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Re:Lights and Ballast

>From: Shane Houston <Shanehouston at excite_com>
>Subject: Lights and Ballast
>Hi list,
>This is my first post.  This is probably very basic to some but new to me.
>I'm looking at the possibility of buying a ballast, lights etc. and hooking
>these up myself.  How much Do it yourself work is involved?  Some basic
>questions I have:  When you buy a ballast do you always get endcaps?  How
>about if you buy a ballast at a commercial lighting center, do they give you
>endcaps?  How do you know what endcaps go with what bulbs?  How much wiring
>is needed?
>Is there an explanation on how to do this on some website that explains
>everything.  Writing this I'm thinking I may be in over my head but I want
>to learn and know how to do this for future tanks.
>This is going on a 75 gallon tank.  I'm not sure of much else yet I'm just
>planning what it would take to do my own lighting.  It will be medium to
>high light though. Probably 4 flourescent lights.

I recommend you get an electronic ballast that can handle 4 T-8 bulbs.  The
wiring diagram is on the ballast, and you can buy the little end-plugs that
the T-8 tubes plug into at just about any hardware store along with the
electrical cord and plug.  The end-plugs are the same size for T-8 or T-12
tubes.  To get the ballast, you will probably have to go to an electrical
distributor.  You can make the frame out of wood to hold the lights and
design it to stand on a glass tank top. Make sure you have double-strength
window glass, not single-strength.

It is about a day's work, perhaps a little more, if this is the first time
you are building a light.

Paul Krombholz, in bone dry central Mississippi