I dunno if you're only interested in the wood look, but I modified a couple plastic strip light hoods. I had 2 30" hoods for my 29s, and after I got rid of one of the tanks decided to use the extra hood for more light. I took both the light strips and cut most of the backs off, removed the light fixtures and bolted the plastic housings back to back. This provided enough room to mount 4 sets of bulb connections directly to the housing. I had to buy a ballast and some small screws, but other than that I had all the necessary materials. I then attached some mylar beneath the bulbs for a reflector, and drilled some extra vents. This was a very cheap way to upgrade the light. But to answer part of your original question, the heat is not an issue. 4 T8s don't put off significant heat provided the have adequate ventilation. I even at one point had a faulty magnetic ballast that got so hot I couldn't touch it, but it didn't melt the plastic to which it was attached. So if you modify a plastic hood, I wouldn't worry about the heat.