Help with Lighting in 14g - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 04:54 AM Thread Starter
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Help with Lighting in 14g

Ok so I have the oceanic biocube 14 which was orginally saltwater. I want to convert to freshwater but I modified the lighting as corals required high lights. I currently have 3 bulbs 10k daylight, 50/50 and blue antinic. I plan on replacing the 50/50 and blue antinic bulbs but the only options are 10k or 6,700k. I plan on dosing ferts but do not want to provide co2 what combination would allow me to put in high light plants?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:08 AM
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High light without co2 = tons of algae. You either need to keep lighting low, or provide plenty of ferts and co2

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:12 AM Thread Starter
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Ok so then what setup should I go with I have 3 lights and my options are 6700 or 10k.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:15 AM
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Both of those are fine to grow plants, but the k ratings have nothing to do with light intensity, which is what drives plants growth/potential algae problems. What are the wattages of the bulbs?

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:18 AM Thread Starter
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All are 24 watts.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:22 AM
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If you aren't going to use any source of carbon (co2 or Excel), you shouldn't run more than one of the lights. Even then, you may have trouble. The higher the lighting, the more the plants want to grow. To grow, they need Macro and Micronutrients, as well as CO2. If these needs aren't met, they can't grow properly, but algae can thrive. There is tons of info on here about the relationship between lighting, co2 and ferts. Plenty of people don't use co2 and run low tech tanks, with low lighting and little to no ferts. Take a look around at some of the articles on here and see what type of setup will help you meet your goals

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 05:59 PM
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T5HO lights really aren't suitable for that tank, when you use it as a planted tank. A single bulb will give you high light, but not uniform light. To get uniform light you would need 2 bulbs, but then you would need to raise the lights about 8 inches just to stay in the high light range, and you couldn't do that with the standard Oceanic hood. If you don't want to use CO2, but would be willing to use Excel, you would want medium light at the highest, and even a single T5HO bulb would need to be about 20 inches from the substrate to get medium light, so it would have to be around 4 inches above the top of the tank.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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Ok I currently does my 29g with flourish excel so I would have no problem doing this for the Biocube but I would definitely prefer not to raise the light system from the substrate. Do you think I stay with two 50/50 and one 10k for a medium light effect.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by jjonesrjc View Post
Ok I currently does my 29g with flourish excel so I would have no problem doing this for the Biocube but I would definitely prefer not to raise the light system from the substrate. Do you think I stay with two 50/50 and one 10k for a medium light effect.
I don't think you are understanding what people are saying. Each of those bulbs is 24 watts of T5 HO lighting. Using all three would put you in super high light territory, which would equal an algae farm. Even using just one of those bulbs would put you in the medium to high light range and would result in un-even lighting levels through the tank, and still be too much light for a low tech tank.

You would be best off getting a different lower power lighting system. What are the dimensions of the tank, and maybe you will get some suggestions for other lights.

Mark
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 09:31 PM Thread Starter
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the tank is a uniform all in one unit the fixture is actually built into the tank so no standard over will fit the top let alone a light fixture. the deminsions are L 15.5 x W 16.7 x H 15 with the filter being an over flow to the back without a top the fish could easily jump in. I guess I can remove two of the ballasts from the lid and keep one.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-01-2010, 11:25 PM
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People who are used to reef tanks always have difficulty understanding how little light is useful on a planted tank, compared to a reef tank. For a planted tank, more is definitely not better, unless you wish to breed algae. When you also don't want to use CO2, the amount of light you can use without starting an algae farm is even less.

One option you have is to use a 24 watt AH Supply kit, http://www.ahsupply.com/18_or_24_w_kits.htm which is about the right length for that tank. That single 24 watt bulb, with the AHS reflector should give you high medium light, possibly a bit more than is wise with no CO2, but Excel might be adequate for the carbon supply.

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