loosing hope, 2 ft. T-8

wendyzJanuary 10, 2006

Hello Light folks,

I have comed Home Depot, Lowes, and several lighting stores on the web to find a 2 foot long fluorescent fixture that will hold two T-8 bulbs.

Does *anyone* know where I can find such an animal?? We are stuck with needing the two foot length because we are under-mounting a bookcase for our African Violets. I'm a newbie (can ya tell!)

Thank you for any replies,


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bigrig(z5/6 Ohio)

Try looking in your local yellow pages under "Lighting fixtures-retail" or "Electric equipment and supplies-retail". What you are looking for is an electrical supply/lighting company that sells to professionals (wholesale) as well as the average consumer (retail). They will usually have a much larger selection of lighting fixtures. 2' and 3' T8 fixtures are not that uncommon.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2006 at 9:23PM
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Thank you for your reply!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2006 at 9:54AM
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lroyrose(central nj)

I bought 2 foot shop lights at lowes.


    Bookmark   January 12, 2006 at 3:48PM
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Pet stores may also carry 2' lights for smaller aquariums. If they're not in stock, a pet supply website should certainly have them.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2006 at 2:32PM
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I found 2-ft fixtures at Home Depot today, BUT they only carried 20-watt bulbs to go in them. My question is whether a 2/20 watt bulb set-up is enough to stard seedlings. I remembered reading something that specified 40-watts as a goal--are two 20s the same thing????

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 8:55PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

You find find much more than 20W in a straight 24" tube. I know you can get 24W T5s in that length (actually 22") but they aren't easy to find. I've never seen a 24" T8 that puts out more than 20W which means you are unlikely to run across one in HD.

2x20W is more or less equivalent to 1x40W. Possibly a little less since fluorescent tubes get less efficient when they are shorter. As an example, 21W 36" T5s put out more light than the more powerful 24W 24" T5, although obviously the shorter tube packs the light into a smaller space which may be better for plants. Two tubes are generally better than one because one fluorescent tube alone will struggle to light the width of a seed tray.

Look for a 20W tube that puts out 1,400 lumens or more. Also consider using a compact fluorescent. They are very easy to find and a 20W bulb will put out 1,200 lumens, ideal if you only want to light two or thee half trays or one or two pots.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 10:22AM
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Thanks, shrubs n bulbs. I've got my architect husband on the case with the electrical supply shop.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:42PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

Oops, my reply should have started "You won't find much more than 20W in a straight 24" tube"! Sorry for any confusion.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 8:55AM
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neil_allen(z5/6 Chi IL)

The wattage of a flourescent is a measure of the energy being used and an indication of the total light being given off, not of the brightness at x distance from the bulb. So a longer bulb uses more energy gives off more total light, a shorter bulb uses less energy and produces less total light. But the amount of light that reaches your seedlings placed 2 inches away along the length of a 2-foot, 20-watt bulb is going to be about the same as the amount of light reaching seedlings 2 inches away from a 4-foot, 40-watt bulb or an 8-foot, 80-watt bulb.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2006 at 11:44AM
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watergal(z6/7 Westminster, MD)

Except that there is some inefficiency for several inches at each end of the tubes regardless of length. So a longer tube gives you more of the brighter "middle" light.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2006 at 10:09AM
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