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Thread: Santa Monica 200?

  1. #1

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    Santa Monica 200?

    I have a 175 gal bow front tank and I am contemplating copying the SM100 design but increasing the height to get double the screen area. I only have room for one SM100, but I have plenty of vertical room above my DT. This way, the flow characteristics can stay the same and I won't have to deal with 2 SM100's. I can divert the return flow to feed the ATS and save on adding a pump. I will probably keep some of the return jets bypassing the ATS and valve them for controlling the amount of flow into the ATS.

    I am considering using the CurrentUSA Nova Extreme 1120 light fixture with 4 T5HO tubes, but I am concerned whether the spacing of the T5 tubes are too close together. From what I gathered, the T5 tubes are spaced at 1.5" centers. So, in the existing SM100 using the 1124 with 2 tubes, there is 3" height of light shining on 5" of screen. For the this design using the 4 tube 1120, there will be 6" of light shining on 10" of screen. In the first case, the reduced light region is 1" on each side whereas in the second case, it is 2" on each side. I am guessing also that the center region of the screen will get more light form the 4 tubes than 2 tubes since the distance from the tubes to the screen stays the same.

    Is this something I need to be concerned about? Santa Monica, do you have any plans to offer a model like this?

  2. #2
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    If you do like I did and build your own using TEK-II reflectors, those are 3" wide each, but you get excellent light spread and they work great. If you built a box for a bank of 24" lamps on either side, you could make a 20" wide screen approximately 12" tall with 3 lamps on each side and that would be plenty for a 175. You could probably get away with 2 lamps per side and a little wider spacing and a slightly smaller screen, say 20" by 9" or 10" and with the TEK-II reflectors you'd still get plenty of light.

    I chose the TEK-II reflectors because they're supposed to be highly efficient, something like 28 bends and supposedly this increases the usable lumens by 200%, and I'd have to say they're right.


  3. #3

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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    Great. Thanks for sharing this. Fewer lamps saves power.

    Can you share more details about this setup? Questions I have:

    1. What lamps are you using here? Don't recognize those round sockets. Don't look like T5 sockets.
    2. Is there no enclosure over the reflectors, or you simply have clips to attach the reflectors to the lamps? I guess for placement above the DT, I'd better contain the light leakage with an enclosure. But I like the open structure for its simplicity and unrestricted airflow. Are you not concerned the the leaked light will cause algae to slowly grow everywhere? I have used black paint to control light leakage successfully before, such as on the cover over the overflow so I don't get algae growing there.
    3. What thickness plastic did you use between the lights and the screen? If it is 1/16", you must have laminate a thicker frame like SM100.
    4. I see that you have 2 exit pipes. If this is a 24" system for 700 gph, what size are these pipes? 1"?
    5. I see that these pipes go into the water and then two 90 degree bends to shoot the water to the surface. I guess this is for additional aeration? Doesn't the screen provide plenty already?
    6. What is that sloping pipes at the back? Just curious.
    7. The union feeding the pipe with the screen comes from a tee. Where is that tee feeding upwards to? Just curious again.

  4. #4
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    I am concerned whether the spacing of the T5 tubes are too close together.
    They cannot be too close. If you are going to build it yourself, 1" apart for high filtering, 2" apart max, for medium filtering.

    For the this design using the 4 tube 1120, there will be 6" of light shining on 10" of screen
    Reduce it to 8"

    I am guessing also that the center region of the screen will get more light form the 4 tubes than 2 tubes since the distance from the tubes to the screen stays the same.
    Not sure what you mean, but the only screen that gets any meaningful light is within 1" of a bulb. At 2", the power falls off too much, although it looks the same to the eye.

    do you have any plans to offer a model like this?
    Not yet; it's much better, and about the same cost, to have too smaller units than one bigger one.

  5. #5
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    1. What lamps are you using here? Don't recognize those round sockets. Don't look like T5 sockets.
    T5HO Bloom bulbs $4/ea in 8 pack http://www.aghydroponics.com/T5-2Ft-Gro ... l24830.htm

    Ice Cap T5HO standard sockets

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    2. Is there no enclosure over the reflectors, or you simply have clips to attach the reflectors to the lamps? I guess for placement above the DT, I'd better contain the light leakage with an enclosure. But I like the open structure for its simplicity and unrestricted airflow. Are you not concerned the the leaked light will cause algae to slowly grow everywhere? I have used black paint to control light leakage successfully before, such as on the cover over the overflow so I don't get algae growing there.
    Yes TEK-II reflectors with lamp clips. I have a new design that will reduce the light bleed, but yes I get a little algae in the sump (not much, actually)

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    3. What thickness plastic did you use between the lights and the screen? If it is 1/16", you must have laminate a thicker frame like SM100.
    Everything is 1/4"

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    4. I see that you have 2 exit pipes. If this is a 24" system for 700 gph, what size are these pipes? 1"?
    It was a design issue. Originally one 1" pipe but the water was right up to the top of the front cover (which is removable). I had to add the second drain to keep the water level down in the box. New design has a separate box for the screen.

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    5. I see that these pipes go into the water and then two 90 degree bends to shoot the water to the surface. I guess this is for additional aeration? Doesn't the screen provide plenty already?
    No on aeration. Was trying to reduce splash/microbubbles. Yet another design error. The drains 'flush' like a standpipe and bubbles blow out every couple seconds. Working on a modification / bubble stopper

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    6. What is that sloping pipes at the back? Just curious.
    That was originally an emergency overflow in case of a clog. I capped it off as it was not needed. Pressure needs to build in the pipe and force it through the screen. Unless something gets into the pipe from the DT, the tube cannot clog, whatever it is would get pushed to the end of the tube. Anything that sticks in the tube before the screen would cause a problem in any system, ATS or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by nanowiz
    7. The union feeding the pipe with the screen comes from a tee. Where is that tee feeding upwards to? Just curious again.
    The tee was going up and over to the emergency overflow. See comment above.

  6. #6
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    Also SM I'm kind of confused about your response regarding light spacing. Are you saying that you want to have the distance between the lamp spacing to be 1", or the lamp distance from the screen? Obviously in a purchased fixture, you can't change the lamp spacing.

    Also I'm sort of confused about the way this was originally described

    "3" height of light shining on 5" of screen"

    What does that mean, I'm trying to picture it.

  7. #7
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    Purchased lights are about 1.5" between bulbs. This is good. But as you move into 3" or more between bulbs, the middle sections don't get the power they need. This shows up when the bulbs weaken, or when nutrients go up... The area between won't be green. Also, at 3", it's just simply half the power of 1.5".

    And having all the bulbs 1" from the screen give strong power; it really drops off as go past 2" from the screen. It's assumed that there will be an acrylic separator, so this will be reducing the power a bit.

    A 5" high screen, with 3" of bulbs, would have 1" at top and bottom with no bulb in fron of it.

  8. #8

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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    So, using the TEK II reflectors, what distance do you recommend for screen to lamp surface? Still 1" with the 1/4" plexi in between?

    If I go for 20"x12" screen using 3 lamps each side, that is (20x12)/(24Wx3)=3.67 sq.in./watt which is much less watts than your guideline of 2 sq.in./watt. Is that OK with this reflector?

    How is the algae growing on the screen in your setup? Can you share some pics?

    BTW, is there any difference between polycarbonate v.s. acrylic as far as light reduction goes? Acrylic will probably last longer and not turn yellow. Any experience with that?

  9. #9

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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    SM, have you looked at the IceCap reflectors? http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.co...3665&subref=AA These are 2.5" wide instead of the 3.5" in the TEK II reflectors. So, I can place 4 of these per side over the 10" height. Perhaps that will give more uniform light distribution and closer to the 2 sq.in./watt value?

  10. #10
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    Re: Santa Monica 200?

    So, using the TEK II reflectors, what distance do you recommend for screen to lamp surface? Still 1" with the 1/4" plexi in between?
    Max 1.5" You just need to be able to reach in to clean the glass.

    If I go for 20"x12" screen using 3 lamps each side
    This would be a low power T5 setup.

    3.67 sq.in./watt which is much less watts than your guideline of 2 sq.in./watt. Is that OK with this reflector?
    2 per watt is for medium filtering. 1 per watt is high. All numbers are with reflectors. Remember that with T5 units, we are no longer just seeing if scrubbers work; instead you are trying to maximize filtering in the smallest space. Once you go to the trouble of T5 bulbs, it's easy to get very high filtering, much more than with CFL.

    How is the algae growing on the screen in your setup? Can you share some pics?
    If you mean me, look at the bottom of this page:
    viewtopic.php?f=2&t=502

    ...it's not always this much; only when I feed the eel a lot.

    is there any difference between polycarbonate v.s. acrylic as far as light reduction goes? Acrylic will probably last longer and not turn yellow. Any experience with that?
    Don't know.

    These are 2.5" wide instead of the 3.5" in the TEK II reflectors. So, I can place 4 of these per side over the 10" height. Perhaps that will give more uniform light distribution and closer to the 2 sq.in./watt value?
    Yes.

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