Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Capsaicin Chaos - Episode 2 - Automating The New Tent

Automating The New Tent

Capsaicin Chaos - Episode 2

Live Stream:
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[ Our New Tent ]

  Last week in episode one we saw our room setup with two tents.  The longer of the two tents is brand new to my grow room and was being used for germination.  For this stage, I didn't have the automation setup but, this week we saw some life in most of our cups so the time to get the tent set up for veg is here.  Below I will go over my veg tent setup.  Keep in mind in the future I will more than likely be staggering my grows and running veg in the square tent and flower in the rectangular but, for now, they will both be used for veg.

[ Tent Setup ]

  The first thing I did was install my carbon filter.  I like to install the filter first as it is one of the larger objects in the tent.  Once it is installed it makes it a bit easier to fit the other appliances.  I have hung the filter to the main section of the frame using two ratchet hangers.  Once the fan was in place I ran the ducting between the high-velocity fan and the filter.  I secured the ducting to the filter using foil tape and used a hose clamp to secure it to the fan.  I find it tough to secure the ducting to the filter with a clamp so I use a clamp and then tape around it on that side for an extra snug hold.

  Once the filter was in I in I hung my dual 4' T5 light fixture and put in two 6500k grow lamps.  I also hung my far-red light in the corner and pointed it down to try and get the best spread possible.  We kick on the far-red for 15 minutes when the lights go out to encourage our plants to start there sleep cycle more quickly.  You can read more about the benefits of far-red light and Phytochrome manipulation here.  I may even do an episode on it soon, we will see.  The last image below shows two temperature and humidity sensors.  The system is taking readings from both and using the average as its baseline for everything.

  Now that we have our lights up the last appliance we need to setup is the humidifier.  I add the humidifier in the back left corner and run the power out the back of the tent.  Now we are ready to set up the automation.

[ Automation ]

  The first step to getting the automation setup was building a four-port smart outlet to allow my BeagleBone and HOBloom to turn my appliances on or off.  I have written a guide to building smart outlets for anyone who would like to know how that is done.  Once the relay is all wired up and the outlets are in place I hung the outlets up like shown below and gave them power.

  Once the smart outlets are up we have to setup the BeagleBone.  This is a pretty simple setup as long as you are not scared to run wires.  If you don't want to do this work yourself but you do want to automate let me know via my email address above.  I'm sure we can work something out and I do plan to star selling pre-built units eventually.  Anyone who gets in on the test runs will get highly discounted setups.  If you are the DIY type and want to set it up your self all code and instructions are open.  All the code is on the GitHub link above but, you can follow the setup guide on the wiki to get a unit setup without my help.  It is a fairly easy and well-documented process.  I highly recommend trying it yourself and I am happy to answer any question or help with any snags you run into along the way.  Just leave a comment below and I will be sure to get back to you asap.  Below are the images of the unit on the wall next to my new tent and the dashboard it is running.  I have also tossed in some pics of the overall setup just to keep the visuals coming.

[ Grow Update ]

  So far we only have one Big Tai Hybrid and four Anaheim peppers still waiting to poke above the soil.  They are still sitting in a dark room under a humidity dome and should pop any day now.  As far as plants showing life we have two Anaheim and five Big Tai Hybrid peppers starting to grow.  Below I have added pictures of each.  They are labeled so we can track the progress of each individual plant.  Soon we will be thinning each cup out to one seedling and killing the weakest of the bunch. I have not had to add any water to do any maintenance yet but we will be doing that sort of stuff very soon now that we have visible life!

Below is the plants still waiting to show life.  They are in my closet with a humidity dome over them.

Below are the Big Tai Hybrid peppers that have already come above ground.

Below are the Anaheim peppers that have already come above ground.

Anaheim #1

Anaheim #2

Big Tai Hybrid #2

Big Tai Hybrid #1

Big Tai Hybrid #2

Big Tai Hybrid #5

Big Tai Hybrid #4

Big Tai Hybrid #3

[ Wrap Up ]

  As always thank you for reading!  If you enjoyed reading, keep checking back for more episodes and don't forget to +1 and comment below!  If you would like to support more work like this you may donate once using our PayPal above or make a recurring donation using our Patreon!  Don't forget that you can also use the link at the top of the page to watch the live stream and check in on our lettuce tent at any time!  Happy growing!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Capsaicin Chaos - Garden Log - Episode 1

Let the indoor season begin!

Capsaicin Chaos - Episode 1

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[ November 12, 2017 ]

  Today was the day I decided it was getting too cold to keep growing outdoors and time to do a full restart inside.  I started by setting up and sanitizing a tent for germination alongside the tent I already have running with some hydroponic lettuce(black seeded simpson).  I put a few seeds in each netted pot in the pictures below with hydroton all around the seeds to keep them in place.  I then filled the bottom of the tub with tap water, added about 10ml of Rhizo Blast and balanced the pH to 5.7.  Within a few days, they began to sprout.  Unfortunately, I did not take pictured when they first sprouted. I have added pictured below of the lettuce seedlings five days after they came out of the hydroton.  I also loaded 12 solo cups with holes in the bottom of them with happy frog potting soil and put seeds in them for half anaheim and half big Tai hybrid peppers.  Below I have also added images of the tents and the room setup.

The grow tent with our lettuce and our live stream(check out the live stream here)

Here is our lettuce five days after the seeds sprouted above the hydroton.

Air pump with two air stones going into our DWC setup.

The humidifier and fan are both controlled by my free open source grow room automation system.  You can find more info here on that project.  Don't hesitate to email me using the info at the top of the page for help getting a system setup.

Below is the beaglebone running the automation software as well as two smart outlets controlling the lights, fans, and humidifier.

Here are the images of the tent I am currently using for germination.  The tent is all set up and ready for the lights to come on when all the seeds sprout.  I am currently working on automating this tent as well and will have it all wired up and done by the next episode.

Below you can see the carbon filtration system and far-red light.  The far red is also controlled by our automation system and automatically kicked on for 15 minutes after the lights go out for the night.

Below I have added images of the computers running the stream and the game in chat(more info on that here).  The black PC is running the live stream and cameras and the silver PC on top is a Linux box running the chatbot and redis cache.

[ November 20, 2017 ]

  Today we had life in three of our cups.  I have added images below to show you the progress on these plants.  So far they have been fed just plain tap water pH balanced to 6.0.  Below are the images of the plants that have shown seedlings.

Big Tai Hybrid #1

Big Tai Hybrid #2

Anaheim #1

[ Wrap Up ]

  As always thank you for reading and I will continue to bring you episodes a few times a week.  For now, I am thinking I will do small updates like this on Monday and Thursday every week.  Every Sunday I will also do a bit longer weekly wrap up.  I also plan to add my time lapse software and a camera in the veg tent and we will add a timelapse to the post every Sunday.  Let me know what you think in the comment section below and most of all Happy Growing!

Sunday, November 5, 2017

HOBloom Live Stream Version 3

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[ Intro ]
    This past week I have made some massive updates to the chatbot in order to increase the amount of fun had while playing with the demo as well as giving a bit of the control back to the automation in order to keep the environment a bit more stable for our plants.  I have stripped the light and humidity controls from the user leaving only the exhaust and circulating fan for the chatbot to control.  Below I will go over all the major points in the new update.  For more info on HOBloom, my open source grow space automation software go here.

[ HOBloom Info]


[ Live Demo ]

[ Gameplay Overview ]
    The new game is based around being the fastest user to enter a random sentence or word into chat. My word list is comprised of mostly titles of video games.  Each round starts with the bot clearing chat and announcing a word that the users must enter back into chat exactly as the bot printed it out.  The first three users to enter the phrase in chat within the time limit of each round will get a chest and be brought to the bonus round where they fight a monster.  Fighting works in the same way as in the previous round except in battle you get shorter words. After the battle is over the round resets and we go back at it!

[ Help Commands ]
    The way the help commands works have changed a bit since the last version.  You may still enter the word 'help' into chat to print out the main help information that will lead you to all information about the game.  I have added a few subcommands to the help menu now.  The command 'help vote' will print out information about the voting system for interacting with the HOBloom unit controlling the room.  I have also added the command 'help shop' that will print out information about the shop system.

[ Interacting With HOBloom ]
    You may interact with the unit running HOBloom and automation the environment in the room using the bots voting system.  The main difference from before is that it now costs 400 gold in order to cast a vote.  On the plus side, you may now vote as many times as you can afford in one round!
    With the voting system, you can vote to turn on/off the exhaust and circulating fans. The command to cast your vote is 'vote' followed by a space and the command you would like to vote for.  Below is a list of the possible commands.

  • turnonfan - Turn on circulating fan
  • turnofffan - Turn of circulating fan
  • turnonexhaust - Turn on the exhaust fan
  • turnoffexhaust -  Turn on the exhaust fan
    Using the above commands you can cat your vote in chat.  For instance, if you want to turn on the circulating fan and give the plants some fresh airflow you can save up 400 gold by playing the game and then type into chat 'vote turnonfan' and the bot will add your vote to the pool.  Every minute the bot will count up all the votes and make the change for the winning vote! In the chance of a tie, the bot will roll a die for a winner!

[ Battle ]
    The battle phase will start by giving you a very short word.  The winners of the last round may then type that word into chat and the first one to enter it will strike the monster.  The monsters do pick a random winner to attack back so watch your HP!  Whatever player gets the final hit on the monster to kill it will get a bonus check and extra XP!  Monsters are based on the average level of the winners and there HP scales to the number of players fighting.  If you die during battle you will lose your chance at the extra loot and your HP will be restored.  If all players in battle die the round ends.

[ Shop ]
    The shop now has two items you may spend your gold on.  We still have potions that heal for 50 HP and now Mega Potions have been added that heal 250 HP. You may buy a potion by entering the command 'shop buy potion' or 'shop buy mega potion' into chat.  The bot will either tell you to save up more gold or sell you the item if you have the gold.  The bot will tell you but you may confirm and view the items you currently have by issuing the command 'showitems' in chat.  To use an item you would type 'use potion' or 'use mega potion' in chat.

[ Items ]

  • potion
    • 100 Gold
    • Heals player for 50HP
    • Player can hold 20 at once
  • mega potion
    • 400 Gold
    • Heals player for 250HP
    • Player can hold 20 at once

[ Gear ]
    Whenever you are in the winner's circle for a round of you get the final hit on a monster you will get a chest with gear inside.  The gear has randomly generated statistics based on base settings for each generic weapon type.  They can give a player a boost to there strength, dexterity and HP.  You can type the 'se' command in chat to see what gear you currently have equipped.  To see the list of gear you have in your bad you can type 'showgear' in chat and the bot will print out the list of gear you are holding.  You may only hold 12 items at a time so don't forget to drop gear you don't want!  When you say 'showgear' in chat each item will have a number before it, you may drop any individual item using the command 'drop' and then a space and the item number.  For example, to drop gear at slot #3 you would type 'drop 3' in chat.  You may also issue the 'drop all' command to drop all the gear you are holding(excluding the gear you have equipped).  Below is an image of the print out of my gear in my bag.

    In the image above, if I wanted to only drop the 'Elven Bow Of Fury' with the #14 in front of it I would issue the command 'drop 15' to the chatbot.

[ Player Stats ]
    As you play you gain gold, gear, items, and XP.  All of this is persistent and all progress will still be kept between sessions.  To see your current level and stats you can type 'showstats' in chat and watch for the reply from the bot.  Below I will go over all the stats in the bots reply and show and image of that reply for my test user.

  • STR- Strength this is your base damage - This goes up one each level up
  • DEX - Dexterity controls your chance to land a critical hit - Goes up one every other level up
  • HP - Current hit points (current/max)
  • XP - Your current experience points
  • GOLD - Your current stash of gold
  • NEXT LVL XP - The number of xp points you need to gain the next level
[ Thanks ] 
   As always thank you for reading and taking a look at the system!  Anyone who needs help or would like to set up this system hit me up in the comments below and I would be happy to help you out!  I can also always be reached out to in the discord server at the top of the page.  If you would like to support more work like this don't forget to check the patreon link at the top of this page! Let me know what you thought of this article and the project below in the comments and as always, happy growing!