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Off-grid indoor growing


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#1 PirateFarmer

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Posted 18 August 2020 - 02:06 PM

Well, since the search feature doesn't show up on my cellphone, I'm going to just ask here:

Anybody grow indoor, off-grid? I'm slowly adding solar.
What kind of set up is minimal? LED lights, or...? Size of inverter, number of panels, batteries (and types/size recommended)? Would like to grow at least a 1/2 dozen or more.
Can heat w/ propane heaters, if I put them in an insulated she'd I have handy.

#2 PirateFarmer

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Posted 22 August 2020 - 05:25 PM

No one?
Nothing?

#3 coorsmikey

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Posted 22 August 2020 - 05:43 PM

The whole idea of "Off Grid" and "Indoor" had me wondering if anyone would bite. There is some irony in the title that I chose to keep quiet about. I suppose there are living situations that would require electricity but are not on the grid but my first reaction was wouldn't it be less expensive to just pay the electric bill? After I thought about it, I get it I guess. I would still have to ask though, wouldn't the resources be better utilized on an outdoor grow that would last you through the winter? At the same time if I was living Off Grid, I would want the best solar panel and batteries available to say that I could produce enough electricity for a a bad ass indoor grow. I am afraid that the others that have mastered the concept though are probably "Off Grid" to the point that they don't have internet access to share the secrets not the desire to do so. I would love to see what you have to share however.


Edited by coorsmikey, 22 August 2020 - 05:44 PM.


#4 Mycol

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Posted 22 August 2020 - 07:10 PM

Aside from building a greenhouse onto the south end of your house lightbulbs and fans require too much electricity for off grid IMO.
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#5 FLASHINGROOSTER

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Posted 23 August 2020 - 09:29 AM

All that off grid can get really expensive if you want it to work the way you imagine. If you are worried about power consumption use full spectrum florescent lights, they hardly put a dent in your bill and will still grow decent bud, granted nothing amazing but still very smokeable.



#6 PirateFarmer

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Posted 24 August 2020 - 03:49 PM

I've seen plenty of off-grid houses that have full electrical power, mostly solar-powered, with large battery banks. Off-grid doesn't mean primitive, necessarily. But restrictions of numbers of panels, batteries, etc., leads to being selective on the choices made...such as fluorescent or LED lights, etc.
I'm curious as to what's been tried, what experiences, that lead to what recommendations. Unfortunately, all those that I know personally that are off-grid aren't 420 friendly.
I have heard a little about LED lighting, and wonder where that's at, nowadays.
Indoor growing as opposed to outdoor = I already grow outdoors, but would love to be able to clone some of these I grow, to have continuous production and not lose the genetics, as the ones I want to clone are feminized, and no seeds or males available. It would also enable me to use clone starts in the outdoor grow next year. A greenhouse is inadvisable at my home location, as there's getting to be regular flybys, because of the traveling meth labs starting to pop up in the immediate area.
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#7 Juthro

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Posted 24 August 2020 - 06:10 PM

I can't help with what lights to choose, but I might be able to help with a good solar set up for off grid use.  I've been doing research on solar for some time, and this guys set up is about the best I've seen so far.   I want to use a similar setup to power an off grid fishing cabin.   I don't want as big of a setup as this guy has, I don't need to run an AC unit 24 hours a day.

 

[Direct Link]


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#8 PirateFarmer

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Posted 25 August 2020 - 10:34 AM

Thanks, Juthro, this is awesome!

I'm gonna look for info on Leads...numbers, color spectrums, etc., needed to grow. This is a good insight on power produced.
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#9 FLASHINGROOSTER

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Posted 25 August 2020 - 04:30 PM

Here is a calculator video using a 100w light bulb as an example to get you started. A couple rough price examples as well around the 4 minute mark

 

 

this one is pretty simple in design

 

https://solarpanelsv...oad-calculator/


Edited by flashingrooster, 25 August 2020 - 04:34 PM.

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#10 Juthro

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Posted 25 August 2020 - 06:00 PM

I think it's worth mentioning that the way you figure out the size of the system you need for a lead acid based set up, like Roosters vid shows, is different then the way you would figure a system like the guy with the bus showed, with his lithium ion batt's.   With the research I've done I've gleaned that LiFe setups cost a bit more up front, but are much more flexible to run, require no maintenance, and last a very long time.

 

Lead acid setups also take up more space, and have much more weight.  You have to have twice as many batteries to run the same load, cuz if you run your batts down below 50% charge with lead acid it will severely shorten their life span, not so with LiFe.  Another thing with Lead batts, if you don't charge them fully every time before you use them it also shortens their life span, again not so with lithiums.  And another life span issue, your going to have to replace those batt's, and you have to do them all at once as a bank for them to function together properly, two, or more likely, 3 times during the lifespan of LiFe setup.

 

IMHO LiFe is the way to go, and will be what I use when I get around to it, unless they come up with something better before then.  That could actually happen, I tend to be quite the procrastinator, and it might be a while.


Edited by Juthro, 25 August 2020 - 06:06 PM.

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#11 FLASHINGROOSTER

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Posted 25 August 2020 - 06:29 PM

Out of likes Juthro it's Interesting to hear. We only use gel cel batteries for solar systems at work so that's really all the knowledge I go off of. They are still led acid batteries though, and I think the only reason we use those is that its a sealed battery requirement in a classified zone.

 

Sounds like old tech versus new teck, I know those power tools are better with the lithium batteries. I wonder what the price difference onn solar one's would be ? most of the one's we work on have a five year life span before they lose significant charge ability.

 

edit: here is one we have used before, it was a decent battery but i think expensive for residential or commercial use

 

 

https://www.thesolar...-solar-battery/


Edited by flashingrooster, 25 August 2020 - 06:36 PM.

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#12 Juthro

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Posted 25 August 2020 - 07:23 PM

It's about 1/4 the price of the LiFe battery.  A  Battle Born 100 amp hour battery is just under $1000 bucks, but is guaranteed for 10 years.  That deep cycle you link to is slightly more amperage, but your going to need two, do too not being able to drain below 50% charge, so now your in for $500, and with a five year life span, your at the same price point for life span as the battle born, and I think their warranty (10 year) is better (IMO)

 

Another thing about AGM's is that you have to use the right charger.  You don't want to hit them with too much current, as you can boil the electrolytes out of the gel, and you can't top them off easy like you can a flooded acid cell.  So they by their nature need to recharge slower to keep this from happening.  Lithiums have no electrolyte to check, and can take recharge power much faster, all the better to take more efficient advantage of short daylight hours.


Edited by Juthro, 25 August 2020 - 07:28 PM.

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#13 FLASHINGROOSTER

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Posted 26 August 2020 - 02:49 PM

Nice, makes sense to me

 

Speaking of overcharging, a couple of weeks ago was the first time I installed a couple batteries and noticed a boiling sound. It freaked me out, it didn't take much of an over voltage to initiate it. The failed charger bumped the voltage up from a  normal equalize of around 13.5 volts to the 15 volt range. Charging a twelve volt battery. I have been installing those suckers for fifteen years and this is the first time I ever heard them boil before. That internet sure is handy for troubleshooting

 

it was during a troubleshoot of a solar chemical pump skid that I could only surmise traveled through a portal to hell. Everything that could possible go bad on that setup did. Ended up swapping the regulator, batteries, motor, and  pump controller, and even the freaking hand switch to turn it on.... Oh no,the solar panel was still good, sorry. 

All in some nice 33 degree weather with full coveralls on, no shade in site. I had to stop and take a deep breath and run the truck ac for a few minutes after I found the fourth piece of equipment that had failed.

 

But hey at least I am working right!


Edited by flashingrooster, 26 August 2020 - 02:59 PM.


#14 el_ronhub_bird

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 11:51 AM

So...turning light into electricity to store on batteries to power lamps that turn elecricity into light. Seems like there's gotta be a more efficient way lol
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#15 Juthro

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 01:29 PM

So...turning light into electricity to store on batteries to power lamps that turn elecricity into light. Seems like there's gotta be a more efficient way lol

 

Yeah, I think what your referring to is called an outdoor grow :) 

 

But seriously, if you've got a better way to get enough power in an off grid situation to run lights and fans, then share with your brothers, please.



#16 el_ronhub_bird

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 04:45 PM

I was just razzing you guys. It seems like a boondoggle to me. I don't know, perhaps a sky light or solar tubes? On that note, I once lived in a house with sky lights that I grew a few small plants under




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