Does Etching affect Light? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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Does Etching affect Light?

I have a 55 gallon with a 2x65 watt CF Coralife light fixture over it. The plants just don't seem to grow well inside. It seems they used to grow much better. Right now that look decent but just kind of hang on. My fertilizing regimen has actually improved. I dose EI method with all Greg Watson ferts.

Anyway, I have noticed I have signifcant etching on the glass on top. I know its etching because I have tried cleaning it with vinegar and scraping extensively with a razor blade. No help. It looks like a cloudy mist on the glass. I'm wondering if this is significantly effecting the light that gets through the tank. I have thought about replacing the light bulbs, but it seems the consensus is to let CF bulbs run until they burn out. Any thoughts?

I'm getting tired of my plants just "hanging out". Even the ludwigia just survives without ever really growing.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 08:04 PM
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It could well be the glass top. The etching will have a big effect on the light transmission though the glass.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 09:05 PM
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I went through this about a year ago with my 30g tank. I needed to prove it to myself, so I set my camera at a specific shutter speed and snapped a photo of the tank with and without the hood. The difference was dramatic (because, like your hood, mine was pretty cloudy), and I have gone with open-top tanks ever since. The acrylic protector on my lights gets water residue from time to time, but that wipes off easily with a damp rag.

Ted


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unirdna
I went through this about a year ago with my 30g tank. I needed to prove it to myself, so I set my camera at a specific shutter speed and snapped a photo of the tank with and without the hood. The difference was dramatic (because, like your hood, mine was pretty cloudy), and I have gone with open-top tanks ever since. The acrylic protector on my lights gets water residue from time to time, but that wipes off easily with a damp rag.
How do you deal with jumpers?
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 11:39 PM
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With a broom .

Actually, other than a shrimp flipping out from time to time, I don't have any problems. Granted, I don't keep hatchets or other fish known to be serious jumpers. Even Harlequin Rasboras, SAE's and Featherfin Rainbows have stayed in the tank. I think it helps that I don't have any large fish living in the same tank (that could spook them).

Hope you didn't mind the slight digression, Ramirez.

Ted


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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-25-2006, 11:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unirdna
With a broom .


Like Ted, I dont use a top glass either. I only have AHS 2x55 on my 55. Jumpers is a draw back for sure, but I dont have any jumpers. I also have a canopy, so it would be hard for em to jump out.

If you dont have the worries of fish jumping out, just leave the glass off. Get all the bennies of the light!!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-26-2006, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
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I think my Coralife instructions said not to place it over open water. Will it be a problem, decrease the life span of my light, or possibly ruin it to have it directly over the light?

It does have a plastic cover on the bottom. I'm not sure if that would be enough protection.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-26-2006, 02:55 AM
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I have a coralife fixture on an open top tank. Use the mounting legs and you shouldn't have a problem.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-26-2006, 04:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramirez
I think my Coralife instructions said not to place it over open water. Will it be a problem, decrease the life span of my light, or possibly ruin it to have it directly over the light?

It does have a plastic cover on the bottom. I'm not sure if that would be enough protection.
I use a CL 96w fixture over my 30g tank without a glass top. It sets right on my tank frame, although I needed to place some rubber sticky-feet on the aquarium frame to keep the fixture from slipping around. Double-sided 3M foam mounting squares can also work in a pinch, but they don't look as nice as the black-rubber feet.

Ted


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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-26-2006, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Well, I took the hood glass off and raised my coralife aqualight on the legs it came with. There must be a significant light difference because the fish are all hanging around the bottom of the aquarium now.

I'm concerned about the Killifish jumping out. We'll see what happens.

I tried to buy some new glass at Petsmart, but they didn't have the size I needed. Plus, the glass was $16 a side for a similar size. I don't want to pay $32 for something that my still cause a problem.
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