Tiny LED project - Moving the peppers indoors.

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by mechanicritter, Dec 1, 2016.

  1.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    I just finished a project some of you might find interesting, I decided to test out some of the new higher power bead LEDs by making a little lamp for one of my pepper plants. It is starting to freeze and this thing still has flowers on it, so I brought it inside. I am assuming december sunlight is not enough, so I made a multivitamin for it out of 2 little Chanzon 5 watt full spectrum LEDs.

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    These little suckers are about 1/4" and put out 5 watts of 70% reddish and 20% blueish light, and use only 6v and 1.4amps. Here is the spectrum chart they advertise.

    [​IMG]

    I also found a metal mount plate that would hold 5 of them, depending on how much heat they put off.

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    These are pretty easy to wire up, you just need to determine the + and -, and then wire it up to a buck converter. I found a cheap lm2596 buck converter for it, and set it to about 12v. Then I soldered it up to the two leds in series, the converter, and an input plug for a 12v 2amp supply I had laying around. That should make these LEDs put out about 8 watts, or 100 lumens each.

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    The two leds produce just enough heat to need some extra cooling, so I used a screw and a washer to pull some of the heat out the top. To see just how hot it gets, I put it in a piece of hardwood. If it turns black or bursts into flame, I will try something less flammable for the permanent cover..

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    Amazingly these 2 little 1/4" LEDs put out quite a bit of light, and as long as it is more than 3 inches away from the tops no heat is felt near the leaves. Both the big pepper and the little one lean toward the light now. Here is the final project, giving some extra lumens to my indoor peppers.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    So far after a week of indoor life, the leaves look better and one pepper turned red! The little habanero appears to like the new light too. With regular indoor lighting on it looks a little pinkish but doesn't make the whole room look weird. And now that they Legalized It, I don't have to worry about getting raided over a few indoor pepper plants.

    If you are new to LEDs, these little ones are a great place to start. The 5 watt ones are about a dollar each now, the mount was less than a quarter, and the converter was about 2 bucks. If you have a soldering iron, some wire, and an unused 12v power supply, you can make one too.

    This turned out pretty good for a tiny DIY project light for less than 10 bucks!
     
  2.  
    calliandra

    calliandra Well-Known Member

    Thanks for sharing this, it's great input!
    I just started a makeshift experimental corner with chilis and basil rescued from the cold outdoor and gave them one of my 50W Cobs... I don't need any other lighting in the kitchen anymore haha
    It's really bright, so seeing what you've done opens a world of downsizing possibilities!

    Besides, the design is absolutely gorgeous! Do you have something to do with woodworking?

    Are those LEDs also available fullspectrum? I would be tempted to mix the ones you have with something that adds a liiitle bit of those middle spectrums...
     
  3.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    Thanks, I used some butcher block remnants since they polish up nice and you can drill\tap them like metal. Since these tiny 5w LEDs came out, I figured I might be able to make a small light for each plant that might actually do some good and not look too crazy for the living room.

    I have not seen any with real full spectrum yet, they leave out yellow\green for some reason. An additional 50w would work great on top of these, Which white ones are you using for peppers?
     
  4.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    An update on the heat these LEDs put out. The 2 5watters keep the top of the bolt at about 150f, and the rest nice and warm. I am adding a couple washers to try to dissipate more heat. I made a second light with more surface area for a test, and it is running about 20f cooler.

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    This second one will be recessed to direct the light better once I get the airflow up through the block right.

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    In full daylight it doesn't look too crazy, and 200 more lumens can't hurt.

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    Almost pepper time.
     
  5.  
    calliandra

    calliandra Well-Known Member

    Yeah the yellow/green are not used in photosynthesis proper, but there are indications that plants do use those intermediary wavelengths too.

    I just threw mine together a few days ago, when I realized the chili still had it too cold in the stairwell (and it got company fast lol). So can't say yet how happy they are with that light.
    It's a Cree 3500K COB I just started using on my last grow (which turned out fabulous!), letting it run 13hrs at the mo. But it looks awfully wasteful!
    2016-12-02 (1).JPG
     
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  6.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    That's a nice looking way to mount it. It looks like it should work great for those little guys with all that reflected light in the corner. Another pepper saved!
     
    calliandra likes this.
  7.  
    Olive Drab Green

    Olive Drab Green Well-Known Member

    241w of COB, Flower Week 2 Day 2:

    IMG_3476.JPG IMG_3477.JPG IMG_3484.JPG IMG_3479.JPG IMG_3480.JPG IMG_3486.JPG IMG_3487.JPG
     
  8.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    That's awesome. "Lets DO this", with a side of pineapple!
     
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  9.  
    Olive Drab Green

    Olive Drab Green Well-Known Member

    Those cacti are pretty important, too.
     
  10.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    It looks like these little lights might actually be having an effect.

    effect1.jpg

    Warning! May ripen fruit slightly faster than daylight.
     
  11.  
    calliandra

    calliandra Well-Known Member

    Looking lovely!
    Mine is starting to regrow leaves now, and I'm also seeing buds.
    How long do you leave your lights on?
     
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  12.  
    dargd1

    dargd1 Well-Known Member

    Are the cacti in there for a reason as it relates to growing cannabis or just an additional plant being grown at the same time?
     
  13.  
    Olive Drab Green

    Olive Drab Green Well-Known Member

    Those are San Pedro Cacti. Research them a bit. I also just got a cutting of Pink Vein Indo Kratom.

    IMG_3557.JPG
     
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  14.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    Nice, mine are too. They get about 12 hours of led light plus daylight. That's just a guess though, is there a light schedule for perpetual peppering?
     
    calliandra likes this.
  15.  
    iHearAll

    iHearAll Well-Known Member

    Check http://www.mouser.com/Mobile/Optoel...LED-Emitters/High-Power-LEDs-White/_/N-8usfj/
    they are partly wholesale, i narrowed the search to white leds but you can pick a brand you like.
     
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  16.  
    mauricem00

    mauricem00 Well-Known Member

    those diodes look a lot like the bridgelux full spectrum diodes. will be interesting to see how they work
     
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  17.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    They are doing good so far. The two 5watters per light stay at about 120f now, and have not had any problems in almost a month of being on. Surprising for a buck each.
     
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  18.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    At almost 1 month of LED light the paprika peppers are ripening nicely and it even has a few new leaves and flower buds appearing. I should have 6 or 7 edible paprika's soon, and 2 that are hollow and hopefully full of seeds. The little habanero is growing slowly under the leds, but the new growth seems to be a little light green. Not sure what that means in pepper land, but I fed it some fertilizer just in case its a nutrient deficiency instead of lack of light.
     

    Attached Files:

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  19.  
    mechanicritter

    mechanicritter Member

    Christmas Harvest time! These little led's managed to keep the plant growing long enough to ripen a dozen or so peppers! The clone of the same plant I just put in a window still has very small light green peppers, so the full spectrum LEDs did speed up the ripening by at least a couple weeks. The darn thing is also flowering again now, so it looks like the project was a success. I may try to clone it a few times before spring, since it seems to be growing fine under these leds.

    End result: As little as 200 lumens of "full spectrum" led light could save your late pepper harvest from winter.
     

    Attached Files:

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