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Old 09-21-2009, 10:55 PM   #1
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Lightbulb Addition to canopy

OK...so i cant get with the expensive lights but want to do some corals are there not any lights or light parts at a DIY store that would be strong enough..I see folks talk a lot about t5 well i saw a few t5 fixtures about 60-90 watts i believe. I just want to know whats the big deal? Get the bulbs and you should be good right prob. wrong but maybe not...anyone went the poor mans way or what?
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Old 09-21-2009, 11:11 PM   #2
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retro-fits are cheaper then complete systems but not by much. A T-5 ballast will run you `$35-40 for a two lamp set up. bulbs run `$20.00 a piece, end sockets for non-waterproof would run you `$2.00 a piece or $10.00 A PIECE FOR WATERPROOF, good reflectors would run you `$25 a piece so you are talking about ~$100.00 plus your time. and those are estimates. You could get somethings cheaper or some more its hard to say. Shipping is a killer also.
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Old 09-22-2009, 12:57 AM   #3
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If you want cheap DIY, and you have a 4' tank, you can go with shop lights.

I got a couple of dual 4' T8 shoplights, gut them & use the parts to build my lighted canopy. Just make sure you get ones with electronic ballasts, and replace stock caps with waterproof endcaps if you don't have a glass top. I use regular Daylight T8's (since I am doing FW), and the whole thing costs maybe $50 for 128W of light. Now doing reef, you will need to get special bulbs at your lfs, which will add $20 per bulb.

For a bit more, you can get a PC kit. <Eg AH supplies's bright kits are ~$50 for 55W, plus cost for bulbs & shipping> The PC kits gives good bang for your bucks, and the reflectors are far better than the ones off a shoplight. If you look around, you can find some T5 kits for pretty good prices (~100 for a dual setup). The T5's gives out a bit more light (better reflector efficiency), but is essentially a straightened out PC. From looking at the prices, you can do better with retrofit kits than trying to buy the parts separately.
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80 gal FW with 30 gal DIY wet/dry/sump.
9 fancy golds, 1 hillstream loaches, 1 rubber-lip pleco (C. thomasi), 3 SAEs, small school of white cloud minnows, planted.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:37 PM   #4
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ok...i'm not up on all the acronyms and abbreviated wording. So some of this stuff is foreign to me.
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Old 09-22-2009, 11:07 PM   #5
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Which ones don't you know?
list...
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:12 AM   #6
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PC = Power Compact - basically a T5 bent in half.

T5, T8, etc. = the diameter of the bulb, in eights of an inch. So a T12 (the "regular" standard bulb) is 12 eights or 1.5" in diameter. T8's are 1", T5's are 5/8".

W = watts.

DIY = Do it yourself

I think that is all the abbreviations in this thread!
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Old 09-23-2009, 10:43 PM   #7
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ok so here's the link to lights i'm thinking about..its from ebay let me know if its a NO or a Go..Thanks
48" T5 HO Marine Reef Aquarium Light 216W 4 Bulbs New - eBay (item 290352813004 end time Sep-30-09 08:43:09 PDT)
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Old 09-24-2009, 03:53 PM   #8
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So what size tank is this for?
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Old 09-24-2009, 10:25 PM   #9
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this light is for my 55 gallon..I've already built my 125 canopy...(moving pics to come soon sorry you'll couldnt come along perhaps the rebuilding of the tank..lol..i have to relight that thing too..
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