well at the current time i have two lighting options, A typical 48" aquarium Flourscent light with 2 single bulbs, 18" in length i believe. A regular shop light that gets hung from the cieling (i can attach it to the inside of my canopy) with two 48" bulbs. I know this isn't great lighting, but how far can this get me by and what type of bulbs can i buy, should i try and mount both fixtures in the canopy (one for daylight one my night, maybe) Will this be sufficient for the rock and sand curing process? will this be good enough for crabs snails and fish? Im assuming this will def not be good enough for corals, but what about if i have stragglers on my live rock i purchase. Thanks a lot for the feedback, i've looked on the forum and it seems like most of the talk about regular flourscent lighting has to do with freshwater. Thanks in advance.
What you are talking about are T12 or T8 bulbs. Those are usually the kind found in shop lights, or standard with aquariums. I am going to assume this is a 55 gallon tank.
I use 12 T5 bulbs over my 150 gallon tank, with LPS and softy corals. Flourescent bulbs are ok to use in saltwater reef tanks, if done right.
To answer your questions: the sand and rock can cycle without light at all, and the lights you listed should be sufficient for fish, crabs and snails. Even if you are lucky enough to get some hitchhiker corals, they will probably be zoas, and these lights will be alright for a month or so until you can upgrade.
thanks for the feedback, the bulbs for the shop light are the larger in diameter ones, used in house and office flourscent lighting. the aquarium bulbs are the smaller in diameter bulbs. would the larger bulbs be T12s and the smaller ones T8s? thanks again!
nevermind a bit of research and i answered my own question, t12s are the larger ones and t8 are the smaller ones...
id also like to make a spelling correction, its fluorescent not flourscent, my mistake.
so probably my best bet would be to use the T12 light for the actinics and the T8 for my normal full spectrum bulbs? i've seen the tubes that go over the bulbs incase one breaks to prevent the bulb from shattering everywhere, would these be something recommended for my use..or will they filter out part of the light spectrum?
just took apart the T12 light fixture....the ballast says its for two 40w bulbs, im assuming this will not work for VHO bulbs then.
how about one of these bulbs:
and one of these:
in the same light fixture. or would it be best to use this fixture for two 48" actinic bulbs and use the other fixture for two 24" sunlight bulbs. so that i can control the lighting seperatly (i should be able to fit both fixtures under the canopy, might be tight though. Thanks again for the input!!
Am I able to just swap out the ballast using one of these:
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