Used 125gal, reseal or what?
Man, I know I have been asking a lot of questions on this forum, but I cannot even begin to tell you all how much you have helped me so far.
After all the questions I have asked, I realized I have been forgetting the most important one, and that is concerning the tank.
I am buying a 125gal tank from my cousins husband. Like I have said in previous posts, I am buying it for $200. He said the last time it was filled was 3 months ago, sounds good right? He was keeping bass, and slider turtles in the tank. He seems like one of those individuals who go with the flow and deals with a problem when it comes up, so I am not exactly sure how well the tank has been takin care of.
Recently, from some pictures he sent, I noticed that the tank does not have middle braces. This became a concern to me, in regards to the glass cover I would have to buy. What was going to support the glass top? And what was going to support the light fixtures?
After doing some research, I've noticed most tanks without braces are generally older. Not exactly sure how old it is though. So when I found out about how old it might be, I began to worry about the seal in the tank. Would it hold? Is one side going to give out? Became really concerned with this, and now, quite paranoid.
So here I am. I do not have the tank just yet, but when I decide to get it, what route should I do? Should I do the 1/3, 2/3 and then full refill process to check for leaks? Should I check for the hardness or softness of the seals? Should I just go ahead and reseal the tank? Or should I just say "screw it" and by a new 125 gal tank from a local fish store?
My buggest concern is the seals and then the brackets for the middle of the tank. I have read about tanks bowing, due to not having brackets for such a large tank. I have also read about leaks and even sides of tanks failing. WHERE DO I START AND THEN GO?
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I had an old 29 gallon fail (old as in 20 years). You really don't want a seam failure on a 125! Safest is to recaulk. It's not really hard, just a little tedious cleaning out the old caulk. I'd be concerned with the lack of a center brace. It's possible to mount a center brace (I'd personally use two, spaced evenly). If the tank front and back glass is particularly thick, that might be why there is no center brace. Newer tanks seem to use thinner glass than old tanks (old-another reason to reseal the seams). Check the tank and see if there is any evidence that a center brace was removed, should be some sign. If it was removed, I'd avoid the tank. If no evidence of a center brace being there, probably will be ok and you can have some glass cut and silicone it in place to hold the hood(s), as well as provide some minimal bracing.
FYI - Don't be tempted to use acrylic/plexiglass for the brace. Silicone does not adhere properly to acrylic and such "seams" have little mechanical strength!
Nice size tank. Good luck with it!
My 180g has no center brace, came like that as it is Hagen and has very thick glass. It was bought new 6 years ago.
I just spoke with my friend, and he said he will fill it up a week before I get there, so I can see it full and in action.
The lack of a brace is not an issue if the tank was designed without one. As Tazman mentioned older tanks that lack a center brace have thicker glass. The thicker glass resists bowing by itself. I've always assumed the addition of a center brace was so manufacturers could use thinner glass and thus make tanks cheaper. If you need a brace for supporting hoods or lights you could DIY something.
Just checked out the tank. It is a big sucker! It is made of 1/2 in. glass. The panels are made out of wood, so you can kind of tell its an older style tank. No signs of ever having braces. He also had filled up for me. And I could see no signs of any visble leakage. But I will still do a leak test when I get it into my new place to where I am moving. The stand looks and seems very sturdy. Has wheels, but I will take them off so the weight can be evenly distributed. The HOBs look old, and they need some cleaning as well. One of the HOBs has a built in heater. I could not make out the model or brand of any of them. Does not have a top to it what so ever, so I figured I would work on building a light weight canopy for it. So thats what I have. The tank itself needs some cleaning. I will take better pictures of it when I get it into my place, and let you all see for yourself and tell me what you think.
Sounds like a good deal then - congrats!
FYI, if you are in western NC, there is a meeting of the SC aquaria association on March 17th in Greenville, SC. Border jumpers are welcome! I'll post specific info under the clubs information area.
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