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Too clever

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by essabee, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. essabee

    essabee Prolific Poster

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    I got too clever 4 years ago when I was building my all-glass 5’ 2’ 2’ tank. I needed to brace the longer sides at the top to avoid the water pressures from deforming or smashing the sides. I hate the cross braces as they interfere with tank maintenance. So I latched on to the idea of bracing the sides along its upper perimeter. I used 2 strips of glass for each side. I siliconed the first strip along the upper inner perimeter of the side and used the second strip as a laminate siliconed to the lower strip and the upper edge of the tank side. As for strengthening the tank sides were concerned it worked wonderfully well and the tank survives till date. As to making maintenance easier and unrestricted, that too worked wonderfully…………………….. The problem was not there and I found out that I had been too clever.

    The 2” braces along the longer sides and the 3” braces along the shorter sides constitutes 26⅔ % of the total surface area of the tank. With a good coating of dust gathered over the years of use; these braces were restricting and absorbing more than quarter of the light over this planted tank. In fact these braces stole from me at least quarter of the electric charges I paid continuously for over 3 years for the lighting of this tank.

    I need to change the hood and design a new one to solve this light restriction problem. Tell me how.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi,

    Could you post a picture of the current light fixture or point to a thread that has one?

    Are you adverse to simply hanging a fixture above the tank and get away from a hood? Then the light may not be such an issue as the SPREAD will be better and may get under the braces as opposed to sitting level with them..

    Keep them clean :)
     
  3. essabee

    essabee Prolific Poster

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    I can't get away from the hood as this tank houses Panchax, and they jump.
     
  4. Singtoh

    Singtoh Prolific Poster

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    Hello essabee,

    I assume that your hood covers the area from outer edge to outer edge of the aquarium, could you not design your new hood to cover only to the inner edges of the glass on all sides? You would obviously have a 2 inch strip of glass along the front and back to cover and a 3 inch strip of glass along the sides to cover, but you could possibly do this by making a bevel of sorts, say for instance by cutting a piece of wood with a 45 degree angle( I guess it would be a 2X2 split down the middle with a 45 degree cut then trimed as need be on the front and back, sides??) to run along the entire outside of the tank to cover the exposed glass area attached to the hood nicley. I assume you are using wood for your new hood? Do you think this would help, or am I just not getting the picture?? An idea to throw out there anyway. Anyway, just thought I would throw the idea out there, if I am not understanding your problem, then please disregard this post.

    Cheers,

    Singtoh
     
  5. essabee

    essabee Prolific Poster

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    I have decided to make a new hood, double walls hiding the braces altogether, extractor fans drawing air through small holes all along the bottom inner perimeter of the hood and finally drawn out through small holes at the top perimeter. I will change the lights from fluorescents to metal halides. Five 70W MH fixtures using 2 blue fountain bulbs, 2 red fountain bulbs and a normal 5200K to hide the magenta tint. I will light the tank indirectly so that I will not have a variable coloured tank lighting. To do this I will be using white laminates on the inner side of the tank (I have found these to be very good reflectors and easy to clean and maintain - they are also water proof and have very long life and not overly costly).
     
  6. essabee

    essabee Prolific Poster

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    Heat and light hoodwinked

    Curtain raiser on my new hood for the 5 2 2 euro-braced tank.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Top of the hood is in two parts - the flat rear portion is the heat extractor chamber and the sloping front portion merely a reflector redirection for the lights.

    I have placed the lights looking forward and needing redirection to the tank. Yes, I would loose an extra 10% of the light at-least by this arrangement as I am using a glossy white laminate for the reflector. I needed to arrange the lights in this way for two reasons - 1 because I like the lights to be directed on the inmates of the tank from the front as that displays them better, and 2 because I am using an odd mix of MH 70Wcoloured bulbs; two of the bulbs are blue and two are red all four are the type used for colouring fountains, the fifth bulb is a normal 5200K shop light which has a lot of green and yellow for brightness but is weak in either ends of the visible spectrum. The light arrangement is needed to mix the different shades before they enter the tank water for more uniform viewing.
     
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