The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking for some opinions on which lighting would be better for my 10g setup. I'm on the fence with this and can't seem to come to any decision, so figured I'd throw it out there. I'm currently using dual DIY spiral cf setup, and recently I downgraded from 2 x 26w (52w total), to 2 x 18w (36w) as I figured I may end up with algae or other issues with 5.2 wpg. However, now that I've got all my plants in hand and am about ready to finalize my scape, I'm wondering if I should go back to higher light. The fact that most of the smaller tanks I see that look good use pretty intense lighting makes me wonder if algae would be better prevented by making sure the plants have enough lighting to grow properly and consume any excess nutrients. As for other details, running 2 DIY 2 liters co2 into the tank, with a DIY co2 reactor which seems to be EXTREMELY efficient (it currently has my tank looking like a very large glass of soda water.) Fert dosing via EI method. Plants include:

Rotala Vietnam
Rotala Wallichii
Rotala sp. Green
Blyxa Japonica
Riccia
Flame Moss
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Do your Spiral CF's have reflectors? If so what kind?

the WPG doesn't really apply to < 20G tanks.

I think I would go with the 52W, being that the lights are spiral CFs, and the reflectors probably aren't very good.




The picture of the tank above is an old one, with the 26w bulbs installed. Unfortunately, the size of the 26w bulbs means they stick out of the reflector slightly, while the 18w fit entirely inside the reflectors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,012 Posts
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/lighting/91251-par-data-spiral-power-saver-bulbs.html should have the answer for you. With that setup as shown I would use the 26 watt bulbs, with the bulbs about 4 inches above the tank, for moderate lighting. Raise them higher to get lower lighting or lower them to get high lighting. If you use the 18 watt bulbs you need to lower the lights about 3 inches to get the same light as with the 26 watt bulbs. So if you want moderate light, using the 18 watt bulbs, with the lights right at the top of the tank would work. But, getting higher light wouldn't work with those bulbs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Hoppy, very very helpful, thanks for that. Will go back to the 26w bulbs. Probably not relevant, but the glass top shown in the picture I posted is actually not used on the tank while the lights are on.

EDIT: I'm trying to figure out why, even with the 36w total, I already have algae issues. I just tested nitrate today, and even with dosing via EI, I had zero nitrate (prior to today's dosing.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,012 Posts
Hoppy, very very helpful, thanks for that. Will go back to the 26w bulbs. Probably not relevant, but the glass top shown in the picture I posted is actually not used on the tank while the lights are on.

EDIT: I'm trying to figure out why, even with the 36w total, I already have algae issues. I just tested nitrate today, and even with dosing via EI, I had zero nitrate (prior to today's dosing.)
Algae issues are a major reason I am switching to ripariums. I think in the end the reason for algae issues is because you have algae issues. There just isn't any one thing that is the problem, it always seems to be a combination of lots of things, including really bad luck. But, of course, the more light you have the faster and better the algae can grow. And, not having consistent CO2 from day to day is another big problem when you try to avoid algae. And, not doing regular weekly big water changes can make it harder to avoid algae. And, not keeping all of the dead or dying plant matter out of the tank is another. And, not having enough plant mass, but not so much that it blocks water flow in the tank, is another.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Algae issues are a major reason I am switching to ripariums. I think in the end the reason for algae issues is because you have algae issues. There just isn't any one thing that is the problem, it always seems to be a combination of lots of things, including really bad luck. But, of course, the more light you have the faster and better the algae can grow. And, not having consistent CO2 from day to day is another big problem when you try to avoid algae. And, not doing regular weekly big water changes can make it harder to avoid algae. And, not keeping all of the dead or dying plant matter out of the tank is another. And, not having enough plant mass, but not so much that it blocks water flow in the tank, is another.
I've done what I can to avoid some/most of these issues, the only one that could be a factor is inconsistent co2, although I'm very careful about keeping an eye on my bubble counter and swapping out one of the two bottles whenever I see it start to slow down. As far as water changes, due to my indecisiveness and constant rescapes, I've done at least 50% water changes weekly. I also do my best to remove any dying/dead bits of plants whenever I spot em.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
Can you show me how you did your DIY fixture. I'm trying to get more watts for my tank so I can get med-high lighted plants but I am having a lot of trouble...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Can you show me how you did your DIY fixture. I'm trying to get more watts for my tank so I can get med-high lighted plants but I am having a lot of trouble...
I'm afraid I can't be of too much help, I got lucky in that the tank is right below a shelf at work, so as you can (kinda) see in the photos above, the lights are clamped on to the shelf.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,012 Posts
You could always clamp the two lights to a piece of wood, then hang that above the tank as a pendant light. There are much neater ways to do that, but not much more simple.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top