Fitting a 48" light over a 40B DIY style - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 01:37 AM Thread Starter
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Fitting a 48" light over a 40B DIY style

Not really a serious DIY, just a simple modification. I thought I'd throw this up in case anyone else is looking for a inexpensive lighting option for a 40B or other 36" tank.

I had on hand an old 48" shop light I was using on my 75g before switching to T5. I found some 36" bulbs in 6500k at my local Lowes. After not being able to find a suitable fixture for those bulbs, I decided I would make my old fixture work.

So I got the bulbs and once home, I disassembled one end of the shop light. I installed the bulbs so that I could get a proper measurement where the end-cap needed moved to.



Marked the fixture, took it outside and drew a straight line all the way across.



Using my angle grinder and a cutoff disc, I made short work of the fixture. Don't forget to wear your safety glasses.



Fitted the end-cap and a few pop rivets and it is nice a secure.



Cut the wiring down to length, soldered the connections, and used heat shrink tubing to make sure the connection was good.



Finally, installed the bulbs and fired it up.



So there you have it, a little DIY, less than $20, and you can have a decent medium level light over your 40B.


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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 05:26 AM
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Very nice!!!!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 05:50 AM
These pants? are fancy.
 
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dr. thunder and sriacha... Are those tools required or just recommended?
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 07:00 AM Thread Starter
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Well, the Dr. Thunder cans are just being made into alcohol stoves for camping. The Sriracha however is needed in order to make the conversion properly. Proceed at your own risk if you choose not to have it on hand while doing this project.


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 12:10 PM
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I've often wondered if it was safe to do this. Aren't you technically overdriving the bulbs? If so, it's not really a bad thing since people do that on purpose sometimes.

Very interesting, thanks for posting.

- Jeff


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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeff721 View Post
I've often wondered if it was safe to do this. Aren't you technically overdriving the bulbs? If so, it's not really a bad thing since people do that on purpose sometimes.
Very interesting, thanks for posting.
With most electronic ballasts, this isn't what is usually considered over driving. Many ballasts are explicitly rated for nominal 20 watt through nominal 32 watt lamps. The ballast adjusts for the lamp/bulb/tube electrical characteristics.

Over driving usually uses a multiple lamp ballast and runs all the lamp leads to one lamp. A two lamp ballast running one lamp is 2x over driving. A three lamp ballast running one lamp is 3x over driving.

The biggest danger in cutting down a shop light fixture is cutting your self on the sharp metal edge. ;-)
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 10:05 PM
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This is awesome! I've been wanting to setup a 40b at work, just didn't want to buy a new light fixture because....We have tons of 48" shop light fixtures laying around. You just made my day! Going to hit up the $1 per gallon sale for sure now.

"Censorship is telling a man he can't have a steak just because a baby can't chew it" - Mark Twain
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2012, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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haha...glad I could help. On the overdriving issue...honestly I didn't really think about it much, I just figured if anything, it would just reduce the life of the bulb. Since they get replaced yearly anyways I figured it wasn't a big deal. It doesn't seem to be terribly bright, I mean not brighter than I figured 60w of light would be. I haven't put them on top of the tank yet to see how well it lights things up but I think it should work well. If I have to I'll buy another shop light and hack it down too and run 3 bulbs over the tank. I'm trying to avoid high light and I didn't really want to drop $100+ on a new fixture yet so this was my low price solution.


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