Cold Cathode Moon Light

smithrc

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ok folks - just thought I'd do a guide to a cheap moonlight.

Some bulbs are available to replace one already in the tank - however, my tank cant turn the bulbs on seperatly... and they need all the light they can get. So i decided on an add on.

Have a look on eBay for 'Cold cathode' they are popular for PC case lighting and are ideal for the moonlight application.

Here is what I got...


all you then need is a mains voltage adapter


The tank I've just fitted these to actually have a clear waterproof panel between the bulbs and the water


I've taken this off and fitted the neon tubes onto it.



having drilled a hole through to the gap in the back of the lid, the wires are parred through...


The screen was then placed back in the lid and the wires threaded to the power supply...



Here's the bit that should convince you...

Low



Medium


High
 
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Thats AWESOME. Once I get my cichlid tank I might do that. BTW do you think that a moonlight on a cichlid tank would stress them out?
 
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smithrc

smithrc

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If the brightness is not too high they will sleep like normal.

I've got them as we're into our ples and want to see them at night.

we must make sure the rest still sleep though.
 

jiffy

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It could be the picture, but that looks pretty bright to be a moonlight. Mabey you should try using just one tube?

I made one on my 10g using LEDs that I wired, and used 3. It doesn't light the entire tank so fish still have places to hide where its dark (under plants) But it gives off enough light you can see the fish swimming.

Overall, you did a really nice job. I like the way you installed it too. Very clean looking. I had actually thought about using cold cathods as well.
 

SoilGuru

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I just got that same "kit" as you, i can sorta see how you wired the lights in your pictures, but was it hard? Any other wires or things I need to do this? I still need to go to Radio Shack and get the converter, but otherwise, I'm going to wire this to the back of my DIY lighting for a 45 gallon planted tank.

Good Job with yours, looks nice!
 
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smithrc

smithrc

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yep - it is bright - its bright with just one tube too :(

I'm going to insert grease proof paper into the plastic tubes round the neons to dim them a lot.

the only other thing you need to do it wire the 12v converter to the yellow and black wires... you might want to get a connector to put on the neon kit so you can plug the converter into it.
 
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smithrc

smithrc

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any that will connect to the mains adapter. it will probubly have a multi connector on it (as the one in the piccy has) - just ask in RadioShack for one that will fit.
 

Paul_MTS

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has any one tried using UV cold cathodes, I have them in my PC and they give off quite a nice glow, I would give it a try my self but it's a bit of an ass to take it out my PC.

You might also try buying a dimmer switch and wiring that into the circuit to have adjustable brightness.
 
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smithrc

smithrc

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hmmm... i might go and try running them at 9v or something :)

as for thr UV - i was wondering about using them for UV filtering...
 
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smithrc

smithrc

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smithrc said:
hmmm... i might go and try running them at 9v or something :)

as for thr UV - i was wondering about using them for UV filtering...
just dropped it to 6v and the light level is a lot better - i'll post a pic when my camera battery is charged.
 

jiffy

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Just out of curiosity...what length are those tubes? I have been wanting to install some into my truck beneath the dash in the footwell areas but I don't want it blindingly bright. I was thinking of using a single 6 inch tube on each side.
 

Paul_MTS

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There 12" ones, my brother has them in his mini and put them under the seats to light the footwells, looks great.
 
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