The 30gHex and you: lights
Planted Tank Forums
Your Tanks Image Hosting *Tank Tracker * Plant Profiles Fish Profiles Planted Tank Guide Photo Gallery Articles

Go Back   The Planted Tank Forum > Specific Aspects of a Planted Tank > Lighting


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-17-2008, 11:43 PM   #1
meatburglar
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: North Huntingdon, PA
Posts: 8
Default

The 30gHex and you: lights


Hello everyone. I have a 30 gallon tall hexagonal freshwater community tank that is well-stocked and lightly planted. It wasn't originally envisioned as a planted tank, but became one over time, so my substrate is standard enameled aquarium gravel; no laterite or porous pebbles as I know (or read) is best.

I should note that for the time being this is a low tech setup, but am considering adding CO2 injection at some point down the line. I do add minerals and ferts by way of Seachem's potassium, iron, nitrogen, flourish, trace, as well as Excel. I have had limited success with certain crypts (wendtii, bronze and green) and swords (ozelot and amazon.) Limited, as in, they haven't died, but haven't prospered either. I would like to grow balansae (tried and failed) and perhaps hairgrass/vallisneria.

I currently have a reptile lighting fixture(!) holding down my lighting duties, which houses one screw-in white CFL (36watt) and one screw-in Colormax bulb (15watt).I know this isn't nearly enough light to be truly successful, and so want to upgrade as soon as possible. The main problem with this is the puny footprint of my tank at a mere 20" diameter. I have been sizing up the Coralife 96watt quad tube 6700k fixture as it is also 20" in length. Is this a good idea, and if not, what would you recommend?
meatburglar is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 09-18-2008, 06:07 AM   #2
lauraleellbp
Fresh Fish Freak
 
lauraleellbp's Avatar
 
PTrader: (70/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Tampa, Florida
Posts: 24,402
Default

Welcome to TPT!

Yes, hex tanks are a booger to light. They're deep, but not wide enough for most tube flourescent bulbs, which really tend to get better depth penetration.

I think if you're planning to upgrade to CO2, your best bet will be to go with a 70watt Metal Halide.
__________________
Tampa Bay Aquarium Society - Next meeting Monday, Oct 13, 2014 @ 7:15pm- See ya there!
TBAS Annual Fish Auction - November 1st!!

lauraleellbp is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-18-2008, 05:42 PM   #3
ovenmit331
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
ovenmit331's Avatar
 
PTrader: (6/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 553
Default

i've got a 2x36w kit from ahsupply.com in one of their enclosures on my 30g planted hex. works very well. Pressurized co2 in it. hairgrass took off. crypts wendtii too. biggest problem for you will probably be your substrate.
ovenmit331 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-18-2008, 07:39 PM   #4
indovinavi
Algae Grower
 
indovinavi's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Playa Del Rey, CA
Posts: 21
Default

I too have a low-light/tech HEX tank, mine is 40g (24"tall). So far, I have been having the same issues with having such a deep tank and live plants. I have two 15 watt 24" tubes, and a reptile spiral tube coralife 20watt 50/50 bulb. I'm injecting DIY CO2 with the red sea 500 reactor (worth the $) and the plants are staying alive, but it's definately obvious that they aren't getting enough light. So I went out and bought all the items for a DIY 70 watt Halide system, but realized that I might still have the same problems with the 1.75w/g, and decided to get the 150 instead. I'll keep you posted on my progress and maybe one of these days I'll finally post up the pictures I've been taking. If you're interested, I have ALL of the items practically ready to install for a DIY 70 watt (10K Double Ended HQI, halogen housing, ballast and wire) I was going to post up on ebay if you are interested...? I can take pictures of it for you. My substrate is the red sea or something like that aquatic plant soil topped with homedepot silicate light-grey sand.

Mike
indovinavi is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-18-2008, 07:46 PM   #5
epicfish
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by indovinavi View Post
I too have a low-light/tech HEX tank, mine is 40g (24"tall). So far, I have been having the same issues with having such a deep tank and live plants. I have two 15 watt 24" tubes, and a reptile spiral tube coralife 20watt 50/50 bulb. I'm injecting DIY CO2 with the red sea 500 reactor (worth the $) and the plants are staying alive, but it's definately obvious that they aren't getting enough light. So I went out and bought all the items for a DIY 70 watt Halide system, but realized that I might still have the same problems with the 1.75w/g, and decided to get the 150 instead. I'll keep you posted on my progress and maybe one of these days I'll finally post up the pictures I've been taking. If you're interested, I have ALL of the items practically ready to install for a DIY 70 watt (10K Double Ended HQI, halogen housing, ballast and wire) I was going to post up on ebay if you are interested...? I can take pictures of it for you. My substrate is the red sea or something like that aquatic plant soil topped with homedepot silicate light-grey sand.

Mike
If you have space, 2x70W would be a better idea. Probably costs a little bit more, but it won't turn your tank into a massive algae farm.

150 watts, 30 gallons = 5 WPG. DIY CO2? Kinda iffy IMO.
epicfish is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-18-2008, 08:08 PM   #6
Rod Hay
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Pittsburgh,PA
Posts: 449
Default

I have a 35g hex tank w/ 20" across the top. I'm not one to DIY, especially w/ electricity. The best ready-made I found for this size was the Orbit CF fixtures by Current USA:
http://www.current-usa.com/orbit.html
I did have to replace one actinic bulb when I purchased the unit.

Works as good as I want it to. I run one light 8hours and the other mid-day for 4 hours.

I really hate working in this 24" deep tank. I'm shorter and when I need to reach the bottom the rim gouges my armpit!!! I'm very happy w/ slow, stable growth from plenty of rosette style plants. My motto for this baby is the less pruning the better! (Crypts, aponogetons, anubias.) I'm not using pressurized CO2 on this tank, but do dose Excel (3ml) daily and light ferts.
Rod Hay is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-19-2008, 04:14 AM   #7
indovinavi
Algae Grower
 
indovinavi's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Playa Del Rey, CA
Posts: 21
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfish View Post
If you have space, 2x70W would be a better idea. Probably costs a little bit more, but it won't turn your tank into a massive algae farm.

150 watts, 30 gallons = 5 WPG. DIY CO2? Kinda iffy IMO.

I have a 40 gal hex, not a 30... (big difference, huh? ) it's definitely a work in progress, but will be adding the pressurized CO2 in a month or so.
indovinavi is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-19-2008, 04:16 AM   #8
epicfish
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
Default

Eh, still a lot of light. Makes it a bit more manageable though.

Good luck.
epicfish is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 09:29 PM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright Planted Tank LLC 2012