Reef Central Online Community
Marine Depot

Home Forum Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences View New Posts View Today's Posts

Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Search Reefkeeping ...an online magazine for marine aquarists Support our sponsors and mention Reef Central

Go Back   Reef Central Online Community > General Interest Forums > Do It Yourself
Register Blogs FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Notices

User Tag List

Reply
Thread Tools
Old 01/12/2013, 09:53 AM   #1
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
My 125 Gallon LED Reef Penninsula tank build

Well, I ran out of space in my existing tank and decided to go bigger. The wife and I have decided to install a 125 gallon tank in our front living room. Her stipulations is that it must be a clean installation and quiet.

I've decided to build my own LED fixture for this tank and received the parts this week..... which consist of:

1 - 72" Makers LED heat sink
5 - 75 /700 mA Invetronics dimmable drivers
1 - DIM 4 Sunrise / Sunset controller
27 - 3UP LED stars (containing 1x CREE XT-E Warm (4500K) 3W LED and 2x CREE XT-E 3W Royal Blue (455 nm) LED's each)
3 - Royal Blue (455 nm) CREE XT-E 3W LED's (Moonlights)
12 - Ocean Coral White LED's (containing 1x 3W Deep red LED, 1x 3W Teal LED, and 1x 3W Green LED)
12 - True Violet (405 nm) 3W LED's
12 - Pure Violet (430 nm) 3W LED's
1 - 4-pot dimmer for individual color control

Other equipment I've picked up include CPR 1000 GPM overflow, Danner Mag-12 Return Pump, and Digital Aquatics ReefKeeper Elite with extra PC4 modules.

I'm going to try and document the build of the fixture and tank in this thread in hopes that you all get some enjoyment out of it and so that I might learn a few pointers from you all, along the way...

So... here we go....


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/12/2013, 08:29 PM   #2
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Some photos of the new MakersLED Heat Sink....












mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/12/2013, 08:36 PM   #3
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Some pictures of the LED's I'll be using.....




3UP CREE's (1 white + 2 royal blue)


Ocean Coral White (1 deep red, 1 turquoise, and 1 green)


Royal Blue CREE's (moonlights)


True and Pure Violets



Getting everything sorted and tinned for soldering.....




mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/12/2013, 08:37 PM   #4
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Some pictures of the LED's I'll be using.....




3UP CREE's (1 white + 2 royal blue)


Ocean Coral White (1 deep red, 1 turquoise, and 1 green)


Royal Blue CREE's (moonlights)


True and Pure Violets



Getting everything sorted and tinned for soldering.....




mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/12/2013, 10:18 PM   #5
sp0k
Registered Member.
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: vegas
Posts: 136
really nice work....im working on the same tank


__________________
The great question... which I have not been able to answer... is, "What does a woman want?

Current Tank Info: in the works

Current Tank Info: 125g 40g sump..all in the making
sp0k is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/13/2013, 10:12 AM   #6
zachts
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: St. Louis, MO.
Posts: 3,266
Very nice, your very organized, my table just has stuff strewn all over when I'm building a light, looks like a tornadow hit radio shack and dumped the after math on my kitchen table right now

I just wanted to pass along some caution learned from personal experiance and research relating to the violets. follow the vendors recomendation and resist the urge to run them anywhere near 500mA or it is likely that the plastic dome on the violets will start to brown and burn after a month or two. use a limititing resistor to keep you from accidently turning the pot up beyond the set current.

I've had over a dozen from 3 different sources burn up now, it has something to do with the plastic in the dome and the light being emited at the near UV range. Keep an eye on them and if they start to brown you can "pop" off the dome and they will keep working just fine. The LED chips themselves seem fine it just seems that not all plastic used in those domes is created equal.

I'll be tagging a long, interested in how they perform as I like a very "violet" heavy spectrum on my tanks.

I'm not meaning to scare you just keep and eye on them, the specs on the ones they sell now seam to indicate they are a newer version than the ones I've used from this vendor, but the domes look the same. Maybe they upgraded those too!


zachts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/13/2013, 09:15 PM   #7
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Made some progress this weekend....

Laying out the LED's


Heat Sink T-Channels for mounting LED's


LED's Mounted


Drivers and Controllers - starting wiring prior to board mounting....


Testing Moonlights via DIM4 controller



mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/13/2013, 09:20 PM   #8
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
zachts, thanks for the pointers. I have a 4-pot dimmer box that I'm going to install on the fixture to run parallel to the DIM 4. I was going to set the DIM4 as a trim (to limit <500 mA) and let the dimmer POT function as a dimmer to adjust the color balance.

What mA do you run your violets at, might I ask?


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/13/2013, 09:21 PM   #9
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
... double post ....


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/13/2013, 10:27 PM   #10
zachts
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: St. Louis, MO.
Posts: 3,266
a complex question to answere, but here goes (you'll notice I've spent considerable time and money testing these critter) I have several fixtures in opperation, and have constantly been tweaking them in the search for a near exact replacment for my display tank lighting spectrum. as well as evaluating different violets to find the best ones for me. (I like lots of violet, which is contrary to what most like so I need to run them very high and have lots of them to get enough for my taste)

originally, about this time last year when I first added violet to my lights the max recommended rating was 700mA just like all the other LEDs I had. since my goal then was to find just the right mix of leds to get a color I liked I went with simple one string one driver approach to my builds and just swaped LEDs until I got where I wanted in terms of color. (basically many prototypes and revisions leading two what I'm about to start building this spring for my dispaly).

the first Light was from Aquastyle Online, and those never were turned up past 400mA as with the optics there was no need over my frag tank, but the vilolets burned up anyway. still working by the way, just slightly dimmer as I didn't get the burnt plastic dome poped off fast enough and some of it stuck onto the secondary optic, I never messed with replacing them just left them in place.

second light a 12 led setup using three violets ran at 580mA on a cheapo driver over a ten gallon. masive heatsing and fan cooled, stayed pretty cool with out the fan but overkill was the way to go at the time. Violets lasted just under 3 months before burning, also still work but badly damaged as the secondary lense melted into them (vendor was nice enough to send replacements with the advise to run them below 500mA, they then posted the 500mA recomendation on their site) So I put the replacemnts on a new fixture and set it to 500mA per thier request. also ordered up new ones from two other sources, Steve's LED and Rapid for the first fixture as a test, along with one of the replacemnts. I modded the fixture to give strong airflow across the lenses as well as heatsink to test a theory about heat on the lens. the replacment burned up anyway so it's not a heat related issue.

first ones from Steve's burned (they sent replacements that are a newer version which I have not installed yet and am hopeful they will not have the same issue) Rapids have had no issue on any of my fixtures to date and have outlived all the rest I have tried to date. (i've had some running at 680mA since last March)

So, based on all of that I presently run them all at 680mA max as everyone claims 700mA can be done without any problems. (a true statement hands down for what I've gotten from Rapid) Steve's LED assurse me thiers will too and the bad ones were a fluke or manufacuturer defect of some form.

long winded way to say that the spec sheet dosn't mean squat, the spec sheet is only for the LED die inside the packaging (the tiny little metalic square piece at the center that lights up) No one, I mean no one publishes spec sheets for the packaging the die goes into, or how they are then mounted to the star chip, so their are an auful lot of vareables out there that can affect performance. the die can run at 700mA al day long with a good heatsink but the plastic may or may not be able to tolerate UV light.

SemiLED (makes most of the UV LED dies used by everyone) now cautions about that on thier data sheets.

sorry I think I over answered your question


zachts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/14/2013, 08:57 PM   #11
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Finished up the driver board and wiring tonight.....

Driver Board cut and painted....


Drivers and Controller mounted....


D-Sub connections to LED's, Dimmer POT's, and Fans.... note my "helpers in the background.



mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/14/2013, 09:02 PM   #12
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
zachts.... not at all. Good information.

I'm thinking that 500mA might be a bit much based upon your information, research, and experience....


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/15/2013, 12:54 PM   #13
TropTrea
Registered Member
 
TropTrea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: SE Suburbia Wisconsin
Posts: 2,924
I like a lot on your set up however to me it seems more complex than it needs to be.

I do have some questions and comments.
In your parts lest you list
12 - True Violet (405 nm) 3W LED's
12 - Pure Violet (430 nm) 3W LED's

May I ask your source for these?

I have also been experimenting now for well over a year with LED's. I have also tried using violets on two seperate ocassions. My initial set up on a 40 breeder had 4 near UV LED's and 8 Neutral Whites running at 350 ma and 8 Royal Blues and 8 Blues running at 700 ma. It only took a week for the UV to burn out for me.

The second attempt at using UV I had them 4 of them running at 700ma, On a string with 8 Royal Blues. On a second string I had 8 Royal Blues and 8 Blues also running at 700 ma. And on a last string I had 6 neutral whites. Everyone that looked at the tank gave me the same or simular comments. Why do you have pink lighing on that tank.?

I made some changes to my second string by replacing 4 Royal Blues with 4 turquise , then later changed to other 4 royal blues to greens, but there was still a very strong noticable pink tint. Eventualy I simply pulled the UV's and the tank now looked more turquoise.

Right now I;m running 12 Royal Blues, 8 Blues and 4 Neutral Whites all at 1050ma.. I love the color combination. Personaly I would like to un some UV's and want to try something different in that area. I do believe some 410nm to 440 nm light would help the corals unfortunatly the Royal Blues only peak at 454 and there spectrum lacks under 444nm and over 459nm. The blues peak at 460 but lack under 450 and over 470. Your 430nm UV's might be a great help vor me compared to the 405's I was using.


__________________
Dennis B.

Current Tank Info: Main tank 120 Gallon, 432 Watts T-5's plus 30 Watts of LED's, Frag 40 Gallon tank 234 Watts T-5's, 3 Frag tanks all 40 Gallon with LED lighting between 60 and 84 Watts. All LEDs are DIY Oh and then there is fresh water tanks 270 gallons
TropTrea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/15/2013, 05:21 PM   #14
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Thanks for the input....

I got the 430nm Violets from clay-boa.com.

One of the main reasons I went with this heat sink was so that I could change out LED's if I had issues or if I wanted to try something else down the road.


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/15/2013, 05:21 PM   #15
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
.... what's with the double posts?? .....



Last edited by mccorry; 01/15/2013 at 06:05 PM.
mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/16/2013, 07:20 PM   #16
zachts
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: St. Louis, MO.
Posts: 3,266
TropTrea, I recal your experience with "pink" violets from another thread long ago and I thing that you just go some lousy LEDs. I've used Violets now from Rapid LED, Steve's LED, Aquastyle Online, and "the site that can no longer be mentioned here on RC" from whence mccory's LEDs came. all of them produce a definate purple blue light somewhere in between a royal blue and a black light. if anything thier color gets lost when mixed in small amounts with a lot of royal blue. That's why I believe you need a lot of them, especially since when you look at radiometric output they are only 1/2 or 1/3 as powerfull as a royal blue. Yet when you look at the spectrum of my favorit VHO t12 actinic it's spectrum has about 2/3 violet at 420nm and 1/3 royal blue around 550nm. so it's about 2-3 violets to every royal blue for a similar effect!

FYI, mccory don't try to post the name of the site you sourced your LEDs from, it will get you in trouble. nothing wrong with the products from them, they just abused thier posting privelages and got banned from reef central as I understand it.


zachts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/18/2013, 11:31 PM   #17
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Well... finally got to wiring the rest of the fixture over the past two days. Still need to install my 4-pot dimmer box, the fans, and the D-Sub connection ports.
Some updated pictures...

Neutral Whites



Royal Blues



Ocean Coral Whites



Violets



All LED's wired up....




mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/18/2013, 11:31 PM   #18
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Thanks for the info Zachts.... didn't know that about the banned vendor.



Last edited by mccorry; 01/18/2013 at 11:43 PM.
mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/19/2013, 11:48 AM   #19
TropTrea
Registered Member
 
TropTrea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: SE Suburbia Wisconsin
Posts: 2,924
Quote:
Originally Posted by zachts View Post
TropTrea, I recal your experience with "pink" violets from another thread long ago and I thing that you just go some lousy LEDs. I've used Violets now from Rapid LED, Steve's LED, Aquastyle Online, and "the site that can no longer be mentioned here on RC" from whence mccory's LEDs came. all of them produce a definate purple blue light somewhere in between a royal blue and a black light. if anything thier color gets lost when mixed in small amounts with a lot of royal blue. That's why I believe you need a lot of them, especially since when you look at radiometric output they are only 1/2 or 1/3 as powerfull as a royal blue. Yet when you look at the spectrum of my favorit VHO t12 actinic it's spectrum has about 2/3 violet at 420nm and 1/3 royal blue around 550nm. so it's about 2-3 violets to every royal blue for a similar effect!

FYI, mccory don't try to post the name of the site you sourced your LEDs from, it will get you in trouble. nothing wrong with the products from them, they just abused thier posting privelages and got banned from reef central as I understand it.
May I ask what thpe of radiometric measurement you made on these violet LED's/ In most instruments there is a big fall off in instrument sensativity when you get down below 440nm with some not even capable of reading anything under 380nm. It is also an interesting with the visual effects of this as light under 460 nm looses it ability to be seen by the human blue cones but is visable by the eyes violet rods normaly used for night vission. The sensativity on an individuals rods to the various cones does varry considerably from one person to another. To me even with just Royal Blues I see a distinct amount of pink in the white sand bed compared to a 460 nm Blue LED. My son sees that same difference while mu wife and daughter can not see the difference between a 454nm rb and a 460 nm blue. On the other hand they can see the difference between a 630 and a 660nm red which I cannot see.

This is why lighting can be so much of a personal preference. Add to that the personal taste where Johnny like a tank with photographic blanced neutral color, Jack like a tank with color that like he is diving in water 5 meters deep and Charlie like a tank where it looks like he is diving 100 meter deep. Therefore no one lighting combination can make everyone happy.


__________________
Dennis B.

Current Tank Info: Main tank 120 Gallon, 432 Watts T-5's plus 30 Watts of LED's, Frag 40 Gallon tank 234 Watts T-5's, 3 Frag tanks all 40 Gallon with LED lighting between 60 and 84 Watts. All LEDs are DIY Oh and then there is fresh water tanks 270 gallons
TropTrea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/19/2013, 01:45 PM   #20
zachts
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: St. Louis, MO.
Posts: 3,266
Quote:
Originally Posted by TropTrea View Post
May I ask what thpe of radiometric measurement you made on these violet LED's/ In most instruments there is a big fall off in instrument sensativity when you get down below 440nm with some not even capable of reading anything under 380nm.
I base my statements on manufacuter specifications "typical" outputs for the chips. looking at SEMI's C35L violet chip it lists typical output for it's hightest bin gourp at 610mW at a current of 700mA. where as the Luxeon Rebel ES royal blue specs say 1120mW @700mA. I compared this to the relative wavelenth peaks on spectral plots from the VHO Actinics to arrive at my ratio.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TropTrea View Post
It is also an interesting with the visual effects of this as light under 460 nm looses it ability to be seen by the human blue cones but is visable by the eyes violet rods normaly used for night vission. The sensativity on an individuals rods to the various cones does varry considerably from one person to another. To me even with just Royal Blues I see a distinct amount of pink in the white sand bed compared to a 460 nm Blue LED. My son sees that same difference while mu wife and daughter can not see the difference between a 454nm rb and a 460 nm blue. On the other hand they can see the difference between a 630 and a 660nm red which I cannot see.

This is why lighting can be so much of a personal preference. Add to that the personal taste where Johnny like a tank with photographic blanced neutral color, Jack like a tank with color that like he is diving in water 5 meters deep and Charlie like a tank where it looks like he is diving 100 meter deep. Therefore no one lighting combination can make everyone happy.
Very true, there's an enourmous thread devoted to color aesthetics of LEDs and it's hundreds of pages can be pretty well sumed up by your statement here


zachts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/26/2013, 08:00 PM   #21
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Just some updated photos....

Working on wiring the Dimmer box.... ended up screwing up the POT's... so I'm waiting for more to show up....


Fans and dimmer box mock up before mounting


Finished fixture connections - two HD15's using straight through cables


Cabinet nearing completion...


Testing the Sunrise / Sunset controller for each channel to debug the wiring


New tank is here!



mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/26/2013, 08:32 PM   #22
sfsuphysics
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 9,096
Only 2 fans? I thought that Maker heatsink gave you 1 per 12 inch section.


__________________
Mike
sfsuphysics is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/26/2013, 08:33 PM   #23
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
They do.... but it looks like I'll only need two since the heat sink seems so efficient.
Actually... I'd probably not need any if I wasn't planning on putting a canopy over it.


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/31/2013, 06:44 PM   #24
mccorry
Registered Member
 
mccorry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Grove City, OH
Posts: 153
Moved the stand into position yesterday and mounted the driver board and some of the ReefKeeper Elite modules.
Also picked up two new Ehiem Jager 250W heaters and a AquaEuroUSA 135 skimmer.

I'll try to get some updated pictures soon.


mccorry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02/01/2013, 08:01 AM   #25
knight2255
Registered Member
 
knight2255's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 315
Very nice build!

Where did you get these connectors(led out, dim fan)?




knight2255 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:12 PM.


TapaTalk Enabled

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2019 Axivo Inc.
Use of this web site is subject to the terms and conditions described in the user agreement.
Reef CentralTM Reef Central, LLC. Copyright 1999-2014
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.3.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.