DWC vs. Coco Drain to Waste

Discussion in 'Hydroponic Growing' started by Funky De, Nov 22, 2014.

  1. Hello All,
    I know this topic has been beaten to death, but with all the posts that I have read I still have not been able to decide on which path to take. 
    I am running a 600W in a 5x3ft tent. I have had several successful cycles with soil and hand watering but am really looking to increase my yield as well as having things a bit more automated. If I was to go coco I would most likely set up a drip that waters once a day for a minute during veg then increase through the weeks of flowering. I would not be recycling water (seems to be a bit more finicky from what I have read). 
    I know significantly more about coco most people I know swear by it but I still am really drawn to DWC. It seems that it is harder to get dialed but once it is, looks very rewarding. 
    I am hoping to get some differing opinions on this as well as some advice on how many plants to run in either. If DWC, should I do separate buckets or run it all in the same tank? If Coco, How large a res should I have and what size pots should I look into given my space?
    Any and all advice would be greatly appreciated. I am hoping to have things up and running a day or so after Thanksgiving. I will post pictures once I decide which way to go.

  2. I have done soiless, but not cocco, and it was great.  Good growth, and it is nice having a little buffer in there.  I have since switched to a diy rdwc system.  My first run was awesome I literally doubled my weight per plant.  But then came the hard lessons.  I lost the next crop to a bad ph swing because I was ;lazy and hadn't re-calibrated my ph pen.  I almost threw in the towel, but had to much invested into these systems to just walk away.  I have since learned a few tough lessons, but have completed 3 successful grows and will never look back.  I think the biggest thing was controlling water temp.  If your water never gets too warm you will probably never have issues.  All my problems stemed from high water temp.  Now that I have that controlled it is amazing how fast the plants grow, and how big they get.  And I havr grown using just about every method besides flood tables. Soil, soiless, full organic, dwc beats them all.  And don't listen to the organic guys that say you will never have as tasty or smelly buds as them.  When done right that is just not true.
  3. i've grown in soil, hempy buckets (100% perlite) and DWC. nothing beats DWC speed of growth imho. the only downsides are it's a lot more maintenance and a lot more sensitive. you have to top up water reserves in DWC daily and you have to keep the bucket very clean or you'll get algae growth. pH needs to be adjusted daily as well (maybe even twice if you're growing a monster that just drinks up water like crazy) since when the water level changes, so does he pH levels.
    coco is very similar to hempy buckets in that you water them once every three days and just sit back and watch the other days. a lot less maintenance, but it's a lot slower growth overall. you can speed up the growth at the beginning a little bit if you do a drip system and have the nutrient solution dripping down the stem of the plant. it helps the roots grow down a little faster.
    i've been growing only hempy for a while now, but i'm looking to grow another monster and i'm up for the extra work so my next grow will be a DWC again.
  4. Hey Todderfran! How did you end up controlling water temperature?

    Sent from my iPad using Grasscity Forum
  5. I've done 4 cycles in dwc and have gotten my nute lineup worked out. That said I'm going to try some coco mainly since I may do a few scrogs.

    I do my dwc in 5 gallon buckets and run 4 buckets per 40 lpm air pump. I change my buckets, never top off and only check ph and tds at bucket change. I haven't had any difficulty with this system since I follow a low nute schedule.
  6. Currently growing in DWC for the first time, the only problem i've run into is the plants getting too big for their home. Switching from soil with two 400w lights to bubble buckets with one 600w i have seen about a three-fold increase in plant size and yield. While DWC does take some work to setup and maintain (ok maybe a lot of work), it can be well worth the investment. One absolute NECESSITY for a stable DWC setup is a beneficial microbe tea. It will greatly reduce the risk of root rot and slime growth and can actively clean your reservoir. Its very simple to brew and will allow you to run the res at higher temps, which is one of the hardest things to regulate in a warm climate without an expensive chiller. http://forum.grasscity.com/hydroponic-growing/903852-cure-root-rot-dwc-ewc-tea-find-out-how.html
  7. #7 GoldGrower, Dec 1, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2014
    For me DWC beats coco in every aspect. Auto watering in coco is not a great idea, you should only water when the plant needs it otherwise you can deprive the roots of oxygen and really slow growth.
    You honestly can't go wrong with DWC as long as you use a reservoir that is big enough, match the nutrient concentration to what they are taking up, and push enough air through the water. In the summer time you may need to take steps to keep the temperature down but if it's winter where you are I doubt you will need to worry about that at the moment.
    Use a light tight res and algae cannot grow, use enough air and anaerobic bacteria cannot grow. I strongly recommend using single bottle nutrients so you don't have to mix them. This makes it so much easier to adjust the ppm on the fly. I can leave my DWC plants for a week without even looking at them if I need to. There's no worries about them drying out like soil. Or staying too wet, you can top up anytime that is most convenient for you 
    There is only one downside of DWC, and that's the noise. Large air pumps make a hell of a racket
  8. I am right along with Goldgrower.  Once you learn dwc it is almost set it and forget it.  I check ph every 3 days maybe.  Like Gold said match the nutrient uptake and topping off is no issue also ph won't swing.
    The weather controlled water temp for me.  I am going to need to buy a chiller if I want to run next summer.
  9. Hi
    I grew dwc and rdwc for many years an changed over to coco for the ease of it compared to hydro yes I hand water every day rather than top us a res every few days
    But I use less feed and is a lot easier to manage
    When small water e dry other day so its. Not to bad and problems in coco are far more easier resolved than hydro I have yet to get a fault with coco and the yeild matches my dwc
    As long as u have good run of set up for coco its very simple
    Dwc works great as long as u got the temps in the res sorted 19 was sweet spot for me when u start hitting 23 plus it all slows down root rot can set in but a chiller can solve this am when its running sweet u can be topping up every day
    The bigger the res the more star u can keep the ph

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