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 LIGHTING QUESTION

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Diana
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PostSubject: LIGHTING QUESTION   Sat Feb 06, 2010 2:57 am

I have just had to make a mad dash to my lfs after finding the filter in my betta tank had died. While I was there I also bought a new bulb for the tank as one of the strips had also given up the ghost.

When I tried to fit it though it is just about impossible! It is a couple of centimetres too long for the connectors in the lid, but the next size down is just way too small. The size on the dud one says 24" and I am wondering if the new one is measured in cm's and so just not compatible.

I usually get them from P@H so will take a trip down there tomorrow and see if they have any of the right size for me.

Anyine else had similar problems?

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Rich
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Sat Feb 06, 2010 6:00 am

I tend to try to buy spare bulbs when I buy tanks with lights - P@H have an annoying habit (least my local one does) of quickly sstopping the supply of bulbs for systemised tanks (like my fishpod)

If its just a straight strip - I cant imagine how a problem came about - they usually come in standardised lengths/sizes so they may have sold you the wrong thing or it was in wrong place etc - eitherway - if you have the packaging you are entitled to take it back - so try to take your old tube with you - otherwise its a trip tot he tinterweb shopping mall for a new light (and postage will be high on a glass tube)

As for betta filter - just convert the existing media from the old filter into an air driven one - easily done and virtually free of charge Wink bettas seem to prefer sponge/air filters anyway.
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Sat Feb 06, 2010 6:18 am

never had to replace a bulb yet diana so sorry i can't help
but hope you get it sorted

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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Sat Feb 06, 2010 12:01 pm

Tubes need to be periodically replaced if they are used with plants - even if they 'still work' basically they degrade and certain frequencies are no longer produced - I believe 6 months is the guideline (based on 8 hours use a day) but if your plants are real fakes like mine - then im sure they wont mind - although there is a theoretical 'danger' from exhausted tubes and dodgy frequencies to humans and aquatic life.

My lights are barely on 8 mins a day - let alone hours so im not worried about it Very Happy

Speaking of lights and tanks - i was looking at my fishpod and thought that there is no real feasable way to change the lighting set up from the current 'built in to hood' rig - the lights are a bit bad in it at the best of times and the design is flawed (basically resulting in damp carpets due to condensation making its way to the wires and hinges ont he outside)

The only way round it would be to totally remove the hood and lighting system and have open top (which I dont like) - anyway - its also acrylic and im still paranoid about scratching it - so Im thinking about getting a Juwel or something 'simple' seeing as I have a good filtration etc already in place - I dont a full set up so to speak.

Having said that - Ive found myself looking into leopard geckos again Very Happy
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Diana
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Tue Feb 09, 2010 10:03 pm

Well this is really weird. I have now tried 3 different makes of light for the tank, 18" ones are obviously way too short, and yet the 24" just will not fit. They are about .5 or 1cm too long!

I cant understand it because i have changed the lights previously without any problems at all!

I cant have the tank lid off and use an exxternal light source because the betta will undoubtedly leap out and land on the floor.
I am thinking I am going to havr to get a couple of these so I can have the lights on - just to keep the plants happy!

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Aquarium-Light-Starter-Unit-24-Tube-18w-20w-Fish-Tank_W0QQitemZ110454836831QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_Pet_Supplies_Fish?hash=item19b79f0e5f

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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Mary
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 10:36 am

Very odd, Diana as IME most tank bulbs are standard lengths. scratch

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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 7:42 pm

I know Mary, I really dont understand it at all. There is definately a small difference in the length. I'll try and take a photo to show you all, because I am not sure I am not just going mad!

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 8:14 pm

hi diana
just wondering there isn't anything fast in the ends of the light fitting
are the slots where the two prongs go clear.

hope you get it sorted


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Diana
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 8:38 pm

OK, see I am not going daft (just yet Smile)

Here's the proof!

PICTURE 1

Old light is on the LEFT.




PICTURE 2

Old light on the bottom, both ends together



PICTURE 3

Other end, showing how much difference in length there is. It's not much, but just enough to stop it slotting into the light attachments in the lid




As I say, I have tried 3 different makes now and they have all been the same. I have even tried different voltage, both 18w and 20w 24" lights but they have all been just a wee bit too long.

I dont understand it but it does seem that for whatever reason these lights are getting made in a different siize, and as I said initially the only thing I can think of it that maybe the lid is mead for inches and the lights are cm, or vice versa.

It is a mystery!

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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Rich
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 9:44 pm

As said they ought to be a standard fitting

Wattage isnt really the issue - the length is

it would be like someone using T5.5 lights

My suggestion (if possible) is contact the store you got the tank from originally and kick a stink - DONT let them fob you off with 'contact the manufactere' as the l;aw goes - who ever you paid the cash is the person responsible for your woes - the transfer of cash for goods is a sealed contract of service (trading standards law)


The lights you get with ArcPod tanks also come seperately - there is a 9w and 11w version (I think) have a look here - given you want two of them as well.... it could work out to be expensive

http://www.charterhouse-aquatics.co.uk/catalog/arcadia-lighting-c-194_274.html

Im not sure how the hood 'works' (ie what make etc) your tank is but imho - the simplest method is to design and build your own simple hood and add your own lighting system - a couple of screw in connectors into a hood (be it acrylic or wooden) will do the job and be alot cheaper than (for example) a T-Bar or any lighting unit off the shop shelf.

If your wondering if the lights ive shown are much cop for plpants - the tubes are designed for plants Wink the have special blue n red spectrum output - the tubes on their own are 8 (although mine are 2years old) so that accounts for some of the cost.

I think your going to have to weigh up pro's n cons etc and get a new lighing system in all honesty but if i were i your shoes - id be bloomin annoyed to put it mildly.
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Wed Feb 10, 2010 10:54 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions Rich, It is so frustrating!

Right, the tank was obtained from an internet company now defunct, and was brought in from China. I have had it for over 2 years and have changed the lights a couple of times before without any problem which is the strange thing.

Although the suggestion of design and build a top may be a good one, I just cant see myself getting to gripa with that - I wouldnt know what the Hell I was doing, and the days of being prepared to have a go are long gone I'm afraid.

I think I have two options that are feasible for me.

Get a completely new tank - I wouldnt mind doing this if I could find a reasonable priced one with a cabinet - the current one is just on an old table, but it seems daft to do this as the tank itself is serviceable, and a new one would have to be assembled etc which would be a pain.

Get a couple of these. I use them on my main tank and have not had any problems with it although it is a bit unsightly.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Aquarium-Light-Starter-Unit-24-Tube-18w-20w-Fish-Tank_W0QQitemZ110454836831QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_Pet_Supplies_Fish?hash=item19b79f0e5f

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Thu Feb 11, 2010 10:47 am

OK - a simple hood would be a sheet of laminated board (like they use for cupboards etc these days) and you can bget it cut to measure at any decent wood merchant or DIY store

Depending on the weight of the lump of wood - you may want it cut in half either length or width way - length makes sense for strip lights (they would be mounted at the rear most section) and for the most part would remain in place all the time

the other section (the front) is your door for feeding and plants etc - so you can just add a small draw handle for something to hold on to.

Buy some tuble lamp mounts - measure where they go and predrill screw holes - then drill a hole for the electrical cable - wire it up - screw everything down (dont screw it up Very Happy) and hey presto.

It seems rather overkill to cough up for a new tank etc - unless you just fancy another tank anyway (any excuse) but given the time and agro - that for me would be last resort.

Those lights you linked too would be 'ugly' but of they do the job and its the most stress free and economical - then so be it.

You need to weigh up pros n cons of 40 for two lights against the other options tbh - I wouldnt think it should cost more than 15 max to DIY though
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Thu Feb 11, 2010 8:37 pm

Thanks for the suggestion Rich but I dont think the diy suggestion would work, unless I am not understanding the concept.

If I just got a laminated board and screwed lights to it then put it on top of the tank, the lights would be in the water. The current lid rest on top of the tank obviously but the lid of it is about 3 inches or so above the surface of the water.

I would have to build some sort of border arrangment for it to rest on, and it all startts to get a bit complicated then.

Loks like the ugly starter unit might be the thing, although they did have some very reasonable tanks in P@H.

It just seems that it is all goig wrong with the tanks at the moment with filters packing in, new one being too strong and then I get the eheim which I wont need at all if I got a new tank!

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Fri Feb 12, 2010 6:36 am

if the hood needs to be raised a little fromthe water surface - not a prblem - whilst woodcutter cuts wood (does what it says on the tin Very Happy) you can have him cut some edging runners - about 4" thick will be enough although 6" will allow your floating plants to escape frying fromo the lamps

then just scrwew into place - seal all the edges and sides of wood with aquarium safe silicon and jobs a goodun

or if your a lazy git - get a carpenter to do it for you or get the ugly ones (easiest option)

if you go for a new tank - get a simple clearseal one and a matching hood with light fighting - no need for new filters etc then Wink
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Fri Feb 12, 2010 6:49 am

what type of fitting have you got on the tank as their might be a way round it lol
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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:37 am

Are the light fittings solid or springy as sometimes there's a bit of give to them?? Wink

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PostSubject: Re: LIGHTING QUESTION   Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:39 pm

They are a bit springy Mary, but not enough to allow these damn light strips to be fitted

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TROPICAL TANK-Elite Tank - 207litres
6 Harlequin Rasboras, 5 Emerald Eye Rasboras, 10 Cherry Barbs, 2 Bristlenose Plecs, 2 Panda Corys. 4 Dwarf Chain Loaches.

ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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