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Incredulous_Ed
06-21-2007, 04:54 AM
I have a 20 gallon high aquarium. It measures 24'Lx16'Hx12'W. Where can I get a hood for a resonable price that can hold enought fluorescent or compact fluorescent bulbs to grow high light plants? I'm really confused on this, and right now I have 1 15 watt bulb on the tank. I was considering this: http://www.ahsupply.com/36-55w.htm But I am really not sure.
THanks guys!

cocoa_pleco
06-21-2007, 05:01 AM
2X55W is PERFECT! you want 5W/gallon, so in a 20g that equals 100W, and you would have 110W. perfect!

Drumachine09
06-21-2007, 05:06 AM
2X55W is PERFECT! you want 5W/gallon, so in a 20g that equals 100W, and you would have 110W. perfect!



You cant just say that every tank needs 5 watts per gallon. Lighting depends on what you plan to keep, the depth of the tank, and the quality of the light.

cocoa_pleco
06-21-2007, 05:10 AM
true. if youre going heavily planted, you may need more, lightly as in 2-3 plants, 1 55W may be enough.

Incredulous_Ed
06-21-2007, 03:26 PM
I;m going with heavily planted. Would the one 1x55 be enough, or would I need 2x55? BTW, I am keeping the 15w fluorescent on if I get the 1x55 so I will have 70w total. Would that be enough?
One more thing, is there any other hoods you know of that would have sufficient light that isn't too expensive?

cocoa_pleco
06-21-2007, 03:33 PM
70W would be okay for most plants. not fancy delicate ones though. If you want it deeply planted, you need the 2 55's


you can get hagens fancy aquaglow lights. my 15g came with the cheap aquaglo and the complete kit was 150$, but the fancy lighted tank (15g still) is 300$. it has 2 55W's i believe. i think they sell them separately, but probably a 150$ tag

hungryhound
06-21-2007, 03:42 PM
Ed. I have a couple of questions.

Are you planning on CO2?

What type of Plants do you want to keep?

Are you going to fertilize?

How fast do you want everything to grow?

How much light you need is going to depend on your answers to these questions.

heavily planted doesn't necessarily mean high light plants. You can have a heavily planted low light tank.



I;m going with heavily planted. Would the one 1x55 be enough, or would I need 2x55? BTW, I am keeping the 15w fluorescent on if I get the 1x55 so I will have 70w total. Would that be enough?
One more thing, is there any other hoods you know of that would have sufficient light that isn't too expensive?

My guess is that you can get away with one 55 watt and the 15 watt is just icing on the cake as long as you do not plan on growing insanely high light plants. Going to 110 watt on a 20 gallon will require good CO2, but will give you good results if you can get your other parameters in check.

Other lighting options.

http://akamai.edeal.com//images/catalog3684/folder24579/img3039481med.jpg
coral life 1 x 65 watt 61.99 (http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS/ctl3684/cp18369/si1383180/cl0/coralifefreshwateraqualight24powercompactlight1x65 w)

this would be another option. It is 20 dollars more than the AHA but does not require you to build a hood or put it together.

there is also a 2x65 watt version that you can get for over 100.

hungryhound
06-21-2007, 03:44 PM
If you want it deeply planted, you need the 2 55's

No you do not. you can have a heavily planted tank with 1 watt per gallon. The amount of light you have limits more what type of plants you can grow, vs how much.

I am sure that I could create a heavily planted 20 gallon of java fern, mosses and anubis. Given enough time.

For reference Ed. here is my 30 gallon with two T5 21 watt bulbs for a total of 42 watts over 30 gallons.
http://i203.photobucket.com/albums/aa296/flutegenetics/Fishe285.jpg

you do not need insane light to get good results. you just have to pick the plants that will grow in your conditions.

Incredulous_Ed
06-21-2007, 04:07 PM
Ed. I have a couple of questions.

Are you planning on CO2?

Yes. I am planning on a DIY mixture.

What type of Plants do you want to keep?

Not quite sure at the moment, but definetly cabombas, amazon swords, as well as some other stuff.

Are you going to fertilize?

Yes. I am currently using Hagens Iron enriches liquid fertilizer. I am planning on changing the substrate to Eco complete or AquaSoil. I'm leaning towards Ecp complete because it is cheaper, But I would really like aquasoil.

How fast do you want everything to grow?

Generally, fast. I'm kind of impatient, and it would be cool to see a constantly changing aquascape. But, I don't have much of a budget and won't start getting paid until Sep or Oct, so I would be content with an average growing rate.

How much light you need is going to depend on your answers to these questions.

heavily planted doesn't necessarily mean high light plants. You can have a heavily planted low light tank.

;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

cocoa_pleco
06-21-2007, 04:08 PM
i see your point. i was referring to tall tanks that are so planted you cannot see through to the back and are major major planted

Incredulous_Ed
06-21-2007, 04:20 PM
About the AHA, willI have to build an enclosure or can I put it in my all glass aquarium hood? If I have to build an enclosure, I will probably go with the corallife or something else.
Which would be a better choice for a planted tank? (In your opinion): The AHA or the Coral Life? would end up paying a bit less for the AHA, but is it worth it?

Is there a DIY that I can do so I will not spend so much money?

thanks guys

hungryhound
06-21-2007, 04:28 PM
About the AHA, willI have to build an enclosure or can I put it in my all glass aquarium hood?

I believe that the AHAs are designed to be mounted up above the tank on a wooden hood. You could easily make one and I am sure there are plans on line.
you could try sitting them directly on the glass, but I would think that you would have a problem with heat build up.



If I have to build an enclosure, I will probably go with the corallife or something else.
Which would be a better choice for a planted tank? (In your opinion): The AHA or the Coral Life? would end up paying a bit less for the AHA, but is it worth it?

I have a couple of coralifes and absolutely love them, but people who have them rave about the AHA lights as well. It is your descision. It all depends on whether you want to build a hood or not.

It is hard to give you suggestions as I am still not sure what type of plants you want to grow. I would figure out what plants you want to gorw and then research what kind of light you will need for those plants and buy your lights accordingly. There is no sense buying an insane light if your plants are not going to use it.



Is there a DIY that I can do so I will not spend so much money?

thanks guys

Yeah. I would just make sure that you use two pop bottles and buy some CO2 resistant tubing. You can make your own diffuser/reactor/ or buy one. You can also run it into your filter as well, depending on the make and model. Most of this is a personal choice and it is up to you how much you spend.

But you should be able to make it for less than 30 dollars if you try.

ChurchofAdam
06-21-2007, 05:10 PM
lol, I JUST got my coralife aqualight FW 1x65W in the mail yesterday. haven't put it on the tank yet (also a 20g high) but it's a vast improvement over the lighting I had. and yeah, diy co2 and the correct selection of plants should let you maintain a heavily planted tank under these conditions. prolly have to forgoe those red plants though

Incredulous_Ed
06-21-2007, 05:11 PM
Thanks hungryhound. All this lighting stuff is really confusing! currently i have elodeas, cobombas and crypts. The crypts grow great, the elodeas okay, and the cabombas have been dying. I wpould like to grow high light plants. I am really confused! Is it possible to buy the lights and end caps and wiring and all that other stuff seperately and put it all in a hood or something like that? I'm just trying to save money. Thanks again.

Lady Hobbs
06-21-2007, 10:21 PM
55 watt is plenty for a 20 gallon. You could just get a glass top for the tank. They cost about $10 for a 20 gallon.

Lady Hobbs
06-21-2007, 10:28 PM
http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS/ctl3684/cp18369/si1383180/cl0/coralifefreshwateraqualight24powercompactlight1x65 w (http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS/ctl3684/cp18369/si1383180/cl0/coralifefreshwateraqualight24powercompactlight1x65 w)

Here's one at Big Als or $60. I wish I had gotten that one myself. I would rather have two 24's than one 48" so I can move them around to different tanks as needed.


LOLOL Just read the thread and see hungryhound has recommended the same light. Great minds do think the same!


Ed, here's another light I continue to go back to. This is also 65 watt. http://www.azgardens.com/newlights2.php Scroll clear to bottom of page.

Chrona
06-22-2007, 12:37 AM
Go with the coralife 65w fixture. The AHS 55 watt will be significantly brighter (and harder to maintain a stable tank in, especially with DIY CO2), and it requires a hood enclosure (or some elbow grease) 2x 55 watts from AHS would be impossible without pressurized CO2.

Incredulous_Ed
06-22-2007, 04:16 AM
Thanks everyone! Now just gotta wait until I get paid in October and I'm good to go!

troy
06-23-2007, 01:36 AM
Hungryhound what plants do you have in your tank because, I have a 5 gallon with a light that provides only 2 watts per gallon.

Chrona
06-24-2007, 12:33 AM
Hungryhound what plants do you have in your tank because, I have a 5 gallon with a light that provides only 2 watts per gallon.

The watt per gallon rule breaks down in small tanks. What kind of bulb is this? At best, I'd say you are limited to low light plants. Watt is a measure of electricity going in, not light coming out.

Drumachine09
06-24-2007, 12:40 AM
The watt per gallon rule breaks down in small tanks. What kind of bulb is this? At best, I'd say you are limited to low light plants. Watt is a measure of electricity going in, not light coming out.


Which brings about the question. Should the "rule" be changed to lumens or candle power?

Chrona
06-24-2007, 12:49 AM
Which brings about the question. Should the "rule" be changed to lumens or candle power?

Technically lumens isn't even a good measure, since what you are really looking for is the amount of usable light that actually gets to the plants, which can be measured with a PAR meter (though they are EXPENSIVE), but yeah, lumens would be a better measure than watts, at least for comparisions between T-5, compact fluorescent, MH, incandescent, etc. Another crucial factor is the intensity of the light. For instance, if you had a 2 watt CF bulb (if they made them) over a 0.25 gallon tank, you'd technically have 8w/g, but you wouldn't be able to grow anything in it. And a 250w metal halide bulb would probably burn your retinas if you stared at it, but 250x 1 watt LED's wouldn't even phase you, even though the LED's probably put out more light in your direction.

The w/g rule can be used for tanks between 20-90 gallons assuming that the wattage is for fluorescent lighting, and that you have decent reflectors. For tanks larger than 90, you don't need as much w/g. For tanks smaller than 20, you need more w/g to get the same effect.

troy
06-24-2007, 03:03 AM
I know I'm limited to low light plants. The plants I have are recovering from even
worse light. I didn't plan on keeping them long anyway.

hungryhound
06-24-2007, 03:33 AM
Hungryhound what plants do you have in your tank because, I have a 5 gallon with a light that provides only 2 watts per gallon.

Sorry it took me so long to respond, as I recently went on vacation and am behind on post reading.

It seems Chrona has addressed the issue or watts per gallon in small tanks.

I also have a 5g with a 13watt compact fluorescence bulb over the top. In this tank I have:

Broad leaf water sprite
Java fern
Moss ball

but the tank in question is too complex to list, so please see the attachment.