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custom glass overflow removal

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hi everyone first time i have ever posted so i am sorry if i dont get it right. i have a custom overflow i put in, and after much consideration of this ugly looking thing i have in my tank i would like to remove it. i have tried guitar wire, string, razor blade nylon ribbon and i can't get behind it. when i do start to get even a small amount done the string breaks or the razor breaks and i dont know what else i can do besides breaking it out and im afraid that if i do ill break my tank please and thank you in advance for your help.

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It's possible noone has experienced trying to remove this style in-tank overflow. If the entire back of the unit is siliconed to the tank glass, it will be difficult to remove, especially if the tank still has water in it.

Did you install it or was it purchased this way?

Any chance of taking a pic from the rear of the unit? It may help generate some answers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
i put it in myself and on the back and side there is a thin layer of silicone but not many materials can fit between it and the glass anything thicker than nylon ribbon will not fit i have tried using the ribbon as a sort of saw but it does nothing to it. razor blades work but i cant get a razor blade long enough (or strong enough) to cut all the way through it. i have broken two razor blades on this already.
sorry no pic of back
 

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A heat gun to soften the silicone and a long retractable razor knife like an Olfa or something thin and flexible.
http://www.olfa.com/UtilityKnivesDetail.aspx?C=61&Id=44

A thinner knife is better because it'll let you get better access. You'll probably break lots of blades so buy extras but I'd say this is going to be the best, safest way to get the overflow off. Once you have it cut back a little bit you may be able to slide some fishing line in behind and slowly saw it through the silicone, braided line works pretty well for this if you can find it.

Just please go SLOWLY and take your time, this isn't going to be a 5 minute procedure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
ive found that out already ive been working on this for a few days. and finally needed to ask becuase i felt like i was going no where. i think i can do the heat gun but would boiling hot water inside the over flow work? ive tried fishing line and i think i need to get really really strong line thats why i went with the nylon ribbon. ill try any and all ideas at this point.
 

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Try a braided fishing line. If all else fails C-4 or gasoline.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
50 or more, go to a fishing store n see what they've got.

I've used the fishing line trick to remove emblems off of some of my cars and old nasty goobered on dealership plaques and it ALWAYS works if you give it enough heat and time.

what brand would be best?(i know ther all the same. but i like quality and right now i need good quality. i can always use the rest to go fishing.) and how long would it take to get through an area of about 6inx8in ish? would boiling hot water in the overflow help weaken the silicone?
 

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I'm not sure how much heat will help with silicone, since a lot of silicone stuff are used in high-temp applications. although, I haven't tried it, so I can't say it won't work.

Id avoid boiling water, there is too much of a chance of cracking the tank due to thermal stresses, etc.

I've bought ~ 80lb (I don't fish, but I find it pretty useful cordage for camping/etc.) in places like sports authority. Sometimes a walmart will have it, but it's pretty hit or miss.


Just to confirm, the overflow box itself is made of glass? And is it just siliconed on the back, or the back and the side.
How big is your tank?

Worst comes to worst, you may be able to break the overflow box, leaving just the rear panel attached, and cover the sharp edges with silicone :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
the side and back were siliconed. i tried the fishing line and it didn't work so i tried the boiling water and fishing line and it didnt work. so i finally broke down and got my point chisel and a tack hammer out and started to break it out. i was very careful not to hit to hard and i made sure to put point breaks in the glass so it would break where i wanted it to. (I WOULD NEVER RECOMMEND DOING THIS) i got it almost out now and decided to update every one i only have the back left and i feel very very happy that is gone but i feel bad i cant reuse the back for a small tank lol. thank you all for your help. your so very helpful (125g planted tank, 2 angelicus botia loaches, gold gourami, 4 swordtails, pictus cat, striped raphael cat, 3 albino longfin bushynose plecos, 2 oto cats. 2 whitecloud's, a bunch of guppies, red cherry shrimp, assassin snails, and mts, and a peacful crowntail betta) (ph 7ish depends on co2, kh unknown gh unknown, dose with ferts as needed about once a week and diy c02 so plants dont die) again thank you all for your help.

all thats left is a small piece of the back
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
i finally got the last piece out. and it looks amazing now no cracked or boken aquarium glass. i would have done the silicon remover but it was so close to the corner i would have had to redo the entire corner seam. and there was no way to get behind the glass to even apply it.
 

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wow, you're braver then I would have been in that situation. I was just thinking of score the inside with a glass cutter, or maybe drilling some holes near the edge, and then breaking it, and leaving the back/side still siliconed to the tank.

Good job though, that's pretty impressive.

I think the main reason the wire/line method didn't work is because it had too much area to cover, in addition to a bend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
wow, you're braver then I would have been in that situation. I was just thinking of score the inside with a glass cutter, or maybe drilling some holes near the edge, and then breaking it, and leaving the back/side still siliconed to the tank.

Good job though, that's pretty impressive.

I think the main reason the wire/line method didn't work is because it had too much area to cover, in addition to a bend.
all i had was the chisel and hammer or string. and i believe it was a mix of the bend and the angling i couldnt get a saw-like tension on the silicone and it got about 1mm and hour and that was not going to work. my heart dropped everytime i heard the cracking of the glass. but its totally gone and cleaned up now. tomorrow i put in a new moss wall and refill all fish look good still and hopefully becuase of the water drop my alfbnp start to breed if not oh well there all alive and well i cant ask for more
 

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Very, very nice job on removing the overflow!!! You are much braver than me using a chisel and hammer.:icon_eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Very, very nice job on removing the overflow!!! You are much braver than me using a chisel and hammer.:icon_eek:
thank you i was so scared every swing i dont think ill every be that lucky again. the point chisel helped so it broke where i wanted it. the back was the worse but when i got it all the way to the silicone i was able to just get a razor behind it and slice it out. when my tank clears up ill take a pic of it and post it on here
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
guitar or piano string.....just a thought but you got it taken care of already..
i tried the guitar string and it wasnt working. it was like trying to cut tree by pulling down the curve of the glass and the gap behind was to thin to get anything that could acually cut i think the wire works better on the corners of an aquarium then on this particular project.
 
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