1 or 2 halides over a 4 - 5 foot tank?

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Gonzo, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    So I'm going to be restricted to a 4 or 5 foot long tank and somewhere around the 120 - 150 gallon range. So the depth can range. I'd be keeping LPS, some monti's, and a few (crocea + maxima) clams. My question is, can I get away with one 250w MH in the middle with two 48" Reef Brite strips, or would I need to run two 250 MH's (maybe two 150's?)

    Anyone had experience with this?

    Oh, and Jess, I still want to see your all LED tank. How far are you from SF?
     
  2. r0ck0

    r0ck0 Guest

    Put one 250w on a rail and run it back and forth. Neptune does this as well as the tank at pacific garden supply. Seems to be good as it reduces electricity and heat. Corals don't seem to mind and the light change is not visually disturbing on a shorter tank like 4'.

    http://www.lightrail3.com/
     
  3. eldiablosrt8

    eldiablosrt8 Sponsor

    im about 40 minutes south SE of SF... im out on 580 before the altamont in livermore

    im home almost 24/7 just holla at me

    IMO i would stick to doing T5 if you wanna save money and heat/electricity i would do 6 t5 and 1 reefbrite for the shimmer

    as long as you dont try sps you should be ok
     
  4. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    I opened the light rail site but nothing happens when I click on any of the aquarium links. Hmm...

    Jess - good deal, thanks!
     
  5. sfboarders

    sfboarders Guest

    LA also has their lights on motorized rails. Those aquarium links don't work.

    Putting the rail idea as an option on my next tank myself. :)
     
  6. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    I like the motorized rails. It's not that expensive either at about $150 bucks.

    I'm assuming if LA and Neptune does it, there is no adverse effect on corals? I guess I'd be concerned on the light fading as it moved across the tank, but I don't know how fast these things go so is that what you mean (John) by the light change being non-noticable?
     
  7. r0ck0

    r0ck0 Guest

    http://www.lightrail3.com/garden/why.php

    The links for gardening work and the principle is the same.
     
  8. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    They've been used for over 10 years in coral farms. First non hydro use I saw of them was at Bob Mankin's coral farm back in 98.

    Speed depends on what unit you buy... most are pretty damn slow. A snail could get out of the way ;)
     
  9. sfboarders

    sfboarders Guest


    In natural life sun comes and goes (clouds for example). I don't think corals would be effected. You'd want it to go slow.
     
  10. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    The sun and a lamp are so far removed there is no direct comparison. The issue with moving a lamp is the moving of the actual intensity. The suns movement is over a much longer period. But the movement is so minimal on a 4' track it's not much of a change in PAR for the most part. If you use a LAIII you'll only get like a 20" movement, or less if you stick the ends further in on the track.
     
  11. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Also note when you move a lamp it doesn't behave anything like the sun as the Sun will hit at different angles to the waters surface and refract in different ways. where as a lamp is always top down.

    I have wondered if that ever would play an effect on coral growth.
     
  12. anathema

    anathema Supporting Member

    I have one single halide over a 3' tank and I'm really disliking it.

    Disliking it so much I'm buying a second halide to spread the light out and will be timing them so only one is on at a time.

    One side of the corals grows and colors up nicely, the other side doesn't. Not that pretty to look at.
     
  13. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    So if I did the motorized track, I would only need one 250watt correct? However, if I went stationary, then I should probably go two 150w?
     
  14. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    If you're buying another halide, keeping one of them on at a time, and hating the way a single light looks, then why not keep them both on at the same time? Or are you saying you hate the way your tank corals are growing?
     
  15. i would go with two 250's. i ran three 250's over a 180 gal that was 24'' deep and everything did fine. clams, sps, lps, anemones, etc. ....now that i down graded to a 50 cube (24''x24''x20'') thats only 18'' deep (waterline to sand) with one 150w things arnt as happy...i'll be upgrading soon to a 250 pendant
     
  16. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    I'm doing 2x 250's over a 4x2x2 (plus 2x 48" actinic RB LED strips)
     
  17. CookieJar

    CookieJar Guest

    I'd lean towards 2 MH as well, a rail could work from a coral perspective but the tank will never be 100% lite up- there will always be dark spots, so from a viewer's perspective it could be iffy. All depends on your preference & type of corals.
     
  18. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Agree with cookiejar. I have a 4x2x2 with 2x150hqi and 1 reefbrite 48" actinic. I will someday buy a second and upgrade to 2x250. The big point is what you will want in the tank. Under the 150's I have my sps as high as I can get them. Lps does fine at the bottom. I think using good reflectors with a large footprint is important! My coralife hqi has very small footprint reflectors. (sad face)
     
  19. Gonzo

    Gonzo Guest

    Good deal - thanks all.
     
  20. JAR

    JAR Supporting Member

    2X250 SE MH on a mover over my 215 gallon 6' tank and I am very happy. I also run 2x54w t5 for actinic supplementation.
     

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