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I don't have a step by step but I can tell you what I did on an old 75 that I am finishing up on. Take a Dremmel with a reinforced cutting wheel and split the frame all the way around.

Take it slow and you can gauge the thickness of the frame. You're basically just melting the plastic and weakening the hold of the silicone. Now you have two sides and you can run a razor blade between the side of the frame to separate it from the glass.

The tank I'm working on had loads of silicone on it and even after scraping the excess with a razor there was still a residual silicone "stain" so to say.

There is a product called Poly-Gone 500 Silicone Stripper that I used to remove this residue. It's used in the aircraft maintenance industry to remove silicone from cockpit glass, fuel lines and other parts. It actually breaks the silicone's bonding ability apart at the molecular level as I understand it. After its done its thing you just wipe the silicone off with a rag. It beats a razor blade by a mile.
 

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I gave it a try on a 5.5 gallon but ended up cracking the tank. I had 3 sides off using a razor and a dremel. I thought the whole thing was loose.. but one spot on the 4th side was still stuck and that ended up cracking the tank... wasted $10 bucks... but might buy another one and try again. Using a dremel on the top plastic was somewhat hard. The plastic just melts and you have to pick it out before it cools down. If you drill too deep it also nicks up the glass.
 

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Just to note here - the ugly plastic trim that we see on most tanks made here in the US does not serve any reinforsement purpose. It does not help the structural integrity at all. It is used because of 2 reasons:

- When assembling the tank it serves as a guide where to place the glass and holds it in place.
- Helps prevent bumps of bare glass edges during transportation.

I've heard that some tanks have bad edges under the trim. Basically it's a very sharp glass edge, unpolished and dangerous, or just ugly. Is that so?

--Nikolay
 

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Doesn't anyone know if you can remove the rim and center support on a 46g bowfront without sacrificing any structural integrity?
I'd like to take the center support out of my 46g bowfront as well... I have to assume that it is of NO support value, because it does have quite a bit of flex in it. Not sure about the rim, but I'd guess that the same is true as with the other tanks...

-Josh
 

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I have a bowfront that I was given that the center brace was totally melted on (previous owner had the incandescent bulb sitting directly on the brace). It hasnt been used in a few years but it was fine for the 3 years it was up and running and never had a single issue.
 

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I assume you removed the rim as well? The next poster beat me to my next question. Has anyone done this with the tank already in use?
I left the rim on, and took the center brace off with the tank full of water. I used sharp razor blades to saw through the plastic.
 

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I left the rim on, and took the center brace off with the tank full of water. I used sharp razor blades to saw through the plastic.
Thanks for confirming that.

Crap, now your gonna make me try this over the weekend. The tank is on an amorie in my bedroom. I could see the expression on my wife's face as the tank cracks while we're having dinner downstairs and the water starts leaking through the ceiling fan over the kitchen table.
 

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Very interesting info.

Surprised it hasn't become more popular sooner, considering people seem to be on the look out for rimless tanks that aren't as expensive as the ADA tanks. I know I had no idea that those black rims offered no additional support. Going to have to try this on a spare tank as well...

Cheers for posting...
 
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