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Cheap Lighting ?

I went to a trucking station today that sells stuff that`s either perfectly
good and was not picked up by the customer or was damaged . I checked out
the lighting dept. and was amazed at what was available . All the stuff was
unused .
1. T8 fixtures...damaged metal frames but the ballast and wiring were
perfect , for 4,8,9 foot lights : $20.00 ( fifty sets available )
2. A case of 40watt T8 bulbs for $20.00...same for T12 bulbs  same price ,
( 50 cases available )
3. VHO ballast for up to 9 foot twin T12 bulbs...magnetic quick start I
believe : $25.00

  There were some types I never saw before , such as a FL bulb that had a
single contact on each end . They seemed to be of the same diameter but of a
significantly higher wattage . Instead of 40 , they were ,I think , 56 watts
. And another type that had the 2 pins in a protected covering...that
wouldn`t fit a regular 2 prong type FL .

So...Are T8`s better than T12`s ? Would a magnetic start VHO ballast work OK
on a unit of 2 (4 FT. ) FL bulbs ?
And what`s the deal with the single contact ends FL bulbs  ? Are they a
better ( higher wattage , etc ) than the regular types ?

  Now the embarassing thing is I can`t remember the manufactor for these
bulbs...I just tried to call to find out but they were closed already . I
had never heard of them...it started with an O is all I can recall .

I`m sure these trucking stations are around most cities and might be
something to look into for anyone wanting to cut corners setting up a high
end pllanted tank . I know I would`ve appreciated knowing of this place
before dropping the cash for the IceCaps .
                                                       D. Thornton
                                                       Wilmington , Ohio