electrical plug/timer nightmare - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
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electrical plug/timer nightmare

Hi All, between all my lights, heater,C02,extra pumps and a million timers, my wall behind the tank looks like sh*t. Has anybody set up something in an enclosure with smaller type timers to keep it neat and ty-dee? Seeking the electrical gurus out there. ( also want to keep it water proof if possible) Thanks
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 09:54 PM
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spiral wrap

velcro straps

raceway duct


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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Spypet, I do know about that stuff, I was thinking more along the lines of an enclosure with terminal blocks, But I think you would have to cut off the plugs and use spade connectors which would be a pain when you want to unplug something.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:07 PM
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Might be easier to offer ideas if you posted a pic of the situation......


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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry no pics- it's just an idea right now. Currently I have 3 cordstrips mounted to the wall behind the tank, with 6 timers and about 20 plugs used, Half the time I can't tell what plug goes to what, it just looks like a big pile of spagetti.What I would like to do is mount some kind of enclosure to the wall and put everything inside of it but condense everything down somehow....and label things so I know what gos to what.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:18 PM
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What the heck are you plugging in?

I use one timer.

Want to see more...check out my website
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:33 PM
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I just tidied up my electrical "system" a few days ago. I took a board, mounted a small junction box with a GFCI in it, and three short cord power surge limiter 4 outlet strips on it. I plugged the first outlet strip to the GFCI. Plugged two mechanical timers into that outlet strip, and the other two outlet strips to the timers. Then I screwed that board to the back wall of the stand under the tank and plugged the GFCI power cord to the wall outlet. So, now I have about 3 untimed sockets and 4 each sockets on two timers. I have the CO2 timed to come one an hour before the lights, and off an hour before the lights go off. The heater, the filter and the hood fan go to the untimed outlets. The light goes to one timer, and the CO2 solenoid and the Barr Internal venturi reactor goes to the other timer. Maybe that sounds complicated, but it works well, gets the electrical stuff off the bottom shelf and looks much neater, plus every electric cord now has a drip loop. I would never, ever even think of using spade lugs to hook up such a system - not safe, in my opinion.

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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brilliant View Post
What the heck are you plugging in?

I use one timer.
What the heck are you plugging in ? For me:

1 light bank on mechanical timer all day
1 light bank on mechanical timer for noon burst
1 CO2 solenoid on mechanical timer to go on an hour before; off an hour earlier than main lights
1 submersible pump on digital timer for macro ferts
1 submersible pump on digital timer for micro ferts
1 2028 filter
1 hydor in-line heater
1 18 watt UVS

It does begin to look like spaghetti after a while . Although I've got it comparatively neat (compared to what it did look like, ahaha,) under there, I'm trying to think of a better system myself. Most of the problem for me is the design of the timers, along with all the "wall warts" makes about 2/3 of the power strips inaccessible.

Sláinte!
Cindy



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— 2wpg CF lighting; pressurized CO2; 18 watt Turbo-twist UVS; Eheim Pro II 2028; eco-complete; 2 Pearl Gouramis; 7 Harlequin Rasboras; 3 Otocinclus catfish

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— lo-tech; 1.8 wpg DIY CF light; no CO2; Aquaclear mini; Schultz substrate; java fern; java moss; 7 Neon Tetras; 1 flame dwarf gourami
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:43 PM
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Really would help if you listed the equipment being used. It helped me to write everything down and then draw a schematic before building. This is mounted to a board and attached to the stand wall (I unplugged everything to take the pic, details are in sump link below).


Are you are using several timers to run things on a schedule, like several light assemblies, CO2, etc.? Consider having a power strip connected to a timer so the whole strip is energized by the timer and the lights, etc. are plugged into the power strip instead of individual timers. A wire nest can propogate induction, and/or light ballast interference can mess with heater thermostats and create power surges to equipment when deenergized. Ever see an arc when unplugging a wound up extension cord?

There are several pics of tank/stand wiring examples in this forum, I believe most of them are in the DIY section, try doing a search to find them........DC
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 10:44 PM
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This isn't an enclosure like you want but I use this dual timer power strip for two banks of CF's that come on and go off at different times plus it controls my moonlights. (In addition, you can also use this strip with or without a pH controller for your CO2. I'm not using it that way though.) This product will help with some of the clutter. Energy Savers Unlimited | Coralife | ESU Reptile | Birdlife | Pondlife | Deep Ocean | A Worldwide Manufacturer of quality pet products

Then I have a separate power strip w/o a timer for my filter, heater and automatic CO2.
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-06-2006, 11:08 PM
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Holy cow!
I am plugging in

On the timer:
solenoid
light fixture with moon light cord

two filters and a
heater

and a new
Aquamedic dosing pump.

I use that same timer listed in the previous post on my tanks for moonlighting.

Oh yeah add an air pump to my list now

Want to see more...check out my website
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-07-2006, 01:15 AM
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I am using this power bar which can make things look more tidy.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-07-2006, 04:41 AM
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Hey that's pretty nice, distrbd, where did you get it? And how much$$$?

The trouble with most power bars is that a timer take up too much space and the outlets next to it are partly covered, but this bar solves that!

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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-07-2006, 09:01 AM
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-07-2006, 04:08 PM
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OK, I've got 3 power strips in the tank stand, 1 in each section.

4 timers -
2 for 2 sets of lights (only use 2nd set for mid-day),
1 for my CO2 solenoid
1 for my moonlights

1 for UV
3 filter plugs
2 heater plugs
1 for the florescent light in my cabinet stand.

At radio shack, they have 6" heavy Duty extensions so that you can plug timers (and wall warts) into power strips. Also I use the outdoor timers similar to these (after seeing Momotaro's setup).

Walter

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--May the floor under your tank always be dry, and your glass clear!!!

Last edited by tazcrash69; 11-08-2006 at 01:07 PM.
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