Rimless or Braced Tanks

by Apr 27, 20205 comments

Have you heard of Rimless or Braced tanks before? This article will help you with your decision if you want a Rimless Tank or a Braced Tank for your planted aquarium.

Table of Contents

Rimless or Braced Tanks
Rimless Tanks
Braced Tanks
Closing Remarks

Rimless Tanks

Rimless tanks use thicker glass to keep the glass from bowing due to the water’s weight when it is filled and to avoid structural failure of the glass itself and joints. Aesthetically, rimless tanks are simply beautiful and elegant. It just looks amazing.

Most rimless aquariums are made from higher purity glass that is much clearer than standard glass. This type of glass uses silica and a meager amount of iron. This low level of iron removes the greenish-blue tint seen from the standard glass used in aquariums.

Because there are no Euro bracing and plastic trims, you have full access to the tank’s top, and you can clearly see the waterline. However, you can also see the watermarks if your water source is hard, and you are not up to par when it comes to your routine maintenance.

You cannot keep fishes that are known-jumpers as the top is open. Of course, rimless tanks cost more.

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Braced Tanks

The oldest type of aquariums, braced aquariums have these plastic trims at the top and bottom of different color choices. These plastic trims are used to cover the joints and seams of the bracing.

It has an added benefit of not being able to see the waterline. Bracing is used so that the builder can use thinner glass without compromising the structural integrity of the tank, thus reducing the cost.

However, there are equipment that are not compatible with braced tanks, depending on the width of the bracing glass. Most glass and stainless Lily Pipes won’t fit, and most HOB (Hang On Back) filters because they are designed with rimless tanks in mind.

I have a 35 gallon, Euro braced tank, black trims and I am using a Sun Sun 303B Canister Filter and for its intake and outtake tubes, it fits even with the bracing, but I have to DIY to lock them into place.

Click Gallery to Enlarge and See Captions

Want to Explore More?

Filtration for Planted Aquariums

They are all recommended, but a planted aquarium should have at least two, and in our experience, you should have both Mechanical and Biological Filtration. Chemical Filtration filter media like Activated Carbon, Zeolites, etc., is not much used in an established and stable planted aquarium. Most of the filter types can house the filter media that will perform all these types of filtration.

Nature Style Aquariums

It is mostly considered to be one of the most popular aquascape designs today. And for an excellent reason, this style is simply breathtaking and very natural looking. We are replicating nature, after all.

Modified Traditional Method - How to Cycle a Planted Aquarium

The fastest method of cycling our planted aquarium works if you have an old established tank or a friend’s tank, but what if you don’t have any and are starting from scratch? The traditional method of cycling our tank, fish-in cycling, involves adding a few hardy fish to jumpstart the Nitrogen Cycle.

Osmosis in Planted Aquariums

Osmosis is the process in which any solvent moves through a membrane in a direction from lower concentration to higher concentration that tends to equalize the solutes’ concentration on both sides. The membrane should be semi-permeable and good examples are the cells of the aquatic faunas and plants.

Nutrients - The Planted Aquarium Water Parameters

Our aquarium is very much like a septic tank for our faunas (fish/es, snails, and shrimps). Whenever they excrete, or you are overfeeding, and those organics started to decay, or when dead plant matter decays, Ammonia is produced. When faunas die and decay, they will also produce Ammonia, lots of it actually, until they are removed. This causes ammonia levels in our tank to spike.

Canister Filters - Types of Planted Aquarium Filters

Canister filters are more powerful and larger than most other filters, and they are suitable for medium to large planted aquariums. This means you can stuff more media due to its larger capacity/volume, which in turn allows for better filtration and more beneficial bacteria colonization. The simple fact is the more volume your filter has, and the more media you can stuff into it, the more effective and efficient your filtration is and the clearer/cleaner your water is.

Closing Remarks

I hope you enjoyed this article and if ever you have additional questions or want to share your experiences with rimless or braced aquarium tanks, please leave a comment below.

Next, we will be discussing the types of materials used in building an aquarium and how it can help you with your decision if you want a regular glass aquarium, a low-iron glass aquarium, or an acrylic aquarium.


  1. Catherine

    Hi ,

    As an aquarium enthusiast myself I really enjoyed reading your article. I prefer the rimless tank, as I have one suspended on my living room wall. I could really advise them: besides the fact that it’s beautiful to the eye, it’s also easy to maintain.


    • Lemuel Sacop

      Hello Catherine,

      Thank you for sharing your experience. I agree, rimless tanks are simply beautiful and easy to maintain.

  2. Greg

    I really like the rimless tank. It is so nice and it would look great with aquarium plants.

    Thank you for telling me about the two kinds of tanks. I thought there was only one type. Well.. I also know about fishbowls😀

    • Lemuel Sacop

      Hello Greg,
      Thanks for coming back!
      We usually don’t recommend fishbowls in a planted aquarium unless it is 10 gallons and above. They are usually difficult to fit in a filtration system, you have to find a way or need to DIY. The glass used is very thin too mostly.

  3. Habib


    What pretty aquarium tanks you have on this article. We used to have the braced tank years back. We got rid of it because it was too much hard work changing the water.

    Thank you for bringing back those beautiful memories.

    Your website is very calming.

    All the best


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