Aquatic Plant Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,
I am new to these boards and I need help already. (which is why I came, huh) :?
I am building a canopy for my 75 gallon tank.
After building the canopy, I am not able to get a lot of light right now.

I am thinking about getting a 2x55W power compact bright kit (110w total) from www.ahsupply.com, that way I will have the option to add more lights later when the funds come in.
Has anyone used them? Do you like them?
And if that is the best choice, what is the difference between a 5000K and a 6700K bulb? I don't like it real yellow or real blue. I had heard the 5000K is really warm and brings out reds. But I have NO IDEA what kind of hue the different bulbs put out.

Thank you :wink:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
542 Posts
Hi missphnx,

You can put 240 W over a 75 gallon tank for about 90 dollars with NO flourescents. See my 75 g tank at:
http://users.ev1.net/~spituch/Steve's Page/Aquarium/hardware/lights/lights.html
A 6500-6700K bulb is pretty neutral hi noon daylight. The 5000K bulbs are warmer. I definitely like the 6700K bulbs better. You can see the difference in the bulbs at this link:
http://users.ev1.net/~spituch/Steve's Page/Aquarium/Animals/animals.html
In the first picture, the brownish bulb is a 5000K bulb. The others are 6500K from Home Depot for about two for $6.50.

The 2x55W kit would cost you about $103 for 1.5 W/G.
The 2x96W kit would cost you about $181 for 2.6 W/G.

The 2x96W kit would be about perfect for your tank. You could put the bulbs side-by-side.

The 55W bulbs you would need to put end-to-end since they are 21.1 inches long. At 1.5 W/G and the narrow reach of the reflectors would probably leave some real dark areas of the tank. If you wanted to go with the 2x55s you could buy another 2x55 kit later on for not much more than the 2x96 kit. That way you would end up with 3.0 W/G.

I would go with the 2x55 kit now only if you really can't afford the 2x96 kit now, but also realize that you may need to have a lot of low light plants, and you are willing to buy the second 2x55 kit later on.

If it were me I would try the get the 2x96 kit now.

Regards,
Steve
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Hi Steve,

Thank you for replying. Wow, this is so much to take in.
I do see the difference in the bulbs on your animals page...the 5000k bulb looks like a bulb about to die. That is probably not bright enough for me.
By the way, your kitties are adorable!

I have only had 1 tank before and it has a twin-tube (T12) fixture sitting over it. So, all this retrofit stuff it Greek to me.

As far as the kind of plants that are going to start out in this new tank once I get the lights, I have a Melon sword, some Val (I don't know what kind), a couple of java ferns and a lobelia cardinalis. Now, some of these I got at the store and some I got from my neighbor. So, I don't really know what kind of light they need. I think he said everything he gave me could tolerate low light (because he knew my lighting situation)

I really can't afford to do the 2x96w right now unless I can find the bulbs for a lot cheaper than the $32.99 each they charge at AHSupply.
Is there somewhere else I can get those? Does Home Depot carry something like that?
If they don't and I can only buy 1 kit, would it be better to get a 1x96 kit instead of the 2x55 so there won't be a gap in between the bulbs?
I am so confused! Man, leave it to me to get interested in something so complicated!

Thank you,
Steph
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
542 Posts
Hi Steph,

Actually the two 55s end-to-end are probably better than one 96 W bulb. The 96 W bulb is 34 inches long. Since your tank is 48 inches wide that leaves about 7.5 inches at either end bare.

With two 55s the reflectors are 22 inches long so you cover about 44 inches so there are only 2 inches at each end that are bare.

Why don't use use the two 40W T-12 NO fluorescent bulbs you have now in combination with the two new 55Ws. That will give you 2.5 W/G! Which is plenty of light.

Show us a picture of your new canopy. How much room is inside it? You could use the two-pin bulb connectors for the 40 W bulbs that I got at Home Depot under the canopy and remove and place the 2x40W ballast on top of the canopy like I did.

The trouble with the 2x55W kit is it will probably light a narrow swath down the middle of the tank. But if put a 40W bulb on either side of the 55W bulbs, it would do nicely.

Steve Pituch
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Oh, no the dual strip light is still over my 60 gallon. The 75 gallon is a additional tank. I am not getting rid of my 65 gallon.
I have 2 angels that have 25 babies right now...I need to get them moved to a bigger tank soon. And since I got the 75 gallon and stand free, that is where they are going. And after buying the filter, heater...yada yada...that is why I am short on $ for lights! The angels will just be in there until they are ready to be sold or given away. That is waaay to many Angels for a 75 gallon, I know. :)

My canopy isn't quite built yet. But the lighting will be mounted underneath the back half of the lid which is 8"wx51"L (approx)
(my neighbor who has about 7 Aquariums in his house is going to help me with the electrical work once I decide what I am doing here)
Unfortunately, he can't help me with inexpensive options because he buys the expensive stuff. :shock:

Well, I guess I will have to start with the 2x55. Then save up as quick as I can for the next set.

Man, what a headache! And I still have trying to keep plants alive to look forward to!

Thank you so much for your time and help. If you think of anything else that can help me, please please let me know.

Oh, heehee, one more question....do you know where to get some Glossostigma elatinoides? (my neighbor ket me borrow his book and I want some of that stuff!...when I get all the lights i need of course)

Thank you,
Steph
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
40 Posts
Steve is right that you can get good lighting out of NO lamps. A 75 gallon tank is perfect for NO or T8 because the spread or coverage is so darn good. You might consider looking at Fullham Workhorse ballasts driving T8's. Of course you could mix T8's and CF from AH. I have been using a Ice Cap ballast with NO lamps over a 75 and get very good results.

That being said, there seems to be a certain glow or shimmer or brightness or something to the CF that NO and T8's don't deliver. Or are the CF I have seen just higher color temp lamps?

Regards,
Jay Reeves
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top