The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just had to try my hand and an LED array after being out of the hobby for a short time and just recently jumping back in. I don't have a PAR meter, so my lighting choices were made solely based on other threads from this site that were using the same tank or a tank with similar dimensions.

LEDs:

x4 Cree XP-G Cool White
x1 350 ma moonlight driver
x1 12 in heatsink
x4 Thermal Sticky pads

I saw a similar enclosure on here and that was my inspiration for how to build mine. I did it was parts from Lowes and just a few hours to put it all togeather if that long.





You can almost see I drilled holes in the top of the heatsink, looped cable though and secured it and had that ran though the suspension cables. This way the suspension cables are actually holding up the heatsink, with the enclosure resting on top of it.






You can see in the last picture, I used something called a "closet flange spacer" I found in the plumbing department to make the curve. I just cut the flange in half, drilled holes for the sheet steel and started bolting it down. By using the flange, I got a fairly nice curve that was consistent out of the metal.

After that it was just a mater of figuring out where to put my driver (will be moved externally before long) and how to run my suspension cables.

The hardest part for me was that I wanted that smooth curved look, but didn't know how in the world to accomplish it. That's where that flange became so important in what I wanted to do.

So far I love the light. I do think I messed up by not ordering optics when I got my LED gear, so that's something I'm going to go back and do. I also plan on adding some DC plugs so I can easily move the driver out of the enclosure and make everything easier to take apart if I need too. I've also went back and covered it in a metallic contact paper material. Sure beats polishing the steel to get that shine.

Total cost for this was $76.06. $48 was from rapidled, and the rest went to the enclosure.

I'm not to good at these 'how to' threads, so if anyone has any questions please ask and I'll do my best to answer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks!

Opps, see I'm bad at these things. It's going on a standard 5.5 gallon. I'll eventually get some nicer glass, but this is in our master bathroom so no hurry.

I tried taking a photo with my phone and the stupid flash just kept goobering the photo up with the contact paper being so shiny. I'll have to break out my Canon and grab some later today. Getting ready to make a run to Radioshack for the power plugs, so I'll get new pics of everything when I'm done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice fixture! Is this the same one you posted on another thread where the cord is making the fixture lean on one side when hang?
Yes it sure was. I sorta have that issue resolved now. I moved the driver out from the fixture and a Radioshack trip got me a few DC power plugs. One went right in the middle in the back of the fixture, with the other end wired to the LED's. And the other to the driver. I picked up some two conductor 'intercom' wire (its what they called it..) to just have it look a bit cleaner.

This works like a charm to keep it from leaning to one side to another. However, how it's just a little heavier in the back and wants to tilt back. Much less aggravating than seeing it twist though. In another thread it was recommended to use some art clay to help get the weight right, so I'll be working on that eventually.

IWANNAGOFAST said:
awesome!! looks like my fixture, i hope i was the one that inspired you
Actually yes! Problem was, I had no idea how to bend sheet metal like you had done to get nice angels out of it. I honestly played with the idea of using a 2x4 and hammer for a few seconds lol. I did love the clean lines and the way it all turned out, I just had to come up with something that little ole' me could do with a drill and some glue. :icon_smil
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Good to know! Pushing mine at less than a third what you were running I definitely wont burn up my plants.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sorry, was out of town most of last week and took the entire weekend to catch up the 'honeydo' list. :)

The sides I tried to Gorilla Glue on, however it seems that what ever plastic the flange is made out of just doesn't want to bond well with the glue. It did not want to hold even have several hours of clamps. So on one end I ended up putting a couple of bolts though the side and though the flange, and the other end is still holding so as of right now I've left it alone.

Marimoball, that's really all the photo's I currently have of it (just some slightly different angles. I don't mind taking some more, what in particular are you wanting to look at?


My lenses finally came Saturday. Took so long because I kept forgetting to order them... And I can't believe the difference they make! It's like an entirely new light. I think I might settle with the 40 degree, but I also have the 65 degree as well. I do like that the 40's give more of a tight light and throws shadows more. I tried taking some comparison shots of 'no lens', ' 65 degree' and '40 degree'. Need to get them off my phone and see if I can do something with them.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top