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Thread: 80 Gallon Shallow Reef Build Thread

  1. #11
    President
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Kenwood
    Posts
    4,208
    Awesome! Post a few pics of the LED build for us.

  2. #12
    Rotifer
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Maineville
    Posts
    41
    Quote Originally Posted by Logzor View Post
    Awesome! Post a few pics of the LED build for us.
    As promised, this is my proposed wiring plan, and rough LED layout. I estimated the size of the heatsink, and where the LEDs could be based on the images from RapidLED. The LEDs are screw mounted in channels in the heatsink, and there are 7 channels which can support LED's. I chose to keep the LED's mounted closer to the center to give me width for the 48" tank, while supporting the fact that it is only 18" front to back. I'm putting 8 pin molex connectors to let me disconnect each fixture, along with a 4 pin to provide fan power, and one spare pair left open for a moonlight channel.
    80G Lighting Kit.jpg

  3. #13
    Rotifer
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Maineville
    Posts
    41
    I've modified that picture slightly. The labels on the LED Layout were transposed a bit.

    Thanks!80G Lighting Kit.jpg

  4. #14
    Rotifer
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Maineville
    Posts
    41
    I've completed the light fixture construction, and have moved on to the dimming controller layout. Taking it step by step and showing some pictures below, I just followed the layout that I posted earlier. The build is relatively straightforward, and I'm enjoying the kit from RapidLED quite a bit. They have made the whole process really easy.

    The LEDs are not tinned when you get then, and are attached to trees as shown. First, you want to use the included tester, which is a fancy word for a battery case for two AA batteries with wires, to check each LED before tinning them. Rapid will not replace an LED once it has been soldered. The next step is to tin the LED pads with solder. You will not be able to do this after they are mounted because the heatsink will cool the LED too much to make it stick! You do not want cold solder joints. Don't make the same mistake that I made, which was to tin positive and negative pads on the same quadrant of the LEDs. You want the positive and negative pads to be on the opposite side of the LED to make mounting with screws easier, along with wiring. I changed mine because of the screws to mount the LED.

    Attachment 10675

    On to mounting. Rapid includes mount screws, nylon washers to insulate the screw and the LED pad, and a nut which inserts into a channel which is part of the heatsink. This made mounting very simple, and you can move LEDs later if needed. I used a bobby pin to layout the nuts in the channel PRIOR to putting thermal grease on any LEDs. Where the blue and white LEDs share a channel, you have to put all of the nuts in place first. I had 5 nuts at the outside channel, 10 in the next, and 5 in the next to secure the side with 5 blue and 5 white. You cannot add a nut to the middle of the channel, they must be moved in from the side. TIP: The first bit of thermal grease from the container will be a bit watery. Discard the watery bit until you get to the thicker grease before putting s drop on each LED. Once the nuts are in place for each row, put a dab of thermal grease to each LED, and mount with screws and insulators. This will force the thermal grease to the edge of the LED, and if you've measured well will not result in a mess.

    Attachment 10676

    Once mounted, You can move on to the wiring. I chose black wire to minimize the bright colors from view. I don't think you will see it much, but I'm a bit picky when it comes to some things. I wired the fixtures so the wires would go toward the middle of the fixture once it is hung. Additionally, the BACK of the fixture will have 5 blue and 5 white LED's to provide a bit more light on the live rock. The kit included 4 white and 5 blue, which I put on the FRONT side of the fixture because I assumed that I need more light on the rocks than the sand. Each cable was cut, stripped, tinned, and then soldered. This wire was included in the kit.

    Attachment 10678

    If I have not mentioned it, I love having the channels that they used for these fixtures. I mounted a wire mount in the middle to act as a strain relief for the wiring for the fixture. Into this went 3 strands of 4-22AWG LED wires colored blue, red, green, and black. These were wrapped in braided cable and heat shrink tubing at both ends. At the fixture, they were split out, routed to each connection point, cut, tinned, and soldered into place. On the other end, they were stripped, pins crimped, and inserted into the molex connectors shown in the picture. None of this was included in the kit.

    Attachment 10679

    Next, the optics were mounted. The kit included 90 degree optics for every LED on the fixture. These are held in place using thermal 5 minute epoxy. Mix this in very small batches, as it gets unworkable very fast. I found that putting the optics on the LED first, then dipping a toothpick in epoxy, and putting a drop on two sides of the LED works best.

    Attachment 10680

    I also purchased the 92mm frameless fan kit for each of the fixtures. I've purchased a PC fan controller with a touchscreen which will drive voltage to the fan depending on the temperature of the fan. You can see the mounted thermistor behind the LED in the last picture. You will see that in the underside picture next also. 4 wires were used for that thermistor, and the fan power. The LED housing gets the wire hanging kit mounted to it, and the heatsink slides into the LED housing. Side plates cover the LED sides and hold the splash guards and heatsink in place, but allow the heasink to breathe. You can also see the 8 pin molex to power the 4 LED strings, and the 4 pin molex for the fan / temp.

    Attachment 10681

    This is the underside of the fixture when assembled. Note the thermistor on the left side of the fixture.

    Attachment 10682

    And the last picture is the LDD driver setup. These are as pictured in the diagram that I posted earlier. I mounted the boards using nylon standoffs and nuts. The bottom has metal screws into the standoffs. Wiring was split under and over to make it easier to fit all of the cabling, and for the LED outputs, I used the same 4 strand LED driver wire as the fixture cable. Two bluefish breakout boxes at the top allow you to use a standard 3.5mm stereo cable to connect to the Bluefish controller. Those split out ground, and two PWM channel controls. I did just finish crimping the other end of the molex connectors on this, but will have to post that picture later. I need to get the fan controller mounted and wired up to the 4 pin molex connectors. I will add that detail, along with cooling fans inside of this enclosure to keep the whole thing running cool. The good news is that I will have this complete by the weekend. The better news is that I was supposed to have an update on the tank shipping soon. Stay tuned!

    Attachment 10683

  5. #15
    Rotifer
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Maineville
    Posts
    41
    ** I'm not sure what happened with the first post. The attachments were there last night, but not this morning. ** I've completed the light fixture construction, and have moved on to the dimming controller layout. Taking it step by step and showing some pictures below, I just followed the layout that I posted earlier. The build is relatively straightforward, and I'm enjoying the kit from RapidLED quite a bit. They have made the whole process really easy.

    The LEDs are not tinned when you get then, and are attached to trees as shown. First, you want to use the included tester, which is a fancy word for a battery case for two AA batteries with wires, to check each LED before tinning them. Rapid will not replace an LED once it has been soldered. The next step is to tin the LED pads with solder. You will not be able to do this after they are mounted because the heatsink will cool the LED too much to make it stick! You do not want cold solder joints. Don't make the same mistake that I made, which was to tin positive and negative pads on the same quadrant of the LEDs. You want the positive and negative pads to be on the opposite side of the LED to make mounting with screws easier, along with wiring. I changed mine because of the screws to mount the LED .

    20150323_200331.jpg

    On to mounting. Rapid includes mount screws, nylon washers to insulate the screw and the LED pad, and a nut which inserts into a channel which is part of the heatsink. This made mounting very simple, and you can move LEDs later if needed. I used a bobby pin to layout the nuts in the channel PRIOR to putting thermal grease on any LEDs. Where the blue and white LEDs share a channel , you have to put all of the nuts in place first. I had 5 nuts at the outside channel , 10 in the next, and 5 in the next to secure the side with 5 blue and 5 white. You cannot add a nut to the middle of the channel , they must be moved in from the side. TIP: The first bit of thermal grease from the container will be a bit watery. Discard the watery bit until you get to the thicker grease before putting s drop on each LED . Once the nuts are in place for each row, put a dab of thermal grease to each LED , and mount with screws and insulators. This will force the thermal grease to the edge of the LED , and if you've measured well will not result in a mess.

    20150324_220922.jpg

    Once mounted, You can move on to the wiring. I chose black wire to minimize the bright colors from view. I don't think you will see it much, but I'm a bit picky when it comes to some things. I wired the fixtures so the wires would go toward the middle of the fixture once it is hung. Additionally, the BACK of the fixture will have 5 blue and 5 white LED 's to provide a bit more light on the live rock . The kit included 4 white and 5 blue, which I put on the FRONT side of the fixture because I assumed that I need more light on the rocks than the sand . Each cable was cut, stripped, tinned, and then soldered. This wire was included in the kit.

    20150325_205140.jpg

    If I have not mentioned it, I love having the channels that they used for these fixtures. I mounted a wire mount in the middle to act as a strain relief for the wiring for the fixture. Into this went 3 strands of 4-22AWG LEDwires colored blue, red, green, and black. These were wrapped in braided cable and heat shrink tubing at both ends. At the fixture, they were split out, routed to each connection point, cut, tinned, and soldered into place. On the other end, they were stripped, pins crimped, and inserted into the molex connectors shown in the picture. None of this was included in the kit.

    20150327_111357.jpg

    Next, the optics were mounted. The kit included 90 degree optics for every LED on the fixture. These are held in place using thermal 5 minute epoxy . Mix this in very small batches, as it gets unworkable very fast. I found that putting the optics on the LED first, then dipping a toothpick in epoxy , and putting a drop on two sides of the LED works best.

    20150328_120117.jpg

    I also purchased the 92mm frameless fan kit for each of the fixtures. I've purchased a PC fan controller with a touchscreen which will drive voltage to the fan depending on the temperature of the fan. You can see the mounted thermistor behind the LED in the last picture. You will see that in the underside picture next also. 4 wires were used for that thermistor, and the fan power. The LED housing gets the wire hanging kit mounted to it, and the heatsink slides into the LED housing. Side plates cover the LED sides and hold the splash guards and heatsink in place, but allow the heasink to breathe. You can also see the 8 pin molex to power the 4 LED strings, and the 4 pin molex for the fan / temp.

    20150328_143130.jpg20150328_143204.jpg

    This is the underside of the fixture when assembled. Note the thermistor on the left side of the fixture.

    20150328_143240.jpg

  6. #16
    Rotifer
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Maineville
    Posts
    41
    And the last picture is the LDD driver setup. These are as pictured in the diagram that I posted earlier. I mounted the boards using nylon standoffs and nuts. The bottom has metal screws into the standoffs. Wiring was split under and over to make it easier to fit all of the cabling, and for the LED outputs, I used the same 4 strand LED driver wire as the fixture cable. Two bluefish breakout boxes at the top allow you to use a standard 3.5mm stereo cable to connect to the Bluefish controller . Those split out ground, and two PWM channel controls. I did just finish crimping the other end of the molex connectors on this, but will have to post that picture later. I need to get the fan controller mounted and wired up to the 4 pin molex connectors. I will add that detail, along with cooling fans inside of this enclosure to keep the whole thing running cool. The good news is that I will have this complete by the weekend. The better news is that I was supposed to have an update on the tank shipping soon. Stay tuned!

    20150329_191909.jpg

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