Looking for opinions/tips on setup!

Discussion in 'Grow Room Design & Setup' started by GiantCentipede, Jul 20, 2013.

  1.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    I'm about to start purchasing components, and wanted to get some input before I take the plunge.
    I've done outdoor and room grows before, but due to space and floor plan a room grow isn't possible for me right now. Since I just moved to Colorado, an outdoor grow has too many unknowns for me still and also doesn't seem viable... Yet.

    So, I've come to the conclusion to build my own brow cabinet using two methods I haven't used before: ScrOG and DWC (I have plenty of NFT experience in extremely large grows, though. I'm not new to hydro, at least.)

    Here is a sketch of the build I'm putting together:
    [​IMG]

    So let me explain.

    Air (A) flows past the dimmable electronic ballast (B) and 45 lpm air pump (P) via two multi-filtering 4" intakes (I) that filter via screen, carbon filter, and micromesh. This should keep out dust bunnies, foul odors/tastes, and most (if not all) mite type insects. Of course, opening the front will allow all three of these things in. That should be minimized though, and only done for maintenance. The reservoir (T) is a 19 gallon tote, sporting two 5" net pots, filled with hydroton. The reservoir will be using 4 14" bubble wall air stones to provide high DO to the plant roots. The ScrOG screen will be a twine type adjustable screen, so the proportional distance from the reservoir is likely incorrect in this sketch. The air will flow past the screen toward the light (L), which is a 400 watt MH/HPS 18" with wing style reflector and pulley system for height adjustment. The box surrounding the 4" 97 cfm inline fan (F) and 8" x 12" (4" outlet) carbon filter (R) is a sealed box with a bottom-center 6" intake and 4" exterior top exhaust vent (V). This should prevent light leakage and provide a way to isolate fan heat from light/grow heat and pull both out simultaneously.

    i get the feeling that 400 watts might be a bit high for the space but, seeing as it is dimmable, should be able to adjust to the needs of the grow nicely and provide a small boost if need be. The fan should, based on my calculations, be able to clear the cabinet roughly twice per minute at about 80% efficiency. Eventually, I'd like to automate much of the process using an Arduino and Raspberry Pi, but for now I will be manually monitoring the situation via a temperature compensating PPM meter and combo thermometer/hygrometer, and adjusting my ph and nutes accordingly. The entire interior will be covered with panda poly to provide efficient light reflection, which will be adhered using a water based contact cement.

    I already have a 24" T8 ebb and flow clone/sprouting cab in the form of a PC server case, so I haven't made any provisions for that here.

    The total cost, not including time, effort, and some basic hardware components such as lock, adhesive, etc., run up to about $800USD. Definitely a far cry from most tents that come with only a portion of the components here. Such tents are significantly more obvious, as this is an Ikea wardrobe.

    I'm interested to hear opinions on the setup (constructive criticism is always nice, non-constructive is less welcome...) and any ideas you may have to improve efficiency, yield, power/nute consumption, etc.

    if you're interested in the parts list, here ya go! :)

    [TABLE="class: grid, width: 500"]
    [TR]
    [TD]Component[/TD]
    [TD]Cost[/TD]
    [TD]Quantity[/TD]
    [TD]Final Cost[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]PAX Wardrobe with 2 doors, black-brown, Bergsbo black-brown[/TD]
    [TD]$219.00[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$219.00[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Apollo Horticulture GLK400CT24E 400 Watt Grow Light Digital Dimmable HPS MH System for Plants Cool Tube Hood Set[/TD]
    [TD]$137.30[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$137.30[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Vortex 6" 449 CFM, 1.2A, 136w[/TD]
    [TD]$159.93[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$159.93[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]ActiveAir Fan Speed Controller[/TD]
    [TD]$21.00[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$21.00[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Deflecto A068/4 6-Inch Diameter by 8-Feet Semi-Rigid Flexible Aluminum Duct[/TD]
    [TD]$13.98[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$13.98[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]iPower GLDUCT8C Ventilation Ducting with Pair of Clamps, 6-Inch[/TD]
    [TD]$17.82[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$17.82[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]iPower 6"inch Air Carbon Filter Odor Control with Australia Virgin Charcoal for Inline Fan[/TD]
    [TD]$62.25[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$62.25[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Extech 445815 Humidity Meter with Alarm and Remote Probe[/TD]
    [TD]$49.99[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$49.99[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Hydrofarm AAPA45L 20-Watt 45-LPM Active Aqua Commercial Air Pump with 6 Outlets[/TD]
    [TD]$41.33[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$41.33[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Lee's Sleek Airline Tubing, 25-Foot, Black[/TD]
    [TD]$5.56[/TD]
    [TD]2[/TD]
    [TD]$11.12[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Como Fish Tank Aquarium Blue 14" Bubble Wall Airstone w 3 Suction Cup[/TD]
    [TD]$6.09[/TD]
    [TD]6[/TD]
    [TD]$36.54[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Net Pots 5 inch, Round, Heavy Duty, 1 Dozen[/TD]
    [TD]$18.10[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$18.10[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Hydroton Grow Rocks - 10 Liter[/TD]
    [TD]$10.06[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$10.06[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Panda Film Black & White Poly Film 5.5 Mil 10' x 25'[/TD]
    [TD]$28.09[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$28.09[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]120mm Aluminum Fan Filter Grills w/ Mounting Screws, Black (2-Pack)[/TD]
    [TD]$6.99[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$6.99[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Silverstone Tek 120mm Ultra Fine Fan Filter with Magnet Cooling FF123B (Black)[/TD]
    [TD]$6.96[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$6.96[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Imperial Manufacturing PA-4W 4-Inch Premium Intake Cap, White[/TD]
    [TD]$6.06[/TD]
    [TD]2[/TD]
    [TD]$12.12[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Speedi-Products SM-RSV 6 6-Inch Diameter Plastic Round Soffit Vent[/TD]
    [TD]$10.51[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$10.51[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Sterilite 19 Gallon Storage Box[/TD]
    [TD]$8.95[/TD]
    [TD]1[/TD]
    [TD]$8.95[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Total[/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]$879.00[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [/TABLE]

    Looking forward to some awesome responses from the pros here!
  2.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    I run a 400 watt HPS with a lumatek 400 watt digital ballast set to run at 430 watts, in a space 20 inches deep x 4 feet wide x 6 feet tall with no problems with heat at all, Mine is a Home DePot wardrobe. You just need an air cooled hood. Also I like your idea about putting your ballast next to your air intake, I didn't think of that when I set mine up but next grow I'm going to move my ballast and try it :) You should be aware that you will get more bud from 1 plant, with a few days longer veg, in that small of a space then you will with 2.

    Also, I would go with 2 inch chicken wire on a frame for your scrog screen, string tends to get pulled and distorted as the plant gets bigger. If your going to go DWC I'd look into a waterfarm, it's a combination DWC/Drip system, and in my humble opinion the best way to grow weed.
    lamopa likes this.
  3.  
    lamopa

    lamopa Active Member

    You're either going to need a cool tube or at least have a fan blowing across the bottom of your lights. You're also going to need some sort of intake fan down near the ground.
  4.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    GoldD: good thought on the cooled hood. Perhaps I can slap an intake on the end of an air cooling tube and run it to the sealed box. I went with a bit taller enclosure in case something like that became necessary. I've actually priced out the additional drip components, and they don't add much... So a waterfarm is definitely a possibility. I was thinking I'd start with a common mid quality strain to test out the first couple grows, in case I needed adjustments like moving to a single plant grow for example. Thanks for the tips!

    lamopa: Thanks for the info, I do agree that a way to cool the light (or running less wattage) seems to be ideal, now that you guys mention it and I see it "on paper". Maybe you could expound on the use of the intake fan? I'm just not sure how it would help the cabinet if the air is being cycled almost twice per minute. I really appreciate it!
  5.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    You don't need a seperate intake fan, passive intake is all you need. You will however need a bigger fan then 97 cfm, not possibly, not maybe, but you will need more than a 97 cfm fan to pull air through your filter and provide air exchange the cab. What you should do is use that 97 cfm fan for an air cooled hood and then get yourself a 180 cfm inline fan to pull through the filter. Check this thread here http://www.rollitup.org/grow-room-design-setup/694190-need-input-grow-box-build.html
  6.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    Hey GoLdD - thanks again for the reply. I've been concerned about the airflow rate, based on all the filters I'll have in place. Based on some quick calculations, it looks like I could pull 3 air exchanges per minute with the vortex (found it on amazon) at ~75% efficiency. I've always tried to keep my exchanges at 2x or higher, so that sounds nice. The vortex does about double my cost for a fan, but buying an inadequate fan then the right one later would cost me more than that. Good find!I'm now thinking a 2" duct from the light fixture, plus two 2" intakes on the sealed box should provide me with enough intake to supply the vortex at the 4" exhaust. I should note that the intakes at the base of the cabinet are on either side, and are both 4". I'll be stepping down from 8" -> 6" -> 4" from intake to exhaust. TCO is still looking to be less than $900, and that still beats out just about any prebuilt I've even seen. Thanks again!
  7.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    If you have two 4 inch intake holes at the bottom of your cab, one 180 cfm fan is not enough, if you are pulling through a filter you can cut that cfm rating down by 2/3's, and you want it to go through the light and through the filter? To do everything you want to do you will need a 240 or more. Or, have a total of 4 inches of intake and a separate fan for the light. You have to remember you need to keep negative air pressure in the cab or you won't get any air exchange with a passive system, some air will go through the fan some will go out the intakes and your plants won't be happy.
    GiantCentipede likes this.
  8.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    That's quite true... Based on some guesstimates, I'm thinking that the filtering setup (3 stage) on the external intakes will reduce airflow efficiency by 50% (if not more, which is another concern altogether) and give me an equivalent 4" 'worth' of intake. I think part of the benefit in this design might simply be the room for flexibility. Too much intake area? Block one intake. Too much exchanger (sealed box) intake? Block one of the 2" intakes. This would sadly reduce airflow across the pump (ballast will always have an open intake, IMO) but I don't think that would be a deal breaker. What's your opinion on going with the extra intake ability, and backing off (blocking one) if need be? I know the last thing I really want to do is be cutting in the cabinet once my grow is started haha.
  9.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    Ok well I honestly have no clue wtf your talking about with 3 stage filtering external intakes, and I don't know what math your using to come up with your numbers. What I do know is that a carbon filter will lower the amount of air any fan will move by about 2/3's, at least that's how you should plan it. So with an inline fan pulling 180 cfm, then adding a carbon filter you are now moving 60 cfm (not bullshit advertising cfm's like on computer fans, but actual real world cfm's) and you have a 47 square foot space, so you are coming dangerously close to not having enough power to pull that air from bottom to top and keep negative pressure. So now if you add another obstacle such as pulling through a light you won't be able to pull that air from the bottom to the top. And if you make your intake holes too large none of it matters because the air will only trickle in and mostly just circulate around the intake holes and the filter, allowing smell out and keeping stale air in. I use two 180 cfm 4 inch fans because they are quieter than a 6 inch 240 cfm fan, and I know that 1 has only enough power for air exchange which mandates the need for another for cooling my light, if I were to use only 1 fan to do both things then I would get a larger one for my space which is 43 sq feet, smaller than yours and I consider my setup to be the acceptable minimum for my space.
  10.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    I wasn't aware of how much the filter would drag down air exchange, great tip!

    The three stage I'm referring to is a mesh grill, a carbon filter, then .3 nanometer screen on the intakes.
    back to the drawing board for my air system it seems! Based on what you're saying, I'm definitely not moving as much air as I previously thought and need to go much larger with my fan(s)!

    I really appreciate the info, I'm used to venting without filters (or none at all when growing outdoors!)
  11.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    It's a process, I know because my set up didn't work right at first either. But learn from my, and others, mistakes and experience and in the end you'll have something that works well and that you can be proud of.
  12.  
    twistedwords

    twistedwords Active Member

    $800 for a 4x2 setup...WOW. I did more than that a 4x4 and (2) 250 watt HID and (1) 400 watt HID complete DWC system for less that $300. I am not bragging, but you are paying a lot for this. I think you are way over thinking this too. My 2 cents though. I do RWDC in my setup.
  13.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    Care to share your setup? I'm always looking for ways to improve my design or reduce my costs. I'm impressed that you managed to keep the price so low, considering that the lights and fan rig I'm looking at (400w mh/HPS, and 447cfm fan with carbon filter) run about that. I'd be super interested to know how you did it!
  14.  
    Barrazaburnz

    Barrazaburnz Active Member

    I agree you are paying a lot. I doubt i have $800 in my 600w 4x4ft and 2x3ft 400w. My tents were cheap free shipping online I even got a taller tent 4x4x7ft all metal no plastic. Digital ballast, big blockbuster 26x26in air cooled hood, HTG supply 6in inline fan, and duct muffler. 2x3ft 400w digital ballast, and 4in duct fan. My best grow room item is my AUTOMATIC FIRE EXTINGUISHER. I can take it all down in just minutes and have it boxed in the closet if I ever need too." X-mas stuff" lol
  15.  
    Barrazaburnz

    Barrazaburnz Active Member

    400w = 2x3ft-3x3ft 600w= 3x3ft-4x4ft 1000w= 4x4ft-+ so they say. Light movers are awesome and change things up. Your hood has a lot to do with it also. I recommend getting stuff premade for growing the tent, inline fan, carbon intake filter, carbon can filter ect. An Air cooled hood allows you to put it down closer to the plants.
  16.  
    MrMeanGreen

    MrMeanGreen Active Member

    720 cfm fan with controller will take care of all your needs and some in reserve. Overkill can always be toned down and it's never a bad thing to have exra ammo in your arsenal.
  17.  
    GoLdD

    GoLdD Active Member

    $800 isn't out of line at all, here's what's in my box;

    Lumatek 400 watt Digital Ballast $175
    2 x 4 inch 180 cfm vortex inline Fan $230
    Can 33 carbon Filter $125
    Hy Super Nova 4 inch Air cooled hood $89
    Hortilux Super HPS Bulb $95
    Agromax MH Bulb $65
    3 flanges $15
    HY 2 outlet digital Timer $25
    Belkin commercial power strip w/ remote kill switch $30

    That's $830 in just hardware, I most certainly could have gone cheaper, but you get what you pay for. If you have the money centipede then it's a one time expense to get quality hardware that will last you dozens of grows without problems. I don't know why so many people here are fixated on being cheap, I can understand college or high school kids being cheap, but you get out what you put in. I spent $1200+ on my set up and in the last 3 years of growing, my weed is exceptional, my yields have been exceptional and the fact that I haven't had to buy weed in 3 years means I've probably saved $5,000 + over the cost of my set up. Money well spent in my opinion.
  18.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    I agree. One thing to remember, if anyone thinks I'm paying too much: I'm not going for a grow tent, I'm going for a cabinet grow with features and functionality that are roughly one par with the Supercloset Deluxe 3.0. Those cabinets are easily $2500USD not including shipping and options, while my $800 mark includes any shipping costs and (IMO) looks better than a big metal office cabinet.

    I'm still interested in how you guys got to the low numbers you did, since just my light, hood, ballast, fan, and filter cost more than that $300 that was mentioned. I wouldn't say I'm going high-end for the components (those Lumatek's do look pretty sexy), but more like middle of the road. Even if I have to upgrade every component after a year is up, I should be ahead of the game.

    For reference, I built my PC cloner for about $200 and I think it's a slick piece of gear. I'll post some pics when the moving company finally gets my furniture up.
  19.  
    lamopa

    lamopa Active Member

    Telling tall tales. A GOOD 400w or 600w HPS light will go for at least $150 - $300 alone. The cheapest grow tent around $100. Throw in fans, vents, containers, nutes, soil, testers, etc. that's at least another $150. I'm not even including a cool tube. Bare minimum is maybe $400 to start.
  20.  
    GiantCentipede

    GiantCentipede New Member

    My cabinet alone (brand new) is $219, so I don't doubt this one bit... Even with an inexpensive grow tent. I think it may be time I added my parts list, so that everyone can understand where that money is going. I'll have to recalculate, since I think I may have broken the $800 mark with a few of the upgrades (97 cfm fan -> 450 cfm vortex, open tube light -> air cooled light, etc), but I'm still thinking its quite reasonable for the quality I'll get out of it.

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