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 Post subject: Basement Incubator
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:51 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 7:52 am
Posts: 313
Location: Oak Island, NC
I have posted this elsewhere, but as most of the occupants are deflasked seedling I got from Peter, I figure it won't hurt to post it here, too.

A guy in our local OS did a presentation on basement tank growing chambers. His demonstrator was a wood and plastic box with a glass front - probably equivalent to a 30-gallon fish tank - lit with my LEDs. With no additional heating, he is able to grow lovely little cool-growers - the kind I find impossible to grow. That inspired me to try, but then it occurred to me that a warm "incubator" would be better for the plants I currently have, so…

I started with a hydroponics flood tray - 3' x 6'
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I have a false bottom in it (two layers of red EcoWeb, shipped to me by mistake), with an overflow drain in the side.

Then using 1/2" thick, foil-faced foam sheathing, I created an enclosure 2' tall over it, making the floor-to-ceiling distance about 30". I spray painted the interior side of the foam panels white to disperse light better than the foil would, then assembled the thing with duct tape. The front has sliding glass doors to allow access. Without the glass, the whole thing weighs about 20#.

There are eye-bolts through the roof that support two 48" 35W Philips GreenPower "Production Module" LEDs, I have some muffin fans for air circulation, and there is a Mist-King system, with three double nozzles suspended through the roof as well. Additionally, there is a 2' x 4' heating mat controlled by a thermostat and tied to the same timer as the lights, so I get a bit of overnight cooling.

It's been operational for about a month, and there are a bunch of deflasked seedling - several phals I got from Peter or trading with others who did, a phrag flask I got from Fox Valley Orchids, now in S/H, and a bunch of mini's I got from Ooie Leng Sun at the SEPOS show. All are doing great.

Image

Maybe the cool-growing chamber will follow - but likely on a smaller scale.

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Ray Barkalow, Orchid Iconoclast
Using science & logic to improve orchid growing


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 Post subject: Re: Basement Incubator
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:19 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:03 pm
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Location: Boston MA USA
Looks pretty cool, Ray. Great that the foam is heavy enough to support the 2 light fixtures.


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 Post subject: Re: Basement Incubator
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:26 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 7:52 am
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Location: Oak Island, NC
Eye bolts with LARGE washers did the trick!


Ray Barkalow (via Tapatalk)

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Ray Barkalow, Orchid Iconoclast
Using science & logic to improve orchid growing


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 Post subject: Re: Basement Incubator
PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:42 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 1:57 pm
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Location: Texas, USA
Thank you Ray. I was going to ask you to also post it here. I have a large 8x4 flood tray from hydro farm. I have it upstair and probably like to build something similar in the winter. In Texas it's not practical to grow plants under light in the summer. Well, I already have a greenhouse. The last thing I want is to have more plants to water indoor. In the winter maybe I don't need to water as often in the greenhouse - and maybe this setup will help me grow seedlings faster. I can keep them warmer so they don't stop growing in the greenhouse. We will see. I'm not very inclined to build anything myself. Once I bought an Orchidarium which is defunt right now and collecting dust.

It would be nice to have a basement. But our soil move too much. I probably need an underground storm shelter but I probably will crowd it with orchids. LOL.

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 Post subject: Re: Basement Incubator
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 11:52 am 
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Location: NJ
That is really a great set up, Ray


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