Locating the ballast
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Old 07-22-2003, 05:00 PM   #1
Doomer
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Just added 2 x 55watt brite kit from AH Supply to my 29 gal. I decided to save time and money by buying an enclousure at the same time.

When I put the thing together I thought long and hard about where to locate the ballast. I decided to mount it to the outside of the enclousure to keep it away from the heat generated by the lamps.

Problem is, it looks like crap. There is room inside the enclosure to mount it but I'm hesitant in putting it on the inside due to the effects of heat on it.

Where do you guys mount your ballast ?

Thanks
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Old 07-22-2003, 05:02 PM   #2
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I mount my ballasts under my tanks and run the electrical leads to the canopy through a conduit.

I have also mounted some of my ballasts in my open top canopies, or in some cases outside the canopy on the back (so it vents into the open air)
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Old 07-22-2003, 05:29 PM   #3
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I run my Icecap 660 under the tank within the stand. WORD OF CAUTION: I am on my second Icecap due to the fact on a bad day in Japan we lost power. Unfortunately my wetdry/sump/skimmer setup was a bit off and the water flowed into the tank causing the level to rise and overflow. The water went down the sides and destroyed the ballast.

You can try to prevent this by looping the wires (wont help much), moving the ballast and setting up a barrier..wood, epoxy, plastic...just beware water has a way of finding nooks and crannies.

I will mount the ballast under the tank again now that i am running cannister filters and no danger of overflow on the ballast.
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Old 07-22-2003, 06:35 PM   #4
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I thought about mounting it under the stand but that would make it a PITA to remove the top. Do you use some sort of plug between the ballast and the lamp assemblies ?
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Old 07-22-2003, 06:56 PM   #5
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I actually have wires that are that long...you could splice extra ones to make the distance or use a quick disconnect...unsure on how to make the disconnect though.
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10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 07-22-2003, 07:24 PM   #6
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I use banana plugs/terminals normally used for high wattage speakers/monitors. You can pick them up at most Electronic supply places.
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Old 07-22-2003, 10:01 PM   #7
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Hmmm, banana plugs/terminals sound like a good idea. I'd only have to deal with 3 connections. wonder if banana plugs come as triplets. I know they come paired, obviously.
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Old 07-22-2003, 10:40 PM   #8
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There are many options for terminal connections like that. I would just head on in to your local electronics store and see what they have to offer!
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Old 07-22-2003, 11:23 PM   #9
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Think I'll use a standard power cord connector. I have a bunch of old AT power supplies that have the female connector. All I need to do is cut a hole in the canopy to fit the plug and away I go.
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Old 07-23-2003, 01:39 AM   #10
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A trailer plug for a tow behind trailer would give you all the leads you need. I think you can get them with up to 9 seperate conductors. This would eliminate the confusion of remembering which banana plug gooes into which receptacle. One motion=9 connections.

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Old 07-23-2003, 02:06 AM   #11
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Yea but them trailer plug can give you a hernia when it comes time to disconnect.
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Old 07-23-2003, 02:08 AM   #12
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You make a good point :shock:
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Old 07-23-2003, 11:07 PM   #13
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It is done.

The ballast is located under the stand and the output goes into the pug in the canopy. I decide to put the pug on the side as opposed to the back so I can stand the canopy up come feeding time.



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Old 07-23-2003, 11:09 PM   #14
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BTW: This tank is still very much a work in progress. It'll be getting pressurized co2 as soon as the bubble counter arrives.
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Old 07-23-2003, 11:22 PM   #15
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Doomer,
Very cool! BTW how do you take your pics and post them...mine always come out crappy. Still learning on the post thing. BTW...see in photos...Mikes new 100 gallon....it is an example of my pics...yours are soooo clear.

mike
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10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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