Building vertical aeroponic cabinet

Hello OGers! This is my first thread here…

I was always fascinated by hydroponic systems, how efficient and clean they are… Just pure water, no messing with soil, you know :)… After years playing with bubblers (very cheap and good) and aero-cloners I’ve came to conclusion that aero & mist systems works even better than classical hydroponics (e.g. drip system , flood&drain table). With better I mean faster growth…

I was inspired by following systems often seen on cannabis fairs. The thing is I’ve never seen it working on cannabis plants with my eyes…

At the same time I was pretty constrained with space and wanted to use dedicated and stealth cabinet in my rooms closet. That is why I choose going vertical as it allows expanding grow area to 3 dimensions, making HPS bulb a lot more effective. Although modern shades like A-wing can offer good reflexivity I just don’t believe its numbers… Laws of physics imho don’t allow for reflexivity this high (95-99% is simply unbelievable).

So I wanted finally to try going fully vertical and after some small tests with screen and 70W HPS I knew this would be feasible. Applying vertical screen will enlarge canopy and allow training of plants to keep form I need… Yes it needs lot of attention and training work, but I’m not afraid :)…

Vertical aeroponic system looked like proper challenge to build … :slight_smile: The only problem was price as I didn’t want to buy pricey ready-made hydro system just for experiment. And also I had concrete space that I needed to utilize and for this reason wanted to build something tailored.

First I saw this system at the exhibition and after some years I got and idea how it could be easily immitated with really cheap! With HT (polypropylen) tubes used for house sewages… These tubings can be sealed properly while being fully adustable. They can sustain temperatures up to 100°C and are not easily flammable. They have 75mm in diameter – just enough to put in 75x75x75mm rockwool cube.

So I grabbed meter and drew some plans. After calculating needed parts ordered plumbing material for very very cheap – it was about 50 euros total… :slight_smile:

Finally plumbing has arrived and you can see all the parts here…


Connecting it together…

There are just few types of plumbing:

  • I (HTEM)
  • T
  • Y (HTEA 45°)
  • L (HTB 87°)
  • plus caps

So you can made possibly every imaginable combination with it… You can of course short any of them for length you need. Each part has narrow end and wider end with o-ring (rubber gum seal). It is much easier to connect them if you use proper plumbing lubrication. As they are not pressure proof, you need to orientate them correctly with wider end going up and narrow end down (inserting it to another). This way water is correctly descenting a falls down not leaking anywhere.

After constructing whole shape I need to drill holes to walls to create holders for whole system (as I can imagine it will be pretty heavy when coming to harvest time… At the bottom I just placed old ebb&flow tub as collector. From this collector water just drains down to closed bucket. (You can’t simply have open reservoir with nutes as it would be covered with algae immediately). This bucket will serve as reservoir.

To make it pure aeroponics I needed to create true mist in plumbing. After days of searching I’ve finally found pump that can make pressure so high in hobby and constructor’s store. It was 12V DC, 3,8A (that is amazing 45 watts!) high pressure pump able to create at least 1 bar pressure. These are similar pumps that are used for pumping gasoline in vehicles. Cons of this pumps are that they don’t have very large throughput, just about 1000 litres per hour and they can pump just 10 meters high. For this purpose this is OK, traveling height is about 2 meters. Also you can’t run this pump for more than 30 minutes or you would burn it.

It is this type of submerged pump:
Barwig 12 V DC, TYPE 01, 18
It looks really simple but has amazing parameters…

Then I needed sprayer able to create fine mist… I found one from Gardena and after some tests it looked like the right thing.

Gardena Spray Nozzle 360 is sold in packs of 5 for about 6 euros.

To place it on the top of tubing, I simply drilled hole in the middle of circular cap that is covering each tubbing. I glued Gardena Noozle into this hole. There was 6 tubings total so 6 sprayers.

You can see setup when loading it with plants. For the vegetation two 115 watts CFL were used. You can see air outlet in the left right corner – there was circular PC vent inserted in that sock which is not visible on the photo. After first round it was obvious that this is not simply enough. There is much more air needed and it would be better to use classical TT or UFO type of vent. At the bottom of the cabinet there is passive intake from outside and simple fan runs air from the bottom to the top.

At first I didn’t imagined that clear line connected to pump would be problem and it has proved me wrong after few weeks as it turned green from algae…

Also what has become problematic was to fit plants inside of each tube. At first I thought this would be easy an I will just press the rockwool… I ended up cutting from the rockwool cut by cut till it fitted the tube.

Anyway some plants where not holding in very firmly and I was dissapointed. This needs to be addressed in next attempt… Better would be use some basket for aqua plants if available in this dimension.

Lets go through pictures of complete installation populated with clones and then after some days of growing.


Hey @Style really like the vertical aspect in a cab. I’ve been trying to squeeze something like the Buddah Box in a metal cabinet I’m building but I will have to make some needs sacrifices in that size space so it won’t turn out 360 degree or anything but I think it will be fun to try

Have any updated pics or helpful experience with this system?