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Old 05-25-2007, 01:22 AM   #21
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Thank you all for your help. I think I've just about decided...maybe. I want to get new glass lids. Will the 24" Versa-Top work? I'm still not familiar with what is standard in tanks. Like I mentioned above, I have an All-Glass 55-gallon with the center brace.

Will a 48" be held up by these lids? If so, was the original recommendation here better than this one here? I saw a light spectrum with the different colors, but I can't seem to find it right now. Is the difference essentially color? The second one is cheaper and has moon lights. I was just thinking maybe there's something I'm missing.
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Old 05-25-2007, 07:22 AM   #22
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I believe a pair of the 24" glass canopies should work.

I personally prefer the Current fixture, but keep in mind that you need to calculate the cost of a new bulb in the total purchase price. Since the stock bulb is a 50/50 you'd only be getting half the usable light. You can also save a little extra by buying refurbished from here. I've heard they'll swap out the stock bulb for a daylight one if you ask, so make sure the check if you order from there.
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Old 05-25-2007, 12:14 PM   #23
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I think I missed something. What is a 50/50 bulb? I can guess what a daylight bulb is, emulating sunlight during the day.
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Old 05-25-2007, 06:23 PM   #24
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50/50 means half daylight and half actinic.
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Old 05-25-2007, 06:41 PM   #25
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Are the bulbs the same socket? Can the actinic be swapped with daylight bulbs later?
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Old 05-25-2007, 07:07 PM   #26
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Yes the bulbs are interchangeable. The atnic wont help plant growth but they will make your fish's colors really pop.
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Old 05-25-2007, 09:49 PM   #27
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Yes and Yes.

These are just a few of the many choices for bulbs that can work in the same fixture. As long as the bulb has the same connector (square or straight pin) and is the same wattage they should be interchangable. Occationally you'll run into an exception where a fixture was made for shorter bulbs and a longer one won't fit, but this is generally only with the less common wattages. The more common wattage bulbs (like the 55 and 65 watts you're looking at) are fairly well standardized by now.
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Old 05-26-2007, 11:50 AM   #28
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Okay, I don't mean to hijack this thread but I was going to do the EXACT same thing as the original poster. I have the same 55 gallon tank and I am looking at upgrading my lighting. I was planning on the Coralife fixture but how would this "sit" on my tank? I will get two 24" Versa-tops for my tank, but will the fixture just lay on top of the Versa-tops or are there legs that will hold the fixure up several inches or so above the tank? Most of the plants in my tank right now are medium light plants (amazon swords) and they are not really thriving but rather just sustaining themselves. I would like to get some medium to medium-high light plants. I should be able to do this without using CO2 correct? I would be going with 130w fixtures and not 260w. I was also wondering if this change in lighting may "shock" my fish or cause them stress. I have some zebra danios, glowlight tetras, ottos, a BN pleco, and GBR's in the tank. I am only really concerned about the well-being of the GBR's as they were what made me get the tank in the first place. They don't seem to be finicky in any way like most people seem to get. They seem rather hardy but I don't want to cause them stress. Please let me know what you guys think. Thanks for your help.
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Old 05-26-2007, 07:33 PM   #29
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You can get legs for both the Coralife and Current fixtures. Coralife has a couple of differnt styles depending on whether you want stadard legs or ones that allow you to flip up the fixture for easier access into the aquarium.

The fixture you are looking at is going to be borderline as to whether or not CO2 is necessary. A lot will depend on how much light is lost as a result of the glass canopy, the height above the aquarium, etc.

The extra light shouldn't bother the fish at all. Just make sure to plant heavily and they'll be able to find lots of hiding places if the light is stronger than they like. Some fish will start a bit when the lights are first turned on, especially when all the lights comes on at the same time. With fixtures with more bulbs the shock can be lessened by staggering out when the bulbs are turned on. It can also help to turn on the lights in the room before the aquarium lights come on.
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Old 05-27-2007, 12:51 PM   #30
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How would the legs work with the Versa-tops? Do they go on the outside of the top of the tank or do they go between the Versa-tops and the rim of the tank? Will they effect how the tops function is basically what I am trying to say. Also, do those tops already have an inch or two gap for things like heaters and HOB filters or do they completley covery the tank?

I am considering the Current USA fixture over the Coralife one now as they have the lunar lights. Are these on all of the time or when the other lights are off? Is there a separate switch for the lunar lights? So if I "may" need CO2 but don't add it, the worst that would happen is that the plants won't grow as fast or the plants will start to deteriorate all over?
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Old 05-27-2007, 01:05 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bs6749
How would the legs work with the Versa-tops? Do they go on the outside of the top of the tank or do they go between the Versa-tops and the rim of the tank? Will they effect how the tops function is basically what I am trying to say.
The straight legs sit on the outer rim of the aquarium and shouldn't interfere with the canopy, but some people cannot keep the front portion open without holding it. The adjustable ones have to be setup without the glass canopy installed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bs6749
Also, do those tops already have an inch or two gap for things like heaters and HOB filters or do they completley covery the tank?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Purrbox
The backstrip on a glass canopy is actually plastic, so that you can cut openings for the tubing etc.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bs6749
I am considering the Current USA fixture over the Coralife one now as they have the lunar lights. Are these on all of the time or when the other lights are off? Is there a separate switch for the lunar lights?
lunar lamps normally have their own switch and power cord. You can set them up to run 24/7 or on a timer to run with the main lights are off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bs6749
So if I "may" need CO2 but don't add it, the worst that would happen is that the plants won't grow as fast or the plants will start to deteriorate all over?
Worst case, you grow a TON of algae instead of plants.
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Old 05-27-2007, 03:26 PM   #32
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Thanks for pointing out what Purrbox said. I must have not registered the back portion being plastic.

I don't really "mind" algae, but I have a BN pleco, 2 ottos, and now I have ramshorn snails that are starting to rapidly reproduce and they should help to curb any algae population explosion. I suppose if I need a source of carbon I can always add Excel right?

I think I may order the Current USA setup. Is www.bigalsonline.com the cheapest place?
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Old 05-27-2007, 03:56 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bs6749
I think I may order the Current USA setup. Is www.bigalsonline.com the cheapest place?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Purrbox
You can also save a little extra by buying refurbished from here. I've heard they'll swap out the stock bulb for a daylight one if you ask, so make sure the check if you order from there.
The place I linked earlier is the least expensive source I've seen so far. I ordered one of the refurbished Current fixtures from them and was very pleased.

Excel is an excellant option as a Carbon source for smaller tanks that are borderline on needing CO2. Just make sure that you're careful with it if you've got either Anacharis or Vals in the tank, as both are sensitive to Flourish Excel.
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Old 05-27-2007, 05:10 PM   #34
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I do have anacharis and I would like vals so thanks for the input there. I am not sure WHAT I am going to do now LOL. I was thinking of just going with the Coralife fixture so I wouldn't have to buy bulbs that I wanted but I was looking around on craigslist and I found a 75 gallon tank with stand, hood, JBJ Formosa lighting for the 75, an extra 48" strip light, and they will even throw in a 29 gallon tank... all for only $275 but they may come down in price (I am working on that ). Seems like a no-brainer to me as I would spend $125 on new lighting, and I was actually planning on getting a 29 gallon tank for raising my GBR fry, so I may sell my current setup and come out even or a little ahead. I think a 75 would be better for 8 GBR's anyway.
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