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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i was wondering if i could drill my acrylic tank when it has water in it. i want to add a 3/4" bulk head for a close loop, so i thought i could just drain the tank down about 8" and drill a hole. what do you all think? oh does anyone know were to get some 3/4" flex pvc. i checked at home depoe but the looked at me like i was on crack!:D
thanks
 

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Not sure about drilling the tank with water in it. It can be done, but I would be extra careful. If it cracks, you're up a creek.

I couldn't find the 3/4" spaflex at my local hardware stores either, but was able to find it at a pool/spa place nearby... HTH.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
well i am kind of worried about doing it, has any one tried this? thanks for the heads up about the pool/spa place!
 

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How thick is the acrylic you're drilling? Do you have any scrap pieces you can practice on? I've drilled a few holes in acrylic, and it isn't too bad. The trickiest part, IMO, is the end. You need to make sure the bit finishes through without binding, which is what would lead to cracking the acrylic... Also, need to go slow and keep the bit moist so it doesn't melt the acrylic and get stuck...

I guess I would drill the pilot hole. Then, drill 3/4 of the way through from the back and finish the rest of the hole from the front. I'm not sure if the acrylic shavings that come off the hole saw would be a problem for your tank inhabitants or not though...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
funnyguyMI said:
How thick is the acrylic you're drilling? Do you have any scrap pieces you can practice on? I've drilled a few holes in acrylic, and it isn't too bad. The trickiest part, IMO, is the end. You need to make sure the bit finishes through without binding, which is what would lead to cracking the acrylic... Also, need to go slow and keep the bit moist so it doesn't melt the acrylic and get stuck...

I guess I would drill the pilot hole. Then, drill 3/4 of the way through from the back and finish the rest of the hole from the front. I'm not sure if the acrylic shavings that come off the hole saw would be a problem for your tank inhabitants or not though...
well i drill 2 1 1/2 " holes in it, but the tank was empty. it's at least 1/2 maybe 3/4" thick. i was just worried about the pressure of the water:eek:
 

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I would get in touch with chowderhead, He is a member on the site. He seems to have a good name when it comes to Acrylic. He might even chime in on this one soon if he reads the post.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
no one has done this before?:confused: chowderhead if your out there and have any thought's please let me know. thanks
 

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Give it a go!!!!!!!!!

I would use a forstner bit to drill the hole vs. a hole saw. One that big may be a little expensive but you will get the best quality hole.

Now I assume that you want the hole on the back wall of the tank, and I also am assuming that the tank is up against a wall......This means you will have to drill the hole from the inside out.

This means you are going to have to come up with a way to deal with the drill shavings from falling into the tank. When drilling glass, the shavings are silica sand and can fall into the tank without problems. While I don't think the acrylic will be toxic, its going to be like dumping a box load of packing peanuts into the tank during the drilling process.....maybe they will float.

There is always a risk when drilling a tank.......

But I would still attempt to drill it, keep us posted on how you do.

Good luck,
Dan
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Chowderhead said:
Give it a go!!!!!!!!!

I would use a forstner bit to drill the hole vs. a hole saw. One that big may be a little expensive but you will get the best quality hole.

Now I assume that you want the hole on the back wall of the tank, and I also am assuming that the tank is up against a wall......This means you will have to drill the hole from the inside out.

This means you are going to have to come up with a way to deal with the drill shavings from falling into the tank. When drilling glass, the shavings are silica sand and can fall into the tank without problems. While I don't think the acrylic will be toxic, its going to be like dumping a box load of packing peanuts into the tank during the drilling process.....maybe they will float.

There is always a risk when drilling a tank.......

But I would still attempt to drill it, keep us posted on how you do.

Good luck,
Dan
thanks for the info. you are right , i am doing it from the inside/out. i thought of cuting a large butter bowl in half and sticking it over the place were im drilling useing plumbers puddy. this should keep all the shaveings from getting everywere. so you dont think i should worry about cracking the tank?
thanks
tim
 

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Cracking the tank IS the biggest worry............

Ask yourself what would you do IF the tank cracked and go from there.

I am NOT recommending that you drill your tank if you have not worked with acrylic or power tools before.

"One can drill his own aquarium and have a reasonable chance of success if proper tools and technique are used".....That was(is) my official statement.(Your Honer))

I have drilled hundreds of holes in hundreds of tanks and I have had one failure.

I can't guarantee that I won't crack your tank if I drill it, let alone tell you, you won't break it.

I know this did not help you much, but there always is a risk of breaking the tank.

Good luck,
Dan
 

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Got to love that statement and I back you up 100% Chowderhead !!!!

I have drilled many holes myself, but if someone ask me to drill their tank, First thing out of my mouth is :

" No guarantee if the glass breaks and im not responsible "

I will offer the drill and bit to have them do it themselves if they want.

The funny part is if they want to do it, they can, if you mess my bit up.

" You buy me a new one "

Sounds like there is always a catch, but that's the game of drilling glass !!!!

Have good day...................................
 

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Most of the time everything goes well and you think I was worried over that when you see how easy a tank can be drilled.

BTW, I like your shaving catcher idea.

Dan
 
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