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Re: Roger';s tank

> On to the next issue.  I'm leaning heavily toward metal halide lights.
> Are there any particularly good sources for metal halide equipment?

I've been happy with the Hamiltons. I'd go with 2 x 250 watts or 3 x 175's
and a 5000K range bulb.
Another idea........add a timed rail(check out any hudroponics place, can't
find on eI have one you can get for cheap-or you can try to make one also)
to move a single 400watt lamp over the length of your tank during a 10 hour
> I've been thinking of hanging pendants off brackets attached to the wall
> behind the tank.  The wall is a former exterior wall, with 1X8 wood
> sheathing behind the wallboard so I'm not worried about its ability to
> support the lights.

The lights(pendants) are quite light. Ballast are heavy but they are
separated and have a 15ft cord.

> It would be relatively difficult to hang lights
> from the ceiling, because there are skylights immediately above the
> tank.  The alternative would be to build a standing rack that arched
> over the tank and supported the lights.  Does anyone have experience
> with these options?

A railing system can be added on the back wall very easily. If your using
the kits, keep the ballast off it and away from everything and it a place
where they will be quieted.
> The skylights make the space very bright, so that artificial lighting is
> probably only going to be needed to extend the photoperiod during the
> winter, and maybe augment it a little for plants that need especially
> bright light.  I was hoping to put together a controller that would
> bring the lights on if the light intensity in the room dropped below a
> preset threshold.  Can anyone give me input on what I need to look for,
> or where?

Those lights(the ones they sell at hardware stores) that have photo
receptors can be used if you place them in the right spot since they are
more sensitive than you likely want. You can get around this by placing them
in a darkened area or adding some dark covering on the light
itself(cloth/paint etc) over the photo reception cell.

I'd not worry about it. I just leave the lights on for 6-10 hours etc and
change with the seasons. I know you want to fiddle with it though:) Some
things can't be helped.

Enjoy da tank.
Tom Barr
> Roger Miller
> Bright-eyed in Albuqueruqe