God help me, changing out the top brace of a 125


Reefing newb
For reasons unbeknownst to me the top frame member of my 125 cracked through in three places when I was cleaning the joint with acetone in prep for resiliconing, so now I'm faced with the daunting task of replacing it. I think most top braces have the same general design but just in case here's a cross section of mine...


The right side of the frame is 2"

So the question is...how to break that silicone seal, and I honestly don't know the best way to approach it. My only idea so far involves using a long razor to split as much silicone as I can, then possibly dremmeling a cut line all along the very top of the frame directly above the glass pane. After that and a little more dremmeling on the corners, I'd hope some gentle prying from the outside bottom lip would be enough to bend each rail of the frame up and remove it in pieces.

So far the only method of frame removal I've seen suggested using piano wire to saw the silicone out. Not sure how well that would work.

Anybody done this job before? I'm all ears.
If it were me, I would use a knife to cut the silicone from between the frame and glass. A "pipe knife"(like this) used for re-glazing windows would work great for this. I would first put several layers of tape onto glass below frame to keep the knife from scratching the glass. Also make sure that the razor blade does not go in the frame far enough to catch the top edge of the glass. The edge of the glass is the weakest point and it wouldnt take much to chip or crack the glass from inside the frame. ( I work for a window company and spent several years as a service tech and have re-glazed (and cracked) my share of windows) Dont try to cut the silicone on the first pass with the blade. You will want to make many passes with lighter pressure. It will cut easier and faster this way. I think once the outside is cut, you should be able to genlty, pull/pry it off. Hope this helps.