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-   -   What to use as "hood" for DIY light? (http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=196169)

dbl_dbl17 11-04-2012 07:23 PM

What to use as "hood" for DIY light?
 
I am thinking about buying the Hagen T5HO ballast with end caps, but I have nothing to mount them too. I've heard of people using gutter, but my tank is 36" and I can only buy it in 10ft lengths - seems kind silly.

What does everyone use? I am going to have it sitting on top of the glass top.

Darkblade48 11-04-2012 07:38 PM

I would just use the gutter, and save the 7' for something else :)

I bought 10' and used about 12" for a 10 gallon aquarium, so..... :D

Hoppy 11-04-2012 09:35 PM

If you need to squeeze all of the PAR you can out of that light, a good reflector is an absolute necessity - the gutter won't do it.

Mike1239 11-04-2012 10:11 PM

You can use the window box planters spray paint the inside or buy some reflectors

dbl_dbl17 11-06-2012 12:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hoppy (Post 2067484)
If you need to squeeze all of the PAR you can out of that light, a good reflector is an absolute necessity - the gutter won't do it.

The tank is going to be pretty low tech.

With that being said, I was looking at the AH supply reflectors, but there is no way of knowing if it will fit well or properly. I've never used them before. can it be molded to the inside?

If not, I am going to get this: http://www.amazon.ca/2in-Yards-Scotc...2166043&sr=8-9

Anyways, I bought the white gutter. Ordering the ballast tonight or tomorrow.

fishykid1 11-06-2012 01:23 AM

That's extremely expensive. Try McMasterCarr.com and see if you can't find something. Their online catalog is a pain, but if they don't have it there'y not a use for it.

dbl_dbl17 11-06-2012 01:27 AM

I live in Canada, everything is expensive :P

Hoppy 11-06-2012 01:33 AM

Just getting a reflective surface on the inside of the "hood" doesn't give you a good reflector. A good reflector lets you see a complete image of the bulb on each side of the bulb, so it appears like you have 3 bulbs, instead of one. That requires the reflector to be shaped correctly. The AH Supply reflectors are shaped right, and they can be slightly bent outward or inward to fit better, but it won't work well if you make them fit against the sides of the "hood" without regard to the shape of the reflector.

What are the tank dimensions? Unless it is a tall tank, more than 24 inches tall, two T5HO bulbs with good reflectors will be too much light for a low tech tank.

dbl_dbl17 11-06-2012 01:39 AM

Tank is 20'' tall. Perhaps I shouldn't add the reflectors then, the only source of carbon I was planning on adding was DIY "Excel".

Would you recommend just installing the bulbs into the gutter with no reflector then?

Darkblade48 11-06-2012 04:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fishykid1 (Post 2068813)
That's extremely expensive. Try McMasterCarr.com and see if you can't find something. Their online catalog is a pain, but if they don't have it there'y not a use for it.

Unfortunately, McMasterCarr does not ship to Canada unless it is with companies they have been dealing with for a long time (before the policy change to not ship to Canada).

Quote:

Originally Posted by dbl_dbl17 (Post 2068816)
I live in Canada, everything is expensive :P

Hear, hear.

Quote:

Originally Posted by dbl_dbl17 (Post 2068826)
Tank is 20'' tall. Perhaps I shouldn't add the reflectors then, the only source of carbon I was planning on adding was DIY "Excel".

Would you recommend just installing the bulbs into the gutter with no reflector then?

If you are trying to maintain a lower light aquarium, then I think the reflectors would not be necessary. T5HO bulbs put out a lot of light.

Hoppy 11-06-2012 11:45 PM

Two T5HO bulbs, using a good quality, full HO power ballast, with great reflectors, will probably give you around 120 micromols of PAR at 20 inches. Since the great reflectors approximately triple the light from the bulbs, that means you should get around 40 micromols of PAR without any reflectors. That is a bit high for a non-CO2 tank, but if you use Excel it might work ok.

dbl_dbl17 11-07-2012 03:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hoppy (Post 2069792)
Two T5HO bulbs, using a good quality, full HO power ballast, with great reflectors, will probably give you around 120 micromols of PAR at 20 inches. Since the great reflectors approximately triple the light from the bulbs, that means you should get around 40 micromols of PAR without any reflectors. That is a bit high for a non-CO2 tank, but if you use Excel it might work ok.

What if I used regular T5? Would this be smarter? I could also install a T8 ballast.

Hoppy 11-07-2012 10:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dbl_dbl17 (Post 2069990)
What if I used regular T5? Would this be smarter? I could also install a T8 ballast.

That would be such a far out guess that I won't even attempt it.

dbl_dbl17 11-08-2012 02:10 AM

Well I've ordered the T5HO ballast. Will post some pics once everything is put together!

Rene02 11-08-2012 03:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dbl_dbl17 (Post 2068816)
I live in Canada, everything is expensive :P

I second this statement.


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