DIY LED red spectrum supplemental lighting - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2013, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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DIY LED red spectrum supplemental lighting

I'm currently running a 36" Ray2 DS on my 12 long and for the most part, I'm very happy with the light and seeing as how I already own it, I'd like to keep using it.
The problem I'm having is that the Ray2 doesn't keep red plants red because its red spectrum output is almost nonexistent. You can check out the spectrum chart here.
So, I've been thinking of remedies for this and the best I can think of is building a supplemental red spectrum strip.
I have minimal experience with DIY LEDs and was hoping some of you might have some thoughts on the subject.

The tanks dimensions are 35.4 x 8.3 x 9.4 inches. I currently have the Ray 2 3.5" above the tank with the deepest part of the substrate roughly 10" below the light.

I was thinking of picking up a 36 x 1.4 inch heatsink and 6 or so Philips Rebel ES 660nm Deep Reds from Rapidled.com. I'm not exactly sure about the driver etc, I still have my research to do.

I realize the excess of red spectrum might throw off the aesthetics of the tank, but I figured I'd cross that bridge when I came to it. I could always swap out some LEDs to find a balance between what I like and what my plants like,

So, thoughts, suggestions, criticism, is this a utterly ridiculous idea? I have no idea. What I do know is I'd like my reds to actually stay red and I'd like my lighting, whether it's a piecemeal setup or a single fixture to have a spike in both the blue and the red spectrum.

Thanks in advance. And seriously, if this is a dumb idea, please tell me that and tell me why, as I said I'm new to this whole DIY LED thing.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2013, 04:44 AM Thread Starter
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Sorry, meant to post in the DIY section, if someone could move this that'd be great.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2013, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Unwavering View Post
Sorry, meant to post in the DIY section, if someone could move this that'd be great.
There's a handdandy diy app at buildmyled.com that would let you know really well what adding in red would do.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
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There's a handdandy diy app at buildmyled.com that would let you know really well what adding in red would do.
Thanks, I found that while I was researching. I think I'm going to go for a completely new fixture and use my current one on a different tank.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 09:32 AM
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Ray2 leds work for red plants.....

you are lacking iron most likely, need red clay in substrate or dose iron into water. Red plants need iron.... and more light will ussuallybring out more color if they have iron.

Red wendtii stays red under led w/o any iron
bronze wendtii has slight red/tan color w/o any iron
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 06:45 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Soup12 View Post
Ray2 leds work for red plants.....

you are lacking iron most likely, need red clay in substrate or dose iron into water. Red plants need iron.... and more light will ussuallybring out more color if they have iron.

Red wendtii stays red under led w/o any iron
bronze wendtii has slight red/tan color w/o any iron
I do dose iron and I use root tabs. so that cant be the issue and with the Ray2 just 3 inches above the tank, if it were able to keep red plants red then I wouldn't be having an issue.

Red plants grow red as a defense against red spectrum light(in order to reflect it). If you don't have sufficient red spectrum light, as is the case with the Ray2, there is no need for this defense mechanism and red plants tend to grow green.
At least this is what I've come up with in my many many hours of research on the subject and I've tried every other remedy/suggestion I've come across to no avail. All that is left is the lighting.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 07:32 PM
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you could use 2-3 fugeray-R... has red spectrum that is also geared to grow plants.

they are 5$ off right now until the 20th
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2013, 07:56 PM
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if your really good at soldering you can source similar led's that the finnex uses, just a different spectrum, de solder and swap them out... i considered doing this but i ended up removing my red plants from my finnex tank.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-19-2013, 12:10 AM Thread Starter
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you could use 2-3 fugeray-R... has red spectrum that is also geared to grow plants.

they are 5$ off right now until the 20th
I saw that the newest Fugeray incorporates red spectrum and I imagine Finnex will be doing something similar with the Ray2 line at some point which would be great.

Using a few of the Fugeray's over the tank might actually do the trick, but I thinking about all the extra power cords, it could get a bit messy. I decided for now I'm going to go with a dual T5HO and re-purpose the Ray2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ach1Ll3sH33L View Post
if your really good at soldering you can source similar led's that the finnex uses, just a different spectrum, de solder and swap them out... i considered doing this but i ended up removing my red plants from my finnex tank.
I have done some soldering, though I'm so far from good I can't even see really good. My electronics professor once said "Don't become a surgeon" while I was soldering chips on a board. My hands are pretty unsteady, so with LEDs that size I won't even attempt it. It is a good idea though for those with the skill required.
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