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DIY hydroponic bubble cloner

Caw

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So I've been looking for other options for cloning than using rockwool. I initially bought a 27g tote from Sam's with a plan to build an aeroponic cloner. Heres a link to a nice video on how to build one, with measurements.


But, I simply dont have the time right now. So I kept looking and I found a few videos of people who built a bubble cloner. This seemed like the perfect alternative. Right now I have 7 clones going, but only 2 buckets in veg operating on a 6 port pump - leaving me with 4 air lines not being used. I also had 4 small 2x1" air stones sitting around. I ordered some 2" net posts and some 2" neoprene collars off Amazon. They arrived yesterday. Tonight after dinner I took a trip to Wallyword to pick up a 4 gallon heavy duty black/yellow tote for $6.

I lined up the cups on top of the lid and drew around them with a Sharpie. I then cut nine 2" holes to hold the cups. The lid was yellow and transparent, so I took it out to the garage and gave it a couple coats of black paint. While it was drying, I cut two 1/4" holes near the top of the tote for the air lines, one on each side. I had a couple splitters and extra air line and laid it out in the bottom of the bucket/tote and attached the air stones - making sure to have equal length of air line off the splitter to each stone. I then filled the tote with 2 gallons of water and turned on the pump. This seemed like the perfect height as I watched to how high the bubbles went on the walls of the tote. I added some root stimulator and PHd the water to 5.9.

I then got my cups and neoprene unpacked and ready. One nice idea I found was to cut out the net part of the cups. This would allow the plant to be moved easier without damaging the roots when it was ready to move. The collars and upper cups hold the clone in place just fine.

Last was to simply move the clones into the system.

I forgot to grab a clear tote for a dome. But, an idea one guy had was to simply drill a few small holes in the top to allow small amounts of water to splash up every so often. He felt it would raise the humidity enough that you wouldnt need a lid. Not sure if I trust that though.(?) Right now i just turned up the humidifier. I'll decide what I'm gonna do tomorrow.

An inexpensive idea for cloning. Sorry if it's been shared before, I'm relatively new here.

Pics attached.
 

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Caw

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Weather stripping? Leaks? I'm not sure where that would be needed or where leaks would occur...?

I looked at ones on Amazon. My issue is justification for spending $100 when by state law (and "wife law", which I'm more concerned about), I can only have 6 clones going. Yes, I have 9 holes. However, 1 is/can be for topping up water. The other two are for "just in case". Not sure I could have 18 "just in case" without question. With my occupation and situation, I cant risk unnecessary attention.

Again, this was simple (made in less than a hour) and inexpensive. Just an option for someone on a budget; someone trying out cloning for the first time (like myself); and/or someone growing small scale (like myself). But your opinion is noted. Thanks for checking out my post.
 

The Hemp Goddess

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Great job! Looks like you have done things right. And trust me, a lot of the $100 unit on Amazon or E-bay are not any higher quality than what you have put together.
 

Keef

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My black and yellow boxes !- Root sprayer here Caw !--- I use those pictured boxes -- 35 gallon and use 12 gallons in it as a res ---34 spot cloner - use the 35th as an access port for air line and pump cord !---U right about cutting the bottom of the basket out -I'll be moving them from 2 inch basket to 4 inch with baked clay balls and probably doing a drip and drain bloom ---I just leave them on the plant until harvest !- might start cutting them like U say ?--My aero grow boxes work the same as the cloners just got nutes - I was running about 6- one foot --14 inch tall plants to bloom in each box - I like a 4 part bloom rotation of 60 day finishers !- harvest every 2 weeks !
Bubble cloner can be simple as a bucket with a piece of Styrofoam floating on top and a bubbler with the plants stuck in a hole -- Aero leaking ?- it happens - I use a filtered 396 gph pump glued to a ceramic tile - square figure 8 PVC manifold on top got micro sprayers every 3-4 inches -- Spray straight up - The pump get bumped around and a micro sprayer point just right-- water leak between lid and box - got some new micro sprayers might fix that - Don't need 396 gph but that was smallest submersible pump with a filter - No filter --micro sprayers plug up -- Love my aero cloners !- Solve the last problem about these dam occasional leaks and done -- $50 aero cloner /grower !-
 
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Caw

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So, I may have lost 2 clones over night. These were the oldest 2 that were probably only surviving due to the humidity dome on the other little clone box I made. Time will tell but doesn't look good.

I went and grabbed a clear tote from Wallyworld this morning - $4 ($3.88). Misted it down and placed it on top. Fits perfectly!

Pic added of label to show dimensions.
 

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Caw

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I’d say you didn’t lose any cuts to not having one if the cuts were healthy.
Yeah, those cuts were taken from unhealthy plants in an effort to save the strain I thought wasn't gonna make it. O was able to nurse them back. Both have recovered now and are in flower - one has done better than the other though. Heres a pic of one of them at day 24 of flower. And to think I almost trashed it...unfortunately I'll only get one crop from it, and not a large one.
 

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Caw

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So 6 of the clones are already starting to show signs of roots!

Even the two I thought I was gonna lose are FINALLY starting to show roots. They look horrible up top, but starting to root, which I'm hoping means new growth is coming. 5th root pic is from the 7th clone pic. 6th pic is the start of the last pic's root.

All in all, I'm pretty impressed with this little thing.

IT WORKS!
 

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Keef

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Go Caw !-- U a cloner now !--They can get kinda ragged on top but once the roots start to develop they'll take off !-- I'm with JF- I'm an aerocloner -- Many paths to the dank !- Just whatever works for U !--
I knew a guy used to be here that cloned in a 3 lb coffee can - float a piece of Styrofoam on top the water with the plants stuck thru holes
with a bubbler stone in it !- He did well !
 

QBCrocket

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I have always used a lid for first week to keep humidity on the top growth and have had 100% take , I have read from posts on here that it is not required so I tried it this time and the tops look like yours , I have got 7 that have come good and are in full growth the others show some signs of coming back but I wont do it again humidity lid for me all the way , next time try a lid see how you go
 
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Caw

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next time try a lid see how you go
Those 2 clones got that way after removing the lid (from another box) overnight. After getting the lid, they stood back up - again, over night.

So, yeah, we are in complete agreement. Never again without a humidity dome!
 

Keef

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I know U right but there's 7 rows of 5 grow spots in my aero cloners so I take cuttings mostly in groups of 5 -- I always got more rooted clones than I need so I don't baby them -- root out or get thrown out - I put somebody else just like U in that hole that will -- Take the best !-- Leave the rest !-- I want more clones than I need !

Crocket in da house !-- Fires getting any better yet Cuz ?
 

Keef

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Also - my cloner is a mixed box - fresh cuts to rooted clones so I use light nute water - I know everyone says just water but it works OK for what I do - They root in nute water for me -- When there's enough growing clones for a box I set up a grower box -Those boxes like in that pick up there -- Looks and works just like my cloners but with full nutes -
I can put about 6 plants in a box - Since I use those 2 inch aero baskets and collar in bloom --plants in bloom can get top heavy and fall over so I was running my midgets at the beach -- Flipping one foot tall bushes -- 6 per 1/2 square meter box --12 plants per square meter -- Makes for a nice variety of smoke !-- They can all be from the same variety or mix and match ?-- Headed to the Bat Cave with about a dozen girls -- 4 part bloom rotation of 60 day finishers - Harvest and move a new set to bloom every 2 weeks for a harvest of one part !
 

QBCrocket

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I know U right but there's 7 rows of 5 grow spots in my aero cloners so I take cuttings mostly in groups of 5 -- I always got more rooted clones than I need so I don't baby them -- root out or get thrown out - I put somebody else just like U in that hole that will -- Take the best !-- Leave the rest !-- I want more clones than I need !

Crocket in da house !-- Fires getting any better yet Cuz ?
got some rain at last things are looking better but not over yet
 

Keef

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Best wishes Cuz !-- Maybe there will be more rain !-- Stay safe !
 

Caw

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This bubble cloner has been a success!

But, when are the roots long enough that it can be moved to a 6" DWC net/bucket?

I've read that they can be moved when the roots are 1-1.5". That seems short for a 6" net pot in a bucket, using clay balls. Some of the clones are shorter than others and I feel as though I would basically bury the plant.

As of last night I upped the nutes to right about 400 - the tap water was at 234ppm. When I checked them this morning, it was like a root explosion! They also perked up and the leaves are now reaching for the light.

Suggestions/recommendations
 

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Keef

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Root porn !- I like it !-- Caw - I got no advice for U !-- I was running midgets in 2 inch cups all the way thru bloom-- I'll be going to 4 or 6 inch baskets with clay balls when I move and get set back up !---Switch from aero to a drip and drain--
I got a beach house on the market and when it sells I'm buying a grow house -- I'm over in east texas now - Set up a grow for my nephew- He just changed jobs and had to move - I been busy growing and sexing to collect my harem - I've cut out about a dozen girls from different varieties - I get settled I'll start culling them !- then bring in more and do it again !
Nice roots Cuz !
 

QBCrocket

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Nice roots Caw , you got me motivated and I made a bubble cloner only holds 12 , gunna run old school cubes vs bubble cloner on my next run see how it pans out , hoping its the bubbler lot less work Hey Keef hoping some one buys that house soon sounds like your bitting at the bit to get going
 
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Keef

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What up Crocket -- U bet I'm ready Cuz !-- I been growing and sexing here !-- I got a grow set up for a monthly harvest and - I should hit the ground running !-- I got clones to about a dozen varieties !-- I'm ready for the Bat Cave and new lights ! -- They can only jam me for so long --
 

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