Lighting options for a 72g Bowfront planted
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Lighting options for a 72g Bowfront planted

This is a discussion on Lighting options for a 72g Bowfront planted within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> I am thinking about taking my 72 gallon bowfront and converting it over to a freshwater planted tank. I am wanting to keep this ...

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Lighting options for a 72g Bowfront planted
Old 02-24-2013, 12:34 PM   #1
 
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Lighting options for a 72g Bowfront planted

I am thinking about taking my 72 gallon bowfront and converting it over to a freshwater planted tank. I am wanting to keep this natural low tech, no plans or interest in using CO2. The tank is 48 inches long and 23 inches high. The type of plants that I would plan on keeping would be low to moderate light plants. Currently I have two 24 t8 fixtures on the tank, but from the reading that I have been doing I don't think that this would be enough light. If my thinking is right I would be wanting to use a dual t8 fixture? From the research that I have been doing and different places that I have checked out online I can't seem to be able to find this type of fixture. Any suggestions on places to look at for these. Also I was thinking that if I could not find the dual t8 that maybe I could try finding a single t5 fixture would this work? I know that these fixtures have got to exist it just seems like I am not looking in the right places. Thanks.
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Old 02-24-2013, 04:04 PM   #2
 
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Originally Posted by BarbH View Post
I am thinking about taking my 72 gallon bowfront and converting it over to a freshwater planted tank. I am wanting to keep this natural low tech, no plans or interest in using CO2. The tank is 48 inches long and 23 inches high. The type of plants that I would plan on keeping would be low to moderate light plants. Currently I have two 24 t8 fixtures on the tank, but from the reading that I have been doing I don't think that this would be enough light. If my thinking is right I would be wanting to use a dual t8 fixture? From the research that I have been doing and different places that I have checked out online I can't seem to be able to find this type of fixture. Any suggestions on places to look at for these. Also I was thinking that if I could not find the dual t8 that maybe I could try finding a single t5 fixture would this work? I know that these fixtures have got to exist it just seems like I am not looking in the right places. Thanks.

i used to find all kinds of fixtures at lowes or home depot and usually alot cheaper then a "aquarium light" becarefull you dont get to powerfull of a light but aslo make sure it is enough. a light inbalance can cause one heck of a algae bloom. since plants only use nutrients when there is a balance of co2 and light. once they slow down on growing due to using the co2 theres plenty of light and nutrient in the tank which algae then takes over. (nothing wrong with low tech setups but just a heads up that you might want to stay away from t5)
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Old 02-25-2013, 01:10 AM   #3
 
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Thanks MoneyMitch for the suggestions. I have known that other people have used the shop light fixtures for lighting their aquariums, but I am hoping to find a different option. Although might stop by to see what they have available. Also hoping in the next couple of weeks to make a trip out to the localish fish store to see what they have in stock, and maybe what might be able to be ordered in if they don't have it in stock.

I did find one fixture that maybe an option although I am not sure about it being my best option. It is a regular T5, not a high output fixture. Was wondering what thoughts were on this Freshwater Aquarium Lighting » Aqueon® Freshwater T5 Light Fixture | PetSmart ? Thanks for any suggestions.
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Old 02-25-2013, 01:21 AM   #4
 
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Okay while posting I remembers another online place that I hadn't checked already had looked at foster and smiths and petmountain. Checked out Big Al's and found this fixture a dual T8 Double Bright Fluorescent Strip Light - Black - 48" The only big issue I see is that from the reviews on the site it does seem that the ballast on this unit goes bad pretty quickly. So not entirely sure that this is the best option since not sure how much and if I would be able to find a ballast if it needed to be replaced, or how easy it would be to replace the ballast.
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:17 AM   #5
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If your are not going with CO2 you might consider a 48" Marineland Double Bright LED fixture. No ballast, no tubes to worry about. My 37 gallon is 22" tall and I have a 24" fixture over the 30" tank and everything is growing well, swords, valls, ludwigia.... 12 - 14 different species of plants. I need to thin out the duckweed as it is shading more than I like but the plants are still doing OK in the more subdued light anyway.

Just don't look at the reef capable, pricey and wrong light anyway.

I linked my plant thread in my signature if you want to have a look at what is working with that setup.

Jeff.
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:27 AM   #6
 
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If your are not going with CO2 you might consider a 48" Marineland Double Bright LED fixture. No ballast, no tubes to worry about. My 37 gallon is 22" tall and I have a 24" fixture over the 30" tank and everything is growing well, swords, valls, ludwigia.... 12 - 14 different species of plants. I need to thin out the duckweed as it is shading more than I like but the plants are still doing OK in the more subdued light anyway.

Just don't look at the reef capable, pricey and wrong light anyway.

I linked my plant thread in my signature if you want to have a look at what is working with that setup.

Jeff.
Thanks Jeff, I do like the idea of the Leds with the fact they are more energy efficient and after the initial cost you don't have to worry about the cost of buying bulbs. Looks like you have been getting good growth on your plants. I will be following your thread to see how things go.

Thinking about making a trip out to the fish store today to see what they have to offer, will talk to them about lighting options and about what they think about the leds also.
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Old 02-28-2013, 01:13 PM   #7
 
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Might have settled on a light

After having done some more research, and reading enough info to start making my head soon I think I have found the lighting solution that I have been looking for. I like the idea of using Led lighting for the fact of them being energy efficient and also the fact that you do not need to replace the bulbs every year. after fishing around at TPT I found an Led system that seems like it will give me the low to moderate light that I am looking for, and also fits in nicely with the budget FugeRay: Ultra Slim LED +Moonlights More than likely I will be going with this fixture. Keep an eye out since I will let folks know how it its working
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Old 02-28-2013, 02:03 PM   #8
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It looks like they are using 0.1 Watt bulbs.... but LOTS of them. I'm not sure what an "LED spread of 120 degrees" means, if it's the light focus, that's pretty wide and you will lose a lot of light... but their overall wattage is a little higher... but it counts the blue lights.

Curious to see how they work for you if you choose them.

Jeff.
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:51 PM   #9
 
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only issue i see is the moonlights, they arent really nessicary. but if thats what you liek then by all means! and you can never go wrong with a 48" all-glass aquarium brand of light. those fixtures have always gone to $%*( and back for me and still work. not to mentiuon the 48" t8 bulbs are very affordable.
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