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Calling All LED Nutters


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#1 Scone

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 06:52 AM

The Unthinkable Happened.

 

The First Person I showed a sample of my gear to literally wants to build a small tier farm around me.

 

Long story short he just started smoking it himself and really likes it,

 

gallery_1415_625_21461.jpg

 

and I gave him some of this.

 

Took about 3 seconds,

 

"Holy Crap!, This Stuff Smells Like Candy"  

 

"It's Like Someone Pealed An Orange In My Face Or Something"

 

"Dude I had No Idea It Could Smell That Good"

 

 

A short talk about THC and Terpenes and how this is like Rocket Fuel and Oxidizer and It's on the table.

 

He wants to buy or start a small tier farm locally and start running it on the side of the rental business we already run.

 

 

Now I have Homework.

 

I have to cost out a 2000 square foot facility and I am starting with the lighting.   The square footage includes all plant growth stages so the flower should be roughly 12 to 1400 square feet in order to leave some room for vegging, and we want to light it with the bleeding edge of LED tech. 

 

My priorities are best spectrum for quality and coverage per kilowatt hour.  Who makes the best chips and kits, in case we want to build em.  

 

 

Also feel free to chime in with anything else I should be preparing for before the bug hits the windshield.

 

We have plenty of time, but I know it's on if we can cost it out.

 

 


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#2 olmec

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 06:58 AM

Water supply is one to be thinking about, is it good water?
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#3 Scone

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 07:05 AM

Our local water quality is outstanding. 

 

They do kinda gouge us by charging for sewage with the water but it's still relatively cheap.


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#4 Enzyme303

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 08:40 AM

@Scone

COB and QB spring to mind @lefty runs LED but Im not sure if they good for high bay and due to the directional nature of LED if coverage would cause the need to invest in more than you've bargained for although growth rates low power use and bulb replacement make for good inspiration.

 

I dont now enough about LED currently to know whats at the cutting edge this could be a start i have no idea how they compare on price but im sure an email would set you straight as they seem to be very good and sharing info

https://chilledgrowl...led-grow-lights

hopefully others chime in with more info and recommendations here:) They seem crazy expensive :(

 

Another thing worthy of thinking about is how well insulated or airtight the building is you dont want to lose a large portion of your profit to the utilities of heating and cooling depends on external conditions ofc and seasonal changes.Once you get your building envelope within requirements stuff like heat recovery ventilation sure helps a lot :)

 

@Forest and @Nefarious Shenanigans should hopefully have some good opinions on commercial scale LED

 

All the best with your adventure :)


Edited by Enzyme303, 13 June 2018 - 09:35 AM.

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#5 Enzyme303

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 11:13 AM

Some food for thought :)

https://www.ledgrowl...market-for-2018


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#6 Bandit 4freekin20

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 12:53 PM

@Scone

COB and QB spring to mind @lefty runs LED but Im not sure if they good for high bay and due to the directional nature of LED if coverage would cause the need to invest in more than you've bargained for although growth rates low power use and bulb replacement make for good inspiration.

 

I dont now enough about LED currently to know whats at the cutting edge this could be a start i have no idea how they compare on price but im sure an email would set you straight as they seem to be very good and sharing info

https://chilledgrowl...led-grow-lights

hopefully others chime in with more info and recommendations here:) They seem crazy expensive :(

 

Another thing worthy of thinking about is how well insulated or airtight the building is you dont want to lose a large portion of your profit to the utilities of heating and cooling depends on external conditions ofc and seasonal changes.Once you get your building envelope within requirements stuff like heat recovery ventilation sure helps a lot :)

 

@Forest and @Nefarious Shenanigans should hopefully have some good opinions on commercial scale LED

 

All the best with your adventure :)

 

The LED I use are all commercial grade and are best used in spaces with high ceilings.

 

As far as LED tech goes, the CLW's I use are easily the most technically advanced lights in their price range. Other lights that can do what mine do cost 2-4x as much and dont perform half as well. One of my LED will replace all lights from a floro seedling starter to a 600 watt HPS and everything in between.

They're not the most efficient in LED at max power but they are by far the most versatile light on the market.

They are spendy though...1 CLW + controller is a $750 investment. Every light thereafter would be in the $600 range with discounts for large orders.

 

Regarding COB.... You get the same results of HPS but with half the power use. If you're in a legal state or an area saturated with growers you might be able to forgo the DIY route and contract a builder. In my city for example, there are 4 COB builders competing so if I wanted a COB I would'nt need to go over a shopping list or hunt down parts on the interweb. I would hire a builder and basically get the shopping, shipping, and build labor pretty much for free in the cost of a light.  Last time I chatted with a builder the going rate on a 300 watt COB that replaces a 600 watt HPS would cost me $320, plug 'n play

 

Other than those two options which overly simplifies the subject almost everything else is either overpriced at a stupid level, or is Chinese panel junk IMO.

That being said I'd still look at Illumitex (especially discounted models that were once $3000 now selling for $500), Blackdog, Apache, and Fluence Bioengineering as other possible options
 


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#7 MDS

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 01:18 PM

You're going to want some pretty serious security too... I can't imagine how much it'd cost to light up that amount of space, it's enormous :o

 

Yes I understand you'll have to divide it up a tad for different growth stages... But there will be a fortune of kit in there & that's not even taking into account how much the plants would be worth ;)

 

Somebody is going to need a very deep & very wide pocket just for starters, so security is of primary importance... I'm sure it's not just the UK that has thieving scrotes :angry:


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#8 Nefarious Shenanigans

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 01:20 PM

yeah I agree on that ChilLED stuff @Enzyme303, definitely a short list of players at that level. I dunno how cost effective they are Scone...

 

But really yeah they are swimming in that 2.5mmols/watt and above level, and very few are up there, hard to argue with really. Also worth looking at is Pacific Light Concepts for a plug and play COB system that they will see you right on price with probably if you want a fair bit, think these are running about 2.0mmol/watt, just ask them; the owner is a guy with much experience in this sort of stuff and one of the early COB builders on several sites years ago, much of his youtube stuff was what got me taking COB seriously to begin with. Fluence Bioengineering is also one i would normally suggest but recently I hear they took a turn for the worse on some manufacturing decisions and the product is now a little subpar, but I have never used one so take that as the hearsay it is

 

As far as building them yourself, cheapest is the various Citizen chips (ask Forest, he will be more familiar than I with these), highest performance at low power is Cree CXB3590 (make sure you buy the top bins only), best bang for buck in my humble opinion is Vero 29, which is cheaper than Cree but also a tad more effective than most Citizen chips. Check out the datasheets, it won't take you long to see what I am talking about and make your own decisions. Another company called Luminus is maybe worth a look too. Much might be decided by availability where you are in the end, you probably want a US supplier like RapidLED for COB DIY in the States, otherwise Digikey or other large electronics wholesalers hold stock of them, and if you are lucky or willing to wait and shop around the big online shops you might find some chips at a good price

 

But really any of those four manufacturers are pretty good and your budget and how hard you intend to drive the chips also comes into play, with Vero outdoing Cree in lumens per watt performance at higher wattages at the chip, (once you get above 75w) right up to 100w... but honestly most of the magic in COB is found in the gentle running power, otherwise at 100w a chip, lumens per watt falls into the HPS range, so you kinda outsmart or should I say outcheap yourself at some point and the whole thing becomes worthless. I can testify personally that these Vero 29D based systems do very well up to the +-63w each range, I have never took them above that so I can't talk about that from experience. But if money is no object, i go Cree all day. I would pay extra for the binning alone if i could afford it, and these work beautifully at +-50w and do things you thought only happened in dreams when you go down to +-30w and below, talking like 200 lumens per watt and above at the chip level, with a spectrum you can shape yourself to a fair degree by chip choice and selective dimming :kill:However, building them at this low power gets expensive very quickly with the amount of chips and heatsinks required

 

if it were me DIYing a whole show of that size today and with a US address, I would probably move away from COB towards quantum boards, they are hard to beat in pretty much every way, including the heatsinking, which is a big part of doing COB properly and QBs don't even need sinks if run at a certain level. You could talk to Horticulture Lighting Group who are the main supplier of these and in partnership with Samsung directly, who supply them the diodes. They can tell you exactly just how much wattage on what board would require a sink or not. Could be quite a saving in a big show to not need all that heatsink, definitely worth checking out. Of course HLG also sell finished 550w fixtures that look very nice and would probably damn near equal a 1000w single ended HPS in performance, especially in a cross-lit room with a lot of fixtures. Think GrandMasterLevel had a youtube side by side going for a while, was pretty telling, might still be up if you have a look

 

expect to use around 60 - 70% of the wattage of HPS for equal performance... This is just a guideline really and chip selection, kelvin temp, drive power etc all factor into it, maybe a little less wattage with a QB than a COB, they are more efficient after all

 

Hope you manage to get the ball rolling anyway Scone, sounds like a whole bunch of fun

 

 


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#9 Forest

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 03:06 PM

the high bay 200w units might suit look on alibaba


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#10 Scone

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 01:04 AM

I spent the afternoon at the hydro store one of my other friends runs, and talked lighting.  

 

Combo high end LED augmented with those dual end systems.  I found this is the most common indoor lighting system running in local farms.  

 

While we are prioritizing lighting we are going to scale into this starting with bare minimum and building from there as it gets going.    I have a Phantom 50 series on the way now to run in the closet, and we are shopping for an LED that will cover the middle of a 10 by 10 room and a smaller unit to run along with the duel end in the closet just to see how they run.  

 

Because these are being used to dial in I am getting comped for the fixtures 100%.   

 

We are both well equipped electronically inclined nerds, so building lights is not out of the question, but we may want to save that for when we ran regular off the shelf lighting long enough to know what we want to build.

 

Our main concern is can we make the layout back in the next several years.  From the sales data I've seen on other tier 1 farms it won't be easy but it's entirely plausible.  

 

So far as security goes, the state requires way more security than we would normally bother with by far so that is covered.  The entire place and surrounding area all has to be covered on camera with an internet accessible system.  This cam system we can also use to help automate things although I will be practically living in the place at first. 

 

And yea Cree All Day.


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