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Old 04-23-2012, 09:26 PM   #1
Kworker
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Need info on DIY LED


So I'm looking to make a few LED light fixtures for several tanks to save some costs especially since my house has solar and we opt for LEDs to try and utilize only the power we absorb up on the roof.. my father is a electrician so ill be relying on his knowledge for the most part but I ask if anyone has a write up of one theyve done or know where I can get a good write up so I can have a plan of what's needed and its construction.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:30 PM   #2
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I hate to be that guy, but there are tons of these threads, just search for 'diy led planted' and you will get all the info you could possibly need.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:35 PM   #3
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what size tanks do you have?
and yeah, i agree with pwolfe, there's a couple of good build threads that people have done.

but if you can't find anything on there then you're more than welcome to ask away here
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:44 PM   #4
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Yeah I did some searching but looking around on Google not on here exactly but I was looking more for someone to post their own successful write up directly.. what I looked at was just the beginnings without any final inputs on how well it worked in long run.. dont worry about being "that guy" I was expecting atleast one person to say that :P but I'm looking to make them for a 29gal. 3 20 gals and 1 5.5.. which is other thing I really didn't see any postings on around my size.. all for larger tanks.. thanks for responses folks
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Old 04-24-2012, 12:04 AM   #5
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If you're going to use solar power, the question is what will be your power source for the LED emitters? If you have DC lines in the house, AC drivers probably aren't the most efficient use of your power.
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Old 04-24-2012, 04:24 PM   #6
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Use an estimate first, if you are running CO2, you can maintain the tanks in high light level and then
1)use this formula, 1.5W LED per gallon. There are other ways to estimate but each method have their drawbacks and advantages.
2)Choose color of LEDs
3)Determine whether you want controller, dimmability or just on off
4)Look for the right fixture(not just a heat sink)-you need splash guard!
5)Ask yourself whether you can solder, the most important part in soldering is to beware of wire frays.
6)Watch couple Youtube tutorials of other peoples' builds but unfortunately MOST are done incorrectly including couple videos from a DIY LED store(LOL) Anyway, you can still learn from other people's mistakes.
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Old 04-24-2012, 04:36 PM   #7
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This website has some great articles with pictures and diagrams regarding DIY LEDs.
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Old 04-24-2012, 05:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WingoAgency View Post
Use an estimate first, if you are running CO2, you can maintain the tanks in high light level and then
1)use this formula, 1.5W LED per gallon. There are other ways to estimate but each method have their drawbacks and advantages.
There are varying lumen output among leds of a certain wattage. Not all 3 watt LEDs with have the same output, this sounds like a formula for failure. Also the depth of the tank will matter as well, a 40 gallon long and a 40 gallon cube are going to have different light requirements and need different optics. Also the heighth of the fixture needs to be considered. Check out hoppies formula if you want a more accurate way to estimate the LEDs you will need.
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Old 04-27-2012, 07:52 PM   #9
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Thanks folks.
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Old 04-27-2012, 09:45 PM   #10
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Check out Hoppy's threads. Just do a search under his username or click on his name on a post. He has some of the best info on this forum. Besides that, there are a couple threads of a couple hundred pages each on reef central that have all the info you'd ever need.

Do you have direct access to DC or is everything inverted to 120/240ac?

There is also the method mulm used where he used cheap fixtures with screw in par30 bulbs. Easy as pie and would be perfect for tanks your size. You can also get smaller bulbs that would be more suited than par30s.
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