Lighting Layout Query

maj74

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19 Oct 2008
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Advice sought on lighting layout.

New 80 x 40 cm base tank.

Aquaray 600 Grobeam Duo which I am happy provide enough light for the volume of the tank. However I am having a little dilemma regarding layout within the oak hood I am making.

The Grobeams are a fair bit shorter than the length of the tank, so i am wondering if I place them both centrally which is more visually pleasing. This is my preferred choice but I am slightly worried this risks a lack of light at the ends and poor plant growth?

Alternatively, stagger the Grobeams which doesn't look as nice, but spread the light further across the length of the tank.

Scale plan drawing of both options (looking down from above the tank) below to give a clear idea of what I mean.

Any thoughts appreciated.
 

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Jayefc1

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I had a 60cm central on my 80cm tank and the light spread was fine to grow the outer edge plants this was a twinstar light so I think you would be fine with them both central
Cheers
Jay
 

maj74

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I had a 60cm central on my 80cm tank and the light spread was fine to grow the outer edge plants this was a twinstar light so I think you would be fine with them both central
Cheers
Jay

Cool, that's what I like to hear!!

You do say twinstar though, so I'm guessing that when you say 60cm you actually mean a 60cm light.

The Grobeams are labelled as 600, but I assume they mean ideal for a 600mm tank, as the units themselves are only 47cm long.

But I'm looking at the light spread with them lined up with each other, and I am hopeful there's enough spill to the ends to not cause a problem.
 

hypnogogia

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@maj74 , are those plans to scale? I’m both versions, what are the boxes that extend beyond what I assume is the outline of the tank seen from above?
What about rotating the lights through 90 degrees and having them in parallel oriented front to back?
 

maj74

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@maj74 , are those plans to scale? I’m both versions, what are the boxes that extend beyond what I assume is the outline of the tank seen from above?
What about rotating the lights through 90 degrees and having them in parallel oriented front to back?

Yes they are to scale.

The long landscape rectangle is the outline of the tank (80 x 40cm)

The 'extra' rectangle on the back (upper edge of the tank on the diagrams) is the back box that will contain all the pipework. The hood is hinged to this, so that it sits horizontal (of course) in use, and vertically out of the way for cleaning / plant trimming.

I'm making this all out of Oak board. The overall look will be similar to a Fluval Edge, but open topped.

I've attached a drawing of a first draft when I was planning on using Aquray 400 mini-tiles, (before discovering they are discontinued)

In the final design the 'back box' has become wider and the hood will be the same width as the back (if I keep the lights central) but would have to widen a bit if I staggered them, hence the difference in the two plans in my original post.
 

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maj74

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@maj74 , are those plans to scale? I’m both versions, what are the boxes that extend beyond what I assume is the outline of the tank seen from above?
What about rotating the lights through 90 degrees and having them in parallel oriented front to back?


Unfortunately the tank is not wide enough to run the Grobeams parallel front to back.
 

oreo57

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Unfortunately the tank is not wide enough to run the Grobeams parallel front to back.
Suggest putting them tight together and 11cm off the water line..

roughly at 11cm "up" (to face of lens) the 120 degree diodes spread w/ a radius of 18cm

So 18 + 46 + 18 = 82cm
From front to back 18 + 2.5 + 18 = 38.5

Light will cover a 82 x 38.5 area at the water surface... approx..

Adjust to taste.
 

alto

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In drawings, lights are placed quite close to each other (front to back) - I’d space these more equidistant

If you go for an island composition, then a central placement of both lights is “perfect” (but it’s also fairly easy to plan for some lower light plants at these ends)
If you go for a triangular composition (see Filipe Oliveira new 90cm x 60cm x 45cm high scape) then you might end shift the lights (to whichever side)

Staggered will provide some interesting light distribution patterns (look at lights at night in a dark room over a dry tank with hardscape) ;)

I wouldn’t be too happy with the “extended” version of these lights, but this will allow you to use the full length of the tank with more predictable lighting (but expect some front to back effects ... which usually works fine with most planting schemes)
 

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