Free tank.....Good or bad??
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Free tank.....Good or bad??

This is a discussion on Free tank.....Good or bad?? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Hello All, i was gifted a 60 gallon tank, stand, and old eheim canister filter. Dimensions are 47.25x15.75x19.5 inches. 1/4 inch glass. I have ...

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Free tank.....Good or bad??
Old 05-06-2012, 10:49 PM   #1
 
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Free tank.....Good or bad??

Hello All,

i was gifted a 60 gallon tank, stand, and old eheim canister filter. Dimensions are 47.25x15.75x19.5 inches. 1/4 inch glass. I have a few questions concerning its condition.

It was saltwater for 8-10 years.It was bought new and moved about 4 - 5 times. It has had 1 leak which you will see from the pics below. Allthough it was fixed (with white silicone as you can see in the first pic below ) and has not leaked since which has been about 3 years. I saw it filled about 2 months ago when my friend said he was getting ready to move to a larger tank and that I could have this if I wanted it for $0. I finally got it home last week, and i started to clean it. It needs a little more love (stand needs alot of love) and should be good to go if you guys think I could use it. Here are my issues from not to bad to possible deal breaker.


1. First issue is just making sure it is clean and OK for what I would plan to be freshwater fish, plants and inverts. It had alot of algae so Getting the glass clean will be alot of work, but shouldnt be an issue. However, how would I be sure if it is 100% clean. Im using water/viniger now. As you can see in the pic below, there is alot of sand "stuck" in the silicone.

2. It is "rimless" but has a "frame". He had HO lights that connected to the frame. I would need some way to have the top covered as I have bad cats so an open top tank is not an option. Any DIY ideas or something that they sell for this purpose? And what are the twopieces off glass near the top for?



3. The one leak he had was halfway down the corner of the tank, and he used white silicone to fix it. Its fine now, however it looks horrible since the rest of the tank is black silicone. How do i go about redoing the seal? Can i get away with cutting out only the white silicone or do i have to do that whole corner? I have never resealed a tank before.







4. Lastly, two of the corners have "chips" in them. They seem OK to me but i dont know anything lol. Any one see this as an issue?












Soonest i would set this tank up is september, as I dont have the room for it now. We may not even move this year so it may be in my parents garage for a while. Luckily they dont mind. However Im house sitting for them for two weeks as they are on vacation and I would like to do any work on this tank now since ill be kinda bored after work. So if you guys think the corners of the tank are OK then i would like to clean, reseal the one side with black silicone, paint the back of the tank black, start pricing lights/hoods (or thinking of diy projects) and cleaning up the stand.

Thanks for reading
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Old 05-06-2012, 10:57 PM   #2
 
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First of all, am going to mention the stand, it is simply too badly damaged to warrant trying to repair it, it is also made of completely the wrong wood to be able to suitably withstand the weight of a tank. Chip/particle board is not good at all with water.

Am not so much concerned about the point where the leak was, the person who had the tank did a good job on resealing that even though black silicone would have been much better.

What I am extremely concerned about is the large chips in it. The fact the larger one is right on the bottom of the tank, means it is going to have the entire water weight pushing onto it.

Are the panels cracked on the same piece of glass or is the front and back panels?
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:02 PM   #3
 
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The top pieces of glass are bracing to prevent the tank from bowing, it is "Euro style" meaning a lot of European tanks are made like this instead of having a bar, piece of glass across the width of the tank from front to back.

It is not done correctly though and also something that concerns me is the wood built up on the side of tank..how is it attacked to the glass?
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:19 PM   #4
 
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I assumed the stand was OK support wise but just needed some cosmetic work. It seems structurally sound and he has been using it for almost 10 years I know it's built to hold the weight. The only part that looks really bad seems to be the edges as you can see.

My buddy said the tank and stand are all eheim which I assume explains the "euro style". But if they are not done correctly then why did they do it that way? He said he bought it like that.

Cracks are scary. They are on the front and the back. I know he said the cracks happened during a move years ago and that it has been filled like that for a long time, and I even saw the tank filled and then filled it again at my place. But if I'm replacing glass and buying a stand then I'm would just ditch this tank and go new.
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:20 PM   #5
 
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Not sure what you mean about the wood being built up?
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:30 PM   #6
 
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With regards to the wood, it is 4 pieces high on the sides of the tank.

Looking at the pictures again, it might be possible to replace to side panels on the stand without affecting the structural integrity of it.

Generally Euro bracing goes all around the rim of the tank.

If the tank has been setup and not leaking for some time then it likely going to be ok, If it were me, I would perhaps consider epoxy resin sealing the cracks in the corners. You could also possibly look into getting new pieces of glass if the cost locally is not too much...This would require either you resealing the entire tank or having it done professionally.

I am going to say that if it has been filled and you personally feel it is ok, then go for it...
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Old 05-07-2012, 05:58 AM   #7
 
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Just a tip, I find baking soda a good way to clean off old algae marks. Worked better than vinegar for me, with some soaking.
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Old 05-07-2012, 08:24 AM   #8
 
I'll add another 2 cents or a nickle...

I'd take this opportunity to reseal the entire tank just to be safe. Resealing is easy - you just need to take your time.
- Clean the tank very, very well.
- Use a razor knife and/or single edge razor blade to remove all exposed silicone in all corners. Take special care not to dig in/pierce between the glass panes.
- Clean the corners really well with rubbing alcohol (denatured or isopropyl).
- Using 100% silicone, apply a bead around all corners. The bottom can be more liberal, but a finger wipe on the sides makes for a better looking finish.
- Let cure for 48 hours before the water test.
Note: There was some concern about the bottom? Correctly measured, another piece of glass could be added to the bottom on top of the existing and sealed in place.

If the stand is sound except for the ragged corners, you might just strap it with 1x, fill the void with wood putty and after a coat of paint would look brand new.

The top rails on the sides is very odd - something special for the previous lighting I wonder? I'm not sure how easy they'll be to remove, but should come off for appearance sake.
Not sure what you intend for hood(s) or lights. I'm surprised your friend didn't pass that on too. Obviously a simple piece of plexi-glass could cover but you still need light(s). You might go with a hood set? Either way is a few dollars unless you can find something used.

Good luck - keep us posted.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:34 AM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tazman View Post
With regards to the wood, it is 4 pieces high on the sides of the tank.

Looking at the pictures again, it might be possible to replace to side panels on the stand without affecting the structural integrity of it.

Generally Euro bracing goes all around the rim of the tank.

If the tank has been setup and not leaking for some time then it likely going to be ok, If it were me, I would perhaps consider epoxy resin sealing the cracks in the corners. You could also possibly look into getting new pieces of glass if the cost locally is not too much...This would require either you resealing the entire tank or having it done professionally.

I am going to say that if it has been filled and you personally feel it is ok, then go for it...
If you mean the frame around the top of the tank, that is just plastic. I assume it was made to hold the type of lights he had. Which were kinda like this:

I will get some better pics for you tonight.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
Just a tip, I find baking soda a good way to clean off old algae marks. Worked better than vinegar for me, with some soaking.
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Thanks I shall try that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AbbeysDad View Post
I'll add another 2 cents or a nickle...

I'd take this opportunity to reseal the entire tank just to be safe. Resealing is easy - you just need to take your time.
- Clean the tank very, very well.
- Use a razor knife and/or single edge razor blade to remove all exposed silicone in all corners. Take special care not to dig in/pierce between the glass panes.
- Clean the corners really well with rubbing alcohol (denatured or isopropyl).
- Using 100% silicone, apply a bead around all corners. The bottom can be more liberal, but a finger wipe on the sides makes for a better looking finish.
- Let cure for 48 hours before the water test.
Note: There was some concern about the bottom? Correctly measured, another piece of glass could be added to the bottom on top of the existing and sealed in place.

If the stand is sound except for the ragged corners, you might just strap it with 1x, fill the void with wood putty and after a coat of paint would look brand new.

The top rails on the sides is very odd - something special for the previous lighting I wonder? I'm not sure how easy they'll be to remove, but should come off for appearance sake.
Not sure what you intend for hood(s) or lights. I'm surprised your friend didn't pass that on too. Obviously a simple piece of plexi-glass could cover but you still need light(s). You might go with a hood set? Either way is a few dollars unless you can find something used.

Good luck - keep us posted.
The stand is sound except for the corners which are a little "chewed up" and the black "vinyl". I'm not sure what you mean by 1x but i figured some putty and paint will clean it up. This is the least of my worries i think.

I will reseal it all if that's what makes the most sense and i wanna do the corner that has the white silicone anyway. When you say not to pierce "in between the glass" is that because there is still silicone in there holding the glass together? I don't wanna scrape off the silicone and have the glass fall because nothing is holding it together. Lol i guess this sounds funny but since I never did this that is my concern. If its as simple as just cleaning the tank, scraping the silicone that's INSIDE the glass and resealing then im up for the task. I really don't want to replace glass. I feel going that far is too much, although i wont throw away the tank before I look into prices, I would just rather not have to do it. However, if I reseal everything and apply epoxy outside as Tazman suggested just as a way to ease my mind, i think the tank will be OK. Especially since it has been in use in this condition.

As for the "braces" they don't really bother me, I just wanna know what they do. As stated above my friend did not give me the lights because he could utilize them on his new tank. Also he had the tank open which I cannot do. I would like to buy a hood, just need to research it and find something that will fit. And Ill leave the braces on because they may help hold the hood. What kind of lights whould be suggested for this size tank planted "low- tech". Dual t-8's?

Last edited by bigehugedome; 05-07-2012 at 10:42 AM..
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:50 AM   #10
 
By 1x I meant 1by, such as framing with say 1" by 2" lumber.

Yes, the glass panes are literally glued together with silicone. What we see on the inside is merely excess that is spread to make a better seal. Any excess outside is trimmed off. When resealing a tank, unless you totally take it apart (which requires special framing tools to reassemble), you just remove the excess silicone on the inside without piercing the silicone between the panes. When done carefully and properly cleaned, the new silicone will bond with the glass and the old silicone, creating a waterproof seal and strengthening the tank.
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