lighting for a 75g tank
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Old 05-31-2006, 05:13 PM   #1
snakeskin
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lighting for a 75g tank


I have had my 75 gallon tank for about 2 years and this last year I have really planted it well and even bought a co2 kit. the co2 kit works and the plants are pearling but I'm concerned with the lighting. I have had two 40 watt flourescent lights this whole time. thats only about 1 watt per gallon. I thought this was ok because my plants are low light (anubias and crypts) but I am now starting to question my judgement here. what flourescent lights would you perscribe?- are there even such things as 80 watt flourescent lights because I haven't seen them.
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Old 05-31-2006, 07:07 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snakeskin
what flourescent lights would you perscribe?- are there even such things as 80 watt flourescent lights because I haven't seen them.
Do you want to buy a ready made fixture, or are you comfortable with some DIY and electrical stuff? What is your budget? Do you aim for a high-light, CO2 injected, regularly dosed setup, or more towards low maintenance?
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Old 05-31-2006, 08:20 PM   #3
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I would really like to buy a ready made fixture.(not really to great with the do it yourself stuff) and my budget is probably around $40-60. I kind of wanted a high light system but I don't think I have time for it.
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Old 05-31-2006, 08:32 PM   #4
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Well... hate to say it... but there is no such thing as a ready made fixture to cover a 75gal for $40-60

I think the cheapest ones for a low light setup will be around $100, and if you want a good one maybe $150.

You could probably fit two or three shoplights over that tank, not looking very good, not very efficient, but that might fit your budget.
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Old 05-31-2006, 08:44 PM   #5
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If your budget is $40-60, there's not a whole lot you can go with, since most single T-12 fixtures (w/o bulb) for a 48" long tank cost about that. If it was my tank, I would probably buy lumber and make a canopy (instructions for this all over this site and other sites) and get the lighting itself from ahsupply. Unless you're going for very low light where you'll have trouble growing much aside from anubias, java fern and mosses, you'd want to go with two 55w x 2 "bright kits". Those are $64.99 ea (plus shipping) and they don't include the bulbs, which are another $21 or so and you'd need four. That would give you just under 3 wpg. If you just added, for example, a double-tube T-12 fixture (40wx2), it would barely give you over 1 wpg which isn't really sufficient for growing anything. You might want to check out www.craigslist.org to see if anyone is selling anything cheap. Or try your luck with aquabid or ebay.
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Old 05-31-2006, 08:53 PM   #6
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While I recomend ahsupply, you could always go with 2, 2 bulb shop lights - and odno afterwards to get more light. I personally got pearling with a pair of shop lights on my tank (one 2x odno), but wanted more light. (my 58 is basically a 75 choped off at 3'
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Old 06-02-2006, 08:52 PM   #7
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Okay if I raise my budget here to about 100-150 dollars what would be a more appropriate set up for more wpg
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Old 06-02-2006, 09:33 PM   #8
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I'm using a jbj formosa light for my 72 gallon! it has 260 watts. It should be in your pricerange. I bought mine from www.aquariumplants.com; It comes with four free bulbs too! I highly recommend it.
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Old 06-03-2006, 03:07 AM   #9
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The problem with 260 watts is that you will need a pressurized CO2 system.
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Old 06-03-2006, 04:41 AM   #10
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Let me just tell you to do it right the first time around. Don't go cheap now, you will end up upgrading if you continue the hobby. So save up and do it the right way the first time around. Higher initial investment, lower overall cost.

Get a nice 4x55 watt fixture or a Tek light. I would prefer the Tek light, but only if budget wasn't an issue.

I can't tell you how much money I would have saved (probably several hundred dollars) if I did it right the first time. Mistakes can be expensive.
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Old 06-04-2006, 03:26 AM   #11
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I already have a pressurized co2 system but I am just wondering if 270 watts will hinder the growth my more low light plants. I've heard that anubius aren't really picky about the lighting but I've heard that crypts flourish better in a lower light system.
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Old 06-04-2006, 04:01 AM   #12
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Balderdash. And the name of that Penn and Teller show on Showtime.

Crypts love high light. Grow like weeds. Of course many of them turn very dark.
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Old 06-04-2006, 04:52 AM   #13
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I'd do two or three HO 54w T5s (I'm sure you can get away with 2 for crypts and anubias).

Ballast would be around $20 (1).

Tubes $20 each (2).

Reflectors $20 each (2).

So that's about $100 plus whatever enclosure you built. Using HO you save some money by needing fewer tubes and reflectors. Enclosure can be smaller too.
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Old 06-04-2006, 05:01 AM   #14
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Rex is right about crypts in high light! I always thought of them as low-light-only plants, but they will really bust out under good strong lighting.

I have some used fixtures I could sell you within your budget-- power compact and VHO types. Just PM me if you are interested.
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Old 06-05-2006, 01:00 AM   #15
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I'm sure this sounds dumb but what is HO and VHO?
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