09-23-2011, 04:06 PM
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I got my first 10g from a pet store as a kit. Next I got my 55 set up off CL. I asked point blank if it leaked. He said no, then we inspected it together. I was looking for old silicon and signs of patch jobs. The tank was in immaculate condition.
More recently I bought a 125 off CL. It was a leaky pile of gomi. The owners offered to deliver it "after work" (in the dark) and the price was right. I asked if it "held water" instead of if it leaked or had had any repairs. Sooooo, the next day when I went outside to congratulate myself I was horrified by how obscured the glass was. I thought that was all fixable. I built a stand and ten minutes into the water test I had a leak. I promptly drained it, took pictures of the faults, and listed a very honest ad on CL. It was bought that afternoon.
So, this past week when I forayed into CL tank buying I put up a WTB ad with very specific parameters. "No chips, deep scratches, leaks, patches, or reptile tanks." When I went and looked at them I did like I did the first time and inspected them carefully. I ended up with a 125 gallon tank with half inch non tempered glass. It's not perfect, but it's leak free, he was honest about it the condition, and the price was right. Just for good measure I did re-silicon it after I scrubbed it to within an inch of it's glassy life. As of yesterday it is up and ready for business.
There are a lot of realllllly great deals out there if you are patient. Even better than that, if you post a wanted ad, you'd be surprised by some of the responses. One guy offered me a 300 gallon L shaped tank for $200. He bought it from an auction at a restaurant and never got to filling it. It'd been in his storage unit for two years. I could not justify it, but I wanted it.