Dendroboard banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
177 Posts
You might want to go for a 26 watt if your viv is tall. I'm not sure what the dimensions of a 55 are...

Also will depend on how you are planting and how much light you want to reach the "floor."

Frogs don't need it to be that bright, your plants might..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts
Im in the middle of setting up a 55 gallon vertical. Would one of these light on the top, in a reptile dome light be enough lighting. Thanks
http://www.amazon.com/89091-15-Watt...5MK0/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1329081573&sr=8-6
Not even close. That tiny little 15 watt bulb will barely suffice for a 10 gallon vert. If you look at the rough rule of thumb being 2 watts per gallon, and you are doing a 55, you need closer to 100 watts. You would have less that 1/3 of a watt per gallon.
To top it off, if you are doing it as a vert, you need to punch 4 feet deep. Maybe a couple of 55 to 65 watt pc bulbs would cut it. Some GOOD Led's might be the best choice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
177 Posts
Doug,

Is the 2 watts/gallon based on a stadard incandesent?

A 26 watt CFL is comparitive to a 100 watt incandescent. (how comparable is debatable) I'm just curious...

To the OP, with a tank that deep, I know i woud have to do some trial and error. Others, like Pumilo, may be able to save you some errors as they have more experience...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
841 Posts
it all depends on what plants you want to grow and where you want them. as pumilo said to punch enough light down almost 4 feet to the floor of that viv you willl need alot more light. a good diy led with 30 degree or tighter optics would do the job. if you use cree xml you would probably need something like 10 to 12 emitters. 55 verts have got to be one of the most challenging shapes to adequately light.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts
2 watts as a "rule of thumb" is going to be a very rough starting point. It's a pretty old guideline and is probably based on standard fluorescents. Obviously it will vary a good bit depending on type of light. Nothing is based on incandescent though, as incandescent lights really are not used for plant growth. It will vary quite a bit depending on the depth of the viv, too, and of course with what plants you want to grow.
I have a row 4 vivs being lit with a 4 foot, T12 shop light. It is barely enough for plant growth. I keep it sitting directly on the top of the vivs to take advantage of the limited light. These are actually running on less that a watt per gallon.
I have a row 2-40 gallon vivs under a 4 foot, T8 shop light. T8s are a little more efficient. These guys are still just under a watt per gallon but the better T8's are giving me better plant growth.
I have a row of 4-25 gallon vivs under a 4 foot T5 HO light with top of the line TED reflectors. I'm pretty happy with the light they are getting. We are still barely over one watt per gallon but the efficiency of the T5s is much better and a really good reflector makes a world of difference.
I use very few light loving broms and really high light plants so this has been working for me so far but the T12s really have to go. Future plans include upgrades to either T5's or LEDs as I get into higher demand plants.

But when you get into punching 4 feet down, lighting can be a different story. Standing a 55 on it's end means you only have an 18" surface to put bulbs over. The shorter the fluorescent bulb, the less efficient and bright it becomes. Therefor, my personal guideline is that if you can't fit at least a 2 foot bulb in, T5's may not be the best choice. For this reason, I opted to go with Power Compact Fluorescent for my 75 gallon 3 foot build. (link to viv http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/members-frogs-vivariums/76581-pumilos-75-corner-viv.html ) (Link to lighting system http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/parts-construction/77561-diy-rain-gutter-pc-lights.html) I used 2-65watt compact fluorescent bulbs, putting us at close to 2 watts per gallon. I used some higher light plants for this build and additionally, had to punch 3 feet down. Light on the viv seems to be serviceable for now. Light levels at the bottom are low but most of the plants are wall mounted. Especially at the back of the viv, on the bottom, light level is very lacking. I will most likely need to supplement this with an LED spotlight if I want to see the few plants back there do well.

I just took a 26 watt spiral, compact fluorescent bulb and set it over a 10 gallon vert. To my eye, the light seems adequate. I moved the same bulb (with a reflector of course) over to a 20 gallon vert (2 feet tall) and I find the light very lacking. I think growth would be limited to very low light plants. To take an even smaller bulb than this, and put it over a 4 foot tall viv, I don't think anything would grow or even survive for long, more than half way down the viv. You may be able to grow easy plants like pothos and creeping fig in the top third of the viv.

In summary, "rule of thumb" is an extremely rough guideline that can vary quite a bit depending on type of light, reflector used, plants grown, and the depth of the viv. Hopefully the examples I gave may be a little more helpful.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ckays

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Would a 4 foot shop light on the side be better, Im trying not to spend too much on lighting. Any suggestions for what LEDs to use.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
177 Posts
If you are trying to keep cost down then get some good wattage CFLs and do one of two things:

Minimal "Wall plantings" that would detract from light reaching the floor.

Use low light plants near the floor.

The lighitng is primarily for plants so plant around your lgihing...

GO CUSE!! We'll be seein you ACC boys soon...:cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts
You could run a shop light along the side but the plants may look a bit "off" as they will try to orient their leaves and their new directional growth, towards the light. So leaves that would normally be more or less horizontal, could re-orient themselves more vertically.
If you go that route, you can get an inexpensive, white, T8, shop light from Lowe's or Home Depot for $20 to $30 and 65K bulbs from there for about $8 each.

Talk to Todd at Light Your Reptiles concerning LED recommendations.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Would led light cost much more. And are there any plants that grow well in ambient light. I want to cover the back in creeping fig so the back wont need to Much light and on the sides I don't know what plants I'm going to plant.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts
LEDs would cost more. Todd could tell you what a setup appropriate for your viv would run.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
552 Posts
Would led light cost much more. And are there any plants that grow well in ambient light. I want to cover the back in creeping fig so the back wont need to Much light and on the sides I don't know what plants I'm going to plant.
You're not going to find a ton of good viv plants that do well at ambient light... pothos comes to mind but there are many people much more knowledgeable about plants than I am.

My ideal set up for a 55 vert would be some of the jungle LEDs from lightyourreptiles or similar with one or two LED spots, probably situated towards the front edge of the top of the tank with a slight angle pointing backwards to penetrate to the lower wall plants and the floor. Low cost (good) lighting is hard to do with a 55 vert like someone else said. It's definitely one of the set ups I want to build though!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
74 Posts
I used a outdoor floodlight that is on a vert I wired for a 3 prong and it put out about 65 watt but it's lumen is about 4000 is what it said. I got it from lowes in the outside lighting section and is working great very bright and compact is also 6500 kelvin and replacement bulbs are 10 bucks. Been using it for about 3 months and the plants are growing great!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts
I used a outdoor floodlight that is on a vert I wired for a 3 prong and it put out about 65 watt but it's lumen is about 4000 is what it said. I got it from lowes in the outside lighting section and is working great very bright and compact is also 6500 kelvin and replacement bulbs are 10 bucks. Been using it for about 3 months and the plants are growing great!
That sounds like their 65K compact fluorescent floodlight. It probably has a quad tube design but the tubes are all interconnected, right? That's a decent, cheap light. It might be enough, by itself, for your 55 if you aren't growing a lot of high light plants. Any broms you would want to mount high up in the viv.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Ill try that, I know I want to grow some type of bamboo if it is vivarium safe, and pothos. Any chance you could post a link, would it work in a dome light and does it give off much heat.
Thanks and sorry about all the questions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,415 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
713 Posts
There are species of ferns that quite enjoy indirect, low lighting and perfer slight shading from bright lighting. Selaginella is the genus you should research as a starting point. Personally, I love ferns. I want more of them. :rolleyes:

Begonias, I believe, perfer indirect medium to low lighting depending on the species. Research Begonias and Peperomias.

Jessica

Edit: A single dome lamp will not work for a 55 vert. Even low light plants have limits.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top