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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hello there every one

ok, im going to start off a my first fully planted tank and i have chosen a 37 gallon. i want to go for a high amount of light to grow somenice plants but, i dont know what would be the best lighting fixture to buy.

my buget only allows for something in the 140 - 150 range. from what iv found on the internet the most cheapest thing i could find would be 2 "Nova Extreme HO lighting fixtures. They come with 1 daylight 10,000k bulb and a freshwater spectrume bulb. Each bulb 24 watts, these would add up to 96 watts. Not 100% ideal i would emagin but cheapest i could find for 137 dollars.

the only other one i could find would be a current USA Satellite dual compact florescent fixture. this one is around 105 to 140 dollars depending where you buy. comes with 1x65 watt dual daylight lamp and 1x65 watt dual actinic lamp, i pretty sertin that the actinic bulb is not good for growing plants thow. would i be able to replace it ?


does anyone now of any fixtures that would fit my needs for a good price?

thank
 

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IMO, the current USA Satellite is enough to meet the high light requirement you're looking for... Just replace the actinic bulbs... Or, if you want to save more $$$ and have time to spare (waiting), post a thread (or look for current FOR SALE posting) in Swap & Shop section...
 

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Is this a 30L x 12D x 22H tank? If so, you are looking for too much light. Two T5HO bulbs, each with its own highly polished aluminum reflector, will give you around 100 micromols of PAR, which is high light intensity. http://www.catalinaaquarium.com/product_info.php?cPath=71_136&products_id=1413 should give you more than enough light to grow any aquatic plant. It would leave the upper corners with lower light, but from half way down, to the substrate, it should be very uniform lighting. You could suspend this about 4-6 inches above the top of the tank, and get more uniform lighting in the upper parts of the tank, but at a lower, but still high intensity at the substrate.

http://www.catalinaaquarium.com/product_info.php?cPath=71_74&products_id=1168 would give about the same amount of light at a slightly lower price.
 

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100 micromols of PAR, which is high light intensity.
I've been reading/hearing about PAR (micromols) measurement and I only have very little knowledge about it (still on wpg basis - old school :))... What's the simplified meaning for this?

I have a 6x 55w kit from AHS for my 120gal and I built an enclosure that sits on top only... Just want to know, if PAR is to be applied, if I need to hang it or space it higher (w/ legs) and for how many inches... Tank is 60x18x26, substrate between 2-5inches...
 

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What Hoppy said. Forget watt per gallon guidelines. They don't apply with new technologies. T5 ho will provide all you need.

Check swap n shop regularly or the auction sites. Many online retailers have sales this time of year and right after Xmas.

Have fun
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'd get a pressurized CO2 setup before upgrading your lighting, a 37 gal tank is going to be hard to maintain with only DIY CO2 if you upgrade to T5HO.
What are the challenges of having high lighting with a DIY co2 set up?

"BTW i bought the 2x 65 watt 6700k/10000k lights" 128 dollars total :hihi:

but i don't think they aren't t5 lights just High Output
 

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The larger the tank, the more difficult it is to get CO2 distributed equally throughout the tank with just DIY.

You might could make it work using 2 setups, one on each end of the tank. You'll need to be sure to keep the yeast mixes fresh, though.

It will just be a lot of work/constant maintenance to make it work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
It will just be a lot of work/constant maintenance to make it work.
how often would i need to maintain the suger/yeast mix? i would imagine that it would last at least a weeks time. also i bought a co2 ladder but i hear that those are only good for tanks up to 20 gallons, im gess ill try to run sum co2 into the filter intake to see if that can add an extra boost

this being my first planted tank im going to go through a starting test period where i just play with the different variables until i have a pretty good picture on how to run the tank efficiently
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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What filter do you have? If it's an HOB model you're likely to lose most of your CO2 to outgassing running it through the intake. I'd consider getting 2 small powerheads, one for each Co2 setup on each side of the tank.

And my guess will be you'll have to replace the mixes weekly, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
What filter do you have? If it's an HOB model you're likely to lose most of your CO2 to outgassing running it through the intake. I'd consider getting 2 small powerheads, one for each Co2 setup on each side of the tank.

And my guess will be you'll have to replace the mixes weekly, too.

i might get a bio-wheel filter but it must be a HOB, there is no space for anything else.

so what, i just put the co2 striate into the power head, isnt it just going to spit it out in smaller bubbles. or is there going to be diffusion

changing the mix weekly does not seem like a big hasel but, it might get annoying and costly after a wile
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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You don't want a biowheel if you're injecting CO2, that will outgas the CO2 like nothing else.

Having the CO2 chopped into small bubbles by a powerhead will increase the diffusion into your tank water via osmosis (as it increases the overall CO2 surface area exposed to the water), so that's a good thing.

DIY CO2 isn't extremely expensive, but it is definitely maintenance-intensive to keep it going long term on a big tank. CO2 fluctuations tend to favor algae over plants, too.
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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When you're injecting CO2 into your tank, your goal is to increase the CO2 concentration so it will stay in the water where the plants can absorb it. When CO2 hits the surface of your tank it will "outgas" or leave the water for the air. The more surface agitation (splashing) the more outgassing you will get. A biowheel is effective biofiltration b/c it has so much surface area. The exact same feature that makes it good for biological filtration will also make it bad for outgassing injected CO2. This is why most planted tankers prefer canister filters- they are "closed loops" and so any CO2 that runs through them is always kept in the water, not exposed to the air.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
so the more water is exposed and the surface of the water is agitated the more co2 is lost. so how would O2 be introduced into the tank for the fish, isn't that surface agitation what gives the water oxygen.

so all HOB filters will be doing this to the co2 correct. :icon_frow
 

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so the more water is exposed and the surface of the water is agitated the more co2 is lost. so how would O2 be introduced into the tank for the fish, isn't that surface agitation what gives the water oxygen.

so all HOB filters will be doing this to the co2 correct. :icon_frow
It is desirable to have some water surface rippling, usually from water flow just below the surface. This rippling increases the surface area of the water to increase the absorption of oxygen. You don't need the biowheel for that purpose. HOB filters that don't have a high "waterfall" will work ok with CO2, but if the water splashes as it enters the tank, you do lose a lot of CO2.
 

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Fresh Fish Freak
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Surface agitation is the issue much more than water circulation. As long as you've got decent water circulation, O2 levels shouldn't be a problem. Agitation is when the surface tension is actually broken, which biowheels and waterfalls do. You can minimize CO2 loss even using an HOB by keeping the water level up or DIY'ing a way to keep water return from splashing when it re-enters the tank. Some people simply remove the biowheel from their HOB filter.

EDIT- Ninja'd by Hoppy LOL
 
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