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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm getting ready to build a canopy for my 29g tank and can't decide what lighting to use. its a fish only tank. I'd like to see some pictures of your tanks, specifically how the light looks. What I mean is I'd like to see pictures and lighting specs so I can compare them and figure out what bulbs to use. I'm pretty sure I'm going to go with 2 T5 bulb setup but what bulbs? I want lights that will make color of the fish really "pop". I see so many people mix different bulbs together. Any suggestions? please include pictures. Thanks! :D
 

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Current USA makes some good bulbs. They have the Slimpaq T5 or the Slimpaq T5 HO. The regular T5 comes in 10,000k or 460nm actinic only while the T5 HO also comes in 6700k. 6700K gives a more daylight look and appeals to the human eye better but that doesn't mean it will make your specific fish pop more.

I don't have pictures of my light setups but Current USA used to be Custom SeaLife and they make some great stuff.

Lights are really all personal preference and how much you can afford to spend on them. I have seen people spend $1,800 on just a ballast not including the bulbs and fixtures. But that was for a reef tank running 400w metal halides.

If you are want to run a 10,000k bulb then I say check out the Current USA T5 retrofit Current USA T5 retrofit they are basically plug-n-play and you can link up to 10 of them on 1 power cord. They come in 18", 24", 36", and 48" size and do also offer an 18" 9Watt 6700k version but it is not on that website I linked you to.

But that's only if you want to buy prefabricated lights. If you want to buy a ballast and end caps then you can just buy their bulbs.

Hope that gives you so food for thought. :thumb: :fish:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks citizen. So if I wanted to buy everything separate, what exactly do I need to buy? I know nothing about lighting or anything electrical. Thank you very much. If you could, explain it in very simple terms(i'm not dumb :lol: , just no knowledge whatsoever in this department) Thanks again!
 

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Let me just say that I am no expert on lighting and it isn't cheap to build your own lighting.

People with bigger tanks (48" and bigger) can do it on the cheap by going to home depot and buying the fluorescent strip lights but those are either T8 or T12. I haven't seen a T5 fixture at home depot but I really haven't looked.

The parts that you would need would in no particular order:

Ballast - which ballast you need depends on the wattage of bulb you want to use. You add up the wattage from all the bulbs and find a ballast that can support it.

End caps - these are the pieces that the wires from the ballast is connect to and the bulb attaches to.

Bulbs - this is completely up to you. the wattage, the kelvin, the length.

Power cord - depending on which ballast you choose you might need a power cord. You can use a 3 prong extension cord cut down to the size you need.

Reflector - this really isn't needed as you can paint the inside of the canopy gloss white and that will act as the reflector.

Then you would simply wire it all together.

If I was to build my own I would use an IceCap ballast either the 660 or the 430 and that would depend on how much wattage. I would use IceCap end caps and mounts. And I would use a computer power cord as I have a whole bunch of them laying around. I wouldn't use a reflector.

With those IceCap ballasts you can run your choice of Very High Output, High Output, Normal Output, and Power Compact lighting. If you ever wanted to change your lighting down the road you could. You would just need different end caps.

There is nothing wrong with those retrofits I linked you to you simply screw them on to your canopy and plug in the power cord and viola! you have light. 10,000K is directed more toward reef aquariums but people do use them on freshwater. I have even seen people say they use actinic bulbs on their freshwater tanks.

Hopefully other people will chime in and give you their input.
 

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Heres a couple of quick pics of my lights. I have 2 60" T5 lights, 1 6000k and 1 11000k. I am running them off of an IceCap 660 bassast which overdrives the bulbs from 80w each to around 100w each.


I would suggest getting a retrofit kit which includes everything you need except mounting screws. Here is a link to retrofit kits.
http://www.reefgeek.com/lighting/T5_Flu ... ofit_Kits/
You can find a lot of info on T5 lights at reefcentral.com, they have a thread that is well of 50 pages on T5 kits and bulbs.
 

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Go to my website and check out the lighting on my 450g. I've since switched it to cichlids but still have the same lighting.

Anyway, I've got pictures of Current USA 10k, 420nn and 460nn in various combinations on there...and by themselves.
 

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Best pic i have of it.


4' Shop lite from Homedepot supposed to be good for outdoor use. Has 2 40w T12's 6100k Cost about 25 bux all together w/ some new acrylic tops for hoods
 

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justshoe said:
Best pic i have of it.


4' Shop lite from Homedepot supposed to be good for outdoor use. Has 2 40w T12's 6100k Cost about 25 bux all together w/ some new acrylic tops for hoods
You really didn't read the thread completely did you? He has a 29 gallon tank so telling him that you use a 4' strip light is kind of pointless.
 

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IrkedCitizen said:
justshoe said:
Best pic i have of it.


4' Shop lite from Homedepot supposed to be good for outdoor use. Has 2 40w T12's 6100k Cost about 25 bux all together w/ some new acrylic tops for hoods
You really didn't read the thread completely did you? He has a 29 gallon tank so telling him that you use a 4' strip light is kind of pointless.
you must not have read the whole thread, or you would have seen the first pic is of a 60 inch light....that's 5 feet.
 

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Fishbguy said:
IrkedCitizen said:
justshoe said:
Best pic i have of it.


4' Shop lite from Homedepot supposed to be good for outdoor use. Has 2 40w T12's 6100k Cost about 25 bux all together w/ some new acrylic tops for hoods
You really didn't read the thread completely did you? He has a 29 gallon tank so telling him that you use a 4' strip light is kind of pointless.
you must not have read the whole thread, or you would have seen the first pic is of a 60 inch light....that's 5 feet.
The person who made this thread has a 29 gallon tank that they are looking for lighting ideas for
his canopy. I highly doubt their 29 gallon tank is 60" let alone 48". The guy who posted the first picture built his lights using an IceCap 660 ballast with IceCap end caps. Therefore it can be made to fit any size aquarium. You are only limited to the length of the bulb.

So I am now going to throw it back in your face as well. YOU must not have read the entire thread either.
 

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Good lord no need to attack me. I was simply giving him an example of whats possible. So dont freak out and be rude. He also and i directly quote "I see so many people mix different bulbs together. Any suggestions? please include pictures. Thanks! " I was just giving him an example of what 2 t12 40w 6100k bulbs look like. and also they do have 24" and less fixtures with ballast's at home depot for t8's and i believe t5's so back off your high horse im just trying to help the guy out.
 

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Time to grow up kids....if you dont have positive input there is no need to post here.

Tekjunky
 
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