Re: Redoign a plant tank

> From: schmaus at drmail_dr.att.com (SchmausJ)
> Date: Thu, 26 Oct 1995 12:07:43 -0600
> Anyway the surface area is 4.5' x 2', which
> is all that matters since we no longer need to worry about depth
> for lighting :).

In theory; practical concerns may override that idea. 

> Previously I had 6 4' fluorescent bulbs (mixture of Tritons and Vita
> Lites = 240 watts) and had success with some of the easier plants.
> You know, various Swords, Valisneria, and such.

This sounds relatively appropriate.

> I read the Optimum Aquarium and did everything except the undergravel
> heating and CO2 injection.  OK, I didn't do the laterite completely
> as recommended, either.  

But you did put water in the tank, right?  :-)  (Sorry, I can't help
that little sarcastic bit when someone says they followed TOA except for
all the important stuff).   

> But the results were satisfying, except I was never able to grow some
> of the more light intensive plants.  So, I'm thinking of adding
> another 2 fluorescent lights to the setup, for a total of 320 watts,
> and getting rid of the glass top.  

I think CO2 was your limiting factor.  You might be surprised at the
results you would get by adding CO2 instead of more lighting.  At our
high altitude, it seems that CO2 injection is even more important than
at sea level. 

> All bulbs have the Triton "Brite Lite" reflectors (which are
> ridiculously expensive, too, but enough whining).

"ridiculously expensive" especially since they don't do anything more than
a simple white shoplight reflector.  Which you can get for $10 even if
you don't use the cheap shoplight "ballast", which you shouldn't use
> Any thoughts on this -- I mean having 8 bulbs on a 135 that's 2 feet
> deep?

Check with Ted Fidder, who works at your facility.  He has a 180
gallon tank setup.  I think he had 8 4' bulbs originally and has since
reduced the number to 6 or fewer.  

Also, if you don't mind a 40 minute drive, I'd be happy to show off
our 4 tanks to you.  We're just north of Loveland. 

George Booth