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[APD] Open Top light loss distance (was deposits vs etching)

Steve and all,
How far above your tanks do you hang your lights?  I have been thinking
of trying an open top and am wondering what the ideal distance would be.

With a cover glass you get some light loss due to reflection and even
more due to deposit build up on the glass.  With no glass cover and
lights too close would you then get light loss due to deposit build up
on the bulbs themeselves and on your reflector?  I suppose this would be
less critical if the bulbs are replaced regularly but the reflector
would still be an issue.  

Having them further away would minimize this buildup but then you lose
light secondary to more of it just missing the tank and shining on the
floor and around the room.

What compromise do people recommend for distance?


Message: 2
Date: Fri, 9 Jan 2004 06:57:55 -0600
From: "Steven Pituch" <spituch at ev1_net>
Subject: [APD] RE: Deposit or Etching?
To: <aquatic-plants at actwin_com>


Have you considered not using cover glasses on your tanks?  Open glass
allow for the beauty and efficiency of emergent growth.  However your
would have to be compatible with this configuration.  All my lights
flourescent, MH, halogen, tungsten) are hung from the ceiling.  I buy
tanks now without cover glasses, and put the money into other

If you want cover glasses, I would recommend that you scrape the glass
have with a razor and just use them.  You will get slightly less light
the tank and it will be more difussed, but they are certainly usable.
People have been living with this situation for many years.  You can
use the
stuff they use to clean shower glass doors.  I do believe with a lot
soaking and some elbow grease, it may put a gloss back on etched glass.
careful it is strong stuff).  But it will come back.

If you pay for new cover glasses I think they will just dull like the

This is a reason I won't ever buy an Oceanics tank again with those
glass center supports.

On cleaning pads, I buy the white ones certified for use on acrylic
I have never had them scratch a glass tank.  I would never use the blue
certified to clean glass tanks. I have a heavy hand, and they feel too
sharp, and I believe people have scratched glass with them.

Steve Pituch

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