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07-10-2013, 01:57 AM #1
Super-easy DIY lighting for FW planted tanks?
I'm hoping to do as much DIY on my newly-purchased 6 and 29 gal tanks as I possibly can (or at least use items from the store that are cheaper alternatives to what's in the pet stores in the case of the stand lol). Not having what many assume are basic building tools and knowledge does put a bit of a damper on how much DIY I can actually do...
Right now I'm trying to think and plan out lighting systems. I prefer planted tanks, low-maintenance with med-low light levels.
The 6gal came with a lid, though no room for lighting. There's a clear plastic strip down the center of the lid that can allow lighting through. The 29 gal currently has no lid, so there's more room to figure things out at this point.
I've started with CLF, but I'm also starting to look into LED fixtures that are already set up to be used in the same bases as old incandescent lighting (since that would be the easiest for me to set up without any electrical knowledge or tools). One that caught my eye is a Cree 9-watt Daylight (5000K) bulb. 5000K is as close as I could find to 6500K in the LEDs, and it says it's comparable to a 60 watt bulb, though they don't say if they mean 60 watt incandescent, or 60 watt CFL. They are also described as being omni-directional, and I'm not sure how much that would counter the "spotlight" effect that is a common criticism of LEDs.
Of course, if I go with CFL, I can get bulbs that are at the right temp for plants. They don't fit in the hood for my currently-set-up 5 gal tank (they're curved to mimic an incandescent bulb, while I need straight and narrow to fit the hood), but they're about 1/4 of the price of the bulb I purchased for my 5gal, and with the other tanks I'd be making the space they go in myself.
Thoughts? Tips? Suggestions?
So, ideas? Other places to look? Thanks! :D