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my new CF lights

I just finished building a CF hood with parts from AH Supply (anyone know
what happened to their web site?).


It sure puts out a lot of light for its size -- there is easily room for
another 2x55 if i ever feel the need. This is on a 55ish tank (13"x48"). I
used their 2x55w Bright Kit. I came up with a minimalist 'hood' design - I
used the reflectors themselves as structural members, capped the ends with
appropriately cut pieces of wood with some wood screws, and joined the two
reflectors in the middle with a 4" wide piece of aluminum plate bent in the
same shape as the reflectors (so basically, the thing looks like one long
reflector). I used pop rivets to attach the center plate, the lamp hangers,
etc. Then I riveted the ballast to the back. The end result is I've got a
very compact, attractive strip light that puts out gobs of well focused
light, and it didn't cost much.

A few observations:

I went with their 6700k bulbs, but I'm not really happy with the spectrum.
Seems to have very little red. I should have gone with something warmer I

My fish (various rainbows) are scared to death and hiding now. I hope they
get over it. Hopefully my plants will grow to provide some shade.

When I was fiddling with the ballast earlier, I took a hot wire from its
output to a finger and I'm pretty sure it burned to the bone. Don't do this
at home, kids...

I can't wait to move over a bunch of plants from my 10G 'farm' tank. I had a
few plants in the 55 before, which grew surprisingly well considering i had
only a little 40W 'cool white' single bulb over it... but now its time to do
some plantin!