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Old 02-04-2012, 10:08 AM   #1
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Lighting Advice, Please

I am thinking about upgrading the lighting on my 55 gallon tank with some of my tax money (yay!). It does not have many live plants in it at the moment, but I would like to go all planted eventually. Either that, or I will change it over to a saltwater FOWLR.

I will be ordering from fishneedit.com since so many people here have said great things about them.

I know I need 2 24" fixtures.... Will the 1 blue/1 white bulb at 6500K work for a planted tank? Or would you guys suggest I go with different bulbs/ different K rating?
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Old 02-04-2012, 11:28 AM   #2
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Your Lighting Question

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Originally Posted by Talvari View Post
I am thinking about upgrading the lighting on my 55 gallon tank with some of my tax money (yay!). It does not have many live plants in it at the moment, but I would like to go all planted eventually. Either that, or I will change it over to a saltwater FOWLR.

I will be ordering from fishneedit.com since so many people here have said great things about them.

I know I need 2 24" fixtures.... Will the 1 blue/1 white bulb at 6500K work for a planted tank? Or would you guys suggest I go with different bulbs/ different K rating?
Hello Tal...

Ideally, you want 6500 K bulbs. These are recommended for planted tanks, because they come closest to natural daylight at 5500 K. 100 total watts for your 55 G will grow most of the aquatic plants on the market.

Don't neglect two other items for good plant growth: Good fertilizers from either the fish or a commercial source in dry, liquid or granules. And, large weekly water changes to keep a high level of minerals in the water.

B
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Old 02-04-2012, 12:36 PM   #3
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Hello Tal...

Ideally, you want 6500 K bulbs. These are recommended for planted tanks, because they come closest to natural daylight at 5500 K. 100 total watts for your 55 G will grow most of the aquatic plants on the market.

Don't neglect two other items for good plant growth: Good fertilizers from either the fish or a commercial source in dry, liquid or granules. And, large weekly water changes to keep a high level of minerals in the water.

B
Thanks for the quick reply. I already have a 46 gallon planted, so I know some of the basics... The plants in that tank are very low maintenance, though.

I have eco complete mixed in with the sand in my 55 gallon in a 50/50 ratio. I have both Flourish and Flourish excel, and I do, usually, a 50% water change every week. If I dont manage to do it every week, its about a 75% every two weeks.
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:45 AM   #4
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Thanks for the quick reply. I already have a 46 gallon planted, so I know some of the basics... The plants in that tank are very low maintenance, though.

I have eco complete mixed in with the sand in my 55 gallon in a 50/50 ratio. I have both Flourish and Flourish excel, and I do, usually, a 50% water change every week. If I dont manage to do it every week, its about a 75% every two weeks.
Hello Tal...

I'd take care with the Flourish Excel. It has a trace of "Gluteraldehyde". This form of carbon can be harmful to some ferns, mosses and Vallisneria. Maybe you already know this.

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Old 02-05-2012, 01:24 PM   #5
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Hello Tal...

I'd take care with the Flourish Excel. It has a trace of "Gluteraldehyde". This form of carbon can be harmful to some ferns, mosses and Vallisneria. Maybe you already know this.

B
Yup, thanks though. I underdose my tank and keep an eye out for any "melting" spots on my ferns and vals. They seem to be doing pretty well, atm.
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Old 02-05-2012, 03:25 PM   #6
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Many people have dosed Excel without issues. It's one of those hit and miss things.
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Old 02-05-2012, 03:32 PM   #7
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You might want to consider going topless and running a single 48" fixture instead of 2 24"s, would be cheaper anyway. I don't have any personal experience with the FNI fixtures, but they seem to be pretty good.
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Old 02-05-2012, 06:34 PM   #8
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You might want to consider going topless and running a single 48" fixture instead of 2 24"s, would be cheaper anyway. I don't have any personal experience with the FNI fixtures, but they seem to be pretty good.

Haha, yeah... For some reason that never occrued to me. Its like... I have 2 24 fixtures now, and I should get 2 24 inch fixtures with the T5HO's....

Mfdrookie pointed this out in another thread to me, and I felt dumb. It was a lot cheaper that way!

But I still love all of you guys... You have yet to steer me wrong!
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