Source(s) for DIY LED build?

Discussion in 'Lights' started by oldfogey8, Dec 8, 2019.

  1. Dec 8, 2019 #1

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    I have been doing a fair amount of research on building my own LED. However it looks like LED component suppliers prices make it so you cannot really save much of any building a light at home. I’ve looked at solstrips, quantum boards, a bunch of COB suppliers but it looks like I can go on Amazon and buy what appears to be an assembled LED with a warranty and Meanwell drivers/Cree COBs for prices in the same range as I could build one. I understand wanting to marvel at what you create and learning the how and what but I’d like to do it and feel like I saved some money. If a single mistake is made and something fries, then there is time and money lost. I priced a build at cobkits that looked reasonable until you factor in $40-$55 in shipping and I still needed to find frame material. Amy suggestions for sources where it makes sense to try a project?
     
  2. Dec 8, 2019 #2

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Mad Scientist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    706
    You found what i have found. There are a lot of people on other forums that talk building leds but when i price them out, you save 50 to 80 bucks. I would pay 50 bucks for a warranty anyways. Hlg has diy kits .. for a lot more than a spiderfarmer light.
     
    oldfogey8 and Hamster Lewis like this.
  3. Dec 8, 2019 #3

    Hamster Lewis

    Hamster Lewis

    Hamster Lewis

    Furry Moderator Staff Member Admin Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    Messages:
    16,304
    Likes Received:
    3,478
    LED prices have come down so much that just buying them with a warranty makes more sense. Unless you just like the DIY aspect. I have been running my King LEDs for a couple of years now and they are still going strong and are relatively cheap.
     
    Lesso and oldfogey8 like this.
  4. Dec 9, 2019 #4

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    Something clever...

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    2,661
    Likes Received:
    5,192
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Location:
    Gold Country California
    They thing I like most about the solstrips is that you can custom shape the light to fit your grow space... or at least I was able to do that in my small space...I’m lookin at the spider farmer series for a new veg box I’m thinking about...
     
    oldfogey8 and Lesso like this.
  5. Dec 9, 2019 #5

    umbra

    umbra

    umbra

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2007
    Messages:
    11,199
    Likes Received:
    9,584
    Gender:
    Male
  6. Dec 9, 2019 #6

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    @2RedEyes - I know you do the solstrips thing. I spent a some time trying to figure out if I could use 4 strips to light the edges of my tent better but was confused by the cookie sheet thing and cooling aspect. Can these solstrips be hung as standalone lights, like using one driver for 4 strips(and some ugly wiring) to provide better homogeneous illumination at the edges of my tent?

    @Lesso - I agree with you on the warranty and also, though I am confident I can build one, I worry that I could have a thermal paste void that might ruin a COB or something so I don’t see the cost benefit.

    @Hamster Lewis - you actually sold me on the King 1200 I have and I am happy with it and also I am positive there is no way in h e double hockey sticks I could build a light comparable for even twice the price. I have bought 2 cheapo LED’s with COBs in them in hopes to get white light/full spectrum but for what I paid, I wish I had bought a king 1500 or 2000.

    Thanks for the input.
     
    Hamster Lewis, Lesso and umbra like this.
  7. Dec 9, 2019 #7

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    And thx @umbra, I have looked at those sites. The cost/benefit analysis still slants heavily towards Chinese built cheapo lights. If I was growing as an occupation, I may see things differently or even if it would allow me to build a really nice replacement for what I currently have, I might try it. Unfortunately I am pretty sure there is very little options for me to get into the cannabis industry(as a grower, a supplier of edibles/tincture/whatever or building lights) aside from being a laborer because of the bureaucracy (for growing and supplying)and/or the cheap components and labor in Asia(for building any equipment needed). That is kinda sucky but it is the reality. A friend is starting up a legal grow and seeing what he is going thru is a total turnoff. I won’t sell my stuff on anything but a ‘break even/help a brother out’ situation. Can’t afford to get busted for a number of reasons...
     
  8. Dec 9, 2019 #8

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    Something clever...

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    2,661
    Likes Received:
    5,192
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Location:
    Gold Country California
    I think pretty much all the consumer lights are made in China, including the solstrips...I’m looking at the Chinese spiderfarmer sf-1000 for a cloner or small veg light in a 2x2 space...
     
    Lesso, stinkyattic and oldfogey8 like this.
  9. Dec 9, 2019 #9

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    Yep. I have read positive reviews on the spiderfarmer lights from the likes of @Lesso and @stinkyattic. The cheapo Growstar S600 light I have (in addition to the King I have) I bought because they have COBs and were dirt cheap. The 2nd one which I got about a week ago is much ‘blurpler’ than the first. Going to complain to Amazon about that...
     
    stinkyattic likes this.
  10. Dec 9, 2019 #10

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    her dankness

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2019
    Messages:
    889
    Likes Received:
    2,532
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Lab rat
    Location:
    The beautiful Berkshire foothills
    The spiderfarmer (I have a 2000) uses respected LED components (samsung) and driver (meanwell). It's a nice solid piece of equipment and I expect it to have a long useable lifespan.
     
    Lesso and oldfogey8 like this.
  11. Dec 9, 2019 #11

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    Probably my next purchase. Lessos plants look pretty amazing. I look forward to seeing how your spiderfarmer works for you. I think the Mars Hydro white LED’s look interesting too. I think they have both uv and far red LED’s. I have a problem with the company though. I think they used a request for testers of their lights to farm email addresses. I thought they were a legit company but ever since I applied to be a tester, I have been blasted by spam. Should have been smart and used my junk email addy... I am a dummy sometimes...
     
    Lesso and stinkyattic like this.
  12. Dec 9, 2019 #12

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    stinkyattic

    her dankness

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2019
    Messages:
    889
    Likes Received:
    2,532
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Lab rat
    Location:
    The beautiful Berkshire foothills
    Shady ... sounds like they should have hired their marketing dept instead of outsourcing lol
    My plants are psyched right now, good penetration combined with low minimal required distance to light is a nice balance, especially with multiple strains with different growth habits
     
    Lesso and oldfogey8 like this.
  13. Dec 9, 2019 #13

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    I like a quick resolution to a question. If you can afford it, buy spydr, gavita, kind, lush or done of the other high end units or buy cheaper Chinese stuff if you can’t. There are differences but in the end, I can’t DIY it for the same price and have the same quality as buying an assembled unit. Economies of scale...
     
    umbra likes this.
  14. Dec 9, 2019 #14

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Mad Scientist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    706
    Love my spiderfarmer light.
     
    oldfogey8 likes this.
  15. Dec 9, 2019 #15

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Lesso

    Mad Scientist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    706
    I was glad i didnt pay full price for my kind led. It was not very efficient. Over priced light in my opinion. The fluence and gavitas look incredible though
     
    oldfogey8 likes this.
  16. Dec 9, 2019 #16

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842
    Yep. If I hit the lottery or get hit by a truck, I would be happy to use some of the winnings or settlement cash to get a fluence or gavita... ;)
     
  17. Dec 9, 2019 #17

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    2RedEyes

    Something clever...

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    2,661
    Likes Received:
    5,192
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Location:
    Gold Country California
    Just checked out that Gavita website...they list everything but the price so I’m pretty sure that eliminates me as a customer...cuz I have to ask....
     
    oldfogey8 likes this.
  18. Dec 9, 2019 #18

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    oldfogey8

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2014
    Messages:
    2,701
    Likes Received:
    2,842

Share This Page