Grow tent lighting question, side lighting

Discussion in 'Grow Room Design/Setup' started by .carbon, May 6, 2011.

  1. Okay so pretend I have a grow tent with the dimensions 32"x32"x63" and were using a 2ft T5 light with 4 tubes for veg to grow 1 or 2 larger (taller) plants.

    I want ample side lighting and have 3 options for that:
    1. Hang 45Watt CFLs on socket cords [ame=] Socket Cord Set for Vertical Hanging CFL Grow Light: Home & Garden[/ame]
    This would allow for the lights to get close to the plants as I want.
    2. In each corner have a wing reflector like this, [ame=] Bright Wing Reflector Fluorescent Grow Lamp Fixture: Home & Garden[/ame]
    with 125Watt flourescents facing inwards, giving a nice spread of lumens on the plants.
    3. I found these fantastic little 4 socket adapters [ame=] Photo Basics 413 4-Socket Adapter: Camera & Photo[/ame]
    which I could rig up on the sides and/or corners to give good side lighting.

    Here are my questions:

    1. Would it be advisable to get a 100-200W HPS setup for flowering or do they make 2700K T5 tubes?

    2. If I use strictly CFLs for side lighting, how much is too much? Would two 125Watt CFLs harm the herb?

    3. Given my many options, which combination would YOU personally choose and why. Both for side lighting and flower.

    Keep in mind I am on a budget, and would like to not have to mess with the heat involved with a HPS not to mention the cost. I will really appreciate any feedback given.

  2. Have you priced a 250w hps light yet?
    Everything you are talking about, more cfl's 2 dollar light adapters, hanging wires etc, while all good thoughts in theory, you're going to make an electrical wire jungl over your plants.
    If you're stuck on cfls, I put 3 cfl's in a 6 outlet electrical strip using these 2 dollar light to plug adapters from hd.
    Remember that most of the light put out by cfl's comes from the sides not the top of the light, the objective is toget as many lumens directly towards the plant.
  3. Yes I understand the light from cfls comes from the side, hence why all my "options" have them parallel to the plant. I just don't have the financial means to support a HPS/MH light and all the ventilation/cooling that is required and would be required in a tent setup.

    I am trying to make best use out of the two types of lights that won't cause large fluctuations in temperature, CFL and LED. Thank you for your input though.
  4. 17.91 for your socket adapter
    29.56 for the 125w cfl reflector
    12.99 for that 4 light adapter....

    My comment about lummens, which you spoke about in your post was to basically say I think that 4 light adapter is more waste than worth.

    While I'll agree that cfl and whatnot is cheaper, you can buy a 250w digital hps setup with bulb and hood for under 200, and the benefits it offers over led and cfl are well known.

    How much is it for a 125w cfl? 25-30? is that true 125w? or is it rated as the equivalent to 125w?

    12foot cord, reflector alone right there is 50 bucks, add 30 bucks for the one cfl @ 125w and that's 80 bucks for one, cfl light setup.
    You put 2 in your tent and poof same price as a single 250w light, and from what I've read 250w lights don't give off a ton of heat like a 400 or 600 does.

    Whichever way you go, you know your situation best, just trying to give some advice based off the ton of reading I've done weighing my options as i graduate from 6x23w fl grows to a 600w hps setup. Good luck.
  5. Thank you dyno for that insight. I was planning, however, on doing much of it myself, as in making reflectors and such; although it isn't free it will cost much less than those amazon prices that I posted just to give examples.

    Does anyone have experience with a 200W HPS in a grow tent and if so what steps were needed to keep the temperatures at a suitable level? Also, at that point, would I be better off running MH and HPS for Veg/Flower instead of CFL and HPS?
  6. #6 Pastivity, May 7, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2011
    Ok sounds like you are beginning to over think it
    The MH for veg HPS for flower is like text book lighting sequence for mj
    Even though you could use the hps for the entire grow from seed to harvest

    Temps will be an issue if you are in a warm environment and/or you keep or want to keep the tent closed
    For me, I use around 200w of lighting atm(150w HPS & LED side lighting) and the only way for me to keep temps down
    I had to invest in an Air Conditioner unit
    plus I keep my tent open because I do not have proper ventilation

    Reason being that people are advising you to get cfls can be because
    they are lower in cost per bulb, people are more familiar with them,
    less heat so temps won't rise so quickly or as high, I mean there is a list

    I say if you can afford an a/c, mh light for veg, and an hps light for flower,with proper ventilation for the heat then that would be one proper way to set-up an indoor grow with a tent

  7. Yeah, that's the obvious choice but I stated that I am doing this on a budget. I can't afford a A/C unit at this very moment and other circumstances limit that option as well. Is it just the MH bulb that has problems with heat or do both run hot? Ventilation I can do, A/C I can not.

  8. The way I have been able to get away with running a HID without an a/c is using a 150w HPS
    It increased the temps by about 10*F
    So if you can keep the room or area cool then having that could be a wise choice

    Cost about 60-90$ depending on delivery with bulb

  9. Thank you! This is the information I was looking for. So it would be most economical to have a veg tent with flouros and a flower tent with a 150W HPS, correct?

  10. You can do that if you wanted to have 2 different rooms but you could run the hps the whole grow as well

  11. What difference would I notice between vegging with HPS in comparison to CFLs? I understand and have read up on the different light spectrums but would HPS just make a shorter, stouter plant.

  12. No supposedly the spectrum the HPS runs makes them grow a little taller
    The more light the better so if you decide to run cfls to mix up the spectrum with the HPS that would be good
    I do this with led panels
  13. I saw that in your thread, I'm hoping she's a girl by the way. I also noticed you purchased a portable A/C unit. Did the 150watt HPS run too hot in your tent or were there other contributing factors?
  14. #14 Pastivity, May 9, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 9, 2011
    Thanks she should be showing here shortly
    Been growing for a couple of years and this season has begun the hottest for me so far
    I was unable to close the tent at all during the "day" for the plants
    (Still don't close the tent but thats because of preference now)
    The heat has to go somewhere but there was no ventilation so it was kinda like a closet :)

    It also restricted me to using around 175w total due to the temps getting above 85*F
    I want more light with more watts on the plants, I am aiming for 250w (hid)or more by the end of the year
    It was ok but I was totally banking on getting an a/c unit this year
    I have been slowly upgrading my set-up since then from lights to the new a/c

    Its more like a work in progress that keeps getting better and easier
    Like I said before as soon as I had added the HPS a couple grows ago
    The tent temp went up 10*F in a hurry so if you can not keep the area cool then that would be the most limiting factor as far as light upgrading goes

    ^Also the reason I had purchased the led panels as I wanted more light with little to no heat in return
    They did the job well
  15. I feel like with all the upgrades and the cost of a air conditioning unit the cost will easily surpass what you would spend on one decent LED. Check out Irishboy's grows with the LEDs from GLH, the 600w one will shock you. Given they are expensive initially but I feel like they would save you a lot of money down the road. Not to mention they are perfectly suited for discrete grows.
  16. I feel like I'm in the same place as you, trying to decide between options, looking heavily at tents and CFL setups for the initial cost savings.

    However what I'm starting to think is this. I feel like no matter what I'm going to need proper venting/inline fan/scrubber. Even if just for smell alone, I'm thinking I will need a filter, and a fan to get air through that filter and a passive intake.

    The advantage I see to CFL or LED is a cooler grow room, can run lighter inline fans or run them at lower settings vs. HIDs. But the price of a good sealed/air vented HID isnt too high (say 250 region).

    I think my cheapest option would be basic tent with filter/exhaust fan, I feel like even if I go with CFL or LED I would need this if only to recirculate air and deal with late flowering smell issues. CFLs seem cheaper at first but I'm starting to realize I'll be venting/scrubbing anyways, so the additional hookups of say an air cooled HID wont be as bad.

    End of the day not sure what I'll go with, it will probably morph over time. I could see one day having a tent with a 150w HID, some LED panels and some CFLs altogether. I will slowly add pieces as heat and $$$ permit. I am leaning to starting with CFLs or T5s though, LEDs are very attractive due to low wattage, but the initial investment is steep for me.

    I figure the lighting aspect can actually be one of the cheaper aspects of a grow when you realistically take heat and smell into account. I'm looking at spending say $90-150 on a tent, $100 on a scrubber, $100 on a fan, maybe even $100 on a silencer. Another few dozens of dollars on assorted flanges etc to get the ducting right. Then of course planting medium, nutes etc, by the time you look into lights they seem like a smaller cost by comparison. Say 2x 125w CFLs at $30 each with 2 CFL hoods at $80 each, you can basically get a sealed air cooled MH/HPS w/ digi ballast for that price. You could do CFLs without hoods, which is where I may be leaning to start, and yeah theres good cost savings there. I'm just saying the entire setup not counting the lights might be 400-700 dollars, so whether I spend $50 on lights or $250 (good quality, MH/HPS 250w sealed hood w/ air venting) isnt a hugeee deal.

  17. I suggest reading through this grow. These specific lights from this company in particular seem to blow the competition away, at least in the category of LEDs.

    Yes, you will need ventilation for no matter what setup you use because your plants need fresh air, regardless, not to mention you want to remove odor. But heat is a big issue with HPS and an even bigger issue with MH. And it seems that people aren't happy wit the 120watt HPS lights they start with so they upgrade, spending more money and eventually you will probably have to get a small air conditioning unit to cool those ridiculous temps so your plants don't die. When you have extremely hot summers, like here in Texas, LEDs just make sense.

    Yes, the initial cost is high, but with a 5 year warranty and all things included I am definitely going to make the leap for the Spectra LED 290. I'd rather spend a lot now, and have all of the benefits of a superior setup, than slowly spend (more) money upgrading my setup and slowly reaching the same level of setup as I could have with LEDs.

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