't think you can apply enough force with a dremmel.

Look for some youtube vids... I always find them educating. It is the hive mind.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2016, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Nordic View Post
It will however take the sharp edge off the cut, and make it less shiny. I'd also recommend a polisher or maybe a dremmel, but I don't think you can apply enough force with a dremmel.

Look for some youtube vids... I always find them educating. It is the hive mind.
While one can find it done on various sites, I always fall back to a basic question. Have you personally done it?
Most admit that they have not or have various excuses or reasons why they failed but still believe.
Which brings another question. If it is simple to remove scratches, why are so many tanks with scratches set out for free or sold really cheap?
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2016, 02:38 PM
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Yes I have, but on a windscreen....I am a reasonably well equipped and skilled DIYer.

Most people do it because they aren't willing to put an hour or two's work into a $20 tank.


People claim to want to live green, but will never consider using a repaired item...


If you are scared you can't do the polishing, have an exact glass replacement cut for that side.


Cut the old silicone from the inside of the tank holding the glass in.

Apply insulating tape to mask the adjacent area you don't want silicone spread on, lay a bead of silicone, put the glass on, smooth the inside bead with your fingers, wait 5 to ten minutes, then pull the tape off before the silicone on it sets.

Leave the bits that squeeze through on the outside, you can cut them off once it is dry.

Leave the tank to dry for one day.

Do not use boat silicone with solvents for attaching to fibreglass, nor any type that claims to prevent mold.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2016, 05:55 PM
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So you have not in fact cured a scratched tank? This is such an old discussion that I can already see the direction.
Sorry, but I still advise thinking carefully before going to the trouble.
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