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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Glass or Acrylic?
by Dave Pierce

There are two types of materials used to build aquariums, namely Acrylic and Glass. Each of these materials has it's own set of advantages and
disadvantages, which are detailed in the schematic below.

LightweightRequires good stand
support along entire
bottom of tank
Requires only perimeter
stand support
ProvidesClearest ViewCanYellow over time
Can begin to bow over time (especially less expensive
brands with thin material)
Maintains its rigidity well
Requires support across
top of tank limiting access

Top is completely unobstructed
Scratches can be buffed outVeryeasy to scratchResist scratchingScratches can never
be removed*
Easy to drill and modifyMust be professionally
drilled or modified
Comes in many shapes
with few visible seams
Less flexibility
in design shapes

All seams are visible
Seams tend to maintain
integrity for life
Seams can develop leaks over time,
especially if moved

* = This is not entirely true. Scratches can be removed using a Hydrochloric acid (HCl). It will work with about any concentration, the higher it is the quicker it will work, but it will also increase the risk of going too deep. A 20% HCl solution is recommended. Practice on a small piece of glass before doing this to your aquarium. Just dip some cotton-wool in the solution and keep rubbing it over the scratch. It will fade away while rubbing. Keep enough fresh water handy to rinse away the acid. Be careful where it drips!!! When you feel the moisture on your fingers, wash them with water and use some new cotton-wool. Your fingers will not drop of immediatly. ;) Use at your own risk.
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