Lighting equipment - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #11 of 17 Old 11-27-2012, 08:19 PM
Byron's Avatar
Originally Posted by Aurie View Post
In the 10 gallon I am using the g e 3100k aquarium plant 18 inch bulb. I noticed it isn't as bright as it used to be. The algae turns to dust and is very easy to scrape off. My snails do eat it but they are too big for the crypts and they fall off. Its also in the glass in oatches.

I will try the 6500 bulb.. it might not be as bad in a larger tank. It looks like crap in a 5 gallon with orange sand lol
Posted via Mobile Device
OK, that is diatoms. Sometimes seen in new tanks, during the first 2-3 months, but never again. In established tanks, diatoms occur due to low light, silicates in the water (silicates are a type of minerals). All tubes need replacing regularly because their intensity weakens as they burn, so at some point they still light but the intensity is too low for the plants to benefit, and algae appears.

T8 tubes (the standard) should be replaced every 12 months. Some of the better made ones will last a few months longer. I would get yourself a new tube, and one closer to 6000-7000K. This will also help control algae, as the plants having better light will use it.

Not all tubes are the same, even with the same 6500K. If you don't mind spending a bit more, the very best are Hagen's Life-Glo and ZooMed's UltraSun. If you go with either, ensure it is the exact named tube, as both manufacturers make several very different tubes. The "daylight" tubes made by GE, Phillips and Sylvania with a 6500K rating are good and less expensive. Though I have found them not as intense. Over a 10g they might be fine though.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
Byron is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #12 of 17 Old 11-28-2012, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
Aurie's Avatar
Here is a picture of the 29 (I just set up like 2 hours ago) with a 8k full spectrum aqueon single t8 17w .. it's not very bright.. I wasn't able to find a bulb I was interested in at Lowes or Petco. Petsmart just had this bulb or Floramax which didn't have the kalvin which I"m sure is 6700. I bought the floramax but it's dimmer still. This bulb came with the tank.

I know it's going to look dark due to black sand .. This is my first time with it. Maybe I'm just imagining things LOL

Uploaded with

I saw this while I was at petsmart, and I know for a FACT it's Normal Output..
I might save up my pennies for it if the tank can be a bit brighter and the bulbs are pretty common. I saw more T5's today then t8's LOL

Last edited by Aurie; 11-28-2012 at 01:10 AM.
Aurie is offline  
post #13 of 17 Old 11-28-2012, 06:10 AM
Geomancer's Avatar
A T5NO (Normal Output) is roughly the exact same as a T8 in terms of how much light they put out. The T5's are smaller though, so it's easier to fit two tubes into a smaller package which is why they are popular in the aquarium world.

T5HO (High Output) were made more for the marine tank world. As coral reefs need very bright lighting so saving space was a big deal (a 4 tube T5HO is the same as 6 T8's and takes much less space).

So a Dual T5NO would push you right up into the upper end of moderate lighting. It's possible to do with a 'low tech' setup (meaning no extra CO2) but you will have to keep your light duration down to 8 hours and possibly less.

T8's are easy to find in hardware stores .... just not daylight in a 24" length unfortunatly. I had to get mine online.

Black sand is by far the best, it makes the fish happy (they hate bright lighting) and it also will bring out the colors. If you can, try to slip a sheet of black poster board in behind the tank and it will make everything look instantly better also.

Some other thoughts, I would greatly consider getting a sheet of 3/4" plywood to put under the tank. What you are using as a stand is too small and without even weight distribution you will stress the seals. Another small tip is to move the heater over next to the filter to help curculate the warm water and make the tank a more even temperature throughout.
Geomancer is offline  
post #14 of 17 Old 11-28-2012, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
Aurie's Avatar
I think now that the tank cleared up from the sand I should be ok with the light that I have and I'll just look for a daylight T8 online. The only one I could find yesterday was either too spendy or a T12. I'll get that NO later down the road.

Thanks for the tip on the plywood. This stand is temporary cause the 10 gallon is on the stand I wanna use. This one is 27 inches across.. the other one is 25 but is taller. I'll go to home depot after work and see if I can get one cut down to size. The tank was just going to sit on this one till it cycled then I was going to do a switch-er-oo
Aurie is offline  
post #15 of 17 Old 11-28-2012, 12:43 PM
Geomancer's Avatar
When you move it, drain as much water as possible and consider removing the sand too.

If you feel along the bottom you'll see that the glass of the bottom does not actually come in contact with the surface of the stand. The only part of the tank that touches the stand is that black plastic trim, which means all the weight of the tank is directed to the sides.

When you go to lift it, all that weight will be focused into where ever it is being held, so four points of two people are carrying it.

I don't mean to try and scare you, just wanted to explain the why of my suggestion. I have a 125g aquarium that had a manufacturing defect in it I didn't see, which resulted in crack forming top to bottom and the tank draining. No one was home at the time and it was quite the mess to come home to. So I may be a bit more parinoid that most ;)
Geomancer is offline  
post #16 of 17 Old 12-13-2012, 11:35 PM Thread Starter
Aurie's Avatar
Just thought I'd update you guys a bit

Tank is getting moved to it's permanent home tomorrow with a piece of 3/4 plywood underneath that is cut to 31x13

Black cloth going to be the background

Still working with that original 17 watt aqueon full spectrum in the 29 gallon, and upgraded the 10 gallon to a super sun something or other zoo med bulb. It's at least 6700k, and it looks fantastic and the brown algea is dying off slowly. My nerite is taking care of the extra.

Back to the 29.. I'm still super interested in the dual NO t5's, and I get $5 petsmart coupons all the time, so I could bring the cost of the bulbs down a bit. Yeah they're cheaper online, but then there's shipping = price of petsmart.

I was just wondering if you guys knew anyone that is using this bulb setup?
Many posts over the interwebs state to use it with a glass top. Do you think the area of the 29 hood that's plexiglass that holds the light strip currently will be ok? I am totally not interested in doing c02 other than maybe a small diy setup because it's cheap and can be set into the stand.

If others read this and they have the 36" version, I'd love to see pictures of the tank "overhang" of the 6" of extra light. I'm willing to get the 24" version because I've read bad reviews of the 30" version

Or maybe you guys know of a double t8 fixture that will fit? Something that is similar to the single T8 but for a double bulb or 2 independant ballasts.

I'll go with a glass top if I have to, but the black top looks cleaner IMO

Aurie is offline  
post #17 of 17 Old 12-16-2012, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
Aurie's Avatar
I went out yesterday and bought the coralife 24" fixture since the 30 had a lot of returns over the years at the store. I bought another 6700 light and now I'm running both in the spot where the 17W sat on the hood. I can only say WOW, the difference is amazing. I can actually see my fish now. I also picked up some microsword and pygmy chain sword and some water sprite.

Today I picked up some Jenny since my husband fell in love with it. I was told it was pretty tolerant of the lighting that I have and so I planted it in the back. I snagged some christmas moss and attached it to my drift wood. I'll post a picture soon.
Aurie is offline  

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
need help with equipment........ DAYCARE KID Saltwater Fish Diseases 1 02-05-2008 01:23 AM
testing equipment tomgray Water Chemistry 3 02-27-2007 07:00 PM

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome