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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I Just Picked Up A 78 Gal Salt Water Tank That Is 29 In Deep And 37 In Long. In The Hood Are Two 36 In T-12 Super Actinic R's And One 175w 20000k Coralife Mh Running Off Of A Aro Ballast. I Have It All Set Up And For One It Seams Realy Blue And For Two Dose Not Look To Be Very Brite. My Question Is Will This Work For Corals And If Not Any Info Would Be Great.
 

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hmmm... the 20kK bulbs are usually indicated for either deep water corals or used in combo with some other supplemental lighting. When used in taks set up for this purpose, they are awesome, but low on PAR, esp the Coralife bulbs when compared to other temp bulbs. 175 watts is a little low for a 29" deep tank, and may have other issues besides color for penetration into such a deep tank when used as a bare bottomed system. What is your intended use for the set up?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My Intended Use Is To Have Corals And Maby Clams But I Could Live With Out The Clams For Now. I Need To Work With The Light System That I Have For Now.no Money To Change Set Up, But I Could Change Bulbs If Needed
 

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JASONWM64 said:
My Intended Use Is To Have Corals And Maby Clams But I Could Live With Out The Clams For Now. I Need To Work With The Light System That I Have For Now.no Money To Change Set Up, But I Could Change Bulbs If Needed
For the change you need to make, it will require a new ballast, almost like changing the entire lighting setup... For a tank that deep with the goals you mention, minimally 250 watt 10kK bulbs, possibly may need 400 watt bulbs for the intensity, but at a shorter duration (photoperiod) or possibly breaking the photoperiod into two segments (or a tracking light system, but that is mucho mas dinero).


An alternative would be to place enough rock in the tank to build a flat plateau at about 15 inches from the surface for your stonies and clams, go BB, and use the lower levels of the tank as a settling chamber area for the detrital snow that forms. This ideally would be live rock, but couls be initially constructed out of eggcrate to provide a stable area for corals and clams while still allowing for detrital settling and current perfusion. This can be constructed for easy siphoning of detritus, the clam will consume excess nitrates as they form, and you can concentrate your circulation in the higher areas of the tank to reduce the cost of extra pumps and equipment needed for whole tank circulation.


This would be a ghetto setup, but will get you by cheaply for now. Your ideal will still be providing total tank flow, strong penetrating light, and oligotropic conditions for the water column with high equimolar supplementation of calcium and alkalinity for what you want to keep in your system.


This will require:
  • Strong 400 watt lighting or 250 watt with DE bulbs
  • In-system CLS or Tunze-type Stream applications
  • Good return pump circulation and possibly a sump with locations for reactors and skimmers
  • Strong high-efficiency skimmers, and potentially strong pressure-rated pumps to drive them
  • Calcium reactors and the regulators, controllers, tanks and support systems needed to run and evaluate them
  • Miscellaneous support items ( like RO/DI, etc., depending on how technical you want to get)
You don't need all the superwhizbang items that many folks suggest, but these are the minimum requirements to successfully keep those highly-colored Acroporid spp. corals and quickly growing and thriving clams with a minimum investment of personal time. There are other means of doing the same, but they become very expensive in terms of time invested, sometimes to the point that you're babysitting the tank rather than enjoying it (and a personal life outside the fishroom
)


Lots to consider, HTH.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So If I Change My 175 20000k Mh To A 175 10000k Mh And Leave The To Actinic T-12 And Put The Higer Light Corals To The Top And The Lower Light Coral Lower I Will Be Good?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank You Why Didnt Anyone Tell Me That In The First Place. Now What If I Left The 20000k Mh And Replaced The Two T-12 Actinic With 10000ks Being That The Tank Is So Deep?
 

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Probably be better with the 10K MH and flourec actinic as the MH will have better intensity.
 

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I think for the budget thing now just put a 10K MH in and keep the actinics.

Eventually I'd get 2-250 MH and keep the actinics. You should be good to go and not break the bank.

If you plan on keeping few SPS or clams probably would be ok with just one more 175w. Just keep high light guys near the top!
 

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You could do one 400w as well. Just better light spread with 2 bulbs on a 37" wide tank! But can do that as well.

Mostly preference!
 

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JASONWM64 said:
So If I Change My 175 20000k Mh To A 175 10000k Mh And Leave The (two) Actinic T-12 And Put The Higher Light Corals To The Top And The Lower Light Coral Lower, I Will Be Good?
This should make a big difference, remember that you are going to have to replace the ballast if you change wattages on your MH bulbs. Icecap will rewire your ballasts if they are Icecap brand ballasts (for a small fee plus shipping), otherwise you'll have to buy/swap for new ones. I am not familiar with the PAR values on the 175 watt 10kK bulbs, you'll probbly want to go to Sanjay's site to evaluate the different 175 watt alternatives there in reference to their PAR values.

See this link for Sanjay's Reef lighting page , and check the resources and Doug McIntyre's page for www.reeftanklighting.com

HTH
 

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Typically the Higher the K the more blue and less PAR.
 

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higher K rating (also means "the higher the temperature of the bulb color") means a bluer bulb, This mimics the light availiable at greater depths in the ocean, but has nothing to do with the overall ability of a particular bulb to penetrate water. ASll colors awre attenuated as water depth increases, but cooler temps light (lower kelvin rating) is absorbed at more shallow depths than the higher temp (higher kelvin rating) colors. Wattge is a better indicator of the abiity to penetrat an equal depth of water for different electric bulb sources of light, and we are only interested in the Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) values for a bulb in a very narrow range of wavelengths for corals. See Sanjay's site for a more thorough explaination of this concept, he goes into great detail on the subject.

HTH
 
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