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Re: lightng

Walt asked:

> (1) What is the standard amount of light needed for a 10 gal tank?
> Referring to page 183 in the Dupla book, 15 watts would be adequate for
> such a tank. Would 15 watts be enough light for plants in the "high
> light" categorty? If not:

One 15-watt tube works well as long as it's replaced when its light output
starts to fade.  If you continue to use a lamp with low output, then it
isn't enough.  Some "high-light" plants will grow in a 10-gallon tank with
one fresh tube.  But really, most healthy aquatic plants will outgrow a
10-gallon tank real fast.  Ever consider a 20-gallon "high" tank?

> (2) Does anyone know of a company that maunfactures twin tube light
> strips for 18" bulbs? There are no aquarium companies that build such
> items.

I think I've seen 18 inch, two-tube fixtures in the aquarium hobby
recently, but that aside, check with a lighting shop for two-tube

> (3) GE puts out a "Daylight" tube that is 5000 Kelvins. Is this within
> the desired Kelvin temp. range for plants? Has anyone had any direct
> experience with this bulb? Got any suggetions for others besides
> Vita-lite?

The GE daylight lamps work fine.  Philips also makes lamps with comparable
output specs, but I found that they lose intensity rather quickly.  GE
also makes an inexpensive plant/aquarium bulb that works very well for
growing plants but its color is a little more yellow than some people
like.  If you can stand the color rendition (or lack of it)  you might
even be able to use cool whites.

> Along with reading through FAQ, I've had recommendations from a couple
> of people whom have suggested using two bulbs. I would like to rig my
> tank up with 2 but my current design doesn't give me enough space on the
> top of the tank to do so. Any suggestions on how to rig up a space
> saving twin tube strip light for a 10g would be appreciated (the reason
> for question 2). Keep in mind that I am not an electrician. (I don't
> want to electricute myself).

I've got two 10 gallon tanks that are each lit with 2 inexpensive strip
lights.  The kind I use have to be wired to a cord and switch.  I
hard-wired the lights on each tank into each other so I only ran one cord
to each tank.  I hate that setup and I'm intending to replace it.  If you
can't find two-tube fixtures, then you probably will be able to find some
single-tube fixtures that are already wired.

I've had some success mixing Gro-lux lights with GE Daylight Delux tubes.
I don't like the color rendition provided by either of these lights alone,
but together they work well.

Roger Miller