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Old 12-08-2018, 04:01 PM   #1
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Anyone have ideas for some DIY LEDs to replace my tubes?

I have a 50 gallon tank (36" wide) with a stand and hood I built for it. For the last several years, I have installed two 36" fluorescent tubes to underside of the lid running off of a ballast mounted in the back. I want to convert to LED and was wondering if anyone had any ideas of some DIY LED lights I can install the same way. This is a low light planted tank so it has been fine off of the 2 - 25 watt tubes it has been running. I only have 3 inches of clearance between the underside of the hood and the glass at the top of the tank.



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Old Yesterday, 12:00 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dm76 View Post
I have a 50 gallon tank (36" wide) with a stand and hood I built for it. For the last several years, I have installed two 36" fluorescent tubes to underside of the lid running off of a ballast mounted in the back. I want to convert to LED and was wondering if anyone had any ideas of some DIY LED lights I can install the same way. This is a low light planted tank so it has been fine off of the 2 - 25 watt tubes it has been running. I only have 3 inches of clearance between the underside of the hood and the glass at the top of the tank.



I bought these lights: https://www.amazon.com/your-orders/p...ntId=D7yLygt6b
And this timer: https://www.amazon.com/your-orders/p...ntId=DBlzsM1Vy
I put in 8 feet of this roll of lights in my 10 gallon. It outputs 164 lumens per linear foot. I use the timer with low light 20-50% for All but 4-5 hours each day, when I have it at 100%.
It works well for my couple of java ferns.
Disclaimer: I'm still new at aquarium living.
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Old Yesterday, 05:42 PM   #3
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Can you post those links again? It looks like those links direct to the orders page. Thanks.

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Originally Posted by mkm0310 View Post
I bought these lights: https://www.amazon.com/your-orders/p...ntId=D7yLygt6b
And this timer: https://www.amazon.com/your-orders/p...ntId=DBlzsM1Vy
I put in 8 feet of this roll of lights in my 10 gallon. It outputs 164 lumens per linear foot. I use the timer with low light 20-50% for All but 4-5 hours each day, when I have it at 100%.
It works well for my couple of java ferns.
Disclaimer: I'm still new at aquarium living.
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Old Yesterday, 05:58 PM   #4
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If you aren't into soldering and all the technical stuff that goes into making an led light then I would recommend just getting a prebuilt light like a finnex planted plus or one of the beamworks lights. If you want to build it then there are several sites that sell complete kits like rapidled.com. here is a how to build a cree led light.
https://www.instructables.com/id/A-C...ED-Light-Unit/
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Old Yesterday, 06:02 PM   #5
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Here are photos. Click image for larger version

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Old Yesterday, 10:10 PM   #6
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The only negative feedback I have about these products is that the timer is very unintuitive to set up and loses it's setting if it loses power. Other than that, this is a great set up for me.
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Old Yesterday, 11:16 PM   #7
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That will work for low light plants. I have something similar with less LEDs than you on one of my tanks. The time on my timer also resets with a power outage just like all of my digital clocks that are plug in's.
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Old Today, 10:33 AM   #8
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That will work for low light plants. I have something similar with less LEDs than you on one of my tanks. The time on my timer also resets with a power outage just like all of my digital clocks that are plug in's.
Hey Fisher, what method do you use to determine lighting conditions for "low light" plants vs non-low light plants? I've seen various tables but not sure I've found one that I trust. I assume you'd have to compare in lumens since LEDs and and tube lights have different electro-optical conversion efficiencies.
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Old Today, 04:28 PM   #9
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I don't keep high light/tech tanks and only moderate to lightly planted low light tanks. Honestly, my gauge was to stick a cheap LED strip under the hood of my tank and see if the low light plants lived or not. Lol. Plus I dose liquid fertilizer.
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Old Today, 06:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
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I don't keep high light/tech tanks and only moderate to lightly planted low light tanks. Honestly, my gauge was to stick a cheap LED strip under the hood of my tank and see if the low light plants lived or not. Lol. Plus I dose liquid fertilizer.
It sounds like we have similar tanks as I have low light plants and does Excel. So are you thinking just get some LED strip lights and attach them to the underside of the hood? I have since done some research and see where people wrap strips around PVC pipe and place them in a gutter so it resembles a tube.
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