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sorry i never heard of bonding glass to pvc :-? most drill a hole and use a bulkhead.maybe more idea on what your doing may help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The idea is to find an alternative to using glass to make a center brace.

My idea is to use ½" PVC pipe that is plugged on both ends. Pictures below should explain better.

PVC pipe, sleeves and plugs


PVC brace mock-up


The final product will have the plugs all the way in. The part I'm in the dark about is what to use to attach/bond the brace to the inside of the glass tank. I know I cannot just use silicone sealant as that doesn't bond to PVC.

Just had a thought: If I use a small amount of epoxy, let it cure fully, then use silicone sealant around the edges of the plug and let that cure fully; in theory the epoxy will provide the strength and the silicone will provide the toxin barrier - thoughts?
 

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Just had a thought: If I use a small amount of epoxy, let it cure fully, then use silicone sealant around the edges of the plug and let that cure fully; in theory the epoxy will provide the strength and the silicone will provide the toxin barrier - thoughts?
thats an idea :) i have roughed up pvc and used silicone as a sealer but never in an application like this.it held so well i couldn't open the lid i sealed.maybe there is an epoxy thats potable(drinking) water safe?
 

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D-007 said:
The idea is to find an alternative to using glass to make a center brace.
What's wrong with glass? It's cheap and it works great. I guess PVC is cheaper, but it's not a huge cost savings in the grand scheme of things. Silicone on glass is something that is proven to work.
 

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Dont think that marine stuff is good... Depends on if its on the outside or inside the tank. I havent read this whole thread but marine stuff usually has mildew resistant chemicals in it and those are harmful to fish... Almost certain if this is going in the tank its a bad idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Eb0la11 said:
Dont think that marine stuff is good... Depends on if its on the outside or inside the tank. I havent read this whole thread but marine stuff usually has mildew resistant chemicals in it and those are harmful to fish... Almost certain if this is going in the tank its a bad idea.
Totally agree with you, that's why I decided against getting it. :D

I'm, also holding off on getting the AquaStik since it's not cost effective when adding the shipping costs.

Instead, tomorrow I'm going to try fishwolfe's idea of roughing up the PVC with some sandpaper and then try doing this 'experiment' with some silicone sealant.

I'll post results (yes, with pictures) by the weekend. I want to give the sealant plenty of thime to cure :)

Regards,
D
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ok here is what I did today:

The tank being subjected to the test:



The tools being used:



65 grit sandpaper; tape measure; pipe cutter; bar clamp; 2 blocks of 2x4; Aquarium Safe silicone sealant; ½" PVC plugs x 2; ½" PVC sleeves x 2; ½" PVC pipe that will be cut to length needed.
Not shown was an 8oz hammer; rubbing alcohol and some paper towels - I use the ones that are blue in color but can't remember the name :p

Here's a close up of the sealant I use for small projects - I already had an opened one.

 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Next steps:

Roughen up the top and sides of the plugs with the sand paper. Picture is of the completed plugs.



Then gave them a quick rinse under the tap to get rid of the dust and sandpaper grit. While they were drying on the back of the truck, I wiped down the areas of the tank where the brace would be with the rubbing alcohol.

Next, I measured the inside distance of the tank's width for the first cut from the PCV pipe; note, this would later be trimmed further:



By this time the plugs and sleeves were dry, so silicone sealant was applied to the sides of the plugs and inserted into the sleeves. The hammer was used to tap them in fully - 2 end-caps made. I then placed one of the end-caps on one end of the cut piece of PVC pipe, then took that length to the tank and lined the other end-cap for the correct length. Made the trim cut, applied the silicone, tapped it on to the other end and used the spit-on-finger method to spread the silicone around the joints.



Then I put a good dollop on each of the end-caps and lined it up in the center of the tank to where I liked it to go. On the outside of the tank I placed the 2x4 blocks to protect the glass and attached the clamp.



I didn't tighen the clamp too hard so as not to crush the glass but just enough to put pressure on the PVC brace to hold it tightly in place. Lastly, I spread some silicone sealant and used the spit-on-finger method again on the ends of the brace where it meets the glass to help with the bond.

Now, I just have to wait till the silicone cures before adding water - probably Saturday afternoon. :)

Regards,
D
 

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It would have been much more dependable to cut a slot halfway through the pipe near each end and lining up with the tank glass. Then you just slide it down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
True but then some of the PVC would overhang on the outside of the tank which is not something I wanted.

For the 55g tank (that has it's center brace broken) I may just do what you suggested because I can then hide the PVC with a DIY canopy.

You could say I did this PVC project for grin's and giggles :lol:
 

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I think for a 55 it will work, anything bigger and I'd get a bit worried. Do you have a spare piece of glass to practice on, to make sure it'll hold? Just pulling apart straight like that, I think it will hold.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
For the 55g with the broken platic brace, I'm either going to do one of the following:

  • 1 - Cough up the $30 for a replacement plastic top frame that has a built in brace
    2 - Cough up about the same amount of $$'s for some plate glass from a local glass company and make my own style of eurobrace. (something I know works and have done before)
    3 - Use ½" PVC and like Mcdaphnia said, cuts slots at the end and slide the pipe over the glass
    4 - Use my grins and giggles experiment depending on the result on Saturday

For my 125g, even though it is an old style tank that doesn't need a brace, I'm going to do option 2 from the list above - but that's a different thread altogether :D .

Cheers,
D
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The experiment was a complete success!! :dancing:

I'll be transfering some stock and decor etc into it tomorrow afternoon after I give it a rinse.

As promised here is a picture to prove it :D



So there you have it, another way to make a tank brace for smaller sized tanks. :thumb:

Regards,
D
 
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