First light build

so i’ve decided i just cant sit around and wait and im going to build either a 100% solstrip or a cob with strips and bulbs (dont even know what kind of bulbs are used in cobs to give an idea of my knowledge) or how you put the units together … im guessing you need aluminim cutting tools/drills which is fine - just need to figure it all out.

probably wont be using it to grow anything but vegetables for the next ~year but i’ve decided to just do it anyway …

current situation is living in montana with my wife and son while she does graduate school and rented out our house in alaska - living in an apartment complex with a kind of similar laundry area to the one i will be converting to grow area back home.

making this thread to start a discussion on light building for a particular area so i can figure out what i need to buy as far as tools and equipment go - im also considering going into this as a connoisseur to potentially build light units for people in the area (WAY ahead of myself i know… but i figured id mention it as far as tool investments go…if i find that i have a knack for it) - recently uprooted my career in information technology so im pretty bored and looking for something to apply myself to.

here is a picture of the laundry area in my apartment - the dimensions are roughly 3 x 6’ on the floor area in alaska is more like 4.5’ x 8’ - still havent decided if i want to use a tent of some-kind or run hvac directly through the sheetrock around the area.

@anon32470837 @Colanoscopy @Jellypowered
sorry for the bad pics… will replace with the actual area in alaska when i get images (just e general side-by-side laundry area without the washer dryer - looking at roughly 40 rectangular sq ft. without a tent):

to start out… im looking on and im guessing i need roughly - 6-8 strips/sinks/all the accessories and a dimmable driver?


I dont see any pics?

I’ll answer q’s later - getting my granddaughter off to school…


Samsung LM561C are the diodes used by solstrips.
They are one of the most efficient LED diodes for horticultural use. I’m sure though I read somewhere that the LM561B (used by most of the quantum boards) diodes have more penetration where as the LM561C have better coverage and spread.


solstips are stripped out boards with slightly different diodes? filling out my knowledge here… never heard of a quantum board.

edit: ok so cobs are much more tightly packed diodes - strips are spread out


Solstrips are lm561c diodes in a hard strip. With the PCB design being the brainchild of @Baudelaire COB stands for chip on board. If you are dipping a toe into diy lighting I plead with you to use strips. Mainly because the easiest method is parallel wiring on already soldered molex connections and they’re only 24v across the board.


diving head first but that is all i need to hear :slight_smile:
solstrip setup it is


Have a Google. Quantum boards are another very popular diy solution but you get nowhere near the coverage that solstrips give.


6-8 strips is a little light (pun intended :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:)

For 3 x 6 area I would think closer to 12 - 16


i immediately googled it, just didn;t know what cob stood for. thank you

i’ll go with 16 then… so 2-3 per horizontal foot in this case… i might still tent it off to cut back on the width/ sq footage. whatever ends up being the best combo of coverage / intensity . if the solstrips should be covering the entire leaf canvas, i’ll probably use mylar (or whatever it is those tents are made of) to control the area better


I second what @roux is saying. I’d go 2 x 7 strips powered by 2 x meanwell hlg320h 24a or b


do you think it would be better to build some sort of internal structure for the area and put a tent over it to match the length of the strips so they are 100% covering the plant canvas?

i guess i can decide that later… the goal here is to figure out what to order via


ok i can add width to this later when i actually apply it to my space- i think i’ll go with half size (and 1 driver if that is sufficient) for now - i think i’ll go with x8 solstrip X2s and a driver

what is the downside of going with higher voltage on the dimmable driver?
also what accessories do you think would be potentially useful for the final product… i really like that digital gauge that shows the electrical readings @Esrgood4u has on his rig

thank you guys for the responses


Use L shaped aluminium and build a frame. Check some of the solstrip builds here on OG to give you some ideas


That’s not my rig with the digital display it’s @Albannach


my bad man been reading a lot of threads - will definitely check out some frames too, thanks


TBH, you can run it straight in the room…if your not happy with your results at harvest, you can fine tune it and narrow the space to increase lumens per sq ft.

The light strips will max out at 52 watts per strip, but they will run hot and burn out quickly…recommended run at 48 watts continuess use.

Dimmable driver are nice to start out plants or clones as its easy to light burn them. Set the HLG driver to lowest (about 55% of watts) to avoid light burn


There are lots of ways to go about this, that’s the flexibility of the system. The strips are pretty easy, due to the parallel. Running eight strips, I would suggest the HLG-320H-24 drivers. If you want this solely for flowering, I like the 2700K diodes. 3500K is a good all around spectrum. My vegging plants like the 5000K.

Or you can mix spectrums. I have 3x 5000K strips on a HLG-120H-24B and 6x 2700K strips on a HLG-240H-24B. Since both of them are dimable I can vary the spectrum.

This video is a good one for learning the basics of LED.


that video was awesome- reminds me a little bit of building PCs years ago- matching power supply to video card/processor w/. heatsinks albeit much less plug and play

keeping it simple with all 3500k for now

pretty basic order - am i missing anything? (i dont see where to choose A or B for the driver - assuming default is A @Baudelaire)

any recommendations on where to buy aluminum rails for mounting the strips/sinks?


I buy aluminum angle iron at lowes 1" x 1" x 1/8". Its pretty easy to cut with a hacksaw.

Also I would get the HLG-320H driver, not the 240H


jesus thanks for checking my work on that… glad im starting this now…

right on i i finally like something about the new place i’m living… has a lowes

ok im going to get this ordered today - i need to support og as well - place is second to none