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Old 03-13-2009, 03:24 AM   #1
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I think I will get that larger tank..

If anyone's read my other posts debating whether or not get the 29 gallon kit or the 40 gallon, the main thing that was holding me back from the larger one was the price. But now after reading around, it looks like I would have to upgrade the lighting anyways if I want to grow plants, and I can't afford to put out $100's for lights. So I just had a good idea (I think!). Since I am going to build my own stand anyways, I read on some other post about people building canopies. I wasn't aware that you could just a standard flourescent fixture that you can get at Home Depot, but if that is the case, then I can basically get plenty of wattage for like $10 or $20. Plus it will look nice. Does this sound like a good idea?
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Old 03-13-2009, 06:06 AM   #2
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I know some people claim you have to have the ultimate light to grow plants.
Horsehocky. I have numerous plants in my tanks and absolutely no problem growing them with the standard lights that came with the tank. I did upgrade the bulbs but that is all I did.
I can grow most low to medium light plants of which there are a very large selection.
PS: I don't know what fixtures you need for an aquarium from Home Depot but I can say I bought a couple of waterproof fixtures for my greenhouse and they were $80 each.
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Old 03-13-2009, 01:02 PM   #3
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I was wondering if I needed special waterproof fixtures or anything because of the water. I guess they won't get sprayed water on them like they might in a greenhouse, but I'm sure the evaporation couldn't be that great for them. I'll have to check into that.
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Old 03-13-2009, 01:36 PM   #4
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I just asked basically the same question for my 30g long. From what I gather you can just buy T8 lights with an electronic ballast and swap out the bulbs for some full spectrum T12's.

You don't need waterproof lights, just use a glass cover on the tank, problem solved. Do NOT use bare lights over water!!!
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Old 03-13-2009, 01:45 PM   #5
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So when building my own canopy, I just need to buy one of those cheap glass covers, and then put the canopy over the top of that?
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Old 03-13-2009, 02:10 PM   #6
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If you are going to build a canopy, yes go with the glass top. but you can also design it to hold whatever light fixture you have a few inches above the glass rather than having it lay right on the glass.
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Old 03-13-2009, 02:29 PM   #7
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Right, I was going to make the canopy maybe 6-8 inches and then just mount the lights to the underside of it (so the lights would be 6-8 inches above the top of the tank). So even if I get a fixture that has a cover over it, would I still need a glass top over the tank? I guess that would be a good idea anyways to keep fish from jumping out. I am glad someone mentioned this or I might not have thought of it! When you buy a nice stand with a nice wood canopy, do they normally have a glass panel above the tank that you have to open as well, or is it all incorporated into the canopy?
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