DIY perpetual cabinet build. Q&A

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Hello farm. Been a while since I've been around. Currently have nothing going. Planning a cabinet build for my reboot in the near future. My goal is to build a plywood cabinet in which i hope to create a perpetual grow. Utilizing LED and attempting to automate the environmentals as much as possible. Just hand watered for the past two years. It sucked. So drip irrigation and temp control will be a focus on this build.

Current ideas:
Plywood cabinet 60"x30"x80"
Two sections up/down for flower. 36"x30"x40". Two veg areas 24"x30"x40. Dimensions are approx and subject to change to accommodate exhaust and controls. That's the general idea. Any experienced box growers out there? Share the knowledge.
 
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Fans, filters, and air exchange.

General cubic foot of the box is approx 87cf. Pretty much any 4" fan will exchange the air efficiently. An extremely quiet fan and a speed controller will be goal. What's anybody using in the 4" sizes? I currently have a hydrofarm 165cfm. It's loud even inside a box with foam egg crate lining i made. I've been looking at something a bit smaller with a speed/temp controller. AC Infinity CLOUDLINE T4, Quiet 4" Inline Duct Fan with Temperature Humidity Controller - Ventilation Exhaust Fan for Heating Cooling Booster, Grow Tents, Hydroponics https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06ZXWN3BG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_ObkjEbRWZ88NQ
Anybody have experience with this fan?
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
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Fans, filters, and air exchange.

General cubic foot of the box is approx 87cf. Pretty much any 4" fan will exchange the air efficiently. An extremely quiet fan and a speed controller will be goal. What's anybody using in the 4" sizes? I currently have a hydrofarm 165cfm. It's loud even inside a box with foam egg crate lining i made. I've been looking at something a bit smaller with a speed/temp controller. AC Infinity CLOUDLINE T4, Quiet 4" Inline Duct Fan with Temperature Humidity Controller - Ventilation Exhaust Fan for Heating Cooling Booster, Grow Tents, Hydroponics https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06ZXWN3BG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_ObkjEbRWZ88NQ
Anybody have experience with this fan?

I love the T4's. I have 4 of them that i use on my 2x2 grow cabinet and on my 2x4 flower cabinet. I also use a T6 for venting my work area. IMHO you can't go wrong for the price point and the are very, very quiet. 🍻

1579461593982.png
 
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I love the T4's. I have 4 of them that i use on my 2x2 grow cabinet and on my 2x4 flower cabinet. I also use a T6 for venting my work area. IMHO you can't go wrong for the price point and the are very, very quiet. 🍻

View attachment 931685
Are these the ones with simple variable controller or the ones with the digital temp controller? I'm curious of the functions. Do i try the digital controller which varies according to the temps or just go with the simple variable speed and set it manually? Being enclosed inside a cabinet I'm wondering the importance of the temp controller vs simple variable control set manually. Price point and effectiveness. I can only assume the sound and vibration is determined by the speed of fan, which basically is identical between the two models, aside from the controllers. I'm leaning towards the simple speed controller with manual adjustment.

And dear Ansel, i am a huge fan of your photography. 😄
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
Are these the ones with simple variable controller or the ones with the digital temp controller? I'm curious of the functions. Do i try the digital controller which varies according to the temps or just go with the simple variable speed and set it manually? Being enclosed inside a cabinet I'm wondering the importance of the temp controller vs simple variable control set manually. Price point and effectiveness. I can only assume the sound and vibration is determined by the speed of fan, which basically is identical between the two models, aside from the controllers. I'm leaning towards the simple speed controller with manual adjustment.

And dear Ansel, i am a huge fan of your photography. 😄
Howdy;

Do yourself a favor and go with the digital controller. You can shut off all of the alarms if you want to and you can choose which thresholds to set. They are awesome for controlling the Hum/Temp in the cabinet.

This is a photo of my environment stats from last week when i started dialing in my grow cabinet for new kids... The output is from another great tool called a "Pulse" 🍻

Big blupurple lights are off and only 2 of 4 T5's

1579478423703.png
 
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I built out a few years ago and used a 8" HyperFan, specifically for the variable speed control for a 5x9 tent. These AC Infinity fans seem to be pretty good from what I can see - they use DC motors and PWM control. The old AC motor blowers were what I was trying to avoid - speed control on AC motors is generally a bad idea for lots of reasons including fire as a failure mode. The HyperFan was really expensive relative to the AC units, these are less so and include autonomous control.

If I got one, I'd probably end up taking it apart to figure out how to extend some of the feature-function back to my main controller.

Thank for sharing this one.

Heya @AnselAdams
Got a URL?
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
I built out a few years ago and used a 8" HyperFan, specifically for the variable speed control for a 5x9 tent. These AC Infinity fans seem to be pretty good from what I can see - they use DC motors and PWM control. The old AC motor blowers were what I was trying to avoid - speed control on AC motors is generally a bad idea for lots of reasons including fire as a failure mode. The HyperFan was really expensive relative to the AC units, these are less so and include autonomous control.

If I got one, I'd probably end up taking it apart to figure out how to extend some of the feature-function back to my main controller.

Thank for sharing this one.

Heya @AnselAdams


Got a URL?

for the pulse -->https://getpulse.co/buy/
pulse community --> https://forums.getpulse.co/



and Thanks 🍻
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
Are these the ones with simple variable controller or the ones with the digital temp controller? I'm curious of the functions. Do i try the digital controller which varies according to the temps or just go with the simple variable speed and set it manually? Being enclosed inside a cabinet I'm wondering the importance of the temp controller vs simple variable control set manually. Price point and effectiveness. I can only assume the sound and vibration is determined by the speed of fan, which basically is identical between the two models, aside from the controllers. I'm leaning towards the simple speed controller with manual adjustment.

And dear Ansel, i am a huge fan of your photography. 😄

at the very bottom of my signature are two urls, one to the Nat'l Park Photography and the other to the videos. Feel free to browse the rest of the site. Email is format only does not actually get used, nor is it resolved for a response. 🍻
 
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Oh, lord. $200? Like, wow. I'll look at this a bit more - I can see why this is a good solution for most folks. Just from what I have read in their response to a question about security - I'ma not a buyer. That is pretty much a bullshit response. End to end encryption and we do it like this ... would be more what I expect for that cost. I work with cloud telemetry as a consultant and that just bothers me. But not knocking what they are trying to do. If they are reliable and robust - then I can see the product being worth about what they ask. I'd just want more sensor choice, I think. And a complete answer about how secure the product is designed to be.

Thanks @AnselAdams I like to evaluate these sorts of products as they arise.

One of the problems with having cloud stuff is eventually it has to become subscription to get things like storage and historical analysis as features. Hopefully they will succeed with launching their business class and accumulate users ( before the money runs out ) because I think they probably have to subsidize the cloud operations. IOT is really new so has the "first hit is on me" market model. You can still get 3-5 channels of IOT for free if you know how to plumb the connections.
 
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AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
Oh, lord. $200? Like, wow. I'll look at this a bit more - I can see why this is a good solution for most folks. Just from what I have read in their response to a question about security - I'ma not a buyer. That is pretty much a bullshit response. End to end encryption and we do it like this ... would be more what I expect for that cost. I work with cloud telemetry as a consultant and that just bothers me. But not knocking what they are trying to do. If they are reliable and robust - then I can see the product being worth about what they ask. I'd just want more sensor choice, I think. And a complete answer about how secure the product is designed to be.

Thanks @AnselAdams I like to evaluate these sorts of products as they arise.

One of the problems with having cloud stuff is eventually it has to become subscription to get things like storage and historical analysis as features. Hopefully they will succeed with launching their business class and accumulate users ( before the money runs out ) because I think they probably have to subsidize the cloud operations. IOT is really new so has the "first hit is on me" market model. You can still get 3-5 channels of IOT for free if you know how to plumb the connections.
Sounds like you are a bit twiddler as am I. If you go onto the forum and talk to Josh, he is their "tech" weenie. He is very open to suggestions and tweeks. I have sent in several ideas. One is in the works as a feature towards the middle of the year.

I like supporting developers and this seems like a solid product. I see no way for them to back-track down the line to gain access to my systems. The most they have is an IP and the whole world has access to that. I agree that they will eventually have to move to the cloud to retain historical data or provide a way for you to download the data. I don't see any data or information connected with this unit that i mind being accessible. After all i hold conversations on here (The Farm) that could be used to track any of us down IF there was a desire and or need.

IF you are on the web, you can be found. end of story. If you are really, really good; it will just take longer. 🍻
 
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Howdy;

Do yourself a favor and go with the digital controller. You can shut off all of the alarms if you want to and you can choose which thresholds to set. They are awesome for controlling the Hum/Temp in the cabinet.

This is a photo of my environment stats from last week when i started dialing in my grow cabinet for new kids... The output is from another great tool called a "Pulse" 🍻

Big blupurple lights are off and only 2 of 4 T5's

View attachment 931788
I like the idea of setting a threshold for environmental control, but my fear is not needing that option due to the fact the cabinet in question will probably need a fan running 100%, 24/7. I'm not sure yet. I guess there is the ability to still do that with the digital control. Cost comparison to function needed though. Also, have you had any issues with power outages, in regards to having to reset the ranges of on/off? Or does the unit have a memory?
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
I like the idea of setting a threshold for environmental control, but my fear is not needing that option due to the fact the cabinet in question will probably need a fan running 100%, 24/7. I'm not sure yet. I guess there is the ability to still do that with the digital control. Cost comparison to function needed though. Also, have you had any issues with power outages, in regards to having to reset the ranges of on/off? Or does the unit have a memory?
I thought the same thing. The fan in the closet is for circulation. These are for venting and controlling temp and Hum. Yes, you are correct in guessing that you can set the T4 to run 100% of the time by setting your thresholds so levels that are never met (or are constantly met). Also you will have these for awhile and your skill set will improve. This is a very flexible unit.

Good Luck & Happy Growing 🍻 😎
 
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I thought the same thing. The fan in the closet is for circulation. These are for venting and controlling temp and Hum. Yes, you are correct in guessing that you can set the T4 to run 100% of the time by setting your thresholds so levels that are never met (or are constantly met). Also you will have these for awhile and your skill set will improve. This is a very flexible unit.

Good Luck & Happy Growing 🍻 😎
What kind of cubic foot are you working in? Air exchange strong?
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
What kind of cubic foot are you working in? Air exchange strong?
The smaller grow cabinet is 2x2x5 and the flower cabinet is 2x4x6

I run two T4's on the grow cabinet and a single T6 on the flower cabinet. I also left one of the standard 6" fans and filters attached to the flower cabinet. I am not sure what it's exchange rate is, however the cabinet came with two and i replaced one with a T6 so i could have the environmental control.

air flow on grow cabinet will close the door if i let it. The fan speed never goes above 2 or 3. On the flower cabinet if you stand in front and let the doors touch your shoulders; you can feel the air being sucked past you. I have never actually measured the airflow on either cabinet.

🍻
 
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The smaller grow cabinet is 2x2x5 and the flower cabinet is 2x4x6

I run two T4's on the grow cabinet and a single T6 on the flower cabinet. I also left one of the standard 6" fans and filters attached to the flower cabinet. I am not sure what it's exchange rate is, however the cabinet came with two and i replaced one with a T6 so i could have the environmental control.

air flow on grow cabinet will close the door if i let it. The fan speed never goes above 2 or 3. On the flower cabinet if you stand in front and let the doors touch your shoulders; you can feel the air being sucked past you. I have never actually measured the airflow on either cabinet.

🍻
My planned cabinet will be around 80 cubic feet, well under the rated cfm of the 4" @200+cfm. I've heard/read mixed reviews of loss of power. I'm on the fence of which size to install.
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
143
My planned cabinet will be around 80 cubic feet, well under the rated cfm of the 4" @200+cfm. I've heard/read mixed reviews of loss of power. I'm on the fence of which size to install.
Don't know your location, but Amazon has a 30 day return policy. Order the T4 and you will know inside a couple of days if it is performing to your liking. If not return it and get the T6. Remember they are both run on DC motors so power consumption will not be great in either case. 🍻
 
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Don't know your location, but Amazon has a 30 day return policy. Order the T4 and you will know inside a couple of days if it is performing to your liking. If not return it and get the T6. Remember they are both run on DC motors so power consumption will not be great in either case. 🍻
Thinking I'm gonna size the cabinet to be able to accommodate the 6", but I'm gonna give the 4" a try. Street looking at the cost of lighting the cabinet, I'm trying to keep the budget under control. Hoping the 4" does it
 
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Random thoughts. So, i was hoping to have two flower areas 2.5'x3'x40" and veg areas approx 2.5'x2'x40". This would allow me to have two flowering crops roughly 4-5 weeks apart. All the time, maintaining and training plants in veg/clone areas to be prepared to transition into the flower areas as needed. Time to start thinking about lighting.
 

AnselAdams

Premium Member
Supporter
652
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Random thoughts. So, i was hoping to have two flower areas 2.5'x3'x40" and veg areas approx 2.5'x2'x40". This would allow me to have two flowering crops roughly 4-5 weeks apart. All the time, maintaining and training plants in veg/clone areas to be prepared to transition into the flower areas as needed. Time to start thinking about lighting.
Question: Why are you limiting yourself to only 40 inches in height. Your bucket or flower pot alone is going to be 12-14 inches. Then coming the other way. Your lights are probably going to be a 24 inches above the tops so you have already consumed 3ft. If you are building this yourself, why not go with 2x4x8 then you are working with standard sizes for later additions as well. 🙂

This photo is of my last grow in my flower cabinet 2x4x6 the res is 40gal 18x30x20
Second photo is day of first harvest of 3.
third photo is 3 weeks before harvest 🍻

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I am only hoping to achieve two separate flower areas to have a stagarded harvest every four weeks or so. All contained in this one cabinet. I know limiting the vertical will be difficult, but with low profile lighting such as qboards or strips i hope to conserve the headspace as much as possible. As for container size, i don't grow hydro. Current 3 gal fabric pots i use are only 10" high. I'm guessing I'll end up with 20" for plant growth. This would mean lots of training in veg and probably implementing a scrog net. It would also mean smaller, multiple plants vs one large. Figuring on four plants per 2.5'x3' flower area. Topped, spread canopy to fill the footprint. It's all a theory and probably will be problematic, but my end goal is a single, self-contained perpetual cabinet. I've been using multiple tents for the past couple years and realized i could possibly scale it back a little and get what i need from it.
 
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