Lighting Help for Newbies (:

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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby Sammimic » Fri May 10, 2019 2:54 am

Ok I’m back. The Reptisun 10.0 T8 bulb arrived shattered. Since I’ve ordered it someone has told me that a 10.0 T5 would be better to use. So now I’m on the hunt for that cheap t5 fixture. I can not find it. I’m in the US. Anyone have a link for it? I see this one on amazon

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00AKKUB ... JUR2&psc=1

And then this light

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00AQU8H ... 1QXE&psc=1

However, it would be great to find that cheap fixture everyone’s talking about. Does anyone have s link?

If I mount this inside the tank (my tank is 4 feet by 18 in wide by 21 in high) will it be too much for the dragon?
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby CooperDragon » Fri May 10, 2019 10:25 am

The fixture you linked to is a good one and is a good fit for the bulb. I would use that combination. Reflector quality makes a big difference in output so it's worth the investment. It should sit about 12'' above the main basking area for best results.
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby Sammimic » Fri May 10, 2019 10:30 am

CooperDragon wrote:The fixture you linked to is a good one and is a good fit for the bulb. I would use that combination. Reflector quality makes a big difference in output so it's worth the investment. It should sit about 12'' above the main basking area for best results.


Ok great thanks. So his basking area would be pretty low. You think this is a better option than getting a hood on top? I have equal fears of ‘frying’ my dragon as well as not having them get enough uvb.
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby CooperDragon » Fri May 10, 2019 10:35 am

Those are good for hanging since they have clips on the top for a wire. I'm not certain if that one sits flat (with the reflector extending beyond the bulb) but it could be mounted above the tank too. If you do that, a screen top will intercept some of the UVB so you'll want it to be about 10'' above the main basking area instead of 12-14''
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby claudiusx » Fri May 10, 2019 11:57 am

Additionally you can use a fixture without a reflector such as this (it's what I am using currently in my tanks)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AKKULI6/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

But if it's going to still be too close to your dragon at the basking area, the t8 that you already ordered would be better. You could mount the t8 inside the tank and still have your basking area.

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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby chesterbeardie818 » Sun Jun 16, 2019 12:29 pm

Hi guys, I just switched my bearded dragon into a new tank and just wanted to ask advice on the best lighting for him as I noticed he doesn’t seem too happy with it. He eats great and is very active but is a little moody which is not like him. He’s in a Zoo Med Large Low 36x18x12. I have a Zilla Desert 50 T8 UVB light which I think might be bad for him? It sits on a mesh screen but I’m trying to find a way to put it inside his tank. And then his basking bulb is a Zoo Med 100 watt Instense Basking Spot Bulb.
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby MrSpectrum » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:03 am

First-time Poster here.

Background:
Building an enclosure (60"W x 24"D x ~25"H) from 3/4" (18mm) Baltic Birch. I spent quite a few hours trying to find details about the "legendary" (ephemeral?) CrossFire Enclosure, but alas, every link I chased--here and on google--was expired, so I designed one from scratch after reviewing a dozen or so videos & commercial designs. I didn't care much for having lighting fixtures on top of the enclosure, so I designed it with an 8" compartment above the 25" main enclosure to house the electrical/lighting/wiring.

UV-B will be provided by a recessed 46/48" T5 fluorescent fixture.
Basking will be provided via a recessed eyeball (aimable) fixture.

Now for the lighting questions...
I've looked in this thread and elsewhere, but like the Crossfire Enclosure, many/most links are expired, so I'm guessing the information may be out of date as well(?)

I'm tentatively considering a Reptisun fixture for the 48" UV-B, but am looking for/willing to consider better alternatives. I looked up the Sunblaster fixture referred to in previous recent posts, but currently know of no others that come with an integral reflector (a "must" from my reading). What concerns me about these 2 fixtures is some of the negative feedback on Amazon. Does anyone here have any opinions on these 2 fixtures (relative to each other) or other fixtures I should be considering?

My second question is indirectly related to lighting--ventilation. Ventilation vents come in several sizes; is there some standard size (or equation) people are using in order to keep their enclosures from overheating due to (primarily) basking lights?

Thanks.
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby claudiusx » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:13 am

Hi there, lots of us use the sunblaster fixture. However, for your size tank I'd personally go with the next size down t5, which is the 34" I believe. That way you can better have a gradient of uvb down to 0 on the cool end.

So is the uv going to be mounted at the top of the 24, or the 24 + 8?

You want to aim for around 15"~ for t5s to the basking surface. Although 12 to 18 is suitable too. And with a big tank like yours you might just want to allow that range so your dragon can choose the exposure it wants.

As far as ventilation, it's pretty much just guesswork. It depends on the temps in your house really. But I just use the 3x12 I believe, soffet covers for ventilation in mine. But you can use anything you find really.

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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby MrSpectrum » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:50 am

Hi Brandon,

Thanks for the quick response. From what I've been reading, 46/48 is the recommended size for a 60" wide enclosure, but I'll certainly consider your suggestion. I figured the 25" height (25" from floor to bottom of fixture) would provide sufficient gradient, with various height climbing structures.

The "big" tank is sort of circumstantial. I don't have a table saw, so I paid a fellow who used to do some work for me to cut the plywood. Baltic Birch comes in 60" x 60" sheets, and was cheaper (and better in other respects) than 8' sheets, and it didn't make sense to me to cut it down to 48" and waste the rest, hence 60". :)

House temp is 70-74F, depending on season. I'm more concerned with not baking the l'il monster. :lol:

EDIT: The 8" on top came from running down to a local pet chain and measuring the height of a dome fixture (worst-case scenario). One of those will just fit into an 8"H space. :wink:
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby claudiusx » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:56 am

1/2 to 3/4 of the tanks span is what is generally recommended. I prefer half, which is why I mentioned that's what I'd personally do but both work. With your tank being taller, either will work fine! :)

Typically when they want to cool off, they would escape to shade areas where it's not only cooler, but has low to no uvb. UVB spanning half the tank allows the cool end to be closer to this low to 0 UVI easier than if the tube spanned most of the tank.

But like I said, it's not a make or break type of deal. I've done it both ways and I ended up switching out my longer ones for some shorter tubes.
You will see what works best for you and your situation. There are lots of "right" ways to do things :)

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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby MrSpectrum » Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:17 am

claudiusx wrote:1/2 to 3/4 of the tanks span is what is generally recommended.


Yup, that's what I read too. I tend to overdesign, so 3/4 of a 48" enclosure would be 36".
Another source I read/saw said the UV tube should be 1 foot shorter than the enclosure, which would be 48" in a 60" box. That's how/where I got that size.

Like you say, it's not a deal-breaker. When I started planning this thing, it was because the price of commercial enclosures seemed awfully high, and a DIY would save some money (silly me). Over time, it's turning into the Taj-Ma-freakin-hal for beardies, but I'm sure I'm not the first to find that out! :lol:
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Re: Lighting Help for Newbies (:

Postby claudiusx » Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:31 am

Yeah I know what you mean! The first enclosure I built cost a lot more than I was expecting. Partially do to silly mistakes or design flaws. But the more I build, the better they get lol! Lots of things you dont even think about until you actually start building one. I have a double stacked 4x2x2 I'm building right now and doing it this way is saving me a lot more than other options out there.

Good luck with your build, you should start a thread in the diy section. We need more diyers in there! Lol.

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