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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Ok, so I did it, i've decided that I will have a planted aquarium and I needed to deal with the lighting. So I decided that I'd build my own hood. It took about 2 weeks to build and paint. I thought i took more pictures but ooppss i didnt.
Specs:
Lighting - 4 T8/T12 Fixtures. With Philips Daylight Delux 6500K bulbs
Night Lighting - 18' of blue rope lights, around the inner lip of the Hood.
Both are ran on timers, the night light has it's own, and the daylight has it's own.
Electrical - Concealed in the hood, one wire runs down to the outlet. GFI outlet for both timers to plug into thus it'll be on a GFI circut.

Now for the pictures, sorry if they suck I just got my Panasonic DMC-TZ1 and havent played with it much.

This is the hood boxed in.


Ends are on look close on the left side you can see they drop about 1" to cover the black ring around the top.










This picutre had auto white balance on it


This picture i set the white balance to the white in the tank (i dont really like the results)


4 48" T8 6500K Philips bulbs


Night lights. To take this picture i had to set my camera on a dresser because I used an 8 second shutter speed to absorb as much light as possible.


Any ideas on the Light Timing schedule? I can turn the white lights on only together, but with my timer in can have them go on and off up to 2 or 3 times a day. The night lights are on another timer. Any comments welcome

Also Thanks to mahamotorworks, I used his thread as a guide
 

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That is a very interesting design. Are the timers in the upper part of the hood? With a single electric cord coming out to the wall socket? That's a neat way to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Exactly hoppy. How i have it wired is with 2 electrical boxes, the single power cord goes from the GFI to the wall outlet in my room. This is where both timers will plug in. The other junction box is where i have both of the shop lights spliced together and into a plug, that plug will go into a timer and control the flourcents.

The night lights will come on after the daylight lights go off, but not for a long long time, idk gotta figure out the schedule.

Also, is there an easy way to resize these? I feel bad stretching the forum, i'll look to reupload.
 

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Pretty cool. I'm curious about all the extra hight above the level of the lights. Is that just room for the wires or did you have any more plans up there?

What brand of shop lights are those, and where did you purchase them?

What are your plans for the tank. What kind of filters will you be using, if any, and if they're hangons how will they interact with the hood?

Could you post a picture of the timer setup if its not burried where you can't get a shot of it?

I'm wanting to build a hood very similar to this one for my 55. Is there anything you would reccomend I do differently?

Sorry for all the q's. :-D
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The extra height was used, because when I mount the 2 timers to the GFI, one of them has to face in a different direction. The only thing is sense they are polarized plugs I cant use just one GFI unless, I use a small "riser" I will provide pictures of them so it makes a little more sense. Also this provided me with a little air exchange area above the shop lights.

Brand of shop lights: Unsure, the fixtures were ~$14 I believe from Home Depot. I got these because they are T8/T12 capable, and also the reflectors arnt monsters.

MY plans for the tank are setting it up as a NPT. My plants come this week (thanks epic) and a few fish as well (thanks John N.). The filtration will be taken care of via an Rena Filstar XP3. The wood i used is only 1/2 wide so the intake and discharge fit right over it, they just may sit a little "high" in the tank.

What would I do differently... Hmmm. I made everything fit exact. I mean, too exact. So when i put the wood on the ends it was to be the EXACT length. The inner edge of the outside boards is 48". I would make them 48.5" or 49" to allow it to slide on easier. It was so tight I needed to use a putty knife and a little "persuasion" to get it onto the tank. I would have made it a bigger.
 

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That hood reminds me of my hood. :D Only I just used a single shoplight, and ran a string of christmas lights for a night light. To switch the nightlight, I just used an electric eye used for a patio light. When the timer turns the main lights off, the electric eye kicks the night light on. I also managed to find a timer that replaces the lightswitch in the wall, so there's no plug/outlet to deal with. You just mount the thing in a junction box and wire it up.

Mine was kind of an excercise to see how cheaply I could do it, and still keep is useful and presentable.




You can barely see the electric eye mounted in the side of the shoplight housing at the far end. All of the electrical connections are made inside the shoplight housing.

Teeleton
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks Errin, I'll be posting a few pics (the reflectors, and the full tank) probably monday, or tuesday. I'm down to low light conditions due to S. Minima LOL, but I have found someone nice enough to take A TON of it off my hands. So i'll have a few pictures once i pull it off and get everything looking better. Need to do some serious replanting as of today but i have to help someone move lol.

I just picked up a couple Harliquen Rasboras last night, hopefully I can find 4-5 more before the pictures. But probably not. Their collor is SO much nicer now that they are in a "home"
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks soul, i'm going to try to get some pictures up, i have some with plants in the tank when it was looking good, now it's in disarray, my hornwort is not doing what i want it to, but the rest of the stuff is taking off. I need to do some rescaping today, and i'm going to probably hop to it soon, maybe i can upload them during that time. As for current pics, i have algae on the glass and hopefully my fert regimine newly implemented will help with that issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Here are some pics before crap hit the fan:
Whole Tank


Left Side:


Middle:


Right Side:


Now mind you, on the right side, the hornwort, ya, didnt stay planted after it grew for a day now it's a massive floating bunch. I think it'll go soon.

The Bacopa monneri is growing bigger and bigger, the Ludwiga is looking more healthy but it stunted and instead of producing leaves every 1/2 inch, it's more like 5 in 1" lol. hopefully ferts will solve this issue along with CO2, my mom (i hope) is picking up today
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Sushi - the thing is, the Cabomba on the right became long and leggy, not as full as i had hoped, so i'm thinking of pulling it. The bacopa in the corrner has gotten massive. The 1 stem of ludwiga is now 4. And the Marsilia is going nuts. I cant get the Rinnoculus (sp) to grow tho. I only have 2 small stems of it now. I'm going to have to try to increase light to it. Oh yes, my HM is getting fairly large. And the vals are gone as well. I'll have to try for pics soon.

The Hornwort, is mostly removed, i just use it as a "sponge" for snails to lay eggs on.

The Hydrocotle was so big it covered 1/3 of the total tank. I now only have a little. Hopefully i'll be able to do a rescape soon and take another picture with clean glass.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I'll see if i have a previous picture of it, currently my tank is overgrown with what seems to be a brown hair like algae. IDK what i can do to remove it, but my tank was cleaned a few days ago, and now all my moss is messed up, and it's growing on just about everything...
 
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