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Cheap lighting option?

This is a discussion on Cheap lighting option? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> So I was looking on the internet last nite to see if I could find the end caps and the clips and this what ...

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Cheap lighting option?
Old 11-26-2011, 11:08 AM   #41
 
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So I was looking on the internet last nite to see if I could find the end caps and the clips and this what I found. Aquarium Lighting End Caps - Aquarium Light Bulb End Caps Fluorescent Tube End Caps and Connectors for all types of fluorescent tubes including terry clips
Not sure if these are what you were talking about or if they will work or not. I am going to go out here in a little bit to see what I can find locally.
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Old 11-26-2011, 02:10 PM   #42
 
Yeah sorry seems the term 'endcap' is more specific to aquarium use. You just need sockets like
these these
. They are on most all t8/t12 light strips where you insert the tube then twist it so it snaps into place. Then it comes down to if you have the fixture exposed to the water as condensation is gonna shorten the life span of a lot of your materials. As long as there is some sort of moisture block like the tank lid if you have one then it will be much better.

I couldn't find anyone selling T5 clips that are not plastic so I wouldn't bother with the clips.

Best I can do with the T5 and figuring out its output is to compare it to other bulbs I have which are not T5s. I can't use any watt values as those are not going to correlate to actual light output. I've just been using my camera to see how much light gets thrown onto a piece of white paper in a dark room.
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Old 11-27-2011, 09:29 PM   #43
 
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My opitions locally

I made to Lowe's and Home Depot today. I couldn't find any T5 sockets like that in the photo. This is the only thing I could find.
2011-11-279516.59.38.jpg
2011-11-279516.59.54.jpg
But I think those are for T8s or T12s?
Then I looked for fixtures for the size tank I need in T5s well Home Depot had one.
2011-11-279516.56.10.jpg
2011-11-279516.56.34.jpg
The fixture was $30 so not too bad but the only lights they had for this is a Soft white bulb. There is also an issue for me on how to wire it up? There is a couple of other stores I can look at for bulbs themself but didn't have a chance to make it there today. Any thoughts in this fixture will it work?
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:07 AM   #44
 
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Has anyone used one of these fixtures Coralife Freshwater Double Aqua T5 Strip Are they any good? Would this be okay for what I am wanting?
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Old 11-29-2011, 02:48 AM   #45
 
That fixture from home depot would work, but I would completely take it apart and remount it without the metal frame in a rain gutter. In the end you still need to swap the bulbs on it which I why I would try the CFL ballasts. The only real thing you gain from the T5 fixture is its ballast and endcaps. And your right about all the endcaps you found they are T8 or T12. T5 you will likely have to buy online. As far as the bulbs if anyone has them Menard's does. Most the other stores have just up till 4100K bulbs. I've only seen the 6500K at Menard's.

Your looking for this just 21 watt size.


Wired the above lights to a 26 watt ballast I took out of a CFL. Wiring is pretty simple but if your wiring experience is pretty much nil it may be challenging. If you have or know anyone who has a soldering iron it would be helpful.


I know a trick to skip the use of endcaps/sockets, but the connection is not quiet as good. Its harder on T5's too since their pins are so close together. Mainly though you need some way to mount the tube to the hood and most commonly thats done with the sockets. Unless you can fashion something to clamp around the bulb itself, or to slide back off the ends and release it. IMO its not the wiring thats hard its the mounting of the bulb to some sort of housing lol.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:29 PM   #46
 
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Ok so I will order those sockets you posted in your last post. I will also have to go looking at a few more stores looking for bulbs. LoL I have never heard of Menard's until I heard you talk about them. Well I look to see where the closest one to me. Evensville IN which is 250 miles away from me. So yeah going there is not an option. LoL
I will see if I can get a chance this week to go look for some bulbs.
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Old 11-29-2011, 02:37 PM   #47
 
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Originally Posted by Boredomb View Post
Has anyone used one of these fixtures Coralife Freshwater Double Aqua T5 Strip Are they any good? Would this be okay for what I am wanting?
I have these on several of my tanks. The tanks came with them. They are a little lacking on the deeper tanks. My planted 100 gallon which is 60" has 2 of these 30" T5 fixtures plus a 48" T-8 and I am able to grow low light plants.

The bulbs for the fixtures aren't cheap and I haven't found grow bulbs locally that fit.
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Old 11-29-2011, 02:39 PM   #48
 
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Here is what I have on my 40B. Looks great and plants doing very well. $49.95 free shipping 36" - 40" T5 HO Light Hood Aquarium Marine Cichlid 78W | eBay
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:11 PM   #49
 
The coralife fixture would be adequate and is generaly considered a good brand. T5 bulbs usually run around $7 each or more HO bulbs often cost more.

The last fixture that was posted is too much light IMO. Long term it will be hard to manage. Its also the wrong kinda bulbs so you would want to change those. Then its also really thin which may look cool but also indicates a loss of performance. You need room to reflect light.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:30 PM   #50
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikaila31 View Post
The coralife fixture would be adequate and is generaly considered a good brand. T5 bulbs usually run around $7 each or more HO bulbs often cost more.

The last fixture that was posted is too much light IMO. Long term it will be hard to manage. Its also the wrong kinda bulbs so you would want to change those. Then its also really thin which may look cool but also indicates a loss of performance. You need room to reflect light.
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When you say adequate I know they would work but would they be enough for middle lighting?

Also I looked at the one HO fixture and didn't like it and also saw it had the wrong bulbs. To honest I want to say away from HOT5's anyways.
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