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Ideal light?

Discussion in 'Talk to Tom Barr' started by Jeremy1, Oct 27, 2008.

  1. Jeremy1

    Jeremy1 Prolific Poster

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    Hey I've got a 40g breeder and I'm at a loss for what type of light I should use. Plants I will use are HC and hairgrass(dwarf). I want this to be a high light tank in order to support these plants. I have considered a 150w pendant from fishneedit.com ,but my tank is 36inches long and I'm not sure that would give me decent lighting on both ends of tank. What are some other lights that might work with this tank. Thanks
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Jeremy,

    I used my PAR meter on a twin tube 36" twin flouro tube light set using 2 Verilux 30 watt tubes.

    I got max readings of 175 about 3-4" from the tubes...

    I know Tom just posted some info on PAR readings at a recent show, and they were only 35-150 micromoles from bottom to top....

    Based on this, I would think anything better than described above would work fine.

    I had 2 of these tanks, and would not recommend a pendant due to the length of the tank. My HQI cause dark tank ends and corners. I would say a couple t5 at 30 watt eac would be plenty. The tank is wide enough to double that if you want, or use 2 fixtures. You can always remove a bulb if need be to experiment, and you can always add it back in.

    Max 2wpg if they are only 4" above the tank. I really don't think you will need more than this.

    I used the above lights over the breeders and was able to get good growth. These were not high tech though..

    IMO, If your c02 and fertilizers are in good supply, light is good, and good circulation/filtration, I think you will find you do not need as much light as we currently think.

    I think that is what Tom is suggesting.....I think we tend to use more light than we really need, even for 'high light' plants, or high tech tanks.

    The tank he showed has HC and readings were 50-60 on the substrate......and that tank is more than 40 gallons.

    I would also suggest ADA as a substrate if you haven't already made this decision. This will help a lot I think for planted tanks, esp high tech with c02. I am going to try it soon in a new tank.......

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    2 x T5's would do nicely.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. Jeremy1

    Jeremy1 Prolific Poster

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    Yes, I was thinking about going T5HO. The hagen glow lights might be worth a shot.
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Or 4x 39W T5's then use the 4 for only a few hours etc.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. Henry Hatch

    Henry Hatch Guru Class Expert

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    I'm partial to T5 lights. They are brights, efficient and give you a good bang for the buck. I've always liked the look of halides, but I would worry about coverage too. If you use separate reflectors you can really light up a tank with T5's. Each 36 inch T5 is 39 watts.
     
  7. Jeremy1

    Jeremy1 Prolific Poster

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    Anyone ever use the Giesemann Midday bulbs? I've never used T5HO lighting, but I assume as long as the fixture/ballast are designed for T5HO bulbs, I can interchange different brands of bulbs?
     
  8. stevie D

    stevie D Junior Poster

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    Yes, you can use any t5 lights rated for the same wattage in any fixture. Depending on the ballast, you could even exchange for longer bulbs if you retrofit the light in canopy or different lighting fixture, but you'd best be sure the ballast can handle the extra wattage. The Giesemann Midday bulbs are execllent, nice bight crisp color. They work really well with the powerchrome aquaflora plantgrow bulb which really brings out the reds in the plants/fish.

    Stevie D
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Having measured a few and the light spread, they are better than you think using the PAR meter.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     

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