Rimless Tank Build

culvern22

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Good Day, Everyone!

New here to R2R but certainly been utilizing the forums for a few years now.

I’ve thrown together some plans for a 48wx12dx14h rimless tank and I’d like to know if anyone experienced with DIY rimless builds would check the dimensions for me before I get the panels cut.

I realize some would object to the shallow depth of this tank but the aesthetics I seek and the space I’m working with will not accommodate something much deeper. I’m going for long and narrow, which will certainly allow for some interesting shallow-reef aquascaping. I’m choosing to work with 1/2” glass because it will be easier to work with than something thinner.

I believe I’ve accounted for the width of the glass (using 1/2 low-iron glass) as well as a 1/16 gap for all seams to accommodate the RTV silicone.

The configuration will be the four panels will be fixed around the base glass panel of the tank and will not be adhered to the top of the base glass panel.

For those who would like to know more, I’ll be utilizing an external overflow and a 20 gallon sump (using baffle kit), since this tank will hold far less than 40 gallons of water. I’ll be building my own stand.

I’ve attached some images of the plans. Please feel free to request additional clarification. Thanks, everyone!

FCC0FB13-43CC-4131-B9A3-D2E836DB0F9A.png EB8FE3E6-3A67-4E9D-AACB-D5D088CA30CD.png
 

JoshH

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I'm not a tank builder by any stretch of the imagination but the 1/2" Starfire tank I own have an 1/8" gap for silicone I have a Nuvo 10 with a 1/16" silicone seam. Might be worth looking into the differences..

Oh and Welcome to R2R!!! Definitely add a build thread so you can share your awesome DIY build, I absolutely LOVE the dimensions you've selected. It's like a SUPER long Mr. Aqua Nano tank. I wish they made one that size it would be the Perfect shelf tank!
 
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coseal

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looks like you are headed in the right direction! that half inch glass is likely 12mm though. and make sure your glazier knows you need exact tolerances. are you doing the assembly? or the glazier?
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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I'm not a tank builder by any stretch of the imagination but the 1/2" Starfire tank I own have an 1/8" gap for silicone I have a Nuvo 10 with a 1/16" silicone seam. Might be worth looking into the differences..

Oh and Welcome to R2R!!! Definitely add a build thread so you can share your awesome DIY build, I absolutely LOVE the dimensions you've selected. It's like a SUPER long Mr. Aqua Nano tank. I wish they made one that size it would be the Perfect shelf tank!
Thanks, Josh! I am so pleased to hear your suggestion about the silicone gap. I’m going to follow your advice as it’s making the gap 1/8” is easy to do and would only stand to benefit the strength and seal. I’m hoping to post a diy thread. It’ll be my first entry into a design build and I know how much I appreciate when others take the time to do so.

Have an excellent week!
 

dantimdad

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Your dimensions are good. I would also leave a slight gap on any tank.

I would suggest ASI sealant. You can find it on Amazon. It is fantastic stuff!
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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looks like you are headed in the right direction! that half inch glass is likely 12mm though. and make sure your glazier knows you need exact tolerances. are you doing the assembly? or the glazier?
I’ll be assembling the tank myself at this point I realize it’s a lot to handle but the challenge and risk is exciting to me. I’m sure I’ll be rolling my pops into giving me a hand ;)
 

dantimdad

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Definitely get a second set of hands. 1/2" glass weighs way more than you might think.

Also blue tape is your friend for clean seams and holding panels in place while they set.
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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Your dimensions are good. I would also leave a slight gap on any tank.

I would suggest ASI sealant. You can find it on Amazon. It is fantastic stuff!
Noted! I’ll look into that silicone as well. Thanks for the reply! I’m so grateful for input from everyone! Sounds cliche but this gives me strength.
 

dantimdad

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Noted! I’ll look into that silicone as well. Thanks for the reply! I’m so grateful for input from everyone! Sounds cliche but this gives me strength.
Man, this place is a wealth of knowledge and help. If you need anything just ask. Someone here will help.

Have fun! I really love the DIY aspect of this hobby.
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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I'm not a tank builder by any stretch of the imagination but the 1/2" Starfire tank I own have an 1/8" gap for silicone I have a Nuvo 10 with a 1/16" silicone seam. Might be worth looking into the differences..

Oh and Welcome to R2R!!! Definitely add a build thread so you can share your awesome DIY build, I absolutely LOVE the dimensions you've selected. It's like a SUPER long Mr. Aqua Nano tank. I wish they made one that size it would be the Perfect shelf tank!
And yes, the Mr. Aqua and Aquamaxx were what got my interest shifted from shallow square lagoon to a long build with 2-3 rockscapes, which will allow for some additional diversity of fish and corals. The downside is going to be the likely increased cost in lighting but I’ve made my peace with that some time ago. I’m very excited.
 

Liron Mishal

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I actually went through this process a year ago. you can check my build thread here:
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/new-100usg-tank.494068/#post-5307095
your glass thickness is too thick. go with 8mm, or 10 max. moving heavy glass panels during the silicone stage is not as accurate as manipulating thinner panels.
mine is 48x24x24, i went with 12mm but if i would to do it again i would go with 10mm.
gap between all panels should be 1.5mm. all panels sits on the bottom panel, make sure you leave the same gap between the surrounding panels and the bottom panel as well.
 

dantimdad

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I have an affinity for cubes but I recently purchased a 12 foot long 16"x18" tank that will have yellow tangs in it and some smaller fish. I really do like the super long look.
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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I actually went through this process a year ago. you can check my build thread here:
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/new-100usg-tank.494068/#post-5307095
your glass thickness is too thick. go with 8mm, or 10 max. moving heavy glass panels during the silicone stage is not as accurate as manipulating thinner panels.
mine is 48x24x24, i went with 12mm but if i would to do it again i would go with 10mm.
gap between all panels should be 1.5mm. all panels sits on the bottom panel, make sure you leave the same gap between the surrounding panels and the bottom panel as well.
Thanks, Liron!

I’m starting to get a lot of the same feedback about the glass being unnecessarily thick. 10mm would also save me some money.

Regarding your configuration, do you still prefer the glass panels being adhered on top of the glass panel? I haven’t been able to find any good input on pros and cons of panels on top or being placed around the bottom panel.
 
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culvern22

culvern22

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I have an affinity for cubes but I recently purchased a 12 foot long 16"x18" tank that will have yellow tangs in it and some smaller fish. I really do like the super long look.
I was thinking the same thing. I feel like the long tank can give access to some fish and corals that would otherwise be contraindicated by having a cube.
 
Top Shelf Aquatics

Liron Mishal

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Thanks, Liron!

I’m starting to get a lot of the same feedback about the glass being unnecessarily thick. 10mm would also save me some money.

Regarding your configuration, do you still prefer the glass panels being adhered on top of the glass panel? I haven’t been able to find any good input on pros and cons of panels on top or being placed around the bottom panel.
I would still go with panels on bottom.
I also did some bracing on the bottom for peace of mind (euro bracing)
 

Liron Mishal

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Just to add, if you go with panels around the base, you may not need the bracing,
however you will have to build it on a very flat surface like another glass panel and it will be a little bit more difficult to glue
Whatever configuration you choose, ill be happy to design a 3d printable jig for you. All you need is clamps
 

JoshH

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Thanks, Liron!

I’m starting to get a lot of the same feedback about the glass being unnecessarily thick. 10mm would also save me some money.

Regarding your configuration, do you still prefer the glass panels being adhered on top of the glass panel? I haven’t been able to find any good input on pros and cons of panels on top or being placed around the bottom panel.
Personally I'd be hesitant to go less than 10mm on the glass thickness. IMs 30L when they first came out used 8mm on a 3 foot span on a 16" tall tank and they had serious bowing problems. And I do agree to not to underestimate the heaviness of glass. It's something people often forget and myself included, took me off guard when I had my custom tank delivered.
 
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