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Old 11-21-2013, 06:34 AM   #1
Warbler
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Using new lamps in old fixture?


Hello!
I'm making a fish tank for my teacher, and we're hoping to go the planted route. He hasn't been into fish keeping for a while but had a lamp hood in storage with the bulb. Checked the manufacturing date, and it seems the hood was made in 1994. The light that was still in there was a T12, so I assume that's what the hood was made for.
I want to get a new, better light for it, and was wondering if I could put a T5HO fixture in there without it exploding or electrocuting the water (that's already happened so far with this tank-not quite looking forward to another experience).
Thank you!
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Old 11-21-2013, 02:39 PM   #2
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No you cannot, both those bulbs have different voltage requirements. Just get a new t12 bulb and go low light.

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Old 11-21-2013, 07:37 PM   #3
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I've seen some T5 retrofit kits, but I can't speak for the effectiveness or safety of such products. Might be worth looking into. Replacing the whole fixture is probably the easier option -- especially with the quality of newer LED products.
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Old 11-22-2013, 12:26 AM   #4
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I'd definitely go LED if I could, but I don't want to bankrupt my teacher, and nobody is selling on Craigslist.
Is there a place where I can find PAR values for T12s? All I can seem to find are ones for T5s, or do I have to look up the bulbs individually?
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Old 11-22-2013, 01:38 AM   #5
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T12's are very outdated... and not as efficient

T8's are a great low cost alternative... 30~40 dollars for a whole fixture+light bulb

Or you can go the CFL route...
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warbler View Post
Hello!
I'm making a fish tank for my teacher, and we're hoping to go the planted route. He hasn't been into fish keeping for a while but had a lamp hood in storage with the bulb. Checked the manufacturing date, and it seems the hood was made in 1994. The light that was still in there was a T12, so I assume that's what the hood was made for.
I want to get a new, better light for it, and was wondering if I could put a T5HO fixture in there without it exploding or electrocuting the water (that's already happened so far with this tank-not quite looking forward to another experience).
Thank you!
Hi Warbler,

You didn't mention what length fixture but there is a simple, easy LED retrofit for old fluorescent or incandescent fixtures using LED lamps. The LED lamp retrofits offered by AH Supply operate on 120 VAC (wall outlet power), do not require a transformer, ballast, or power driver, and come in 15 watt, 20 watt, and 26 watt output and are 6400K ($72 - $99). They have good PAR readings as well.

PAR readings of 20 watt LED lamp


Aqueon\All Glass Fixture w/20 watt LED lamp; socket already installed


20 gallon with 20 watt LED; no CO2


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Old 11-22-2013, 02:48 AM   #7
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That looks really awesome, but my teacher was balking at just the price of dirt for the tank.
I think I'll just get a new light hood. Cheaper and easier, I suppose. Could I potentially make my own light hood even though I have zero electronics experience, or might it just be easier to find a used one?
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:11 AM   #8
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Just go cfl and a hardware store clip light

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Old 11-22-2013, 04:51 AM   #9
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Wouldn't I need a ton of CFLs and some basic DIY stuff to get a base for the CFLs? I might do that for one of my tinier tanks though, good idea.
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Old 11-22-2013, 12:09 PM   #10
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For less than the price of those retro kits you can get a new FugeRay that's much better looking.
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Old 11-22-2013, 01:28 PM   #11
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For less than the price of those retro kits you can get a new FugeRay that's much better looking.
Hi Sluggo,

True, but the AH Supply retrofit kits have 2X the PAR ratings of the Finnex FugeRay. The retrofit kits are equal to or higher (26 watt LED lamp) PAR than the Finnex RayII.
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:32 PM   #12
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Quote:
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AH Supply retrofit kits have 2X the PAR ratings of the Finnex FugeRay. The retrofit kits are equal to or higher (26 watt LED lamp) PAR than the Finnex RayII.
In that case, it's probably overkill for what the OP wants.
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Old 11-23-2013, 06:15 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warbler View Post
That looks really awesome, but my teacher was balking at just the price of dirt for the tank.
I think I'll just get a new light hood. Cheaper and easier, I suppose. Could I potentially make my own light hood even though I have zero electronics experience, or might it just be easier to find a used one?
If your teacher is balking at the price of dirt, then he probably shouldn't be trying to go planted. In my experience this is a very expensive hobby.

As far as lights go, you can go pretty much any direction you can think of, depending on how handy you are. Though since you did say you already electrically charged the water, i would really recommend getting something ready made. I assume electrifying the water killed all your fish, im not even sure how you would make the water part of the circuit without blowing a breaker.

Really though, the best place to start for advice here would be to give us the specifications of your tank such as length, width, height, rimless/rimmed and a more clear idea on what you would like to grow in the future. This would keep us from recommending something that doesn't fit and won't grow what you want to grow.
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Old 11-23-2013, 05:11 PM   #14
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No, there weren't any fish in that tank, and I was testing the item in a tiny tank to see if it even worked...needless to say it did not.
Alright, specifications are a 30 gallon rimmed breeder, size 36*18*12. I've got a hood on the tank with an approximately 30 inch slot for a light strip. I'm looking to grow low-medium light plants, nothing too demanding. I've got a teeny DIY CO2 set up, but it doesn't produce much CO2 even as far as diy tends to go.
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Old 11-23-2013, 07:52 PM   #15
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The light that guy built probably wont give you the par you need, but it might give you ideas.
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