52 watts over 10 gallons, woohoo!

neverendingninja
  • #1
The "Alternate Lighting" thread inspired me to do a retrofit on my hood. I went to walmart and spent $3.27x2 on sockets, $6.97 on two 26w spiral CFs, and $2.87 on some cord stock.

Came home, and a piece of 1x6 cut into mounts, a few wire nuts, a little head scratching and an hour and a half later, and I'm all done. Its ridiculously bright! I'm going to have to probably do 1.5x dose on excel until I scratch up the dough for a co2 system, which I will buy after I get 60lbs of eco complete, which I will buy after I get two new 65w CF bulbs, which I will get after I buy my son's Christmas... :|(side note: money sucks!)

pictures tomorrow, its bed time!
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #2
score man! I have 50 watts over my 10 gallon aswell. plants are doing amaing! Are you going to run C02?
 
neverendingninja
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
I'd like to, but with Christmas coming up, bills, plus needing new lights and substrate for the 55gal, I don't think I'm going to be able to get a co2 system anytime soon. My father-in-law has pounds upon pounds of wet and dry yeast for his restaurant, so I'm going to snag a bit of that and do my own co2 system. He also knows exactly how to make the yeast "proof" as much as possible. I think it will all work out pretty good. Just got to get some parts.
 
fungusonmytoe
  • #4
wow great job! how exactly did you do your own retro fit? i'm turning my 55gal long into a low light planted and its just not in my budget to buy a 96w retrofitting set from ahsupply.
 
neverendingninja
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
DISCLAIMER: I WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGES INCURRED FROM FOLLOWING THIS WALK THROUGH. IT IS FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY, AND YOU TAKE ANY AND ALL RESPONSIBILITY UPON YOURSELF IF YOU ATTEMPT THIS. BE WARNED, IT COULD BE A POTENTIAL FIRE HAZARD, ESPECIALLY WHEN PLACING IT ABOVE WATER.

Well, here it goes.

You're going to need:

A standard fluorescent housing
Sockets(I used the outdoor ones from Wal-Mart, small electrical dept., $3.27 ea)
Some cord stock(again, small electrical dept., lamp cord, $2.87)
Spiral CFL(you guessed it, Wal-Mart...$6.97 for two 26w 6500k)

First off, you're going want to check and see what size CFL will fit in your housing. I was able to cram two 26w in my housing from a 10gal.

Next, gut everything except for the switch out of your old housing. You'll be left with a positive and a negative wire. Wire the positive to the switch...this is because you want to interrupt the flow of the positive line, not the negative. Safer this way.

Next, you're going to have to make mounts out of 1 inch thick wood. Cut it to fit flush inside your housing. Next, cut a hole so that your light socket will fit inside, snug enough so it won't come out on its own.

Now, fit the socket in, and secure the mounts using wood screws.Wire the socket up to the housing's switch and neg. wire. Install the lights, and you should be good to go. You need to make sure that your wires are tucked away so they don't touch the bulbs. This could potentially cause too much heat and melt the wires, which would be bad.

There are certain limitations to the wiring which I can not go into, because I am not an electrician. I do know, however, that putting too many lights in series could potential overload your wiring, becoming a fire hazard.

SEE DISCLAIMER AT TOP OF POST
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #6
do you have any pictures of your hood?
 
neverendingninja
  • Thread Starter
  • #7

148.jpg

149.jpg

150.jpg

Excuse the diatoms. My otos in this tank aren't do a very good job.

I'm starting to get some algae on that fake driftwood too. Guess I need to buy a ton of snails, some to eat the algae and some to be eaten by the dwarf puffers
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #8
that looks a lot like mine but my cf fit with my hood.
 
Jimold
  • #9
If this works, you might be onto a great idea that would help me a lot. I have a 44 gallon hexagon tank that I want to set back up, but I wasn't sure how to get enough wattage on a small hex surface top area. This could be the very answer I was looking for.
 
Tom
  • #10
that looks a lot like mine but my cf fit with my hood.

Hey, I never thought of using that for my 10 and 5 gallons. It would bring a lot more light into the tank and would look a lot nicer.
Tom
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #11
if you also add tinfoil to the hood you will have a lot more light reflected back into the tank and less wattage wated
 
neverendingninja
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
Incorrect, sir. Tinfoil has been shown to actually refract light more than it reflects. This means that it is actually scattering the light away from the tank, instead of back in to the tank. The only material other than rigid polished aluminum I could think of using would be mylar, but I'm afraid it may have the same affect as tinfoil in this scenario.

Bright white paint is actually more reflective than tinfoil.
 
Jimold
  • #13
Incorrect, sir. Tinfoil has been shown to actually refract light more than it reflects. This means that it is actually scattering the light away from the tank, instead of back in to the tank. The only material other than rigid polished aluminum I could think of using would be mylar, but I'm afraid it may have the same affect as tinfoil in this scenario.

Bright white paint is actually more reflective than tinfoil.

I've heard the same thing about tinfoil, something about it not being flat, but sort of crinkly that screws it up as a good reflector. But if I remember right, painting the inside of the light fixture bright white is almost as good at redirectng the light back as alumimum, and a lot easier.
 
NeoDevin
  • #14
Seems to me if you squeezed things in there, you might even be able to get a third bulb in there. 78 Watts on 10 gallons anyone?
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #15
lol your fish would need sunglasses
 
Jimold
  • #16
actually, at that point I think the PLANTS would need sun glasses.

serously, I think you'd fry them with that much light.
 
Wolfgang8810
  • #17
lol that wouldbee the equivlent of 300 watts of incadecant light
 
Tom
  • #18
actually, at that point I think the PLANTS would need sun glasses.

serously, I think you'd fry them with that much light.

And then lead to an underwater fire. lol

That would be the first recorded case of a fish getting a sun burn underwater. lol
Tom
 
Isabella
  • #19
Ninja, love your retrofit If I add CO2 to my tank, I might increase my lighting a little too. Maybe you'd make one retrofit for me too? LOL
 
neverendingninja
  • Thread Starter
  • #20
If you didn't live several thousand miles away, sure! But, I really do think I could cram another bulb in the middle. My main concern would be whether the wiring could handle the load or not. At that point, I would definitely need to have pressurized co2.... and hire someone to do a lot of pruning.
 
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