Converting a fluorescent light control unit - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-02-2003, 09:51 AM Thread Starter
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Please forgive me if this is a stupid question; is it possible to convert an 8w fluorescent light control unit by replacing the tube holder leads to ones large enough to accept 14w fluorescent tubes? I'm asking because I could save money if I do this. At the moment I have 1.6wpg in my tank but I want to upgrade to either 2.5 or more expensively 3wpg! Thanks in advance for your replies!

Michelle
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-02-2003, 03:03 PM
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Without more information on your ballast (fluorescent light control unit) I can't be sure, but the answer is generally no. If you did extend the leads and put a 14w tube in there, the ballast would still only have 8 watts of energy to offer and the 14w tube would appear dimmer than it should.
Have you ever seen these 13w fluorescent swing-arm desk lamps?

- Sam P -
plantedtanker in limbo - all tanks currently in storage
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-02-2003, 08:07 PM
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Where did you find that lamp?
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-02-2003, 09:25 PM
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Wal-Mart, of course. It was a few years ago. I think I paid around $20 for it.

- Sam P -
plantedtanker in limbo - all tanks currently in storage
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-03-2003, 05:43 AM
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Guess I'm going shopping tomorrow. I need some extra light for my 5.5 gallon tank. The strip light doesn't give good coverage.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-03-2003, 12:59 PM
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The phillips PL type lamp that comes with it is only 3000K, which does wonders for algae growth. They have 5000k and even 6500k 13w PL bulbs at bulbs.com but I did a quick remedy and covered the glass lid with a blue wal-mart bag. Light output is brought down to more manageable (non CO2 supplemented) levels and the algae problems is vastly reduced.

- Sam P -
plantedtanker in limbo - all tanks currently in storage
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-07-2003, 01:56 PM
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Okay now, I'm really curious about this blue bag technique. Did you install the blue bag to reduce intensity of the light, or to convert the light to become bluer (by filtering out the yellow)?

Not too long ago, I replaced the incondecent bulb on my 5.5g with a compact florescent that I bought from Home Depot for $8. The new bulb is much brigther but it's rated 3000K, and come to think of it, I do get more algae now. Should I be doing the blue bag thing? What about the heat from the bulb and the possibility of burning the bag? won't the blue bag become brown bag in time?... :?
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