LED nano 2.5 (1 week update pics) - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-13-2009, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
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LED nano 2.5 (1 week update pics)

Aqueon 2.5 gallon tank
(3) Current-USA Powerbrite 10k LED lights
Hagen Elite Mini internal filter 58 GPH
Marineland Shatterproof 10w heater
3M ColorQuartz T-grade black sand
Azoo CO2 regulator/solenoid and 5lb CO2 cylinder

This project started as a free tank that I was going to setup for cheap. I picked up the tank and glass top on store credit. I liked the silicone work of the Aqueon tank compared to the Topfin tanks. I had the Hagen Elite Mini sitting around because it used to be my CO2 diffusion method in my 40g. Everything was free so far, great! Too good to be true..

For light I wanted something really low profile. I didn't want a lamp, the bedside table this resides on is too small for that to be practical. I didn't really want power compacts because of the potential heat they could transfer to such a small tank. The logical thing was LEDs. I looked at some DIY stuff, but for such a small tank size I thought an off the shelf solution would be best. I decided on the Powerbrites, 4x1w LEDs sounded promising. And just incase they were I decided to get three of them. Oops #1. And as long as I was ordering online I picked up the mini Marineland heater. Hopefully it's good, it was a preset thermostate of 78 degrees and is rated for 3 gallons. Should be nice in a 2.5 gallon tank. I especially liked it for it's small form factor, way smaller than the stealth heaters.

Then I was listing something for sale on Craigslist and happened upon a CO2 setup. It was the Azoo setup from Dr Foster's along with a 5lb tank for $130. I talked it down to $80 and at that price it was impossible to pass up, especially when the CO2 cylinder was a newer aluminum tank to boot. The tubing is garbage, and the glass diffuser was damaged, oh well. And this was Oops #2 for the "free" tank. I guess if I need to feel better about the money spent I can just go to Craigthor's thread and look at all the ADA stuff. I look like a thrifty bum in comparison!

The goal here is really to test spin the LEDs and see their usefulness to planted tanks. That's why I got 3 so I can play with various light levels, along with CO2, and report back with the findings.

For now I think I'm going to create a little background forest of bolbitis fern, with mounds of moss infront, and a little twisted piece of manzanita that looks like a fallen tree. I'll get pics up once the remaining equipment arrives.


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Last edited by prototyp3; 03-14-2009 at 09:20 PM.
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post #2 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-13-2009, 08:14 PM
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Looks like a plan

Nice scores on the equipment! I can't wait to see your tank evolve.
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post #3 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-13-2009, 08:38 PM
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Hey!

I would love to know how those LEDs work out. What are the dimensions of those LEDs?

Now I demand pics!

Craig

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"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #4 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-13-2009, 11:35 PM
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sounds pretty nice. I want a 2.5g betta tank at some point and would like to see how this goes.
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post #5 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 03:44 PM Thread Starter
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Looks like a plan

Nice scores on the equipment! I can't wait to see your tank evolve.
I need to stop looking at Craigslist. If I see a great deal I ignore the fact that I don't necessarily need it. But being a CO2 system, it can get used on any tank so I thought I'd better get it.

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Hey!

I would love to know how those LEDs work out. What are the dimensions of those LEDs?

Now I demand pics!

Craig
You know you're an ADA junkie, we can't all ignore it!

The lights should arrive this afternoon, I'll get pictures up as soon as they do.
Regarding the dimensions, they're 12.25" long, 1.6" wide, 0.75" tall. Should be a perfect fit on the 2.5 gallon.

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Originally Posted by julian_photo View Post
sounds pretty nice. I want a 2.5g betta tank at some point and would like to see how this goes.
My friend has a betta in his 20L and also wants to home him in a 2.5 gallon after checking it out. Should be interesting to see how much scaping one can easily get done with only 6" of depth. I'm not quite sure what I'll stock mine with. It will probably just be plants in the beginning.

Here's the equipment so far.




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post #6 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 03:47 PM
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nice. if those LED's work long term I could sneak them into the ADA fixture. probably 4-5 of them

Craig

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"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #7 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
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Just got them in, WOW... These things can really throw out some light. It created a nice tight spotlight on the opposite wall of the room when aimed that way. A combination of the LED itself and the conical reflectors. You can see the tight spread in the picture with one LED strip ontop, the light doesn't fully reach the front or back glass. Two strips seems to give the perfect spread for a 2.5 gallon tank. I haven't even tried a 3rd...

Each strip comes with a set of clips that allow you to attach these to the underside of a canopy, as well as adhesive rubber feet to stand them off the top glass. (haven't installed mine yet) I'll get better pictures of everything when I get some more time.

I'd be willing to bet these will grow anything I put under there..




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post #8 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 10:28 PM
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I'm very interested in this. Will keep an eye on the thread- want to see how well LED actually works!

Thanks for trying it, and posting your results
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post #9 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 10:29 PM
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Were did you get those?
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post #10 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 10:29 PM
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i thoguht you got 3?
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post #11 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-16-2009, 11:02 PM
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Awesome. I too am interested in where you got them

-Chris

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post #12 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-17-2009, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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I'm very interested in this. Will keep an eye on the thread- want to see how well LED actually works!

Thanks for trying it, and posting your results
You're welcome. I found it strange that there wasn't anyone trying (and posting results from) this light over a nano. Only thing I turned up was a nano reef. Time to change that!

I did order 3, one was missing from the order. I'm currently trying to get that resolved with the retailer. You can find them on any of the main online aquarium places like Dr Foster's, Big Al's, etc.

Here's a better picture of the fixture itself. There is one opening on each end of the fixture where the cords plugin. Power cord goes in one end, and then you can connect additional fixtures through the other end with the link cord. They provide rubber plugs to cap those openings if not being used. You can also see the rubber stand off legs for sitting it on the glass top. There is also clips that grip into those grooves of the fixture for mounting it against the top of a canopy. Overall pretty nice design. The power switch is in an awkward location but a timer negates that anyways.

I also painted the tank, blacking out the back glass and one of the sides. I went with two sides because it's mainly viewed from a 3/4 view on the bed. It's almost placed in a corner, so you'll never view it from the blacked out end. With the equipment being black it just gives me more space to arrange and hide it all.

Speaking of equipment, does anyone use this 10w Marineland heater??? I love the size, less than 6 inches long, about a half inch thick, and one inch wide. Sure it's preset to 78 degrees, but that's where I'd want it anyways. Much smaller than the Stealth heater I have in my 8g Finnex. I hope there isn't a functional reason it's not widely used...
Sure it's got red text but the smaller size gives more room to hide it behind hardscape elements or plants.




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post #13 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-17-2009, 09:13 PM
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I use that heater in my Mini-S. Good little heater. It doesn't heat the water as quickly as I'd like, but the trade-off for it's small form factor makes it well worth it to me.
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post #14 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-17-2009, 09:13 PM
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I have one of those heaters in my 3.5 gallon tank. My laser thermometer tells me the water is a cool 69 degrees right now. The tank is slightly bigger than it's rated for, and is near a drafty window, but still...

I just haven't found another heater that will easily fit in the tank yet.
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post #15 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-17-2009, 09:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback on the heater.

Gweneth, what is the room temperature that the tank is sitting in? 69 sounds really cool.

Ugly Genius, what is it holding the temp of your 3.5g tank at? Are you saying it's slow to react to the daily fluctuations in temp?


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