Unusual Lighting Questions
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Unusual Lighting Questions

This is a discussion on Unusual Lighting Questions within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> 2 Questions: 1) I am setting up another 29 gallon tank. I have a 2 bulb HO T5 light fixture which would obviously put ...

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Unusual Lighting Questions
Old 12-12-2012, 01:54 PM   #1
 
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Unusual Lighting Questions

2 Questions:

1) I am setting up another 29 gallon tank. I have a 2 bulb HO T5 light fixture which would obviously put me in the high light zone. I would prefer to keep this tank at low/medium light. This fixture does not work with one bulb removed.
Would blocking the cover under 1 of the bulbs be alright to bring me down to a low light level? I was thinking about simply painting half the cover under the bulbs black. Or even applying duct tape over half the cover to block the light produced by that 1 bulb. (By cover I mean the protective plastic strip under the tubes) I realize this would probably increase the heat levels under the bulbs.

2) I am currently using a cheap, 24", T8, flourescent, one bulb light fixture that does not have a reflector (other than white plastic) for my current 29 gallon tank. The tank is heavily planted and the plants do OK but nothing special.
I was wondering if adding a thin piece of sheet metal above the light would help increase the reflection and the light being delivered to the plantst? Maybe something even as cheap as aluminum foil above the light might help?

What do you guys think? Thanks in advance for any replies.
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Old 12-12-2012, 03:50 PM   #2
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trapperwolves View Post
2 Questions:

1) I am setting up another 29 gallon tank. I have a 2 bulb HO T5 light fixture which would obviously put me in the high light zone. I would prefer to keep this tank at low/medium light. This fixture does not work with one bulb removed.
Would blocking the cover under 1 of the bulbs be alright to bring me down to a low light level? I was thinking about simply painting half the cover under the bulbs black. Or even applying duct tape over half the cover to block the light produced by that 1 bulb. (By cover I mean the protective plastic strip under the tubes) I realize this would probably increase the heat levels under the bulbs.

2) I am currently using a cheap, 24", T8, flourescent, one bulb light fixture that does not have a reflector (other than white plastic) for my current 29 gallon tank. The tank is heavily planted and the plants do OK but nothing special.
I was wondering if adding a thin piece of sheet metal above the light would help increase the reflection and the light being delivered to the plantst? Maybe something even as cheap as aluminum foil above the light might help?

What do you guys think? Thanks in advance for any replies.
I have read that aluminium foil works, shiniest side out of course. Also read of painting the inside of the fixture with reflective paint; never done this, so don't know which paint. Also, not all tubes of the same size and K are equal in intensity. For single tube tanks I have found better growth with the better more expensive tubes like the Life-Glo or ZooMed's UltraSun. These are made to push out more intensity than the cheaper daylight tubes.

On the T5 issue, I wold suggest a new fixture. I would be concerned over wasting two tubes (which are not cheap), energy, etc. One thing I have often wondered is if a burnt out tube in one would still allow the other tube to be lit? I know you can't remove a tube, but if it was in but didn't light... ?

Byron.
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Old 12-12-2012, 04:48 PM   #3
 
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I did this with foil tape. I has worked well for me. You can get a pretty large thick roll at any hardware store. Bought mine Lowes. Its much like duck tape, but foil.
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Old 12-13-2012, 01:48 PM   #4
 
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Thanks for the responses.

I think I will try the aluminum foil or the foil tape on the one light and see what happens. I am currently using nothing but Life Glo tubes as they are the only ones I have tried that do not give off a purplish hue.

Hmmm-I like the idea of having one burnt out bulb and 1 good bulb for the HO T5. I can't see why that wouldn't work.

Thanks again
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