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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have some seriously old-school single bulb fluorescent light fixtures for a ten gallon tank. I would like to go high light/CO2 for cheap, and am considering just throwing two of these with glass over the tank. That's 3wpg in something about 12" deep, but without good reflectors and with only reasonable quality 15-19w bulbs.

Doable?

As a goal, I would like to start out with almost exculsively dwarf grasses and grow a "lawn" then add a few things in for a minimalist setup.

I have done high light and CO2 before, but in a VERY small tank that was easy to get high light in.

What say you?
 

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even though two 15 watt bulbs equates to 30 watts it is not safe to assume that your tank will be getting 3 watts per gallon especially when using "seriously old-school single bulb fluorescent light fixtures" and no reflector. mainly because old used fluorescent bulbs don't kick out as much light as you would expect and more than half of the light wont even be making it into the tank with no reflectors in reality your most likely going to be getting 1=2 watts per gallon. I would just recommend investing in a new compact fluorescent light fixture that you'll never have to worry about. it will save you a lot of hassle in the long run for $40 you can buy a professionally made fixture for a 10 gallon that can grow basically any "high light" plant
 

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I have the coralife 20" 1x40W fixture over my ten gal. It grows stuff, but doesn't give enough light to the bottom parts of my rotala. I ordered one of the current satellite fixtures with 2 40W compacts. It comes with 3 plugs, 1 for each compact, and 1 for the moon light. That might be a good idea to use. I paid ~$130 for one at aquacave.com.
 

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One of the 40W on the Current Satellite is actinic. Actinis isn't suitaable for plants. It's a great fixture. I use it with the mounting legs over my 16 G which has the same footprint as a 10G.
CBWMN
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
To be honest, I'm trying to spend as close to $0 as possible. $130 is just too much for me right now. I'll do as much DIY as I have to, I'm pretty handy with building things.

Probably $75 would be the upper limit for me to spend on a new fixture.
 

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You can get an AH Supply 36 watt bright kit, plus a 6700K bulb for about $60, and make a simple box fixture using that, all for around your price limit. That should give you adequate lighting for most plants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
hmmm, good call. I might even get one of the 55w setups and suspend it so that it doesn't look crazy hanging over the edge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm either going to get the 36w bright kit, or the 40w sattelite, probably the satellite. It's a little cheaper and the only thing the bright kit has on it is the reflector.

One question, if I get the legs for the satellite do I need to put glass over the water?
 

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I am searching light for my 10 gal as well.
Looking at spec for 40w satelike, it say this model come only 1 switch. So how do I turn on only lunar light only for night viewing?
 

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If you haven't already purchased the Current fixture, you may want to take into account the light that comes with the unit...a combo 10,000K/actinic lamp. You may want to purchase another bulb for this fixture since the actinic portion of the bulb that comes with it isn't much use for plants.

I can understand the desire not to DIY due to the time involved but I thin the AH supply kit would be a better bang for your buck considering the amount of "usable" light you get for the money.

How much is a replacement 10,000K or 6700K bulb? Don't forget to factor that into the cost of the Current fixture.
 

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I am searching light for my 10 gal as well.
Looking at spec for 40w satelike, it say this model come only 1 switch. So how do I turn on only lunar light only for night viewing?
The 40 watt version uses two outlets; one is for the power compact and the other is for the LED light. The switch only applies to the power compacts.

The Actnic bulb that comes default with the Satellites are actually useful for plants because it is in the 460nm range. However, you don't get much red with a 10K and Actinic together, and since plants also need the ranges of 640nm-660nm, you're better off getting a fixture like this if you can... although your 10 gallon has a length of only 20". http://www.current-usa.com/novaextremet5hox2.html

For reference, this is a helpful thread started by Newt regarding what bulbs are best used for Photosynthesis: http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/science-aquatic-lighting/26955-color-temperature.html

I own a Satellite 20" Powercompact and I regret not being able to buy a T5HO fixture, mainly because your options of color spectrum are more flexible than Powercompacts.
 

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Check out the local Lowes or Home Depot for mercury vapor and metal halide fixtures. They are built hellishly strong and would probably end up cheaper than anything commercially available for aquarium use with similar light output.
 
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