- Jan 25, 2017
I use the same exact shut off valve.
I use the same exact shut off valve.
These are what I bought. On sustainable village for 3.90 or 4.90 each. I will get this setup guide as soon as I can. Setup ideas and parts needed.
Hopefully I can pull off being helpful without sounding condensending. I have successfully used TB's for longer than I care to mention.
I have used them in every growing medium with and without nutes, in containers, beds and outdoors with absolute success.
If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. The system is based on actual individual need, not an assumption that all are created equal, (even if they are the same via clones), rather than a timed assumption.
There are a few tricks and a learning curve. Their service life is indefinate, so regardless of the initial cost, they are an absolute bargain! If your needing several hundred of more, form a relationship with a local shop and make a deal to prepay for an order directly form Canada, and you could cut the cost in half. Just be patient with customs.
It helps to understand exactly what makes TB's work. You have a porous cermaic cone, a plastic control cap with a small bladder connected to a pin which exerts pressure on the silicone feed hose.
As the growing medium looses moisture, it attempts to draw from the cone creating a negative pressure inside the TB. With the drop in pressure, the bladder is pulled down allowing the pin to reduce pressure on the silicone hose and you begin rehydration.
The design is brilliantly simplistic. Regardless of what my fellow enthusiast may have come up against, once the basics are mastered, the only control issue will be caused by human error. (sorry)
Now to address a few of the concearns.
Proper adjustment is a bit tricky at first. Be patient in the beginning, and the free time you gain will simply blow you away. Hosing can be fun, but there comes a point where you start feeling like a hose monkey!
Make certain your growing medium is absolutely saturated. Instert the cone midway between container and trunk. Press the cone in to where the plastic cap meets the cone. If the ceramic is exposed, it can cause erratic drip control due to evaporation. Extend the silicone drip hose to center of container. If you are using 10 gal or larger, you can use two TB's or purchase their drip extenders which allows you to drip in multiple locations using one TB.
Loosen the adjuster cap until you have a steady flow. Slowly and patiently turn the adj. cap clockwise until a drop is suspended at the end of the drip hose (important!). Again be patient and watch for 15 seconds. Now turn the cap clockwise and additional notch or two depending the level of saturation you are seeking, (this will take some attention over a few days). Once you have found what works, in the future it will be an absoulte set and forget. I do not reccommend readjusting to flush. Top flush with a hose. Once you got it right, don't touch until your resetting for your next go. At the end of the cycle, rinse the cones, remove the caps and store in clean H20 (preferably r/o).
If you are experiencing flooding after you perfectly adjusted the TB's, it will be the result of one of three issues:
First being a pinched drip line. To prevent this, before setting, completely loosen adjuster, pull the silicone hose to it's intended location and proceed with adjustment. Once adjusted, never pull on the hose!
Second would be a improperly soaked/filled/sealed TB. You must soak the cermaics in preferably r/o water for several hours. When filling (preferably r/o water), you must place the top on the cone under water making sure there are no air bubbles inside the cap. When sealing the unit (under water), make sure you tighten securely without going too far. You can strip them, thus no negative pressure, thus cone dries out, thus wfo!
Thirdly, supply and demand. The elevated reservoir is limited in scope when dealing with agressive thirstly babes. If you have a dozen little girls, this method works fine with the distribution hose supplied in the kit. If you are looking for fool proof delivery for thirteen to infinity, you must pressurize your system. I won't go into technical details as there are so many options, but the end result needs to be an endless supply of 6 psi. Ironically, you will eliminate many sensitivites with the higher pressure.
If you run out of pressure for even 5 thirsty minutes, you must, resoak, refill, readjust. No way around it.
I have read several complaints of the TB's not being able to keep up with severe demand. If set up properly with 6 psi, that would be impossible. At 6 psi, a TB will shoot a tiny but steady stream six feet.
With the problems I have read, the majority are from the supply end. If all you are getting is drips with adjuster wide open, you must elevate your tank or pressurize. Often times, if you have adjusted the TB's properly and you are experiencing flooding, it is because your supply could not keep up, the cone lost some of its internal water and you lost the proper balance of internal negative pessure and the pin is not applying the proper force on the drip hose. Once this has happened, you cannot adjust you way out of the problem. You must remove TB and start from square one.
Once you have taken care of the basics, you will never feed any other way.
In regards to production, that will always be a never ending debate. In regards to my own experience, in a commercial like scale, it is the best way. Each container has it's very own personalized system. If you have a dozen container hobby deal, then picking up each one and checking it twice is not only feasible, but enjoyable.
So are you using that as the primary water/feed supply?That is great!! It is very simple to setup. It’s a bit more involved if you are looking for a foolproof long term setup. That’s where I was going to add my info.
I went online last night looking for parts. Reservoir mainly. Buckets work but are small and will require multiple fillings per week. Granted the useage is much less with blumats too. No soaked to dry moments. It’s a slow steady drip when they need it. Places like Home Depot have storage totes which work ok. I do prefer the thickest you can get.
Most people are looking for the more simple approach. The simpler the more maintenance is required I feel. I just walked into my grow after 36 hours away. I haven’t touched anything in a week. Each pot was moderately moist. Reservoir had 5 gallons left so I flushed it out and refilled. Can’t be happier with the setup.