Need help with lighting on the cheap

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by Wmoon518, Aug 29, 2017.

  1. Need some help to determine in what I have to work with is okay. Am a newbie, so bear with me. Need to grow for personal use for back problems and buying is just getting to be way too much. Here's what I got:

    - Am going to use an old walk-in shower that is about 3ft x 3ft. Am only going to have 3-4 plants at a time and will most likely veg indoors and flower outdoors as weather is good all year round (I hope I said that right).

    - I have (8) 14.5w 5000k 1575 lumen led (100w equivalent) bulbs I already had. I am in the process of making a light that would use all 8 bulbs (4x2) with reflectors.

    1. Will this work? Is this enough light?
    2. Would this be okay to mix an autoflower or two in?
    3. Is there any way to rough guess-timate how much I could get with this?

    I know most of y'all here are probably experts, but hopefully you can have a little pity on a novice and try to help me out.
  2. Too many variables to hazard a guess (strain, medium, etc), but there are many successful grows using a setup like yours..If you have some decent and viable seeds..give her as go;)
    BUT more light = more yield.
    Autos are really not for beginners though..too touchy I think!
    Good luck to ya..!!:)

    PS: Mylar survival blankets are under $5 on bang for the buck imho.
  3. A 3x3 area could probably handle 2 plants for an entire grower but will most likely be crowded. Vegging indoors and moving outside to flower works but flowering is based on light hours. Although year round nice weather is a bonus, it doesn't mean you can flower year round outdoors. Also, this is medicine for your back. So wouldn't you want the best quality and quantity that you could actually produce? Technically your lights may be able to veg a couple small plants indoors. Not ideal, but your plants will grow some. Imo I would purchase a light designed with proper spectrums for vegging and flowering, and do the complete grow indoors if possible. You have some control over environmental factors indoors. Outside, even though the sun is the world's best light, you are at the mercy of mother nature. Heavy winds, rain, or lack of rain, uncontrollable heat and humidity. Oh and don't forget the thousands of different bugs and animals that are going to think that you just brought them to an all you can eat salad bar. Or that jackass that was strolling around the woods and stumbles upon your plants and pulls them before you. I understand that you want to do this on the cheap, but why do you think quality weed isn't cheap? It costs money to produce good bud. I'm not saying that you cannot use your lights and move outdoors and grow weed, but it's going to be some work. Good luck.
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  4. #4 Savarast, Aug 29, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2017
    Regular LED bulbs can work for growing? I thought it had to be those red/blue spectrum bulbs, or are those what you have? Most places online suggest from 20-40w of actual power per square foot of grow space, so a 3'x3' would ideally be pulling ~270w. More light leads to more growth/yield, so it just might not be the optimal yield.

    Mylar blankets would be ideal in your space since its a bathroom, flat white paint can work too, but I'm assuming you don't want to paint a shower stall in case you want to bring it back to a shower.

    I'm pretty damn new to this too, I have a 3.5'x3' space I'm using and I can tell you right away anything more than 2-3 plants is likely not going to work very well. I made the same rookie mistake thinking I could fit many into my space, I now have 6 growing, and two rooting clones and there's no way they will all be able to stay.
  5. A 400w HID will make you much happier. Will probably cost $30 a month to run depending on where you live and won't put out too much heat. You're yield will likely double or triple compared to using all those cheap LED bulbs.
  6. Sorry but I beg to differ on yields..
    Nope Cockatoo.gif
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  7. The walls had just been redone with some shiny white panels so they are really good, but I was thinking about the blanket idea. Better, also, my 99cent only store has them for $1 (WOO HOO!!!!).

    I already tried to grow a Blueberry Fem I got a seed for free, outside but had some problems with. I did manage to take a pair of clones from it before it started acting up, so this is what I am going with right now. Just transplanted them into 3 gal pots and put them inside with two of the 14w and two 14w LED grow lights that a friend gave me (red and blue spectrum, from what I understand)
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  8. Thanks for your comments.

    My problem is that this is the only space I have to grow, for now, and I want to keep at least one plant (rotating as I go) that I can take cuttings from. My thought was to get a few clones I have going and transfer one of them outside, in the backyard (protected from roving jackasses) around November and keep one for more cuttings. Then put the other out in January or February and keep the cuttings going for a few months. By that time my finances should hopefully improve and I can have a second area set aside to keep at least one plant vegetative at all times.

    I absolutely understand that quality weed is not cheap, and would love to invest hundreds into doing it primo, but ya gotta do what ya can. If I can get a few ounces per plant for now, I will be happy. That is why I have come here to hopefully get the right pointers to do the best I can now and learn from those who may have been in my position and have been able to work it out. The more info I can get from y'all the better. Thanks
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  9. Buzzer777 said the same about the blankets and I am seriously thinking about them. 99cent store has them a $1 a piece. The shower was redone a little while ago with those shiny wall panels, and has not been used so it is pretty reflective.

    As far as I am aware, being daylight, they are "full spectrum" or at least as full as they can be. So, do you mean 20-40w, using the 14w "actual" use or the 100w equivalent? The place is actually about 12 s/f, so if on the high side, 40w, 480w required. If by the 14w, times 8, that would be 112w actual usage but 800w equivalent. which would apply?

    What was the problem with the 6 plants you had, not enough light, or was it a room issue, or both? I just put the two 3gal in there and they don't even take up half of the space.
  10. I would love to, but as I said finances are all but non-existent. The $30 would be tough. I saw a few reasonable bulbs, but would one be enough for 10-12 s/f? The problem is I haven't seen a lamp for less than $100.
  11. Ebay has a few no-name 300w (maybe 125w actual) for <$75
    Meizhi 300w for $63.50..
    Problem is for 10-12sq ft, even one of the 300w jobs are just ok for 2 plants in Veg..but NOT for flower..That would need a 2nd light..Also keep searching on Amazon for open box deals. I recently got a 300w dimmable there (re-packaged and missing a power cord) for $45 shipped:)
  12. If you are only vegging indoors you will only need 100 watts (actual wattage) of LED. 2x 50 watt COBs in 4000K with passive pin fin heat sinks a single driver with dimmer. Done. I know your budget is tight or non-existent, but even if you have to save $20 a month for 6 months to get it done right, it is worth it. You will just waste money on cheap garbage and in the end you will replace it anyway.
    Don't do the mylar blanket thing, they rip, creates hot spots, impossible to clean and not the same as the diamond material in a grow tent, use flat (not glossy) white non toxic paint or panda polly only, ever. Or you can buy sheets of the diamond tent material (4'x25' $40 Easy Grow Lightite Foil)
  13. Not to sure OP wants to wait, but I do agree with you;)
  14. Problem is that 6 plants will need MUCH more light than you think..This setup is a 3x3x6 and crowded as hell as you can see..BB is a beautiful plant and will grow to be a huge wide bush, even when trained properly..(One of my favs and I have recently started a BC Early BB myself)..
    This photo shows my 4 plants under 1x Unit Farms UFO80 and 1x Nextlight Mini..Both Relatively expensive LEDs
    Each would only do a 2x2ft area in flower..;)I grow 4 since I like different strains..BTW: the 2 on the right are Granddaddy Purples and with a ton of LST, Topping (once) and Supercropping, they are still about 3ft high..:eek::eek2::eek:
  15. Was that fixture, Ballast and Bulb? Also, shouldn't I switch to 2600k for flowering? I would guess you would just swap out the bulbs?
  16. Buzzer,
    You are correct. I need to set something up now with what I have. Not working so what I basically have is what I need to work with now. I am hoping to get something started that will be like Harlequin or Cannatonic which is a super low THC and High CBD that will allow me to get back to work and start being productive again. Really want to eventually do up a nice setup that will be proper. Have a great spot in the garage that I want to enclose and set up two small rooms. That will have to wait.

    Thanks for the info. No problem with that as there ain't much going out now. I do get Amazon GC's from time to time, and have been using them for other stuff I need, but hopefully will be able to start saving them for the right stuff. And I will hold off on those blankets. It seemed like that would be a decent sub for now as all the tents are similar to that on the inside. Glad to have y'all here to let me know.
  17. They are nice. The BB I took the cuttings from was really nice in veg (?) so I really want to keep trying to grow some and hopefully don't kill them off.

    Okay, I know topping, and have read a bit about LST (bendy-bendy) but what is Supercropping? Also you sad something when you were talking about the BB (I assume you were talking about Blueberry, but I was always told never to assume....... you know), what is BC?
  18. BC= BC BUD (breeder)..Named Early since she finishes very fast for a photo..50-60 days I think

    BTW: No Ballast etc needed for these leds..cooler and less $$ to run..Hope this helps

    Here are 2 shots..#1 is after I hurt the stem..#2 shows resulting bud formation!
    8-13-17 supercroped GDP#2.jpg 8-17-17 stacking.jpg
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  19. I was referring to the 300w you were talking about that you found for < $75. Is that the whole set up (bulb, ballast and fixture)?

    The pics, are they from the over crowding or the supercropping? Thanks for the video, I will watch it later.
  20. NO, <$75 is for a 300w Meizhi LED..NO Ballast, bulb, etc needed..Comes with all needed for that price..
    Just add a Pair of Yo-Yo hangers and you're good to go!
    MEIZHI Reflector 300W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum Hydroponics Indoor Plant Lamp | eBay

    The pics I posted are a before and after shot of the same area, showing the growth explosion after she repairs the damage by sending a bunch of plant goodies to fix things up.. I would never let the overcrowding result in damage..Damage I do intentionally (up til 2 wks in flower)..then the fun begins;)

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