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So i picked up a 40 gallon long from a dude off Craigslist today. The tank had no history of leaks, no cracks, no major anything. It was even up and running when i picked it up.

Once i got it home, i realized there was only silicone sandwiched in between the glass sheets. It didn't have those big visible layers of silicone running across the rims. You can barely even see the silicone. I guess it's worked so far ( 5 years) , but im worried it isn't enough to hold long term. It has a that black plastic trim.

Should i be worried? Will i have to tear it apart and reseal it?

Thanks, all
 

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I think the silicone that is sandwiched between the glass sheets is the only place with any strength, the rest that is typically seen is just extra and isn't really providing much to hold it together. I could be totally wrong and someone correct me if I am but it makes sense to me, look at all the nice rimless tanks out there with almost no visible silicone. I think it should be fine as long as there are no visible bubbles in the seals.
 

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As someone pointed out, the tank is structurally held together by the thin layers of silicone between the glass faces.
The silicone we sometimes see on the inside of a tank, is like wearing a belt and suspenders., it just forms an extra seal.

Remember to mask off anything you don't want to get silicone on before you start, and to pull the mask off before the silicone starts to set, or it will be glued to the tank. Keep baby wipes at hand for cleaning your hands/spills. You get nice silicone spreaders, it is a little tool with 4 different sized balls you use to uniformly drag the corners with.
 

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Not to worry... Most likely will hold.

I did glass work on the side for a local custom aquarium contractor. Drilled, repaired and plumbed many tanks....

1, I would be very surprised if there was only the adhesive between the glass panels sealing the tanks. Most likely there is just a neat sealing job that was done. I am unaware of any manufacturer that only uses the glass adhesive to seal the tank. However, the better tanks have very neat sealing jobs. I used to mask the tanks and use a high quality clear food grade silicone. Even then I would use a plastic "knife to trim whatever excess I could. This would provide as pristine a view as possible.

2. If the tank has not been "dry docked" for a long period, chances are it will be fine. Even newer tanks that have been dry docked for a time will be OK. Newer silicones are more tolerant of being dry for a time.

3. If it ain't broke... Don't fix it.

If you do decide to reseal it, I would do the following:

1. Mask the seam to be sealed as tight to seam as possible.
2. Place a thin bead of clear food grade silicone on the seam.
3. Wearing a disposable latex glove run your little finger on the silicone bead to force the
silicone into the seam as much as possible.
4. Remove masking tape BEFORE silicone cures.
5. Allow silicone to cure fully.
6, Trim excess with plastic putty knife/scraper (use plastic to avoid scraping glass).

Remember the silicone on the seams ONLY seals the tank for leaks. The adhesive in between the glass panels is the structural support.
 

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Sounds like a vintage early glass-silicone Metaframe tank.

Is the top plastic edging a little thinner and skinnier than the bottom? They were sort of infamous for skimping on the silicone on those.

Like the others said, adding to the silicone already present won't be a big chore, I'd really clean the inside sparkly clean and give the glass joints to each side by an inch or more a good wiping down with white vinegar before preceding. Let the vinegar dry completely before starting. This will 'prime' the glass so the silicone sticks better.
 

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to me it sounds like they could have cleaned up the extra silicone as cut it away or could be an early version with not as much..but doubt it..honestly like others have been saying why not just do a reseal...you could do one corner at a time so as the glass wont move or move very little..but everyone seems to be giving you good pointers already so take them up on it if you feel comfortable
 

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Sounds like a vintage early glass-silicone Metaframe tank.

I think he said the tank was 5 years old.... Think the metaframe name is gone longer than that.....


Metaframe glass tanks were clearly branded on the bottom plastic with the logo, if memory serves....
Yeah mine still has that sticker. But I fixed that lousy silicone job years ago. They used somewhat low iron glass in those tanks.
 

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Yeah mine still has that sticker. But I fixed that lousy silicone job years ago. They used somewhat low iron glass in those tanks.


Yup... they were cheap and no the best...... BUT when I was a youngster.... I was glad to have them.... They were affordable tanks.


Company had an interesting history... They developed lots of innovative aquarium items.... Grew a brand, then sold it and started another! As I recall, 2 brothers started it and later their families got involved,,,, Last I remember they were involved with San Francisco Bay Brine Shrimp eggs.... The original bothers are gone but I think the families are till around,


Believe it or not Metrafrme tanks are no "collectible". So hang on to hat Metaframe tank... you never know! LOL!
 
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