|05/04/2012, 05:38 PM||#1|
Join Date: Apr 2011
Hood Retro w/ LED Panorama Pro's
I decided to create this thread after seeing many people DIY'ing Ecoxotic's Panorama Pros into their stock hoods. I just wanted to give an alternative option, on how to install them. Most, if not all installs I come across, involve simply mounting the moduled to the inside of the hood. This may be fine, but also starts the debate to wheather or not the modules will burn out prematurely, due to excess heat and/or moisture. Fans, no fans, rubber washers, spacers, reflector, no reflector....?
I have come across more than one thread, about peoples modules burning out, flashing, or frying. The "newer" modules have a safety, that will flash the modules if they get too hot. If this happens, then obviously theres a heat issue. The modules are designed to emit/release heat from the heatsinks (which are the "fins" on the top of the module). The LED diodes themselves do not emit heat, down into the tank, but rather up and out through the heatsinks. Covering these heatsinks, or insufficient cooling will cause them to overheat. Even with fans, the modules are STILL contained...this just adds to moisture...which is bad. Unlike PCs, MH, and T5, which emit heat directly from the bulb, and down into the tank. I can see here, where fans would be effective. With that said, the Ecoxotic website states they are water "proof". In actuality, they're more like water "resistant". Sure they can withsatnd an accidental drop in water, but they sure in the hell can't be ran underwater. I've talked to Ecoxotic on this issue, and they too have had customers burn out modules because they (the customer) had completely contained the modules under a hood. Now being the great company that Ecoxotic is, they replaced the modules free of charge. But how many more times can they do this before threy deem it cost ineffective?
So...the way I installed them into my hood, was to simply cut out sections of the hood, where the module's heatsinks would be fully exposed to the air, allowing for maximum heat release. On a side note, I've had this install reviewed by Ecoxotic, with the answer of, "Great retro! You should have no problems with the way you installed those."
-Keep in mind this is on a JBJ28-
Tools I used:
-Dremel tool w/diamond tip cutting wheel, pink grinder, and a routing tool.
-Needle nose pliers
-Blue painters tape
-And the MOST important...your favotite drink/beer
1st...Remove the hood from the tank, by popping it out of the clips that are on the back wall of the tank. This can be tricky, as it feels like they're going to break or snap off. I used a pair of needle nose pliers, to help open up the clip, and pull the small "bar" out of the clip.
2nd...Remove the plastic splash guard, by unscrewing all the screws around it's perimeter. (save the screws and splash guard)
3rd...Unplug the stock PC light from the power supply, and pop it out of the metal clips that hold it in place. You should now be looking the chrome reflector.
4th...Remove the reflector. This is now useless, as LEDs direct light down. Unlike MH, T5, or PC, which are bulbs, and emit light 360deg. These need reflectors to reduce lost light, by bouncing off the reflector, and redirecting down into the tank. The reflector is mounted into place by rivets. These will need to be cut. I simply used the needle nose pliers to bend/deform the rivets till I could pull the reflector off. (sorry no pics for this step)
You should now be left with a fully intact hood, minus the light and reflector. If you want to remove the fans and moon lights...your on your own. I left them in. I dont use the fans, but I do use the moon lights. I'm trying to make this install as simple as possible.
5th...Decide how many modules you are going to install, and measure out where you will make your cuts. Use the blue painters tape, to mask off and line where your going to make your cuts. I installed 3 P-Pros. I started at the very front of the hood, along the wall, that's right behind the feeding door...make sense? My cuts were 11 5/8" by 2". With 1 1/2" gap between each module.
6th...Use the diamond tip cutting wheel to cut along the blue tape. If you take too long in one spot, the wheel will get hot, and melt the plastic of the hood, distorting your cut. So be steady and smooth with your cuts, backing off every few seconds, allowing cool down. Once your cuts have been made, attatch the pink (fine) grinding tool to smooth out out your edges.
7th...You will notice that the modules are a about 1/4" longer than the space allowed inside the hood. This is where I used the routing tool, to shave down some of the left and right side of the wall, so the modules can sit flush on the hood.
8th...Drop the modules into place, and screw them down. The "tabs or "wings" of the modules should sit right on top of the hood, while the modules themselves should drop right into the cuts you made. Leaving the heatsinks flush with the top of the hood, and freely exposed to the air. Simply use small screws, one on each end, to mount the modules to the hood.
9th...Flip the hood over, and reinstall the splash guard using the original screws you saved from earlier. You'll find adequete space to run the cords under the shield, through the back, and out of the hood.
10th...Replace the hood back onto the tank, plug in...and enjoy!!!