let there be light

All right, after a variety of issues, the LEDs and dimmer have been finally installed. Actually, only one of the two LED strings is now hooked up to the dimmer, as the other potentiometer caught fire when testing it out. Although RapidLed’s staff was very helpful responding to questions, it was a right pain to get this done and if you are thinking of starting a marine tank: go with a custom tank and buy off-the-shelf LEDs and do not bother with a ‘plug-and-play‘ aquarium with fluorescent bulbs or a LED retrofit kit! (I will post a list of recommendations based on my own experiences for starting a native tank some time …)

IMG_9850Anyway, it is all done now; one dimmable string with 12 white LEDs and one with 9 (if I remember correctly) white ones + 6 Royal Blues. The LEDs should have worked with the inbuilt timer but (at the moment) they don’t. This also means that the four inbuilt blue (moonlight) LEDs do not work at night, which is a shame. A very nice shimmer in the water; quite blueish, but I hope to get a replacement potentiometer soon so I can play around with the colour.

IMG_0430I have put in sand instead of gravel which looks nicer. I have put in some Wireweed to provide some competition for algae now the light are back on (I could not resist sticking in some red seaweeds I found). Some cushion starts and topshells were left, but with the chiller and LEDs in place it is time to get properly get back to collecting animals and seaweeds. Marius has raised the bar pretty high on his Irish Rockpool Aquarium blog, so let’s see how it goes!

3 thoughts on “let there be light

  1. Hurray the sun is shining in your tank 🙂 That top picture looks like there was a lot of headscratching involved 😉 Really looking forward on your new setup especially in terms of red seaweed and the blue lights. All my attempts with daylight only with red seaweed have failed so far unfortunately. Well done, just the right time now to get started again for summer.

    • Yeah it was a long and painful process….I already see the algae growing so I am not sure that the chiller and LEDs will make my life a lot easier though….Want to tone down the blue lights as well, some more soldering to be done soon :-/

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