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Lighting a Big Tank

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by islanddave, Dec 16, 2015.

  1. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    Hello,


    I thought I would start a new thread that is more specific to my queries. I have a big tank to light. 250 gallons. 60"Lx36"Dx27"H. Concerns are penetration and spread. I would like this tank to become a nature aquarium in the traditional sense. Ferns, grasses, mosses, and ideally a carpet of some sort, with possibly a nice red high light plant of some sort. How would you light this tank?


    Thanks David
     
  2. Solcielo lawrencia

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    Two BML custom full spectrum fixtures.
     
  3. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    Yeah I was afraid of getting that answer. I had a catastrophic failure with two of their fixtures a couple of years ago. My tank crashed and it took forever to resolve......so I opted for a refund. My tank crashed and I vowed never again. Any other suggestions?


    Dave
     
  4. Pikez

    Pikez Rotala Killer!
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    Ummm. THREE BML fixtures?


    ;)
     
  5. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    Is this so that if two fixtures fail I'll have a spare? Any ideas except BML?


    Thanks
     
  6. Solcielo lawrencia

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    Two Green Element Quad SnakeEyes, 60" freshwater. Then buy some "full spectrum", 470nm blue, 490nm cyan, 420nm violet, and optional 520nm green. Then desolder and replace the LEDs. While you're at it, replace some of the 6500K with 4500K LEDs for more even spectrum.
     
  7. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    I'll take a look for them Thanks for the suggestion!
     
  8. kevinmichael77

    kevinmichael77 Guru Class Expert

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    Doesn't anyone use t5's anymore?
     
  9. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    T -5's never heard of that is that some kind of new diode arrangement?


    No seriously I have thought of t-5s and would quickest to buy an ati 8 bulb fixture and be done with it......but having gone to leds on other tanks I don't really want to go back. I find that flourescents do a great job of light spread but don't like the effect it creates.Everything is so well lit that the tank seems to loose some dimensional aspect to it. It's. Like nothing seems.to have any depth to it ....it looks flat. Completely subjective but that's how I feel. Plus I do like the dimming ability of leds especially when I start to plant a tank. I like to light the tank according to plant load.....and where I am it can be hard to get all the plants I want at the very beginning.


    I would love the halide route but don't have enough over head room to raise the lights high enough during the initial phases of planting to prevent an algae explosion
     
    #9 islanddave, Dec 16, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2015
  10. Pikez

    Pikez Rotala Killer!
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    Nah. Just suggesting something other than 2 BMLs. ;-) Two will give you plenty of light for a nature aquarium. But three will give you more even coverage without dark spots. If you get a narrow beam angle strip to increase penetration, you will need 3.


    My experience with BMLs have been completely different from yours. I buy roughly 1 new four-foot LED strip a month. I've tried virtually all of them. BMLs are still my favorite.


    I'm not sure who else makes 60" fixtures, so you may be limited in choice. You could try Kessil or Ecotech pendants. Expensive, good looking, no issues at all with penetration.
     
  11. Kathy Yata

    Kathy Yata Junior Poster

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    Reefbreeders makes a unit that fits a 5' tank. I put a 5' LEDzeal over my 6' tank that has a 5" peninsula overflow I didn't want to light. DSunY, sold on ebay, makes panels you could fit together to fit your extra wide tank, might be something to look into as you would need 2 of the other brands. All would need to be special ordered in a spectrum for a planted tank.
     
  12. Solcielo lawrencia

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    Other than a custom spectrum BML, the only other option available is to DIY your own fixture. This would be my choice since I can easily customize the spectrum.


    These are the LEDs I'd use to provide full spectrum from ultra violet to far red:


    400nm


    420nm


    470nm


    490nm


    520nm


    full spectrum (red phosphor 450nm)


    4500K neutral white
     
  13. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    This light has a fairly even distribution of 8k and 6500k what do you think of this light? Its cheap and would provide even coverage in multiple. Thanks


    http://www.petsandponds.com/en/aquarium-supplies/c5813/c231289/p17722568.html
     
  14. PhilipS

    PhilipS Lifetime Members
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    2 or 3 Kessil A360WE Tuna Sun LED pendants.


    If you scape with twin "islands" then just 2 is necessary.
     
  15. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    I have kessil 360's in my other tank and they are awesome lights given a few parameters are met. One you do not need high light in a deep tank. Two you dont want any red plants.
     
  16. PhilipS

    PhilipS Lifetime Members
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    How is it you prefer no reds?
     
  17. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    No I like reds. It is just that the kessils in my experience do not support red plant growth very well. This is due in large part to the lack of red leds in kessils matrix.
     
  18. PhilipS

    PhilipS Lifetime Members
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    Red light to make the reds pop or cause the red plants to be an faded red rather than an orange red or a blue red?
     
  19. islanddave

    islanddave Subscriber

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    Red light certainly enhances the visual red that we see.....however the red in any spectrum facilitates a process that causes the plants to become red
     
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