How much light?

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by Steve Smith, 31 Mar 2008.

  1. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Hey all. I'm looking at yet another tank setup and I'm doing some pre-setup research. The tank will be 18x12x12, sand substrate, probably TPN+ ferts and probably Excel dosing. Planting will be mainly vallis sp., eleocharis sp. and some stems, such as Bacopa Monnieri and other delicate stems. Maybe even some Hydrocotyl sp.

    Anyway. Based on this rough planting list and the size of the tank, can anyone recommend what lighting level I should be aiming for?
     
  2. nry

    nry Member

    Messages:
    1,239
    Location:
    Cumbria, UK
    I had 24w over my 12" PFK Cube and never had any major algae issues though I was using DIY CO2. Without CO2 I would think somewhere in the region of 2.5-3wpg would be sufficient? Maybe closer to 2wpg to be honest, depends on light spread I feel.
     
  3. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,091
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    2 x 15w T8 or 1 x 36w PC T5 will be fine with good CO2 and other nutrients. You may have to DIY a reflector for the PC T5. An old T8 reflector works fine IME.

    Bear in mind that vallis can be sensitive to Excel, even with regular dosing.

    If you do go for Vallis, try out V. nana, as its thinner leaves are more suited to your tank's dimensions.

    Good luck.
     
  4. nry

    nry Member

    Messages:
    1,239
    Location:
    Cumbria, UK
    The Tropica vallis mini twister certainly hated CarboPlus, so I assume Excel aswell. Started melting within a week or so of adding it regularly.
     
  5. Garuf

    Garuf Member

    Messages:
    4,959
    Location:
    Leeds.
    From experiance, the t8 option would be much better I find it difficult to keep on top of co2 distribution and adequate co2 with 36 watts of pc.
     
  6. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Ah, I had forgotten about the excel/vallis problem. Ok, maybe DIY CO2 then, or something other than Vallis.

    I have a 36w PC over my 27 litre tank "cube", using an arcadia 15w reflector. Works very well :) I might look into some sort of luminaire if I can find one cheap, ie that german company with the small T5 setups.

    I might also consider a double T8 starter, say double 18w? I could make my own luminaire quite easily.
     
  7. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Hmn, on hold now I think. I just organised buying a 47gal tank for my cold water fish. Too many tanks on the go at the moment!
     

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