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New Tank!

puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
So I managed to find my self a 1 year old tank in the size I wanted 5x18x20 with stand and hood.

I decided to redo the seals as it looks like they are starting to peel a little in places and the bracing just to tidy it up a little. I am half way pulling the tank apart However when I got down and had a closer look I noticed that the end panels aren't entirely square they are about 2mm out at two of the corners on the bottom.

What do people think about this? I was really hoping that I didn't have to completely rip the thing apart as I am not sure I would be able to successfully put it all back together. I have seen many videos on how people do it but they are usually only small tanks nothing of this size.

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Comments

  • BobBob Member, Classifieds Posts: 708
    Hi Puma,

    The first thing I would be doing is checking that the end panels have actually been cut "square". This should tell you if the side panels are okay or if they are bowed.

    What is the thickness of the glass?

    If the end panels are square and the sides are bowed I would think you are taking a risk I would avoid.

    If it's 10 mm glass and the error is in the cut of the end panels you should be okay.

    Cheers,

    Bob
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    Hi bob it's only 6mm glass.

    I just ran a square over the panels and they are all square the large 5ft panels are also straight when I put a straight edge over them there is no bow at all.

    What I think has happened is when they made the tank and put the end panels in place there wasn't enough support so they have moved slightly they are all siliconed in place and don't seem to be going anywhere. I am sensing that I am going to have to start over aren't I?
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Has it held water-tight previously ? If so, it should be ok. Having said that, you are stripping silicone off the joins? Silicone wont stick to silicone and may decrease the integrity of the join, when re-doing silicone all of the existing silicone must be removed completely, all surfaces cleaned with methylated spirits, before fresh silicone applied, your basically have to dismantle the entire tank, perhaps a job for a insured professional, or just buy a brand new tank. If it holds water then it should be ok anyway. Cheers :[email protected]
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    Well basically I was going to strip the bead of silicone from the inside of the tank and not do the silicone between the pains of glass as I have seen many times before.

    Yeah the tank does hold water fine well so I have heard and seen in a photo however it was empty when I saw it so I can't count on it really.

    You know what stuff it I'd imagine I could manage to rebuild the thing I am just going to do it. I found this helpful article on how to build a tank so I will go with this.

    http://www.austinglass.com.au/aquariums.html#

    The reason that I didn't buy a new tank is because the sellers here in Canberra are blood sucking thieves they want my right arm and my first born child for a tank of that size..

    Anyway back to the shed with the razor blades I go!
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Ok good luck, was nt trying to be a smart arse, just that ive done a few tanks in my time,and so my comments are based on experience, good for you m8,keep us up to date,cheers - btw- safety blades work best when removing silicone. 8-}
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    edited March 2014
    Thanks mate. I didn't think you were being a smart arse.

    One question I have how do you get the silicone off the sides of the panes of glass? I can get it off really easily from the glass front because it is really smooth however the sides have been beveled through a machine so they are a little grainy and the blade misses a bit of the silicone that goes into the tiny pits is that just not to worry about or do I need to get that out too?

    Was thinking something like this might do the trick http://www.selleys.com.au/sealants/silicone/remover/
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Yep - silicone remover is the go, ensuring EVERY trace of silicone is gone,cleaned with metho and dried.Cheers.
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    Excellent. Well the tanks apart I found it has a 10mm base so I am happy about that. Now the tedious task of cleaning the panes.

    Any tips, tricks or pointers you can recommend for building? I have an idea of what I am going to do but any advice is welcome.
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Ive only dared to dismantle smaller tanks, 50 lts max, my forte being replacing front panes of tanks and mending cracks both on mostly larger tanks, the principles are the same though, id follow the link, austinglass. Buy the best type aquarium silicone, research needed praps, keep us updated,cheers
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    Ok well I have done some more work and the tank is ready to go back together.. Well at least I was hoping it was..

    This is why I believe that it was siliconed like it was. The base appears to be about 2mm too long. I am going to take it to a glass shop and have them sand it down a little.. Unless I can manage it myself.

    image
    image
  • MoooMooo Moderator Posts: 7,653
    =D>
    photo mooo_avat.gif "I'm a Doug Addict" photo cow2heartkisses.gif
  • Errol WilsonErrol Wilson Member, Classifieds Posts: 526
    Well done, don't think I could have a go at that. You seem to have things in hand though love you cleanliness and room to move! Keep us updated with pics please.
    =D>
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    edited April 2014
    Ok so here is an update I have gone a little overboard however I'd rather just do it once. I have been taking my time just doing a little at a time and if I'm not happy with it then I start again.

    So the base was a little long so I had to cut it down. I needed up using a battery powered grinder with a continuous diamond blade worked out not to badly in the end.
    image

    The tank is all sealed up now I went with a 10mm silicone bead up the sides and a thicker 14mm on the base it seems very strong now and the joins look really clean.
    image

    Securing the support braces on
    image

    All done
    image

    Did a couple of things to the frame too. It was tiled already by I tided them up and sealed the edges with silicone.
    image

    While I was at it made my self a little inbuilt power station with a inbuilt timer for the lights.
    image

    So here it is about 10 days after all being finished and on it's first test fill.
    image

    Left it for a couple of days without any issues leak wise. :-SS

    Now I am just having some problems with getting the bottom to be level. I don't like the idea of having an open frame so I wanted to add a complete sheet to the frame to make it one entire piece.

    First up was a sheet of compressed cement with polystyrene but that didn't work out too well I then replaced it for a camping mat foam type thing. This was much better as it has more give, however still not the perfect result I am after.

    I then worked out that the compressed sheet was not quite flat so I have ditched that and now gone with a base of MDF (this stuff is 99% of the time totally flat) I am in the stage of priming an painting the MDF so that if some moisture was to leak onto it I don't get any swelling.

    Should be ready to go in a day or two and then I will try another test fill with some rocks for weight.

    Will keep you all posted!

    Happy easter too!

    :D
  • BobBob Member, Classifieds Posts: 708
    Hi Puma,

    Very, very impressive.

    I can understand your desire to only do it once.

    Your setup overall looks very clean and well prepared.

    What is going in it?

    I hope you have an enjoyable Easter.

    Cheers,
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Excellent work , good stuff. Keep us up to date #-o =D>
  • MoooMooo Moderator Posts: 7,653
    edited April 2014
    =D> Brilliant job, I'd be a nervous wreck lol
    photo mooo_avat.gif "I'm a Doug Addict" photo cow2heartkisses.gif
  • TallTree01TallTree01 Member Posts: 580
    Looks good puma. :)
    I hope it is naught but smooth sailing ahead. :ar!
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    edited April 2014
    Thanks guys. Well it looks like the ply wood has done the job. Went with a sheet of 12mm ply and then a 10mm HD foam camping mat and it has levelled out really well.

    I have filled her back up and will leave it for a week or two to be sure everything is ok.

    image

    Now I just need to find the black sand that I am after I am pretty set on Tahitian moon sand just need to source it as it's soooo dam expensive. Or if anyone knows of a cheaper alternative just basically after really fine black sand.

    Also I need to sort out some lighting I will be having a few live plants in there so I need something to help them grow a little also would't mind having another lamp with something in it to give me this affect I think it's called moon lighting. Looks cool!

    image
  • DougDoug Member, Classifieds Posts: 2,371
    edited April 2014
    I have a moon like like that. It is great. Means you can enjoy the tank for a lot longer. M bought a Quad T5 light unit with two blue cold cathode tubes build in. These days I would go for LEDs as they are cheaper and less touchy. I would also have gotten the light with twin power leads, one for the main lights and one for the blue so I can run them independently of each other. Currently I have to manually turn the timer on and switch to the blue. Worth it!
  • puma85puma85 Member, Classifieds Posts: 370
    edited April 2014
    Thanks Doug yeah I am looking into LED lighting I have seen a lot of people use strip lighting. You can get a RGB strip for about 25 bucks that comes with a cool remote control too.

    The other thing I am looking into is using LED strips for all of my lighting. I have found this strip it's a 5050 led that will give me 72w it isn't a huge amount roughly 0.8 per gallon.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/120942085767?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649

    Or I guess even better I could go the 5630 that will give me 150w working out at about 1.3w per gal.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/5M-300-Leds-5630-Bright-Strip-Lighting-Waterproof-12V-LED-Strips-Strip-Camping-/141261252543?pt=AU_Car_Parts_Accessories&hash=item20e3d3a7bf&_uhb=1

    I want to put some Vallisneria in and from what I have read they are ok with low light however I don't know what is low light? Does anyone know? Also how do you know that LEDs are giving off the correct colour spectrum?
  • Heintz.GHeintz.G Moderator Posts: 1,363
    Tank looks mate well done, have a read on this site on led strip lights and led flood lights.

    http://www.aquariumlife.com.au/showthread.php/52330-Strip-led
    Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes & dreams.
  • MoooMooo Moderator Posts: 7,653
    ^:)^ =D> Looks amazing ;)
    photo mooo_avat.gif "I'm a Doug Addict" photo cow2heartkisses.gif
  • Errol WilsonErrol Wilson Member, Classifieds Posts: 526
    Heintz, Great read on that whole thread. THANKS. As I am still after lights to finnish my other 2ft, I think I will go with some waterproof strips on a heatsink. Hope I can fit three as it has to go into one of those Aqua one plastic tops. Blue eyes and gobies hopefully thanks.... Doug I love those blue spots but will have to go with some others.
    Sorry to all for the highjack. I absolutely love this post Puma what a job you, should be very proud of your workmanship.

    Love to all

    =)) =)) =))
    small laughing tree
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