Best hydro setup for me?

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May 26, 2011
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Hi, longtime stoner just getting into hydroponics. I have a attic type area available for me to grow in and im trying to figure out how to set up a hydroponic system in there. Ive been trying to do a little research but i cant find anywhere that tells what the best setup would be for me. Its about a 10x10 area with a tent style ceiling that ranges from 4 ft to 6 ft and a cheap, DIY 10-15 plant system would be ideal. Can anyone recommend a system for me and if possible post some pictures or a how to guide? Thanks.
Hi rolledandready,
Are you going to be able to control the temps in your attic? My plants would burn up if I tried to grow up there. Also, a 10-15 plant hydro setup would require a decent amount of weight in a resevoir, is the attic good to hold the weight?

Theres windows i could open and a large hatch that leads directly to the house. Could i control the temp just by opening the windows/turning on the AC? And i believe so, its been converted to a living space and the flooring looks pretty secure.
you will be fine...look into Hydro farms...or maybe even a eb and flow...more Hydro gurus will be by shortly as Im a dirt farmer but dibbled me toes in dwc...To help with the heat(if ther is an issue) try running lights at Night when outside temps are cooler...

take care and be safe:bolt::bong:
10x10 isnt much room for 15 plants, unless you are going with a SoG style small plants.

I agree with 4u, Ebb and Flow would be good for the area, if you want to fit 15 in there.

What type of lighting are you planning on running?
Given that its a attic you are probably going to have to vent your light extra well, because of the sun beating down on the roof.
I have been trying different setups for about a year now and have found the best thing so far is a recirculating system that has all the plants in "rubbermade" totes with a resevoir for setting up a little away from the plants for adding water with nutrients. Yu will need to get 5-8 20gal totes (depending on how many plants yu want to grow. I like putting 2 indica dom plants per tote) with the tops, get 10-20 8"mesh planter baskets (or 1/2gal plastic plant containers like the nurseries use with the smallish holes in the bottom), get a bag of hydroton and a bag of coco coir. get a real good 120-200gph water pump and a good air pump with 5-8' 1/8" air hose and 2 big airstones. yu will need to get some 1/2" pipe (about 15'-20' Yu can also use rubber or other type flexible hose) 3/4" threaded fittings for each tote. get a multitap head from one of the hardware stores that is used in the yard watering systems like "rainbird" that has a flow rate of at least 5gph. get some "drip hose"(about 25' of 1/4") and drip hose stakes for holding the drip lines in place.:doh: got all that?:hubba:
now I measure the diameter of my planters or baskets and cut out holes in the lids of the totes spaced about 1-2" from the outside edges of the totes, just big enough for the planters to sit down in the lid with only about an inch sticking up and about 4-6" of space beneath the planters and the bottom of the tote. At the same time I drill a hole in one side of the tote, just big enough for the 1/2" fitting to thread into it, about 1-2" from the bottom (this will allow some water to collect in the bottoms of the totes to keep the rootball wet but then drain back into the rezevoir as well) Yu will need some good marine type glue to hold the fittings in place and not leak (I use "goop"). once yu decide how many of these to make, yu will need to arrange them in yer grow space and make up a way to elevate them roughly 8-12"(so that the water can drain back into the rezevoir. Yu can improvise as yu see fit. I actually built a low platform and use a wide bottom shallow 12gal storage tote that sits under the platform at one end) once yu have them arranged the best way yu then need to run yer hose from each tote, back to the rez (again yu can improvise. I only have 3 totes to an area so I run 3 separate drain lines). In yer rezevoir you will place yer pump and 2 airstones (for hydro yu need to really aerate the water reeel good) I drilled a hole in the top of my rez and in the center of my platform so that I could run the 1/2" hose from the pump, up to the level of the tops of my planters, then topped the hose with the multitap disperse head. from that I hook up the 1/4" "driplines" and run them out to each planter (looks like a big spider with skinny legs) and attach them with the stakes that are made to hold the water lines. I also get a mesh bag from the hydro store to put my pump in to keep trash from stopping up the watering system.
Once the system is set up and tested I set up my grow pots by putting 1-2" of hydroton in the bottom of them then cover that and fill to the top with coco coir that has been soaked in water and separated (It comes in dehydrated blocks that are like cement until yu crush it up and soak it). After that yu set yer plants (clones or seedlings) in the coco and turn the lights on. Good luck and feel free to ask any questions:)
A 10 x 10 room is going to cost thousands to set up. Even if you run your lights at night, temps are going to be a nightmare in an attic. Attic spaces can get 20-30 degrees higher than ambient temps. A window and a hatch to the house is not going to do it. You are going to need good centrifuge type fans pulling cool air from somewhere and exhausting hot air outside. I would recommend monitoring temps without any lights for several warm days and see how hot it gets up there. I would think hard about any kind of recirculating hydro system with large reservoirs in an attic. The risks of leaks and property damage are real.
I spent a lot of money trying to convert my attic into a growspace.... Insulating.. Drywalling... Air movement ... The whole deal...

In the end, I could not control the temps enough to grow effectively. The attic is in the top of the house.. In the end ALL heat goes up...

I am moving back to the basement....

I know this is not what you want to hear.... But it is the truth 8).
While not wanting to disagree with TGH or CG, their experience is much greater than mine I would look at it a little differently.

I would not go for dwc or rdwc, I would look at either ebb & flow or NFT. Both these systems need much less water, though a large flowering plant can drink 10l per day! Have you thought how you will get that amount of water into your attic?
Your space may be 10 x 10 but have you thought about making the grow area smaller?
Why do you want around 15 plants? DO you have a medical need for your meds? If so, how much do you need? Could you get the amount you need from fewer plants?

As the guys said, controlling temps in your attic will be your biggest problem. Where in the country are you? I am in the Uk and loft insulation here is a big thing, my loft is ALWAYS freezing, around 10deg lower than the house which is different to the guys speaking here.

If you work backwards, starting with how much weed you need, then work out how many plants you need to give you that, then how much space is needed, then how much light is needed. I believe what you are wanting to do is possible with a lot of thought and planning.

Access, water and temps will be your biggest barriers to success but ultimately they can be overcome.
Peace W
Good call on the water Woody. A drain would be needed as well.

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