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Old 01-14-2004, 10:34 PM   #1
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some questions on diy lighting

ok, i was looking through the drs foster and smith catalog today and they have a metal halide reef optix II retrofit reflector for $62.99. is that a good price?

i saw somewhere that someone got their ballast at lowes or home depot two work their 250 watt MH bulbs. does anyone remember the name of the ballasts? how well did they work? or if you guys cant remember the name, any recommendations on any that you are using that you wont have to spend an arm and a leg on.

i would need a dual ballast.

also any ideas on a PC retrofit kits that i don't have to spend $300.00 on!!

thanks a lot guys!!!!!!

mark
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Old 01-15-2004, 12:00 AM   #2
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Hello Lights has a parabolic Mh reflector on sale for $29.95 last time I looked at their site. I'm not sure about getting a MH ballast at Lowes or HD...you can get PC ballasts there. If you want to do a DIY MH ballast, look for an Advance ballast. You may have to come up with an enclosure. I'm thinking Bearfan or Timbo could probably guide you better than I can on that subject as they both have some experience with these type ballasts.
For PC retro kits, AH Supply usually has the best deals and their products are very good. Or...you could get the parts separately. Endcaps should cost you less than $5 each. You can get reflectors for around $15-20. You can use a Fulham ballast or, depending on what size and how many bulbs, one of the Sylvania Quicktronics from Lowes. A Fulham Workhorse 7, capable of 220watts, should cost you less than $40.
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Old 01-15-2004, 09:15 AM   #3
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Here's the cheapest that I've found:

http://www.aquarium-supply.biz/order...ght_Retro.html

I just got my 2x96 PC from them yesterday. They're $155, compared with $300 at drsfostersmith.com. The bulbs were included too.

I was sure that it was a mistake on the price, but I have the lamp and my credit card was charged the correct amount. Oh yeah, the shipping was $12.20, so no gouging there either.

Jim
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Old 01-16-2004, 12:23 AM   #4
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www.ahsupply.com is even cheaper
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Old 01-16-2004, 12:32 AM   #5
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Yeah, but the bulbs aren't includedat ahsupply. Also, for the 2x96 you can't control the bulbs independantly, you have to buy 2 1x96's which increases the cost. It appears that you have to wire it yourself too, the kit I posted is all wired, there are just a few quick connect sockets and plugs.

Jim
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