HPA DIY first system question/ newbie

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Looks like you are off to a good start! I have some questions but dont have time now.
Thanks I hope so fingers crossed ....

My only concern is if you left enough space between the fabric pots and the foam box. You ant good air circulation all the way around the chamber or you could get uneven cooling or places that stay dryer/wetter than others.
That's a good eye my friend , no so I took one of the pots and literally flipped it upside-down and slid over the top and what that did was make it bulking on the top basically where the shape is round " it's the bottom of the pot " and the I cut a whole on top for lid .... So I made 2 because I couldnt decide what was better lol and u just sealed the deal I'm going to just do it this way it's cleaner .
Well

The spray pattern looks good so far. You will want to test hang time of the mist, but you have toi have it all sealed off to do that.
Ya so im having trouble with finding a convenient way to actually point the misters the way I want and making sure they don't accedently move on me im trying zip ties but not feeling to comfortable trusting it won't move on me... Gotta try come up with a better solution I did drill them into the OSB just the tubing and I angled it the best I could for how it should be but the finer tweaking isn't easy
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Little cleaner like this as well , If u can't tell from photo there is a good amount of space all the way around

- for measuring hangtime it's really hard to see in through one of the 2 " netpot whole and I'm thinking holding maybe a flashlight in one while putting my eye to the other IDK how accurate I can get this way I feel like u need a lot of light to really see it floating around , I seen people using the camera scopes but I don't have one maybe I should invest in one , anyway that was my idea for trying to get hangtime ....
 

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Larry3215

Well-Known Member
Sorry for the delay. Ive been under the weather.

That's a good eye my friend , no so I took one of the pots and literally flipped it upside-down and slid over the top and what that did was make it bulking on the top basically where the shape is round " it's the bottom of the pot " and the I cut a whole on top for lid .... So I made 2 because I couldnt decide what was better lol and u just sealed the deal I'm going to just do it this way it's cleaner .
I use hot glue to stitch together pots for my chamber. Just a dab every few inches is all you need some times. Other times you need a long stretch to hold parts together. Its a fast way to tack fabric in place to itself or to other things.

Ya so im having trouble with finding a convenient way to actually point the misters the way I want and making sure they don't accedently move on me i
Ive tried several different ways to solve that problem. Early on I just stuck the HPA misters through a small slit on the fabric and used zip ties and swivels to get them "close enough". Later I decided I wanted more control over height, and vertical and horizontal directions. Part of that is to be able to move them to respond to root growth and to help keep them from being over grown.

Here are some of the ways Ive done it.

I do not recommend this technique. Its more trouble than its worth ;)
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For the last several grows I have been attaching the nozzles to PVC pipe. Some times fixed, but mostly set up so I can raise and lower the pipe to adjust the height, plus being able to turn the pipe to adjust the horizontal angle the nozzle points. In some cases I added a way to adjust the vertical angle, but lately Ive just been leaving the nozzles at aprox a 45 deg angle, but still able to turn the pipe/nozzle combo from side to side and raise and lower it. It helps to be able to raise it because I like the nozzles as close to the floor of the chamber as possible. This give the spray the longest travel distance, but the roots can pile up in the bottom and they go straight for the nozzles. It helps if you can raise them a bit if that happens.

I just took the entire root chamber apart to replace the fabric pots - they had too much salt build up and dead roots in the fabric. Im also making the chamber slightly larger in diameter - from 24" to 29.5". Im going to reduce the height slightly from 29" to about 26-27" and see how that goes next grow.

This is my current nozzle holder. The air line feeds up through the PVC pipe - which extends to just above the lid of the root chamber. The water line goes down through the bottom of the chamber and over to my siphon tank - which is just outside the fabric pot. I can raise and lower the PVC pipe as well as turn it from side to side. The vertical angle is fixed at aprox 45 deg. I heat the ends of the PVC pipe with a heat gun until about 3" is soft, then clamp that part between some boards and bend it to the angle I want until it cools. You can use a propane torch too but go slow - the pipe melts and burns easily.

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Ive also tried this trick. The blue part is just a plastic lid with a screw in the center holding it to the PVC pipe. The screw is just tight enough to hold the nozzle but you can still change the vertical angle by hand. It turned out to be too much trouble reachiing down into the chamber and I never did really use that much once it was set. Turns out that 45 deg was about right.

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This was my first try. The nozzles were pretty much fixed, but I could turn them if I wanted to - none of these PVC joints on any of the above are glued in place. That makes it easy to make changes, disassemble, etc.

0804192129.jpg


- for measuring hangtime it's really hard to see in through one of the 2 " netpot whole and I'm thinking holding maybe a flashlight in one while putting my eye to the other IDK how accurate I can get this way I feel like u need a lot of light to really see it floating around , I seen people using the camera scopes but I don't have one maybe I should invest in one , anyway that was my idea for trying to get hangtime ....
I find cat toy lasers work great. You should be able to point the laser down at an angle thru the same hole or a different hole and use your phone (no flash) to video thru the hole at the same time. The video will make it easy to measure the speed the mist disappears.

Your phones flash is an LED and that will also work well for watching mist hang. To do that just lay your phone over one hole and let if record with the flash ON. I use both because each gives you a different idea of how the mist is doing.

Actually, for the phones flash to work best, you need to be recording from the side. That way you can see the mist slowly drop down from thje top oif the chamber. If you are recording from the top with the camera flash ON, you cant really tell how low the most is getting.

Here are a few of mine using both ways.



In this one, the l;azer toy is pointing down at an angle thru the same net pot hole as the camera.

 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Sorry for the delay. Ive been under the weather.
Oh no ! I hope all is well and please no need for apology we all have busy ass lives and you even taking your time to show me what’s up ! Thanks

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I will be back in a little bit with lots more info I'm going to figure out my flow rates and I have so many questions and I can't ask with out having all the pieces to the puzzle, I need more info about what the system is capable of and I think I understand now what I'm supposed to be looking for with hangtime ... Anyway I will post up later on .peace !☮
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
ok I’m bad at trying to quote replies lol what ever

Just a little math ....

Chamber size is 42gal it is (22x22x20)

Measured 2 nozzels with the plastic bag method and weighed up each at 98.92 - 99.16 grams so I guess we can call this 100ml/min

So I need .84ml in the chamber at all times or 3x that amount size of plant dependent ...

On times are .5sec to 1.5sec so this gives me a general start and I wasn't measuring hang time correctly before or I should say I wasn't sure what to look for basically what I assumed and what is actually supposed to look like where 2 different things ........ But I am slowing understanding now your supposed to keep that thick mist in the chamber at all times just cycling it constantly at the right flow rate ....

To be completely honest before starting this project what you read and what u think it's supposed to be like you should earase that from your head lol https://www.rollitup.org/t/advanced-aeroponics-or-how-to-get-fuzzy-roots-and-be-a-happy-grower.1039452/ all the reading u do and understanding formula are like 2 different things until u actually do it at least that’s how I learn.. I still have to keep going back and re reading old Post and I guess what I'm trying to say no matter how many times I read it and wrote the Info down .. it doesn't matter untill you actually do it and try it you never the same but at least I’m not hitting a wall yet !

going to try and make a video with the laser if I can’t find one at Walmart then I’ll just use the light from the phone and record that way and try and see like u said the mist drop down and before I was looking only at the bottom I didn’t know that but This is making more sense now so I’ll try that idea u gave me and see how it goes I can post video to
 
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Larry3215

Well-Known Member
Measured 2 nozzels with the plastic bag method and weighed up each at 98.92 - 99.16 grams so I guess we can call this 100ml/min
Did you do that with the nozzles running on the timer or on the whole time? It will make a difference in the flow rate. Id suggest you set the timer for 0.75 seconds ON time and maybe 2 to 5 seconds OFF time. Then let it run for say 100 cycles and then do the math. That way you will be taking into account the over spray that is likely occur on each cycle as well as the ramp up time as the nozzles fire on each cycle.

Also, be sure the solenoids are in the final locations as they make a difference.

That flow rate is on the hi side for that size chamber I think. You're going to need to keep the ON times well under 1 second - based on that chamber size and assuming your flow rate is in the ball park.

At 6 liters/hour/nozzle, and starting at 1 second On time, and lets say 60 seconds OFF time as a place to start - that works out to the following flow rate numbers.


LPD
GPD​
#cycles/hr​
ml/ON cycle​
ML/Gal/cycle
LPD/Gal
4.721
1.247​
59​
3.33​
0.079
0.112
Those numbers are on the hi side for that size chamber. Atomizer recommends between .02-.04 ML/GAL/cycle in early growth and up to 0.1 ML/Gal/cycle in late growth. He recommends LPD/Gal between .05 and 0.1. So 1 sec ON x 60 sec OFF is on the hi side for those nozzles.


Here are the same numbers at 0.75 sec ON x 60 off. These numbers ml/gal/cycle and LPD/gal are close to what I typically run - a little less early and a little more late.


LPD
GPD​
#cycles/hr​
ml/cycle​
ML/Gal/cycle
LPD/Gal
3.556
0.939​
59​
2.50​
0.060
0.085



Once you determine your hang time, you can play with the ON/OFF times to get the numbers a little more in the range he suggests. I personally have not had good luck running at his lowest numbers. All my babies seem to need to start closer to the middle of the range instead of the low end. I also have not needed to go to the highest numbers, but not far under.

Note that the ML/Gal/cycle is determined by the ON time. The OFF time has no effect. LPD/Gal varies with ON time and OFF time. So you can pick an ON time to get the ML/Gal/cycle, then adjust the OFF time to get the LPD/Gal in the range you want.

I have a really crude spread sheet for doing all the math if you want a copy.
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Did you do that with the nozzles running on the timer or on the whole time? It will make a difference in the flow rate. Id suggest you set the timer for 0.75 seconds ON time and maybe 2 to 5 seconds OFF time. Then let it run for say 100 cycles and then do the math. That way you will be taking into account the over spray that is likely occur on each cycle as well as the ramp up time as the nozzles fire on each cycle.

I have a really crude spread sheet for doing all the math if you want a copy.
real quick regarding these couple suggestions I did not do as you suggested to determine the flow rate I will do that now and maybe try it a couple different times and see if I get anything different.

and yes please to the spread sheet I’ll pm my email I’m sure that will help me a lot LOL I’m not great with math but give me the formula I’ll figure it out just takes a few try’s ...

now I will go back and write down everything from the last post and go set timer and bags up :bigjoint:
:peace: I will be back lol
 

Larry3215

Well-Known Member
Here is the spread sheet. I had to change the extension to PDF to get it to load. Just change the .PDF to .xlsx. I can do different formats if needed for other spreadsheet programs.
 

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Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Did you do that with the nozzles running on the timer or on the whole time? It will make a difference in the flow rate. Id suggest you set the timer for 0.75 seconds ON time and maybe 2 to 5 seconds OFF time. Then let it run for say 100 cycles and then do the math. That way you will be taking into account the over spray that is likely occur on each cycle as well as the ramp up time as the nozzles fire on each cycle.

Also, be sure the solenoids are in the final locations as they make a difference.

That flow rate is on the hi side for that size chamber I think. You're going to need to keep the ON times well under 1 second - based on that chamber size and assuming your flow rate is in the ball park.

At 6 liters/hour/nozzle, and starting at 1 second On time, and lets say 60 seconds OFF time as a place to start - that works out to the following flow rate numbers.


LPD
GPD​
#cycles/hr​
ml/ON cycle​
ML/Gal/cycle
LPD/Gal
4.721
1.247​
59​
3.33​
0.079
0.112
Those numbers are on the hi side for that size chamber. Atomizer recommends between .02-.04 ML/GAL/cycle in early growth and up to 0.1 ML/Gal/cycle in late growth. He recommends LPD/Gal between .05 and 0.1. So 1 sec ON x 60 sec OFF is on the hi side for those nozzles.




Here are the same numbers at 0.75 sec ON x 60 off. These numbers ml/gal/cycle and LPD/gal are close to what I typically run - a little less early and a little more late.


LPD
GPD​
#cycles/hr​
ml/cycle​
ML/Gal/cycle
LPD/Gal
3.556
0.939​
59​
2.50​
0.060
0.085





Once you determine your hang time, you can play with the ON/OFF times to get the numbers a little more in the range he suggests. I personally have not had good luck running at his lowest numbers. All my babies seem to need to start closer to the middle of the range instead of the low end. I also have not needed to go to the highest numbers, but not far under.

Note that the ML/Gal/cycle is determined by the ON time. The OFF time has no effect. LPD/Gal varies with ON time and OFF time. So you can pick an ON time to get the ML/Gal/cycle, then adjust the OFF time to get the LPD/Gal in the range you want.

I have a really crude spread sheet for doing all the math if you want a copy.
I pretty much spent my entire Sunday filling bags with water lol tried adjusting PSI up like 5 psi and down 5 keeping in the 80-85 with the reducer.
Every 100 cycles one of the nozzles would I think drip more than the other it wasn’t just one that did it everytime it was always the other one when I tried to duplicate it that next time it would be the other nozzle but it was weird it was always about 3 grams extra either nozzle...

So I Tested ON time of .8sec and I left it off for 2 seconds @ 100 cycles
80 seconds in total @ 139 grams I took an average here plus or minus 3 grams

Or I also did .5sec ON time 100 cycles for 50 second of on time total almost exactly the same give or take 3 grams

it does still sound high for my chamber size witch is 42 gallons and my the flow rate is 1.75ml/sec and per what @Atomizer recommendations that puts me in the higher range taking into consideration 2 nozzles so I was figuring 1.39ml per nozzle with .80 sec on time im going to now utilize the spread sheet you sent me and get more infomartion

Also my hangtime is in the 70-75 second range using the .8 on time
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Just a quick update on the original Red and black Tote that I first made as a HPA cloner..

I popped 17 seeds 16 of them successful and I put them straight into the cloner in the beginning they did great I had them on 3sec on / 3 min off, once I seen roots I started really putting them under a lot of stress because I was learning what works what doesn’t for example I tried longer off times and Imoved the entire system under metal halide so I can really see what it can handle anyway there where under such intense light there leaves bleached out and the roots where looking exactly like DWC so after all my experimenting and playing around now I know what it can handle plus what the time I get should be I mean it’s still actually not the right amount of spray time but it’s a lot closer than I had it any... I’m going to take the biggest and fastest grower from the bunch I’m ready to give the new breathable chamber a Test run...
6DE0E782-C32B-48ED-AE57-DE930897D3D2.jpegCan see how some runts and the 1 is just took off compared to the rest nothing seemed to faze it
90843C4F-1B3E-4924-AAB2-9509DD5644A1.jpeg
a little bit of cotton candy going on , on top of Hydro roots!
4CD6F963-69C1-41E3-A37F-B41EDE1CC6B8.jpeg
 

Larry3215

Well-Known Member
I pretty much spent my entire Sunday filling bags with water lol tried adjusting PSI up like 5 psi and down 5 keeping in the 80-85 with the reducer.
Every 100 cycles one of the nozzles would I think drip more than the other it wasn’t just one that did it everytime it was always the other one when I tried to duplicate it that next time it would be the other nozzle but it was weird it was always about 3 grams extra either nozzle...
Interesting. I wonder of the weight of the bag was tipping the nozzle down - that might let it drain more water out of the tubing at the end of the run.

im going to now utilize the spread sheet you sent me and get more infomartion
The spreadsheet helps me visualize how changes in timing will effect the system.

Also my hangtime is in the 70-75 second range using the .8 on time
Thats not bad.

example I tried longer off times
You dont want your off times to be longer than the hang time. The ideal situation is for the roots to always have that perfect Goldilocks amount of mist available. Never too much and never too little. An off time thats longer than the hang time means your into a wet/dry cycle, and thats less than ideal. Its not horrible, but its not the ideal situation.

a little bit of cotton candy going on , on top of Hydro roots!
Fuzzy hairs!!! Excellent!

I see some brownish areas. Thats a sign of bacterial growth. Check your root chamber temps, and check your rez for signs of algae, slime, cloudy, etc. If the rez is inside the grow room, you may need to see about ways to cool it down or move it to a cooler area.

I use an icechest and 1 liter frozen water bottles to cool it down. I keep it under 60F at all times so I dont need chlorine etc to keep it sterile. Chlorine, etc makes it much harder to get fuzzy roots.

I forget - are you DTW on this one or recirculating?
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Fuzzy hairs!!! Excellent!

I see some brownish areas. Thats a sign of bacterial growth. Check your root chamber temps, and check your rez for signs of algae, slime, cloudy, etc. If the rez is inside the grow room, you may need to see about ways to cool it down or move it to a cooler area.

I use an icechest and 1 liter frozen water bottles to cool it down. I keep it under 60F at all times so I dont need chlorine etc to keep it sterile. Chlorine, etc makes it much harder to get fuzzy roots.

I forget - are you DTW on this one or recirculating?
beginning to grasp what it means when u say “Goldilocks amount” !

ok so I’m pressure there isn’t any algae I’m check again to be honest I used B52 in the Rez never again though that was a mistake it’s not a flood table lol so the reason for the yellow I was tweaking it a lot and 1 time took too lock putting in the other 3 solenoids in the beginning I was waiting for more to come in and didn’t understand the importance of 1 per nozzle when I initially ordered everything so they where dry maybe an hour I tried not to take them out of the bin but ended up having to in order to easily change a plugged mister probably from the B52 so that’s why the plants on the right are stunted as well the right side wasn’t really spraying them I think now that everything is doing what it’s supposed to . The temps did also get up in the high 70’s I think close to 80 for a couple days so maybe there is the beginning of something I could clean out the Rez again make sure.

ok I’m going to start keeping Rez under 60 it’s always been at 68 so far so I will keep it colder from now on.

Now that u said the weight of the bag pushing down on the nozzles yes I think you hit it on the nose I mean that has to be it I’m going to try it one more time .... it depends on how I was tying the bag to the nozzle so one was probably hanging off the bottom I even thought about it at one point but didn’t think it would have effect lolI know that when I watched I could see like 1-2 drips.
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
Also wanted to mention that I am recirculating at the moment just while testing things out but moving forward especially when I start using the breathable chamber DTW for sure but with the cloner I will just recirculate .



beginning to grasp what it means when u say “Goldilocks amount” !

ok so I’m pressure there isn’t any algae I’m check again to be honest I used B52 in the Rez never again though that was a mistake it’s not a flood table lol so the reason for the yellow I was tweaking it a lot and 1 time took too lock putting in the other 3 solenoids in the beginning I was waiting for more to come in and didn’t understand the importance of 1 per nozzle when I initially ordered everything so they where dry maybe an hour I tried not to take them out of the bin but ended up having to in order to easily change a plugged mister probably from the B52 so that’s why the plants on the right are stunted as well the right side wasn’t really spraying them I think now that everything is doing what it’s supposed to . The temps did also get up in the high 70’s I think close to 80 for a couple days so maybe there is the beginning of something I could clean out the Rez again make sure.

ok I’m going to start keeping Rez under 60 it’s always been at 68 so far so I will keep it colder from now on.

Now that u said the weight of the bag pushing down on the nozzles yes I think you hit it on the nose I mean that has to be it I’m going to try it one more time .... it depends on how I was tying the bag to the nozzle so one was probably hanging off the bottom I even thought about it at one point but didn’t think it would have effect lolI know that when I watched I could see like 1-2 drips.
image.jpg
 

Larry3215

Well-Known Member
when I start using the breathable chamber DTW for sure but with the cloner I will just recirculate .
If its at all possible I would highly recommend doing DTW. You wont use any more nutes than you are now, and it will eliminate soooooo many potential problems that recirculating can - and almost always does - cause.

DTW eliminates almost all PH drift problems. You might still get some if you have hard water, or an algae/bacterial infection in the rez, but you wont be feeding those bacteria on the roots right back into the rez so they can get another chance to cause issues.

With DTW you will also be feeding at a constant, unchanging EC level with uniform levels of all nutes all the time. Recirculating almost always causes EC drift and varying levels of nutes as the roots uptake some faster than others. By the time you do a rez change, the nute levels could be way off.

DTW is really worth the effort. The plants will be much happier :)
 

Rdubz

Well-Known Member
If its at all possible I would highly recommend doing DTW. You wont use any more nutes than you are now, and it will eliminate soooooo many potential problems that recirculating can - and almost always does - cause.

DTW eliminates almost all PH drift problems. You might still get some if you have hard water, or an algae/bacterial infection in the rez, but you wont be feeding those bacteria on the roots right back into the rez so they can get another chance to cause issues.

With DTW you will also be feeding at a constant, unchanging EC level with uniform levels of all nutes all the time. Recirculating almost always causes EC drift and varying levels of nutes as the roots uptake some faster than others. By the time you do a rez change, the nute levels could be way off.

DTW is really worth the effort. The plants will be much happier :)
Cleaned changed Rez just now and I’m using a 5gal bucket to catch run off and I’ll just dump after checking EC/ph right now going IN 5.8ph 350 ppm/Tds with 350ppm/TDs @6.0ph coming out I do love the level of control here it’s amazing how precise u can get when u have it all dialed in and as far as recirculating your right it’s not like I’m being that waist full barely using any nutes right now it’s mostly water but I would like to try and find someone that sells Jacks 321 local I want to make the switch it’s not very economical to stay with water nutes
 

Larry3215

Well-Known Member
You can get it pretty cheap on-line. I buy 6 pound "kits" and one kit last me a couple of years at the EC levels I run. The kits have all three parts for the Jacks 321 hydro mix. Its all I use - no adds at all - and my girls stay green and happy looking until harvest.

This guy sells several different size kits.


You can also find it on ebay and probably Amazon.
 
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