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Glass or Acrylic

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ryan H, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. Ryan H

    26
    Luzerne
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    Looking for any opinions, pros/cons on acrylic vs glass. Any help is appreciated, looking at 75-100 gallon.
     
  2. Barrett GIRS Member

    170
    Urbandale, IA
    Ratings:
    +78 / 0 / -0
  3. Actuary Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    651
    Adel, IA
    Ratings:
    +130 / 1 / -0
    For that size I'd go with glass. For larger aquariums I prefer acrylic.
     
  4. Ryan H

    26
    Luzerne
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    Ok thanks, what's the benefit or just personal pref?
     
  5. Reef Medic Clay Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    380
    Des Moines, IA
    Ratings:
    +63 / 0 / -0
    I definitely prefer glass. Acrylic is great for visibility, as it's way more clear than glass. It's also a lot lighter, if weight is an issue. Glass is way easier to maintain, as it takes a pretty decent amount of force to scratch it. It's also cheaper, for the most part. I'm working on ordering a tank from Reef Savvy at the moment and the size I want would probably be cheaper in acrylic lol. But I'm paying for quality and durability.
     
  6. Actuary Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    651
    Adel, IA
    Ratings:
    +130 / 1 / -0
    As mentioned above, improved clarity and a more manageable weight with acrylic. So if you are going for a very large tank those factors become more valuable. However in the 75-120g range the glass is still thin enough that clarity isn't impacted much.
     
  7. Ryan H

    26
    Luzerne
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    Do you generally pay more for Acrylic prob 100 over glass or is it about the same price?
     
  8. Reef Medic Clay Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    380
    Des Moines, IA
    Ratings:
    +63 / 0 / -0
    I'd say acrylic is definitely going to be more expensive over 100 gallons. I had a buddy that got a 60 gallon acrylic tank from Petco (can't remember the brand) for about $500. That was just the aquarium. I bought the same sized aquarium that was an Aqueon brand for about $170. My entire 75 gallon reef ready tank and stand was around $600 brand new.
     
  9. Dave Experienced Reefkeeper Premium Member GIRS Member

    Des Moines Area
    Ratings:
    +380 / 1 / -0
    Keeping a large acrylic reef tank clean is a nightmare. Had a 280 acrylic that we replaced with a glass 300 because the coraline algae began "creeping up" from the bottom. Cleaning became harder as corals grew. With acrylic you're limited to plastic tools for cleaning and if you even look at acrylic wrong it will scratch. A large acrylic FOWLR would probably be fine or if you are very diligent with daily cleaning (I'm not).
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2018
  10. Actuary Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    651
    Adel, IA
    Ratings:
    +130 / 1 / -0
    There's definitely some truth to this. This was frequently the look in my old 180g acrylic.
    [​IMG]

    However, I have found an amazing magnet scraper which cuts right through coraline. This has allowed me to keep my 36" tall 400g acrylic clean without the need for diving into the tank. They are very expensive magnets but it has definitely made life way easier.

    Considering that you're looking in the 75-100g range though I think glass is the way to go. It's easier to clean, it isn't an impossible weight to manage, and the glass isn't thick enough to cause clarity issues. As others have stated, acrylic is also quite a bit more expensive (unless you find a good used deal).
     

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