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New lights for 120gallon (5X2X2) ft

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by creighton, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. creighton

    creighton Guru Class Expert

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    I'm currently running 2X96 watt PCF over my 120 gallon. I have pressurized CO2 and just recently turned a maxi-jet 1200 into a bubble chomping machine :) using the needle wheel modification. Do you think 2 X 150MH at 7800K or somewhere around there will let me grow most every plant well? I really want to have a nice foreground and haven't had much success as of yet. I don't think my 1.6 wpg is going to allow me to do that. I'm also going to try to make a hanging fixture out of conduit. I'm going to ask Fishneedit some questions now...:D

    What do you guys think?
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Creighton,

    I would try and use your current lights and only switch if the plants you want to grow need more light. A 120 is most likely 20-24" deep, so MH may be better for you in the long run.

    If you do switch to MH, be prepared to up your fert dosing as more light = more fert/co2 requirements.

    C02 is usually more of an issue, but looks like you are covered there..

    That being said, MH are very nice. I would recommend a 6500k bulb.

    Somewhere on the site, I have pics of my fixture on closet shelving. EZ to mount and adjust the lights........

    I have 3x150w (6500k) on my 180 and have had great success with it!

    Best of luck
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I'd add some more PC's, 2x 150 W will not give you a good spread of light really over a 5ft long tank.

    So I'd stagger another pair of the 96Watt bulbs.

    That's a lot of light, I have that on a 2x2x6 ft tank(4x96 and the MH's on top of that!).

    I'll mostly use the PC's for 9-10 hours a day.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. creighton

    creighton Guru Class Expert

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    Gerry-

    My current setup is very poorly planned. Like a moron I didn't install fans so the heat has become a problem. One of the ballast have stopped working. I think its due to the heat...so I would have to replace the whole ballast I really have 4 X 96watt 6700K bulbs above my tank, but only 2 work :mad: . The maxi-jet is a CO2 monster with the modified impeller so I think I've finally got a good CO2 dispersion, but it's a little scary because my Bubble counter is going at around 20+ Bubbles per second to get my drop checker lime green. What's even stranger is that the pH drop signaled something to my corries and now they're laying eggs all over everything :confused: !?!?! I saw how you mounted it on the closet racks. Brilliant idea, but I think I'm going to try the conduit thing. I'm prepared to up the ferts. I'll post a picture of my "fish station" in my room. It pretty hilarious. I may just stick with what I have until I get my own place. Thanks for talking some sense into me Gerry. I would have been broke for a while .


    Tom-

    Would 2x96 watts PC with AH reflectors + 2 x 150 MH's from "fishneedit" sound good. I got the maxi-jet crankin' so I think my CO2 is okay so I will hopefully be able to handle the extra light. The fixture over you 180, did you get that entire thing from fishneedit? Maybe I'll just install 2 fans and replace the ballast or something. The 4 X 96 watt setup was working good. One more thing, why even have the 150w MH's over the tank if you will just primarily use the PC's? Is a noon-day burst really that important for plants? I guess a lot of factors come in to play here...type of plants, maintenance, ect.


    Thanks you guys!
     
  5. JHipkin

    JHipkin Junior Poster

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    Wouldn't a 5x2x2 be 150 gallons.

    I have a Tek 6 x 54 watts T5 HO over my 120 (4x2x2) and it works fine. I run the lights up during the day and back down in the evening using the following sequence: 2 x 1 hr, 4 x 2 hrs, 6 x 4 hrs, 4 x 2 hrs, 2 x 1 hr. Pressurized CO2 and a good supply of ferts should be balanced with enough light to keep the plants happy.

    Are you getting any pearling from the current lights?
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I use a coralife Aqua light pro, so no, I do not use the fishneedit light for that tank.

    A staggered T5 light is nice and gives many different options in terms of spread and intensity. This is ideal for fixed hoods that can neither be moved or raised.


    I suppose you could mix the HQI+ PC's or T5's, but this looks ugly unless it's enclosed or a pre made integrated system.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Creighton,

    As an FYI, I cannot even COUNT the number of bubbles per second/minute/whatever on my setup. Only way I can get the DC to show a nice green color is to really have the c02 up. Fish are all okay and get nice pearling. At 3-5 bbs, I get no pearling. Each setup is different, and large tanks need more c02 than the normal 20-50 gallon tanks that are popular.........I went through a 10lb tank in two months to give you an idea..........

    Keep in mind that environmental triggers are required for some fish to spawn. Corydoras are no exception. I have seen them do this when the weather turns cooler, or after a very large water change.

    If they are spawning, it is a good thing, as conditions are good for them

    Best of luck!
     
  8. creighton

    creighton Guru Class Expert

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    Do they make a 5 footer? That looks like the bomb digety :p ! (Huh?) You can control each bulb with a switch ,right?
    No pearling from the current lights sadly. I don't think 1.6 wpg of PC is enough to get my swords to go nuts.
     
  9. JHipkin

    JHipkin Junior Poster

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    The light has two switches. One controls a the outside tubes (2) and the other controls the inside tubes (4). A couple of timer with multiple settings from ACE Hardware and it works fine.
     
  10. creighton

    creighton Guru Class Expert

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    Okay,
    I ordered a new ballast today from AH supply. So I'll be up to 4X96 watts soon. I want to install some fans in my hood though. Should I just drill holes for 4 fans on the side of the hood and wire them up? I asked Kim from AH and he said that I need to try to work with natural convection. Such as blowing in cold air from the bottom that will force the hot air out (I think that makes sense). Where can I get some cheap fans to stick on my canopy.

    Here's some pictures:

    http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc164/thenakedaquarist/PICT0166.jpg
    http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc164/thenakedaquarist/PICT0167.jpg
    http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc164/thenakedaquarist/PICT0164.jpg

    Also I think the tank is 5ftX2ftX2ft, but I'll re-measure it just to be sure. It was sold to me as a 120 gallon, but you never know.

    Thanks guys!

    Creighton
     
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