DIY Grow Tent

Discussion in 'Do It Yourself' started by Shackleford.R, Sep 29, 2009.

  1.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    Hello all! On the coattails of my recent grow, recent and first, I took note of a few things I may have done wrong, and few of the right things I could have done better.

    1-Light leaks are your enemy.
    if you think you can get away with a tiny crack of light during flower, you're wrong.

    2-Proper ventilation and cooling makes for happier plants.
    at times I allowed the grow space to reach temps of 92, though possibly OK for a hour or so, definitely not OK as a consistent temp.

    3-Growing CFL means growing smaller plants.
    my last girl grew out of control, at times I was overwhelmed, if you want to be successful with CFL, accept you'll be blooming sooner than you may wish

    4-(IMO) CFL needs soil
    hydro is fun and sounds exciting, but it also has a much more rapid rate of growth. growing CFL you have fewer lumens and slightly less usable light
    so, do yourself a favor, grow in soil which has a much more moderate rate of growth, and therefore is more likely to make better use of available light

    With these lessons in mind, I set out to build a minimalist DIY Grow Tent, to make better use of my growing closet.
    The design is simple and this isn't a step by step by guide of how to construct what I am doing.
    More like an ongoing journal of its construction. (not too complicated you could figure it out for yourself after one look)
    (I should throw this out there now, my girlfriend would like the house to be grow-free for a bit, so this will be slow build..)

    The project as she stands now, looks something like this..
    [​IMG]
    ..not TOO exciting I know. (unless you are myself and you see all the potential in store!!)
    She measures 23"W x 13"D x 56"H


    Phase 2 - installing fans. I plan to use 4" 120VAC fans, two attached to the very top of the unit for exhaust, and one attached to the lower back for intake (I'll be doing up a panel to hold the lower fan in place, that may have a step by step guide)

    Phase 3 - entails wrapping the unit in Panda Poly-Film, the goal is wrap her up like a christmas present, using zip ties to hold in place and lastly a strip of duct tape (black for aesthetics sake)

    Phase 4 - sticking on a pair of adhesive zippers to the front of the unit, one on either side running the height for complete access

    Phase 5 - internal air movement, considering a 6" spring clip-on fan attached to one of the posts to keep air moving and get that early developing plant strong and sturdy

    Also, I'm sure someone will ask, "Hey.. what's with the hood, thought you said CFL?! WTF?!?! ZOMG!!?!" CALM DOWN!!! Your eyes do not deceive you.
    That is my 125W 2700k Mogul Base CFL. Which may or may not get re-used this go 'round.
    Looking into ramping it up to a 200W CFL, regardless will be purchasing a 5500k CFL, similar style for veg.
    Again before I receive any guff for using such a CFL and not HPS or MH or HID (which CFL is) or BMF or UGK or other damn abbreviation..
    I used that bulb on my last grow, with decent results (all other factors aside) and it BARELY made a noticeable difference on my utility bill.
    So put that in your pipe and smoke it (after you're done smoking your homegrown ;) )
    One last note, the shelf the hood hangs from is completely adjustable, for any height desired.
    That is all for now, keep checking back and subscribe! The build (as its not truly that labor intensive) should be done in about a week or two.
    Followed promptly by the cracking of beans in early-mid November.
    Happy growing RIU!!

    :peace:
    Shack
    IAm5toned likes this.
  2.  
    "SICC"

    "SICC" Well-Known Member

    SUBSCRIBED :bigjoint:
  3.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    glad to have you SICC. trying to spread the project out about (picking up the pieces needed as i find the best prices and have the cash to spare)


    :peace:
    Shack
  4.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    After some preliminary testing (this is without the film "shell") temps are cruising pretty steadily between 82-84 degrees. Lets hope adding the film doesn't mess with this too much. MY guess is it will, but only by about +2-3 degrees. Keep in mind I will have a exhaust/intake fans going and a circulation fan inside as well. I'm also cooking up an idea in my head about a "heatsink" style fan mounted on the shelf above the hood, used for cooling CPU's i think i might be able to attach it to the shelf/hood in a way that it could be useful. My gut tells me though it would only lend a difference of about 0.5-1 degree so I'll decide later if its worth the cost/tinkering.

    :peace:
    Shack
  5.  
    DubB83

    DubB83 Well-Known Member

    Looking good, stop by the dollar store and get some mylar. Look in the bag stuffing isle!

    ~GG420
  6.  
    "SICC"

    "SICC" Well-Known Member

    just read thru everything, sounds like a great project, im gettin a 125 watt CFL as well, with both the Veg and Flowering lights, along with the trip lights at 2,000 lumens each, so it should be good, we'll see,


    i'll be posted
  7.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    [QUOTE="SICC";3162210]just read thru everything, sounds like a great project, im gettin a 125 watt CFL as well, with both the Veg and Flowering lights, along with the trip lights at 2,000 lumens each, so it should be good, we'll see,


    i'll be posted[/QUOTE]

    trip lights? i missed something there. tell me more!

    :peace:
    Shack
  8.  
    "SICC"

    "SICC" Well-Known Member

    lol it was a typo, some light strips, something like that, im gettin it from a friend and thats what he told me, he used them but i guess he lost some plants from it being to hot

    ima look at it today, so i should be able to get an idea what they are, but he's hookin me up so whatever it is, i'll take it, plus at 2,000 lumens each, and he has a couple of them, i'll let you kno when i get it figured out
  9.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    sounds good to me.. i'm definitely interested in something like that... this little space i could use some thing for under the canopy in addition to the hood.

    :peace:
    Shack
  10.  
    DubB83

    DubB83 Well-Known Member

    Regular CFLs will give you more performance in numbers vs higher wattage/lumens. I suggest standard 23W CFLs for supplemental lighting. Light reduces on the inverse of square and those lights run hotter so an increase in distance will equal about the same as a 23W in light intensity. Plus with 23W'ers you can get a good spread of light if you space them out and place them an inch or two away from the plants.

    ~GG420
  11.  
    DocBrown

    DocBrown Well-Known Member

    I like you're idea. Gonna keep my eye on this.
  12.  
    tmsculli

    tmsculli Active Member

    Shackle, you actually were the person who put the finishing touch on my "should I grow or not" . I found your thread with the power strip cfl fixtures and then the $$$$$ started to run out the door. So thanks for that brother and good luck with this tent, looks like fun.
  13.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    I'll be looking to you for info as far as cooling/venting the area. so far my temps are topping around 86 3-4" from the light. glad to have you here!

    No shit?? did you post in thread?? didn't recognize the user name. happy to know that thread was a good tool for you! you're grow is pretty sweet i was looking at it earlier today. hang around the tent should be done in about a week or so.

    :peace:
    Shack
  14.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    Picking up panda film and fans tomorrow. planning to start with two fans... one intake and one exhaust. if temps continue running high (my goal is steady out in the 80-84 range) then i'll add a second exhaust fan. does anyone have any thoughts as to rigging a fan to the lower shelf? i considered being cheap and using foam board with a hole cut for mounting the fan, and attaching it between the poles using zipties. but!! i don't know how well the foam board would hold up over time. plywood or bust? that was my second plan, use it the same as the foam board, only use a "U" bolt to attach to the poles.

    what are your thoughts??? the fans need to go on first, then the film so i can just trim the film to fit over the fans and seal with duct tape.

    :peace:
    Shack
  15.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    I have some thoughts on the proper use of this grow tent. It's not a grow in the traditional sense of a long vegetative grow period. The space is best suited for a quick grow, start to finish. Going from cracked seed/seedling state to "full grown" in the span of about 12-15 days, flowering and harvested by day 55-75 depending upon the strain.

    The theories being applied to this grow tent from what I consider a GREAT read for small scale personal use growers. "Buds for less Grow 8 oz. of bud for less than $100" authored by RIU's very own Garden Knowm. He has a thread discussing the book, HERE. If you haven't checked the thread and you're a CFL grower it is WORTH your time!! The book has a complete daily photo documentation of the grow it catalogs. As well as info on soil and nutrient uptake, also a DIY light hood how-to. Check it out!

    That is all for my quick plug.

    :peace:
    Shack
  16.  
    DubB83

    DubB83 Well-Known Member

    The sturdier the better, you will get more use out of it without having to fix it all the time. That is how I feel about it.

    That is a good book to get started with, the daily pictures are pretty cool. I had a few problems with what the book said, but otherwise it was dead on and a good how to for starters not wanting to go broke to grow some herb. Just a heads up, if you flower as a seedling you run a chance of growing more males or hermis. It really is best to flower when the nodes on the branches start to offset.

    Also that book is very strain dependant, if your growing mexi-schwag bag seed (Sativa), they have a 12 week flowering time. Indicas usually will flower for less and the book is based on an Indica grow.

    ~GG420
  17.  
    DubB83

    DubB83 Well-Known Member

  18.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    step ahead of you on strain research, or actually same page. i have good, reliable, feminized indica seeds from Greenhouse Seed Co. planned for this grow. 10 total, a couple duplicates, but two 5 seed mix packs. When i said it goes from seedling to "full grown" i should have mentioned it was indica strain growing under possible 24 hour light to get those leaves and nodes poppin'!

    :peace:
    Shack
  19.  
    Shackleford.R

    Shackleford.R Well-Known Member

    I go to radio shack to pick up a fan and i'm looking for a 120VAC 4" PC fan, because everything i read about it, it comes with a little power supply/cord.. only they don't have it. they have some DC fans comparable size, and AC on that doesn't come with power cables.

    My question to RIU.. do i need a power cord of any kind other than two conductor lamp cord? If i plug one of these straight into the wall, using no sort of power converter/inverter BS block of plastic with a resistor in it (i.e. cell phone charger) is the fan going to blow up?

    The Radioshack A-Hole tried to sell me on this ridiculous idea to buy a PC power supply and some PC fans ready to plug into the power supply, but thats just my cost up an extra 30-50 dollars bare minimum.

    Your thoughts RIU!!

    :peace:
    Shack
  20.  
    MeisterYo

    MeisterYo Well-Known Member

    Just see what the most power the fan can handle and take an old phone charger that about does it. Thrift store electronics are great for cannibalizing.

    I had an old external cd rom and just took out the drive and hooked up a ton of fans to it.

    The powersupply would just be regulating voltage.

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