20" double bulb fluorescent - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-21-2003, 06:50 PM Thread Starter
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Is there such a thing as a 20" double bulb (18" bulbs) fluorescent strip light, preferably a retro kit for a single? I can only fit two 20" strip lights on my tank and I'd like to go from 2 to 4 bulbs. seems like all I can find are 24" on up.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-21-2003, 07:10 PM
eds
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Pretty sure I saw them in my LFS yesterday. I'll check again when I stop by over the weekend.

55gal - Coralife 4x65w cf, xp3, flourite, Hydor ETH300w, pressurized CO2 w/ rex(TM) reactor!

30gal - 55W AH, ecco 2232, flourite/gravel, DIY CO2 w/ Hagen ladder

3gal - endlers/cherry shrimp
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 01:21 AM
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I have never seen a two bulb 20" fixture. Is your tank a 10 gallon? If so head over to www.ahsupply.com and get their upgrade kit 2X13 watt for 10 gallon strip lights. I have one and it works great. I also run a standard strip on the front of the tank.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 02:01 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. I have a 44 gallon pentagon. The hood is set up for two strip lights, currently I have two lights with 1 bulb in each. The plants are doing surprisingly well under such low light, but I think they could be doing much better. I'd like to just reftrofit them and double what I have now. I'm trying for a low-med light setup.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, this looks good from ahsupply, but the heat warning worries me........
Here's the info from there site:

You can use this kit to convert a 1x15w fluorescent light strip to 2x13w. Includes: Two 13 watt thermally protected magnetic ballasts; two 2-pin GX23 sockets; wire for completing the connection of the ballasts to the power cord and switch in your light strip; wirenuts and screws needed for installation; and pop-in vent covers and base pads. Requires two 13W bulbs (not included).
IMPORTANT: If you choose to use your 2x13watt Bright Kit™ (Item #21301) to retrofit a regular light strip, you'll want to be sure to order our FREE Installation Tips (Item #21309), use the two pop-in end-vent covers and rear corner base pads included in your kit, and place your strip on top of a glass cover. This should remedy the heat problem you'd otherwise have with so much light built into such a small strip. Used this way, we've found that these small light strips will not get as warm as some larger strips such as a commonly available 2 x 30 watt aquarium strip - either on top or inside near the bulbs. NOTE, however, that you should not use a light strip retrofitted with two 13watt CF bulbs on top of a regular plastic tank cover. That could get so hot that your thermally protected ballasts might shut down - especially if the ambient temperature is high.

My hood is plastic. Should I avoid this fit?
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 03:03 AM
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I have never been a fan of them dang plastic hoods.
Just build yourself a hood and mount the lights. Its actually very easy to do and the heat issues go bye bye... not to mention they look much nicer.


I just built one for my 56G... Bucks DIY Canopy
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 01:32 PM
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My hood (the part where the bulbs are) is plastic. The tank cover is glass. You can get a glass cover pretty cheap. If you are worried about the heat then get one of the AH Supply enclosures and get the full 2X13 watt kit with the reflectors.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 02:57 PM Thread Starter
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OK, first of all, many thanks.
I am attaching a pic so you can see what I'm talking about. Seems like I have more choices than I thought. If I retrofit one 15w to the 2X13's, would the additional 11 watts be worth the expense? That would take me from 30 watts to 41. If I retrofit both, that would be 52, but double the price. I have a lot of stuff in the tank, so I figured there are 30-35 gallons of water. Maybe I should make a hood. I'm not happy with my current hood for two reasons: the limited light options, and my arm barely fits through the opening! What materials should I get to make a hood?
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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My wife has just noted that she likes the way the hood looks now, she has been surprisingly supportive of this new hobby of mine, so I'd best not push my luck!
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Wanted to run what I picked out at ahsupply by you guys before I ordered.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 04:32 PM
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Those items should make your tank a lot brighter than it is now. But I think you should seriously consider trying to get more light into the tank. Its a beatiful tank but I'm afraid you will be seriously limited to the kinds of plants that will grow under that amount of lighting.
Heres another option that I've used on my 10 gallon which has worked out really well for me: Move the tank to a window to get natural sunlight into the tank. You can adjust the amount of light hitting the tank with miniblinds or curtains.

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
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I was worried about sunlight causing algae. It gets about an hour blast of sunlight each morning now, but I will think about moving it. Now I'm considering doubling that order and running two sets of 2x13's or modifying the current hood by cutting the fron light opening so it can fit a 24"strip, seems like there are a lot more options with the 24" opening. Thanks again.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-22-2003, 05:05 PM
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Things are a little different with a planted tank. Besides, I think the old "algae from sunlight" thing was invented by the light manufacturers. In a non-planted tank there's a lot of nutrients just waiting to be gobbled up by some green organism. This is not the case with a planted tank, which has plants to gobble up those nutrients. The most important thing about having your tank next to the window is keeping the light cycle under 12 hours. Thats where the blinds come in.
IMO, you could have a beatiful tank without altering the hood too much. Buy those CF kits from ahsupply and move the tank close to a window and you'll have plenty of light.

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75 gal heavily planted,50/50 Black beauty,Eco-complete substrate, Pressurised CO2 with solenoid, ph controller, AB Reactor 1000, 330 watts 9325K GE PC lighting,Ehiem Liquidoser, 2-Filstar xp3 canisters.
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