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Old 03-14-2005, 02:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I've seen a few tanks with "hoodless" setups (i.e. there's no lid and the lights are a few inches above the tank) and wanted to make/find one. Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Also I'm working on a high school budget ($62 for the next three months or so) therefore cost should be VERY low. Nothing over thirty bucks. I want to put it on a standard ten gal. or thirty tall.
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Old 03-14-2005, 02:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I have a Red Sea 5/8 gallon tank that was about $30 total. Comes with a power compact light, HOB filter & everything. All you need is substrate and livestock.

It's too small for a betta btw...
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Old 03-14-2005, 05:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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here is my 10 gal tank. this is as low budget tank as i could make.

hood $5
lights $12
filter $11
heater $7
gravel Free
tank Free
plants paid shipping only

total $35


click the attachment for picture!!
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Old 03-15-2005, 11:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks, but I'm looking for a hoodless setup (one that suspends a light above the tank) to make or buy. It can't cost very much and can't hang from anything. ideas?
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Old 03-15-2005, 01:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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you can't see it, but that one is hanging from the clothes rack in a closet.

you could easily cut some wood to hold it up. you could also build a hood out of wood. if you do that, line the inside of the hood with aluminum foil or mirror to act as a reflector.
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Old 03-15-2005, 03:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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my question is: would the wood get wet and gross? As in, would it rot out?
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Old 03-15-2005, 03:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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you could seal it with "thompson's water seal" as seen in commercials. lol. but seriously, you would have to use some water repellent paint or somthing.
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Old 03-16-2005, 12:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I've made a couple of DIY hoods so far, all out of wood. I typically use a layer or two of Kilz primer followed by several layers of paint. The wood gets fairly wet at times when I'm doing tank maint. But, I don't believe that just sitting above the tank causes it to get too much moisture. I'd venture that the heat of the light, in some way, compensates for any excessive moisture near the top of the tank.
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Old 04-29-2005, 08:21 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hello sk8r turned aquarist. I used to skate too and I know all about trying to get decent aquarium lighting with a college budget. I used shop lights in my 55 gallon aquarium. I suspended these lights from the ceiling. I used a stud finder to find the location of the studs which I screwed the hooks into. Another important aspect is to use turnbuckles to make sure that the light is even when you suspend it. I suspended my light from a slanted ceiling and used chain for the suspension so I had to use turnbuckles to make sure the light is even. Total cost for 4 48" bulbs, the chain, the base board to attatch lighting to, the turnbuckles, AND the studfinder: about $50-60. I love having the suspended light fixtures because it allows my huge sword plants to grow well above the water surface and start flowering. No way this could happen with a standard "hood" type installation. Suspending the light also prevents it from heating the water as well and allows quicker access to the tank. If you look at large reef aquariums, many of them use suspended lighting.
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