View Full Version : Wiring up a power compact light system
05/23/2006, 07:52 PM
I hope that we can make it to the next meeting so I can start putting names with faces on here. I also hope that we can come up with the 24 bucks for membership to the reef club, but right now that is like getting a new bulb for our new Power Compact lighting system we bought. Hope that 130watts will be enough light for a 20 gallon tank. Does anyone know much about Power Compacts? Like how to wire them up, I looked up the wiring diagram on the internet but I got cinfused on how to wire everything. They need a wiring diagram for dummies on there. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
05/24/2006, 06:48 AM
what kind of bulb do you need? color/pin config?
05/24/2006, 08:28 AM
straight 4 pin [....] and I am looking for either 50/50 or one white and one actinic.
05/24/2006, 10:06 AM
our straight pin bulbs we are wanting are 65w bulbs
05/24/2006, 02:13 PM
Can you post a link to the best information you've located? Also, it would be helpful to post the exact manufacturer and part number for your fixture (if in one piece) or for the ballast and base if separate pieces. I do not know anything specifically about power compacts, but I understand electrical and wiring diagrams. I put together my own normal flourescent and metal halide light setups from the ballast, bases, and a wiring diagrams from the internet.
05/24/2006, 02:31 PM
i have 2 55w 10,000k straight pin bulbs, and one atinic 65w straight pin im not using
05/24/2006, 02:52 PM
the ballast is a workhorse 5, 120v, it has 4 red cords, and 1 yellow cord out of one end and the other end is the power cords. we have the cords that run to the wall, and the caps for the end of the bulbs. does that help any more runner?
05/24/2006, 02:53 PM
skwirl how much would you want for the bulbs? Where at in TN are you from?
05/24/2006, 02:56 PM
That is the diagram I have found. It looks like I need to splice the yellpw wore in two, but the wire is one solid piece of metal.
It's not trival on these PC DIY ballasts/sockets because straight and square pin sockets are different. I had to use an ohmmeter on mine to determine how the socket was wired. After that, it was pretty straight-forward. Is there a schematic on the ballast, as the link schematic doesn't agree with your description? I suggest you get someone to do it for you if you're uncertain as to how to wire it.
05/25/2006, 05:55 AM
Dave is correct -- the ballasts usually have a wiring diagram on them. Is there any way you could scan that or copy it down and post that? If we can't figure it out online, I could always meet you somewhere on my lunch hour during the week and I'll help out. I work in West Knoxville in the Cedar Bluff area. You could always pay me back with a frag sometime in the future. ;)
See the pic at this link for a typical ballast wiring diagram:
05/25/2006, 08:58 AM
there isn't any diagram on the ballast at all. Where at in Cedar Bluff do you work? I will be out that way today. When do you take your lunch hour? Could I possiblly meet you after work? My wife goes into work at the freeman webb building around 6 tonight to do her security job.
05/25/2006, 09:25 AM
I work across from the big post office.
I am about to go running with a friend during lunch today. I'll be in Powell after today and until next Tuesday. If you wanted to meet me somewere up towards that way, we could get together then. Otherwise, just pick a day next week and I'll adjust my running schedule (I only do it two or three times a week from work, anyway).
05/25/2006, 09:28 AM
If you are using two 55W bulbs, you can do it easily. That ballast is rated at 128W max, so the 65W bulbs will not work. Here's teh simplified wiring....
you have 2 PC sockets....each one has 2 slots to put wires in, be sure you use the same slot on both sockets. You will need to wire nut two wires to the yellow wire to make it into two wires. Then run one into each socket, on the same side. Now to the red wires....the top two will need to be wire nutted together to form one wire, and you will have to add a piece to go to the socket....put this wire into one of the sockets. The other 2 red wires go together, in the same exact manner and go into the other socket. It should fire right up.
On a side note, the diagrams on the Fulham website are very easy to follow, and if you can't follow them......you REALLY shouldn't attempt to wire them up. ALWAYS use black electrical tape to cover all wire nuts and connections. Good luck and BE CAREFUL!
05/25/2006, 09:57 AM
well I was trying to follow then but got confused when it was telling me to split the yellow wire and I don't know how to wire nut them together, I was hoping that this would have been put together when I bought it off of Kevin but it wasn't.
I think I am just going to get with runner and have him help me out on this one.
I wasn't going to attempt to wire it up after seeing the fulham diagram, b/c I didn't understand it. I was hoping it would be dummy proof b/c electronics is not my thing.
05/26/2006, 05:15 PM
Got the lighting system all hooked up and going good, even built a small hood for it to sit on top of my 20. Had a couple electricians here at school who took a look at it and wired it for me, once I saw what they were doing I about slapped myself in the forehead. It was easy but oh well. Sorry runner, maybe I can get with you when I put all of my tanks in one "stand". That will be a custom job, and a pain in the neck to build. So I will need help with that one, and not just on wiring up the lights. When we have some frags I will let you know though runner.
05/26/2006, 07:57 PM
No problem. I am always happy to help. I think I am in this hobby more for the DIY projects than the corals at times, anyway. An engineer is always tinkering with things. :D
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