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Old 07-31-2006, 04:37 PM   #1
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DIY Lighting Advise

ok i am having issues with lighting for new 75 gal freshwater planted tank.
you can see me path coming to this in THIS THREAD HERE
i am aiming to have about 2 wpg. i am thinking off mounting the fluorescent bulbs right into my all glass canopy...so here are my questions
1. can this be done and what is the best way to go about it?
2. what materials will i need and where is the best place to get them? Home Depot ok?
3. any suggestion and help you can give would be great, this my my first DIY aquarium project

here is a simple diagram i made to show what i am thinking of doing, two 48" bulbs would be attached in the back of the canopy and the other two would be attached to the underside of the door in the canopy so i can still open it and feed my fish!

thanks in advance for any help/advice you can give!

Just because I am working at Petco does not mean I am a sell out, they are still an evil empire, that I am trying to make better.
75 Gallon: New World Cichlids|26 Gallon Bowfront: Planted Angelfish/Swordtail Tank|20 Gallon Long: "Nano" non-reef|10 Gallon: frog and mosquito fish
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Old 08-01-2006, 11:41 AM   #2
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1. My DIY hoods are very similar to this design. One thing you may want to consider is not having it rest on the glass but on the ledge of the tank. Kind of hard to explain without a picture though. It'll also get you more room length wise because 4' tube plus wood sides is greater than 4'. Also, my hinge lifts the whole front up so that it flips over and rest on the back half with the lights shinning on the ceiling...don't know if thats what you meant or if its better or worse, just something to think about.

2. For my first hood I just used a 1/2" x 6" and plywood. For my second hood I used 1" x 6" (1"x6" was much cheaper than 1/2" x 6") and plywood. I bought stuff from HD. First time I cut all the wood to length myself. The second time I thought I'd save a little time and had the HD guy cut all the wood to length. The monkey couldn't measure right. You might be better off cutting the wood yourself.

3. I recommend getting a drill and a jigsaw if you don't already have better tools. Both tools are fairly inexpesive, $30 each and are infinately useful. In fact, I build hoods, stands, custom computer cases, all sorts of things with just these two tools. Jigsaws do take a little practice to get a straight cut though!

Don't be afraid to make a mistake is all. Its a learning process. And besides...wood is fairly cheap. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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Old 08-03-2006, 02:13 AM   #3
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three 48" T-8 floresents at 2X ODNO would get you about 2WPG

The $10 home depot electronic ballast fixtures come with (2) F32T8 ballasts, when wired with both power leads to one bulb your 2X ODNOing the bulb. 2X runs cool and wouldn't need active cooling (a fan).

This would save you some space over your 75Gal. you only have 18" to work with.
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Old 08-07-2006, 12:24 PM   #4
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Most people aiming for 2WPG are trying to avoid CO2 injection.. this will make it very rough with the amount of light in your design.. 2 T8 bulbs will be the most you'll want to run without Co2 of some sort. (even 2 2litre pop bottle DIY method would suffice with a decent reactor, I believe there are plans for that in this section aswell)

As for bulbs, 2 Daylight deluxe from home depot would work. along with a 2 x 32w T8 fixture it will get you to about the light level you want (you could push another single tube, but it may be a rough ride without solid Co2 source)
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diy, diy light, light, lighting

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