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Old 05-27-2003, 04:02 PM   #1
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lighting question

I have a question about the lighting in my black water tank. When I was setting this tank up, I needed dim lighting. I have a hood that takes one regular output light. I used a regular freshwater 24" 20 watt bulb, but it made my tank really bright (29 gallon tank). My lfs suggested I use a 50/50 reef bulb, which I bought and installed. It does look more dim, but I thought I saw a post about sw tubes not being good for freshwater tanks. My question is:

Is this doing more harm then good? Is there a better way to make a tank "dim"?
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Old 05-27-2003, 06:09 PM   #2
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I'm sorry I don't know about your lighting,but I have been looking into a biotope tank myself.The first site is pretty specific on how to set up different types of black water tanks.Pretty fascinating,really.For now I just have the generic goldfish tank,but when the goldfish move into the pond....black water.

http://badmanstropicalfish.com/bio-type.html

http://home.sprynet.com/~jwhite07/fish/fish.htm

http://www.planetcatfish.com/shanesw...h-aquarium.htm

http://www.cityaquarium.com/freshwater.htm

http://www.xolesfishies.com/biotope.htm
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Old 05-28-2003, 01:44 AM   #3
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As long as you aren't keeping plants, I don't think the 50/50 will hurt anything. Are you using a glass top? If so, I wonder how some window tint would work out on it? Should darken things some I think.
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Old 05-28-2003, 03:18 AM   #4
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I am keeping plants. I have a java fern that is all over the bottom, and an amazon sword. I have found that underwater plants are a lot harder to keep than regular house plants--there's hardly any warning before they are in trouble and they almost always die once trouble is evident. Is the 50/50 no good for plants?
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Old 05-28-2003, 08:59 AM   #5
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I don't know that much about plants...I don't keep them. I do remember corvuscorax saying that the spectrum wasn't all that important for plants as long as they got enough intensity. I think the 50/50 won't hurt the plants any although it may not be bright enough to give them the light they need.
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Old 05-28-2003, 09:18 AM   #6
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Is this doing more harm then good? Is there a better way to make a tank "dim"?
Kinda going on guesswork here, since I've never done what you are doing. I don't think you are in any trouble, the java fern should handle the dimmer light. The Amazon Sword? i dunno, it needs more light than that. Get some Java Moss to go with your java fern, keep a close eye on the sword, get the sword out if it starts to die. (Java moss is low-light too.)
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Old 05-28-2003, 11:07 AM   #7
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I'm trying to find something that fits in my black water tank (South American) . I'm really hesitant to get rid of the java fern, that thing doesn't die and has been with me since the beginning. Unfortunately, it doesn't come from the region my tank is from. The amazon sword seems fine for now, but I've lost them before--they seem to die without warning. Sigh...I guess I'll just have to get another tank . Any ideas for hardy South American plants that can stand a low pH (6.0-6.4), soft water (1-6% dH GH), and low lights?

BTW--thanks for the links mendhigirl
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Old 05-28-2003, 07:06 PM   #8
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I dont no if this helps but,I once used construction paper on the hood glass and cut holes and shapes to light the areas I wanted (plants) and block out light in other areas. it also looks kind of cool when rays of lights are cracking through
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Old 05-28-2003, 09:52 PM   #9
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Now that's a good idea...I would have never thought of that. Bet it does look good. You got any pics of your tank? 25 kudos to you for an innovative idea.
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Old 05-29-2003, 12:30 AM   #10
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That's an awesome idea! I'm going to try it tomorrow. Thanks cabana!
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