11-29-2011, 01:48 AM
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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.