Inexpensive full spectrum light source needed

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by millca, Jul 10, 2014.

  1. millcaValued MemberMember

    poeticinjustices and any other ranchu lovers,

    What type of lights are you using with your ranchus?

    Eastcoastranchu suggests a full spectrum light rated at 6600-6700K.

    I'm wanting the least expensive option out there as the baby ranchus I'll be receiving next week will be held in temporary tubs for now.

    Do they make full-spectrum regular screw-in type light bulbs with full spectrum and that rating? I can find bulbs that say full spectrum but they aren't necessarily giving me their rating (here's an example:  )

    I found this one on ebay but I'm hoping for an even less expensive option:

  2. HappyKnitterValued MemberMember

    They sale light bulbs at HomeDepot and at Lowes. I get them also for my craft lamps.
  3. DolfanFishlore VIPMember

    Full spectrum is a bit misleading. What you want is something in that color temperature range near 6500k. This is best for aquatic plants and is similar to real sunlight. Most bulbs have a "K" rating on them. Check out home depot, lowes, walmart, etc. They will all have spiral CFL bulbs in the 6500k range. Sometimes these are called "daylight" or "natural light".

    As for super cheap lighting, about the cheapest way to go is to buy the clip on metal dome reflectors, sometimes called "shop lights" and then add in a few of the above mentioned screw in CFL bulbs.

    The LED fixture you linked from ebay would be good too, as it has many LED's in the 6500k range, some blue and red which are also good, and only a few green (which aren't that good for plants). $42 and free shipping, it doesn't get much cheaper than that, and this LED light won't look at "ghetto" as the clip on shop lights. Plus it's an LED, you will save money in the long run on electricity, and they don't produce as much heat.

    Also, I just realized you never really mentioned plants. If you don't plan on keeping any live plants, the light really doesn't matter, it's more about what pleases your eye at that point. Some like a warmer/redder hued light tone, and some like a more cool/bluer hued light tone. Personally, if it were up to me, I would go with that LED you linked, or perhaps an LED made by Beamsworks (also pretty cheap), or even Finnex (a bit more pricey but well worth it, solid construction, switch moisture covers, aluminum casing, just really good lights). This way you can add plants later even if you don't want to go that route right now.
  4. millcaValued MemberMember

    Thanks for the replies so far. Great info, Dolfan.

    I won't be needing the lights for plants but rather to bring out the colors in the ranchus eventually.

    You are right about the shop lights being a tad bit too "ghetto" especially for my kitchen so it looks like the ebay LED is the way to go. I'll check out the other two brands as well. I have a Beamworks LED for my 29G but they didn't list the Kelvin rating.
  5. DolfanFishlore VIPMember

    The LED that you linked is very cheap so a pretty good deal, and if you wanted to add plants later on, you would be ready to go as that light would be ideal for plants as well.

    Don't be scared to check out some live plants too, they are very helpful for just about any tank, especially one with goldfish that produce a lot of waste. I'm sure poeticinjustices can further elaborate on the helpfulness of keeping plants with ranchus. There are some super easy plants to keep with them like hornwort and java fern that won't get eaten. And you could even put some ones meant to get eaten like duckweed, anacharis, and sometimes frogbit.
  6. millcaValued MemberMember

    Thanks Dolfan!

    I just found this Finnex light. Do you think it would work just fine as well?

    I'm really liking the price, of course, shipping might bring it above the other.

    Once my ranchus are 3-4" I'll be moving them into my 55G tank that does have live plants. But while they are babies and juveniles, I'll be keeping them closer to my kitchen water source for 100% water changes as recommended by eastcoastranchu.

    UPDATE: The shipping on that Finnex is only $5 so still quite low.
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2014
  7. DolfanFishlore VIPMember

    That finnex light is very small, only 9 inches long, so I don't think it would be good for anything more than 5-10 gallon tank. I think it's designed more for a nano rimless tank like many use for aquascaping and/or shrimp.
  8. millcaValued MemberMember

    I ordered the 24" LED from eBay. Thanks for your help Dolfan.

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