Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?
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Old 05-20-2013, 08:31 PM   #1
TB3Redneck
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Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?


I'm relatively new to the fish hobby, but I'm loving it so far. I've kept all sorts of exotic reptiles for 5 years, and fish are starting to seep into my collection! I've got my 29 gallon cycling right now, and the parameters are looking awesome so far. But my question is really about the whole watts per gallon thing. The hood that I got for this only allows for one incandescent, which is only 18 watts. So if I want around 2 to 3 watts per gallon, I should have between 60 and 90 watts. If I were to convert this to a dual bulb CFL, would that up my wattage since I know have two however-many watt bulbs?
Thanks!

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Old 05-20-2013, 10:59 PM   #2
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Trick question(whether you knew it or not), most CFL's draw far less power then their incandescent counterparts. For example, the basic 60w equivalent bulb only draw 13 or 14w depending on brand, but that isn't what matters. What matters is the light reaching your plants - and for that watts per gallon is a horrible measurement of light ( http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=184368). You should look into the work done on CFL's and (note that if you do what I did/it sounds like you are doing CFL's mounted vertically are much more light)
(Hoppy's detail work)
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=184368

A little bit lighter reading, scroll down:
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...t=85667&page=2

Good luck, it's a fun project. I converted my old T8 to 4x CFL.
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...066&highlight=
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Old 05-22-2013, 10:44 AM   #3
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

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Originally Posted by majorwoo View Post
Trick question(whether you knew it or not), most CFL's draw far less power then their incandescent counterparts. For example, the basic 60w equivalent bulb only draw 13 or 14w depending on brand, but that isn't what matters. What matters is the light reaching your plants - and for that watts per gallon is a horrible measurement of light ( http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=184368). You should look into the work done on CFL's and (note that if you do what I did/it sounds like you are doing CFL's mounted vertically are much more light)
(Hoppy's detail work)
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=184368

A little bit lighter reading, scroll down:
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...t=85667&page=2

Good luck, it's a fun project. I converted my old T8 to 4x CFL.
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...066&highlight=
Sorry I took so long to reply, but you pointed me in such a perfect direction that I got wrapped up there! Seems like the setups I have is efficient enough, but I really wanna get these plants flourishing, so I may convert it to the CFL bulbs.

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Old 05-22-2013, 03:33 PM   #4
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Take a look at AHSupply.com retrofit kits. I have their 55w kit on my stock 29g hood with a glass aquarium top. I am live streaming it right now, you can check it out and see how much light it puts out. Their included reflectors are fantastic! Here is the link to the thread: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=335834
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Old 05-22-2013, 06:40 PM   #5
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Glad to help. But I want to see some pictures!!
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:09 AM   #6
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

Here she is! I've added a black background and a red crypt to the back right corner. I'm gonna stock it with Cardinal or Neon tetras(maybe both as I might have to wait for Cardinals), one or two Angels, and something else... I can't decide! Someone told me rummynose, which I would like a lot, but I want something in between the size of a tetra and angel... Maybe something for the bottom?

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Old 05-23-2013, 11:30 AM   #7
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Looking good. Going to be amazing with some green.
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Old 05-23-2013, 04:05 PM   #8
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Be careful of Angels and Neon's (even cardinals by some reports) together. Lots of people say they will snack on them when the Angel is larger - and lots of people say they grew up together and are just fine together. I don't have an Angel myself because the wife loves the Molly babies and I'm sure they would eat the fry

Also, you owe us more pictures once it grows in I just switched tanks so it's killing me waiting for mine to grow in, I have to survive on looking at others!
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Old 05-24-2013, 03:04 AM   #9
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

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Looking good. Going to be amazing with some green.
I'm hoping so! I just put in a red crypt in the back right, and some little sprouts I got off of it and scattered them in the back. I'm gonna make a CO2 system to get this thing booming.





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Be careful of Angels and Neon's (even cardinals by some reports) together. Lots of people say they will snack on them when the Angel is larger - and lots of people say they grew up together and are just fine together. I don't have an Angel myself because the wife loves the Molly babies and I'm sure they would eat the fry

Also, you owe us more pictures once it grows in I just switched tanks so it's killing me waiting for mine to grow in, I have to survive on looking at others!
I'll definitely put up more pictures. Think I should start a new thread?

I'll go with some neons first then, since the Cardinals are a little mote pricy.... It maybe ill throw a few neons IN the Cardinals, so there will be a few bright gems in with the slightly dimmer gems lol.


Also, I'm going to be out of town this coming Wednesday, until June 20th. My ammonia levels were rising yesterday, so they should be dropping soon...
Should I wait to add the fish?

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Old 05-24-2013, 03:20 AM   #10
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

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Old 05-24-2013, 03:23 AM   #11
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

I'm having a bit of a crisis in my mind. My Galaxy S3 usually takes breathtaking photos, but I can't seem to get the quality I usually get taking photos of this tank! It's probably just cause its heavy with tannin and there are some particulates that float around... Still bothers me lol!


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Old 05-24-2013, 03:32 AM   #12
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Now that I saw that, I. CAN. NOT. SLEEP. TONIGHT.
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Old 05-24-2013, 03:41 AM   #13
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I would wait on the fish for sure, with you being out of town and the tank not cycled yet. Besides, you won't be there to enjoy the fish anyway so no loss.

The spider picture you took with your phone? Very sharp!
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Old 05-24-2013, 04:45 AM   #14
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Default Re: Converting an incandescent fixture to a dual bulb CFL?

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Now that I saw that, I. CAN. NOT. SLEEP. TONIGHT.

Oh c'mon! You know it's cute.




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Originally Posted by majorwoo View Post
I would wait on the fish for sure, with you being out of town and the tank not cycled yet. Besides, you won't be there to enjoy the fish anyway so no loss.

The spider picture you took with your phone? Very sharp!
Yup. One of the biggest reasons I got this phone! I love it. I'm gonna get a macro lens soon so I can take super sharp photos. I also need a tripod.

I can't remember how good this picture looks, but here's my Gourami.

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Old 05-24-2013, 05:52 AM   #15
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I need to convince my phone to take anywhere near that good of a picture

It does great for most shots, but close up isn't so good.
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