Keep your fingers crossed for me! 125g drama! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Keep your fingers crossed for me! 125g drama!

This 125 is going to give me a heart attack. It's been one thing after another, but it was a steal, so I can't complain - unless it goes bust!

After I committed to buying it, the seller, a coworker, told me the rim was cracked but the tank wasn't bowing. He said he would clamp and epoxy the crack before I picked it up. He did, but used Gorilla glue and it didn't hold during the move. I used a two part epoxy for plastic while the tank was empty. Today I noticed it cracked again sometime after I filled it. I took detailed measurements to monitor it - hopefully it won't spread before I get the two steel bars made. If it does I'll drain 1/2 the tank to take the pressure off. I was going to get two stainless steel bars made that would sit over the plastic support bars on the rim, but in my eagerness to set the tank up I forgot all about it. Ones that are bent and hang over the edges, acting like a support/clamp/brace combo. Now it's on top of my list! I may drain 5" or 6" anyhow, do you think it would help take some of the pressure off?

I called the guy I bought the tank from, and he said the rim had been cracked like that for a year and the tank was full the whole time, so I'm hoping it's stable - I know the tank was full because we helped empty it when I picked it up. The crack has a max gap of 2/8" and is 5" long. The tank IS bowing at the top, and it had to have been when he had it, he must not have measured it - it's not visible to the eye. (the crack isn't any larger than the original, in fact it's a bit shorter) The glass bows out at the very top 2/8" of an inch at it's peak. I'm keeping a close eye on it!

Some bad pics...the bottom one looks bowed on the perimeters because of the zoom of the lens - you can't see anything in person.




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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 11:27 PM
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Order a new frame. Put a ratchet strap around the top and empty the tank half way. Use a vibrating saw and cut the old off then silicone the new one on. I had the same thing happen to my 72 bowfront it totally sucks I know what you're going through. Don't waste your time using things like Weldon. It will work for about a month. Mine did and then when I was sleeping and a gun shot went off. I jumped out of bed and ran to the barn to get the wood clamps and put them on. Scariest night of my life.


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 11:44 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, that would be a good thing to do and I will, but I'm still going to see about getting stainless steel straps for now, the idea of removing the rim on the tank is too daunting for me to handle right now. With my luck the whole thing will fall apart when I do. As soon as you said 'vibrating saw" my blood pressure shot up ; )
And math is my worst subject - lol. I meant 1/8" on the gap and the bow, not 2/8".

PS - thanks for the steps in replacing the rim! We sell ratchet straps where I work, but I probably wouldn't have thought of it : )

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
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ok, so where can I get a new rim? I'm not having any luck finding a source that carries one for a 125g tank...

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 03:23 AM
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Yeah that's scary! Yikes!

If you go for stainless steel strapping, I'd still try to repair the existing plastic rim with a plastic rated 2-part epoxy. I'd use a Dremel tool and grind the crack a bit bigger (so you can get about 1/8" of glue in the fracture. Be sure to chew up the inside surfaces so the glue can stick. Then put a woodworking bar-clamp on there and let it set. Once that glue has dried, I'd put the stainless strap over the top.... But that's just me.

Be sure to post pics when you get your repair done!

EDIT: If money is no object, you could use this stuff: Epoxies for difficult to bond plastics. However, that's going to set you back about 100 bucks. Of course that's still cheaper than cleaning up 125 gallon disaster! ;-)
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 04:23 AM
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 01:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, I saw these vendors on another thread, but unless I'm missing something, neither have frames or rims to fit a 125g tank...

I still haven't been able to contact anyone about making the ss straps (being the weekend & all) but if it's affordable that's the route I'm taking. I already used two part epoxy for plastic on the crack when the old owner's Gorilla glue started popping out, but I can see I didn't get any really into the crack - it was more on the surface of the rim. I have a much better idea of how to do this now. I also saw a post where someone used a fiberglass bondo kit, I think over the epoxy in the the crack. (epoxy in the crack, fiberglass over the rim) Since I could paint the rim, the bondo wouldn't show if I tried that...

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 01:19 PM
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If you find some on that works with Stainless ask how much it would be to make you a new top rim from stainless. Probably won't cost more than a plastic rim with shipping if the person os local.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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Good idea! They dropped off our new phone books yesterday, and there are several metal fabricators (but I imagine they do big industrial/commercial jobs) and several welders. One of the welders is just 3 or so miles away and works in fabrication and welding, listing stainless as one of the metals.
How hard is it to remove a rim? I'm not keen on the vibrating saw idea and don't want to try that - I'd have to rent or buy one anyhow, but I have jeweler's saws, hack saw, dremels etc. I also read it can be possible to warm up the silicone with a hair dryer to make it easier to remove. I have to say a ss rim would give me the ultimate piece of mind - lol

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 06:04 PM
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How many braces are on the whole top?
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Two braces spaced 24" apart, on a 72" rim...

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 07:56 PM
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That's just like mine then. Honestly I would drain the tank and cut that brace out then silicone a piece of 3/8ths glass there instead. I did that on a different 125 that had no brace at all and it works great.

I used a single piece of glass about 8 inches wide right in the center and used silicone to glue it on top of the front and back glass and under the edges of the plastic brace. I had to cut a bit of plastic and remove old silicone but it works great at supporting the tank, better than the setup like yours that I have on my other 125
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 11:12 PM
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Like brainwavepc.com said look into eurobracing. Also does the tank have a manufacturer label on the bottom?

This is where I got mine: http://www.aqueonproducts.com/produc...-aquariums.htm

I emailed them and their response was great. I even told then that the tank was purchased used from another person, the tank didn't have any markings or receipt and that I wasn't even sure it was their brand of tank. The lady I was emailing went out and found a rim in the warehouse set & shipped it for free and even through in a full 12" tube of aquarium silicone all for not even .01. To this day I still can't believe they did that.

Just checking the site fast they list a 125 with dual braces as you described.


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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 11:16 PM
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It wouldn't much of a project for a welding shop to make a top rim. They would your angle stock and just have to miter cut the 4 corners (4 small welds). If you ad a brace (2 welds) . Syaimnless cost a little more but it is not too crazy. Being strainer than plastic it won't have to be as big either. Could end up looking pretty nice.

Remember you don'y want it perfect tight as you'll use a bit of silicone to attach and form a gasket. Give 'em a call see what they say.
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