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First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas

Athos56

New Member
Hello everybody, I'm a avid diy guy, I've done everything from making my own vacuum tube amps to electric beer brewing. I've recently got my medical card and turned my diy furvor to growing. I've worked out a rough DWC set up for a small grow. What's shown below is for one plant, I would scale up to a max of 3 plants under 600w in a 4x2x6 tent ( already made and also diy ;) ).
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One: 5gal water tank for RO water. Linked to nute tank with a manual valve and float valve.

Two: 5gal nute tank. Level is controlled with a the float valve to add RO water to replace water lost and keep the proper nute concentration. There is a pump, air stone, and return pipe in the nute tank.

Three: 3gallon pot. There is a double valve set up for two water levels. High water for starting and low for running after the roots are established. Water gravity feeds back to the nute tank through here. Nutes are fed to the grow pot through irrigation at the basket pot. There is a large air stone in the bottom. So nute solution feeds in and gravity feeds back. The water and nute tank and are outside the tent to stay cool. I'm also thinking that the pump will feed a manifold and some of the water will feed into the grow pot directly to force more water through the system. There is a drain at the bottom for water changes. To change the water I close the valve before the float valve and let the pump empty the tank and then dump the grow pot.

So does this make sense? I'm open to ideas and changes. I look forward to sharing future grows with you all.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

I have non-hydroponic soil experience. So the basics of the grow are known to me, the dwc system is the new component any help would be appriciated. I'm an engineer at heart so I tend to over do things ;)
 

Ancho

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

Too complex for me, I'm assuming that your diagram is accurate and that you will be having the reserve water tank directly above the nute tank. If so, what is the easy way that will allow you access to the nute tank for checking and controlling both nutrient levels and ph? Draining the tank, why not just have a valve teeing off your pump that would allow for your drip component but also allow the pump to drain directly from the nute tank when a total water change is required. Good luck to you, this is a great hobby.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

Good point about the complexity and the t off the pump. I'm drawing something up a little simpler I'll post it in a bit. Thanks.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

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Too complex for me, I'm assuming that your diagram is accurate and that you will be having the reserve water tank directly above the nute tank. If so, what is the easy way that will allow you access to the nute tank for checking and controlling both nutrient levels and ph? Draining the tank, why not just have a valve teeing off your pump that would allow for your drip component but also allow the pump to drain directly from the nute tank when a total water change is required. Good luck to you, this is a great hobby.

Here is that updated picture. I took the basic concept from a well known system. But it looks like it can be diy'd for under $$. I did indeed stack the tanks, I figured I could test off the T valve or get an inline TDM/PPM meter used for aquariums to keep track. But I added quick connects to the plan for easy disassembly. Plan 2 is much cheaper and simpler. The only draw back is I might have to use 1/2 inch or 3/4 inch tubeing rather than 1" PVC if I go with quick connects.
 

Ancho

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

3/4 inch is probably as small as you want to go, I think your plans look good, one consideration not addressed is water temperature control that is something that may or may not be an issue for you and you might not even know until your system is built and running, but you will need to keep it below 75 degrees.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

Yeah I was hoping that keeping the rez outside the tent and using a vented hood would keep things in range otherwise a chiller will have to be rigged.
 

Ancho

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

I have a vented hood and keep the rez outside the grow tent and still require a small chiller to keep the water temperatures down in an air conditioned house. I have also wrapped buckets and lines with insulation in an effort to keep water temps down.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

I have a vented hood and keep the rez outside the grow tent and still require a small chiller to keep the water temperatures down in an air conditioned house. I have also wrapped buckets and lines with insulation in an effort to keep water temps down.

That's as much as I expected, blows the diy budget out of the water. Did you spring for one of the $300 aquarium chillers? Maybe I could find one used.

Athos
 

Ancho

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

I'm running two 5 gallon buckets right now, one a rez, one for the lady about 8 gallons of water total. Using a Cool Works Ice chiller, about $120, I'm able to keep my water temps at 73 degrees in the morning and they will rise during the day to 75, acceptable. When I was running a three bucket grow and about 12 gallons of water it kept the water right about 75 at all times. The room temperature where the tent is kept is around 78.
 

Ancho

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

Athos, as an FYI when running a DWC grow to the best of my knowledge you'll need to have some plan in place to keep your root zone healthy. Some people use a live culture in the rez to foster good bacterial growth, others run H2O2 through their system to keep it healthy and sterile, Florashield is another answer to the issue. Just something to read up on and decide on as you prepare you hardware for growing.
 

Athos56

New Member
Re: First post, hello all, some advice needed on some ideas.

Athos, as an FYI when running a DWC grow to the best of my knowledge you'll need to have some plan in place to keep your root zone healthy. Some people use a live culture in the rez to foster good bacterial growth, others run H2O2 through their system to keep it healthy and sterile, Florashield is another answer to the issue. Just something to read up on and decide on as you prepare you hardware for growing.

Ancho,
Hey Thanks for the tip, I hadn't even thought of that yet. :Namaste: I also looked at those cold finger chillers. I thought if I was going to spend the money I might as well save up for the bigger inline unit. ;) I'll post pictures of by set up soon.

Athos
 

lendee

New Member
Another thing to keep in mind is to try to break the water tension with a simple plume turn an elbow up and allow the plume to break the surface this will cause more (DO) dispersed oxgien than even stones you can also have the return line water fall into the res remember can't have enough oxygen. A chiller is going to be a must if want any consistency with your grows.
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This is what i use 47 gal 2 pot system with 10" net pods and 2 plants per net pod. Chiller under floor.
 
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