Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Capsaicin Chaos - Episode 2 - Automating The New Tent

Automating The New Tent

Capsaicin Chaos - Episode 2

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[ Live Stream ]

[ Previous Episodes ]

[ 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!

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