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4ft X 1ft X 1.5ft light recommendation

Davey

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Joined
26 Feb 2021
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12
Location
Uk
Dear all,

This is my first post, although I have lurked on this forum many times for helpful advice and inspiration.

I have a tank in my classroom and the lighting unit has stopped working. It was a Hagen t5 unit which I had retrofitted onto an old metal hood, however, the shape of the hood meant that I couldn't direct the light towards the back of the tank.

I would love to replace the hood with one with adequate integrated lighting but my searches have been unsuccessful. I have since began to look for a light which sits on the top side-edges of the tank and plan cover the top with either perspex or glass.

I would like to grow more demanding plants with the kids and would prefer to buy something which will enable this. I am finding it difficult to find such a product.

All pond Sol do a unit, although it only has 2 t5 bulbs and I want to go for a 4 tube unit. I have been in-touch with iquatics, however they don't produce the model which stands on the glass anymore, their units sit below the edge of the glass and the tank bracing will be in the way of this.

Could someone please recommend a suitable product?

The tank dimensions are 4ft X 1ft (w) X 1.5ft (h)

Many thanks
Davey
 

oreo57

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Joined
19 Jun 2020
Messages
179
Location
USA
My "go to" answer would be to stick a 4' Beamswork on it and call it a day.
Amazon product

Unfortunately not available atm.
Maybe due to Chinese New Year.

48" DA 120 120x - 5200 lumen 86x 10000K, 16x Actinic, 9x Red, 9x Green
48" DA 120: 47.75 x 5.00 x 1.00

There is a version w/ all 6500k leds as well.
Make sure you have the 5 row model.

Want high light.. Use 2
2 are roughly equivalent to 4 T5 tubes.

Why do you want 4 t5 tubes?
+100 watts over a 40 long is a bit challenging.
Not terribly challenging but not low tech really.
 

Davey

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26 Feb 2021
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Uk
Hi @oreo57
thanks for taking the time to reply and making those suggestions.
You've actually made me consider getting led's or 2 t5's as opposed to 4.

The reason I have been wanting 4 is that the previous Hagen unit had 2 tubes, and some of my plants were getting leggy, although they were pearling with CO2. This may have been down to the placement of bulbs within the metal hood though, as I couldn't fit one to provide good coverage at the back of the tank.

I've been looking at chihiros Lights since my post last night. I'm still under the impression I can get more bang for my bucks with t5. There's a second hand 4tube unit available for under 80 which is tempting me.

Do you think medium - demanding plants can be grown using one of these led strips or 2 t5 tubes? The tank is a foot and a half deep.
 
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alto

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24 Dec 2014
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6,246
There's a second hand 4tube unit available for under 80 which is tempting me.
This should be fine but check that the lamps can be run in pairs - a well designed unit will have these staggered, eg tubes 1&3, tubes 2&4; this was you can mostly run 2 tubes and only turn on 4 for a “midday burst”
Use of HO or VHO T5s and optional reflectors would provide loads of light
If you go used, make sure the ballast is in good condition (you might check that your current unit doesn’t just need a ballast replacement, though depending on age (& brand) it may only run normal output T5s and at 45cm height, you may prefer HOT5)

Having said that, once you get LED they are very convenient, most can be programmed, dimmed etc

As this is a school tank you might send off letters (with students participation including tank photos, goals etc) to local shops and brands etc requesting (hinting at) donations ;)

Bump your post number to 25 for access to the Swap forum here
 
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Gloucestershire
Tropica recommend 20 - 40 lumens per litre for medium difficulty plants.
Although this is only a rough idea because with plants you really should be dealing with PAR (Photosynthetically Active Radiation).
Your tank is 122cm x 30cm x 45cm giving a volume of 164.7 L so with the substrate lets say 150 L.

Medium difficulty plants need say 30 Lumens/L. So, you will need lighting with a total of 4,500 Lumens.

On average T5 Fluorescent tubes give out about 70 lumens per watt. So you will need a total of 65w. 2 x 33w or 4 x 16w.

Florescent tubes are cheaper, but it is very difficult to dim them, so when they are turned on and do that flashy thing it stresses the fish.

With all this maths involved, I feel a lesson plan in the making.

There is a lot of useful information on ukaps sponsor "Tropica" Make your aquarium a success - Tropica Aquarium Plants

Hope this helps
 

Davey

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@alto @The grumpy one thanks for the info! I've had a good read of the tropica success guide. Seems as though 2 54w tubes will be a solid way to go, 4 will probably be excessive, although there is that cheaper second hand unit I was looking at which does have the option to switch 2 off.

I'm deciding not to go with the LEDs as the lumen count will be lower and the price will probably be greater (not in stock just yet).

Looking back, the tank has been an excellent educational and mindfulness tool. Has helped calm lads down and has been used to teach all sorts; fermentation, photosynthesis, ecosystems, nitrogen cycle and some water chemistry. I'm sure we can weave in light temperatures, par, wattage and lumen rating at some point (after I read up on it). I'm looking forward to getting it back in action ASAP.

Thank you!
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
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6,246
price will probably be greater
Yes and no, most fluorescents units don’t include bulbs (or include bulbs I don’t like), and there will be some replacement costs associated, also higher electrical costs (and the eco footprint of that choice - also shipping costs etc of the larger heavier unit and replacement tubes over time)
LED has decidedly taken over locally - actually a major reason why I switched over to LED when I was shopping for a new lighting unit (I’d had two fluorescent units fail over couple months) and none of the lfs stocked any T5s (nor did any other local shops, there were various T8s, a few T5s at hardware shops and T4s at the grow-op shops)
Note that you can buy either 50000 hour or 30000 hour LEDs (no idea if the latter will actually fail sooner or if the supplier just didn’t want to list 50000)
Also if you look at say, a 0.3watt LED there are various manufacturers and also low, medium or high intensity options (for 45cm tank height I’d suggest high intensity, but also look for higher watt rated LEDs)

If you’ve time, you can likely find a couple old TMC AquaRay Ultima etc units with Osram Olson & CREE LEDs - look for the square “tiles” - these LED units got excellent ratings at the time for plant growth and their focus on PUR vs PAR lighting (while many will insist that ANY light spectrum is useful and plants are adaptable, PUR remains a sound & efficient concept)

You might try posting Wanted ads for these lights (even contact TMC and see if they any older units to donate to an excellent school program ;) )
 
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oreo57

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19 Jun 2020
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179
Location
USA
@alto @The grumpy one thanks for the info! I've had a good read of the tropica success guide. Seems as though 2 54w tubes will be a solid way to go, 4 will probably be excessive, although there is that cheaper second hand unit I was looking at which does have the option to switch 2 off.

I'm deciding not to go with the LEDs as the lumen count will be lower and the price will probably be greater (not in stock just yet).

Looking back, the tank has been an excellent educational and mindfulness tool. Has helped calm lads down and has been used to teach all sorts; fermentation, photosynthesis, ecosystems, nitrogen cycle and some water chemistry. I'm sure we can weave in light temperatures, par, wattage and lumen rating at some point (after I read up on it). I'm looking forward to getting it back in action ASAP.

Thank you!
Lumens isn't really indicative of strength.
A 5000 lumen tube w/ poor reflectors isn't near as good as 5000 lumens with geeat reflectors.
Same with leds. The 120 degree delivery has an edge over the 360 plus reflector delivery.
Matter of fact leds can have delivery efficiency of 1 to 2x more than tubes. Since they are related
same with wattage.
Cist us another matter..
Using lux us a minimum for a more exact comparison really.
T5 example if "reflector efficiency" really.
Eg catalina vs fishneed magenta vs light blue

PARvsDistT5VariousLights.jpg
 
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