Re: Lighting, MH vs. Florescent / [Q]How do I use laterite?

On Wed, 21 Feb 1996:

> From:  (Dirk)
> Since I'm thinking of going with a 75gal, I gather that I'll need more than
> 200W of light.  If I went the florescent route, I would have to have 5 or 6
> bulbs.   Dollar-signs flash before my eyes as I think of replacing
> vita-lights or something like that every 6 months.  I have many questions,
> here are but a few:
> +  How long do MH bulbs last?
> +  How many would I need?
> +  How much do the bulbs and ballasts cost (ballpark)?
I've been kind of unhappy with my use of MH, but I do it in a kind of 
half-assed way, so I know lots of people who are happy with them. (my 
fiance for example)  They are quite delicate and it seems that their 
lifetime varies considerably from bulb to bulb.  I have direct experience 
with two which lasted less than ten months and one which has been going 
for almost two years.

A single bulb would provide enough light but in a poor distribution.  You 
could plant the tank in such a way that accommodates the strong center 
light and much weaker side lights, but this is of dubious desirability.

Bulbs are roughly $50, you can pay more if you like.  This is for a 175W 
5000K bulb which seems to be pretty much a standard.  The prices I've 
heard for ballasts fluctuates wildly, someone else will probably give you 
better info on that than I could.

> Also, I know I've read about it somewhere, but what does the "degree"
> designation mean when applied to bulbs.
The Kelvin rating of a light source (oversimplifies and) describes the 
color of the light emitted.  The rating (e.g. 4800K, 5500K, 7600K, etc.)
states that the light source gives off the same color light as a black 
body raised to the temperature specified.  Think of a cast iron stove at 
the temperature specified (measured in Kelvins) and that's roughly the 
light color you're going to get.

> ------------------------------
> From: PacNeil at aol_com
> Subject: Re: [Q]How do I use laterite?
> Can I use laterite as a supplement for example, on the surface of my gravel?

Uh, no.  Actually, you can try anything, but I wouldn't suggest it.  It 
would be messy.

> My tank is already established with simple aquarium gravel. I'm looking for a
> way to feed my plants without having to tear down my already established
> tank. Is there some other more efficacious way to feed my aquarium plants in

Both Aqualine Bushke (sp?) and Dupla make, essentially, balls of laterite 
which can be pushed down into the substrate without having to set up a 
layer all the way across the tank.  I've not used these products, but 
you should check them out.

> (Yes, I know it' over stocked. I do a lot of water changes, 1 to 10 gallons
> RO water nearly every day.)

No doubt!  I keep a 200g with fewer fish than that.

> with terrestial plants) but have been unable to locate a good book locally.
> Any suggestions especially books with color plates? Please be complete if
> possible (ISBN #'s?), because I'll probably have to order.

I don't have the book at work here, but I always suggest the Rataj book, 
and I'd suggest That Fish Place for ordering it.  If it's worth shopping 
around to save a couple bucks, you might beat their price but they're 
usually pretty cheap.

I hope this helped either of you,

Christopher L. Weeks            |Are the opinions expressed herein 
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