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http://indianaquariumhobbyist.com/community/ :: View topic - reflector material- suggestions
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reflector material- suggestions
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vkv
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 11:44 am Post subject: reflector material- suggestions Reply with quote

 Hi  all,
 
 Any  suggestions  on  reflector  materials.  I  was  thinking  mirror  finish  aluminium  but  don't  know  if  it  is  easily  available  and  what  sort  of  expense  is  involved.
 
 Please  do  let  me  know  if  you  have  any  info  on  materials,  availability  and  appx  pricing.
 
 I  need  this  info  for  a  DIY  light  fixture  for  4'  tubes  and  I'm  located  in  Mumbai.
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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rahulk
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 12:06 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi  Venkat,
                 I  guess  metal  foil  would  be  good  enough  as  a  reflector,  foils  which  are  used  to  package  food  .
 
 Rahul
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vkv
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 1:57 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi  Rahul,
 
 I  was  wondering  if  the  aluminium  foil  will  not  degrade  over  time  with  the  heat  and  humidity?
 
 Have  you  personally  seen  it  being  used  or  used  it  yourself.  What  are  the  results  over  time?  I  want  something  that  is  pretty  low/non-maintenance...
 
 I  hope  to  get  away  with  lower  wattage  by  using  a  good  reflector.
 
 Is  a  glass  mirror  any  good  or  will  it  just  cause  restrike  since  it  will  be  flat  and  not  formed  to  a  good  reflecting  profile?
 
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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sandeepraghuvanshi
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 3:31 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Aluminium  foil  will  wrinkle,  crumple  &  tear  off  with  time.
 A  QDM  (quick  dirty  method)  is  to  paint  the  inside  of  canopy  with  white  paint.  This  can  be  repainted  when  it  becomes  dirty.
 I  find  the  results  good.
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vkv
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 3:40 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi  Sandeep,
 
 I  thought  of  White  paint  but  decided  that  would  be  my  last  option.  
 
 I'm  exploring  the  viability  of  different  materials  that  I  can  form  into  a  good  reflecting  profile  to  maximize  the  output  from  my  tubes.
 
 A  good  reflector  may  improve  light  efficiency  by  quite  a  large  margin.  How  much  more  than  white  paint  is  something  that  I  do  not  know  but  I  think  a  reflective  aluminium  or  glass  surface  will  be  better.
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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sandeepraghuvanshi
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 4:03 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Glass  will  not  easy  to  mould  in  the  shape  on  canopy.  Further  it  will  get  hot  &  might  crack.  If  you  are  using  glass,  get  a  condensation  plate  between  canopy  &  water  surface.  So  in  case  glass  breaks,  pieces  will  not  fall  in  tank
 I  have  tried  aluminium  foil  and  tore  it  down  in  three  months.  It  gets  very  dirty  with  water  condensation  and  tears  off  as  soon  syou  try  to  wipe  it  off.
 If  you  want  a  permanent  soultion,  nothing  can  beat  a  ready  made  reflector.
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rohansd
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 4:05 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 venkat,
 
 Are  u  keen  on  DIY  only  ?
 There  are  very  good  reflectors  available  in  the  market.
 You  may  want  to  try  them.  
 BTW  what  lights  have  you  finally  zeroed  upon?
 aditya  (apolloyon)  had  used  2    36  watts  PLLs  with  commercial  reflectors  (  no  hood)  and  has  had  very  results  with  his  3'  planted  tank.
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vkv
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 4:12 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Not  really  although  I  am  a  DIY  nut-  I  enjoy  building  stuff...
 
 I  actually  asked  around  int  he  markets  and  found  that  nobody  was  willing  to  sell  reflectors  separately,  all  of  them  were  offered  with  the  light  units.  In  other  words  I  was  unable  to  find  a  single  ready  to  use  reflector  in  the  market.
 
 Also,  my  situation  is  a  little  unique  in  that  I  have  very  little  headroom  on  my  stand  and  I  feel  that  a  DIY  will  conserve  more  space.
 
 Would  you  know  what  is  available  in  the  market  and  where  so  I  can  ask  around.  A  brand  or  trade  name  would  help.
 
 Knowing  what  the  professional  reflectors  are  made  of  would  make  it  easy  to  build  my  own.
 
 I've  decided  on  Philips  LifeMax  (2450  Lumens/tube).  Will  use  about  4  or  5  with  copper  chokes  initially  and  then  later  upgrade  to  electronic...
 
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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rohansd
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 4:19 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 If  u  just  look  up  on  the  celing  of  your  work  place  you  may  see  the  tubelights  inside  those  reflectors  fittings?
 do  you  see  them  ?
 The  reflector  that    i  have  seen  were  exactly  like  those.
 How  many  watts  of  light  are  u  planning  ?  The  reason  i  am  asking  this  is  to  find  out  if  PLL  will  suit  your  needs.
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vkv
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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 4:29 pm Post subject:  Reply with quote

 The  reflectors  are  the  same  but  I  have  not  found  these  to  be  available  individually  for  sale.  I  guess  I'll  have  to  do  more  searching.
 
 I  also  wanted  to  shape  the  reflector  to  an  optimum  reflecting  shape.
 
 PLLs  were  ruled  out  because  of  the  cost.
 Cost  of  the  tube+cost  of  the  choke  and  holder  exceeds  the  gain  in  lumens.
 
 36  watt  PLL  is  about  2900  lumens
 36  watt  Lifemax  is  2450  lumens
 cost  of  PLL  is  5  times  the  Lifemax
 
 Plus  fitting  the  tubes  is  easier  because  of  the  4  foot  length  of  the  tank.  
 I'm  looking  at  about  4-5  tubes.
 
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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Saugata
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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 9:17 am Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi!  Venkat,
 
 Why  don't  you  look  at  the  option  of  using  "Acrylic  Sheets  with  Mirror  finish"?  I  am  personally  using  them  and  they  seem  to  be  quite  good  and  not  very  expensive  too.  However,  you  will  not  get  any  ready  to  use  reflector  rather  you  will  have  to  do  some  tweaking  around  in  order  to  get  it  fitted.
 
 Regards,
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vkv
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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 9:31 am Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi  Saugata,
 
 I  will  look  at  that  option  but  the  only  issue  is  Acrylic  cannot  be  formed  and  I  wanted  to  form  them  into  a  proper  reflector  shape  (one  per  tube.)
 
 Will  the  acrylic  stand  up  the  heat  over  long  period?  Wouldnt  it  lose  reflectivity  and  shape  etc?
 
 How  long  have  you  been  using  your  acrylic  sheets  and  what  kind  of  lighting  are  you  using?
 
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 9:36 am Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Initially  i  was  using  3  36W  PLL  lights  on  a  2'  canopy  &  now  I  am  using  6  Philips  Trulites  (@  36  watts  each)  @  12  hrs/day  and  haven't  found  the  heat  to  be  a  major  factor.  Ofcourse  I  have  always  used  Electronic  ballasts  as  the  heat  generated  as  very  less.  
 
 Regards,
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sen
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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 10:59 am Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Hi  Vkv,
 I  have  seen  Stainless  stell/Aluminum  reflectors  being  sold  in  BVK  Iyengar  Road,  Bangalore..
 They  are  sold  as  a  part  of  double  tube  industrial  fitting
 the  total  cost  of  the  fitting  with  a  stainless  reflector  was  850
 and  with  Aluminum  reflector  it  is  950  (Yes  Aluminum  is  costlier).
 They  are  selling  the  reflector  seperately  too  it  may  be  close  to  500  bucks..
 
 Thanks,
 G.Senthil  Kumar
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vkv
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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 11:04 am Post subject:  Reply with quote

 Ouch,  thats  expensive.
 
 I  think  I  will  look  for  mirror  finish  aluminium  sheet  and  do  it  myself...
 
 Now  WHERE  do  I  find  a  sheet  of  this  material  in  Mumbai?
 
 Till  then,  I'll  look  at  Saugata's  acrylic  suggestion...  BTW,  Nice  hood  you  have  there  Saugata...
 
 Regards,
 Venkat
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