Cold Cathode moonlighting

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Cold Cathode moonlighting Empty Cold Cathode moonlighting

Post by bulldogg7 on Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:25 pm

These are the parts I used, you can use different ac/dc adapters. Even different cold cathodes kits.
If you decide to order online, http://www.xoxide.com/coldcathodes.html has cheap lights.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=5694040 I paid the $15.49, seems they're on sale now.
Cold Cathode moonlighting Inverter

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?summary=summary&techSpecs=techSpecs&currentTab=summary&custRatings=custRatings&features=features&accessories=accessories&productId=2271470&support=support&tab=accessories $19.99 but cheaper online, google for them.
Cold Cathode moonlighting Light

The first step is cutting the ends off the cables. On the power adapter cut is close to the plug end. On the inverter for the cathodes, cut the main wire that runs from the inverter, as far from the inverter as you can. I threw that switch away a long time ago, it conect to your computer's power supply. If you have cold cathodes made for a car, they also work and won't have that part on them.

Now the fun part, don't worry, you won't get shocked. Hook up the wire ends, and plug in the power adapter, if it works GREAT! If not unplug and switch the wires around and retry, they should work now. On my combination the wiring seemed backwards, but this is the only way they would work.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1002-12
You can solder the wires if you like, it would help keep them from pulling apart and make a better connection in the long run. I did, but the pic didn't turn out. I was out of shrink tubing, electrical tape works fine.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1004-18

Installation is easy. Find somewhere to run the wires. The lights unplug from the inverter, so you can slip them into tight spaces.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1006-17
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1007-8
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1009-9

The next 2 steps are interchangeable.

Secure the wire from the DC power adapter to your main lighting cord, to keep it from getting pulled out. It also plugs into the inverter. In the top of the pic you can see the inverter, I taped it to the top of the canopy to keep it secure.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1011-7

Figure out where you want the cathodes to go, I put mine on my fixture just because it was polished and may help reflect the light. Basically you can put them wherever you like, away from the water. If put high enough over the surface, they make ripples on your substrate, pretty neat effect. Mine are 4.5inches off the surface and I get a small effect of it.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1012-8

Here they are set at 12volts
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1013-8
And at 6volts.
Cold Cathode moonlighting DSCF1015-9


And a short animation with the tank lights on, and off, and cathodes at different settings.
Cold Cathode moonlighting Test200

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