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MH to T12 - Back to the future?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Gerryd, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    Since we have all been talking lately about lower light levels, I thought that this would be a good time for me to experiment on my 180.

    I currently have a 3X150 w MH fixture mounted >30" over the tank. I used to have 240w of T12 light via 8x30w in two fixtures. I am going to revert back to the T12 setup, but go with 120 w of T12 at first.

    http://www.bigalsonline.com/StoreCatalog/ctl3684/cp18360/si4295414/cl1/double_fluorescent_strip_light__black__72?&query=+SHP-10555529++%24209.99++28383++Double+Fluorescent+Strip+Light+-+Black+-+72%22&queryType=0&hits=12&offset=

    I am curious how much LOWER the new setup will be to get the same PAR of 50-100 micromoles :)

    I will be using 30w Veri-lux bulbs that are similar to the old Vita Lites.. I have these on my 45 gal non c02 tank and the growth is good and steady, no algae, etc.

    http://www.lightbulbsdirect.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=F30T12VLX&Category_Code=Verilux&Product_Count=7

    I also like the look of these lights as opposed to the MH despite the ripple effect of the MH.

    One of the new fixtures should be here by Tuesday so will see then and post initial results.

    I am pretty sure that I will need the additional fixture to keep the fixtures from resting on the tank to get the desired PAR.. I want them to be OFF the tank as they are now..

    I used to enjoy my look and growth when I had the T12..

    So, I am really going to have fun with this now that I understand c02 and EI at least a bit :)
     
    #1 Gerryd, Sep 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 18, 2010
  2. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Gerry, you double posted... ;)

    I assume you will include the possibillity to go higher than 120W? I think you'd need around 180W....

    Keep us posted...

    regards,
    dutchy
     
  3. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Dutchy,

    Well, I also think I will need the second fixture but shipping was free so no penalty.

    I can measure the PAR with the one fixture and guage from there. Each fixture has 4X30w so 120 total per fixture. With 8 bulbs should be easy to get a good spread...

    With two fixtures I can position them separately further apart which is impossible with my current fixture :)

    I should get a better dispersal of light with less high/low points....

    I deleted the dupe post :)

    Later.
     
    #3 Gerryd, Sep 18, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 18, 2010
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Try DIY T8's or DIY T5's instead.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  5. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Hi Gerry,

    I have 8 x 30W T8's over my 110g. But, for the last 6 months or so now, I have only had half of them on, so only 120watts of T8.

    I am an experimenter too, as you well know. I have found that 120watts of T8 grows plants slowly, but nicely for my size tank.

    I just felt like chiming in. My 1cent worth. Can't say it's 2cents worth even. ;-)

    Scott.
     
  6. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    ..and before Biollante chimes in as well, by half of them on I mean every second row, not one side of the tank is illuminated and one side is not. ;-)
     
  7. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Guru Class Expert

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    Lol I remember being slammed on a Canadian Forum when I suggested the user keep his T12s and add reflectors. All the other users were saying that T12s wern't good enough. lol

    Nice to see someone actually doing it. though. I don't think it will be a problem. People forget that much as T12 may be old technology that the actual tubes will be better these days than back then in terms of how they are manufactured etc. That is if you buy good ones :)

    AC
     
  8. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    .

    Well, it looks like many wishes may be filled here lol

    The fixture was just delivered now and does indeed contain 4x30w bulbs.

    However, they came supplied with Marineland full spectrum T8 bulbs!

    Since the fixture does have reflectors (my old setup did too) I can try both the T8 AND the T5!

    I am very interested to see any PAR differences between the two.

    I will post a pic of the fixture later. I assume I will take measurements this week and post later.

    Good thing I am so far behind that I have not yet sent out my PAR meter.....:eek: Soon I promise...yeah yeah yeah, you've heard it all before....
     
  9. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    So, resting the fixture on the top of the tank so the water is 1" away :)

    I get 167 micromoles MAX at the high point just under the water surface. I easily get mid 50s PAR at the substrate.

    So, I think with BOTH fixtures, they will be about 2-6" above the tank to get the same PAR as I have with the MH.

    I took some pics but cannot find the usb cable to upload from the camera due to moving soon :)

    But, the look is very yellowish in comparison but I kind of like it. I think the fish liked it too as it did seem 'softer'. The fish looked very good as well IMO.

    So, I think this will work fine.....
     
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