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Thread: Homemade LED fixture

  1. #1
    Lotsa blue bluemax's Avatar
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    Homemade LED fixture






    While upgrading my petiolaris terrarium I was confronted with the question of what was I going to do for lighting? This is what I came up with. The components were mostly purchased from Home Depot - egg crate grating, E27 (screw-in type) sockets and standard lamp cord and a plug. In addition the reflectors are from disposable muffin tins and the actual LED lamps I directly imported from China in cool-white and warm-white spectra from here: http://www.lemonbest.com/lemonbest-w...iness-lighting The total cost of parts for the complete unit was about $75 US.

    I've been running it at full, though it is dimmable, for about 2 months now and at a stated 120 watt rating it seems easily bright enough while providing a pleasing light quality for viewing the plants. My Drosera falconeri has gone from a greenish-red to a beet red so I gather the colors of the lamps are acceptable to the plants. All of them seem to be growing normally and with good color. The lamps were sold as spot lights and you can see from the photo of the completed terrarium that they caused bright and dark spots on the floor of the tank. I removed the lenses and they became flood lights with much better mixing of light and coverage. This also allows for much better cooling of the LEDs. There are holes punched in the foil reflectors cut from the muffin tins and this allows for good airflow through the lamps. The legs are styrofoam cut from packing material and these are possible because the entire unit is very light. So far, so good.
    - Mark

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    LuluMegan's Avatar
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    How long have you had this setup going? I was looking into LEDs too but have been worried because the icps website said they're not as good as t5s. They seem to be working for you if your falconeri really colored up

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    Lotsa blue bluemax's Avatar
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    So far it's been about 8 weeks. Probably long enough to get a feel for how the spectrum of the lamps works with the plants but not long enough to call it all an unqualified success. I was hoping that the LEDs would radiate less heat into the closed tank than the previous T5 florescent lights did but that doesn't seem to be the case. This doesn't really matter for my uses but for cooler-growing plants it might.
    - Mark

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    sflynn's Avatar
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    Nice set-up, I need to make something similar for my petiolaris Drosera during the winter. What size is that tank, just wondering? Thanks!

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    Lotsa blue bluemax's Avatar
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    Thanks. It is a 29 gallon tank and the dimensions are approx. 30"L x 19"H x 12"W.
    - Mark

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