Light and Easy Basic CFL Info

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Noods

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Sep 25, 2011
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CFL – Compact Florescent Lamp


CFL’s are a good, inexpensive, and energy saving alternative to HPS or MH growing lamps. They’re especially good for growing in small spaces like PC cases or smaller cabinets where even a small HPS would cook your plants.


This picture courtesy of micro.grower. Thanks micro!

They also work fine for larger grow areas, for larger plants. You just need more lights.



CFLs come in all shapes and sizes and are most beneficial in smaller places like PC cases because the smaller the bulb and wattage, the better the lumen output. (And a large 125w bulb wouldn’t fit in a PC case.) While a large 250w bulb will emit xxx amount of lumens, a smaller bulb will emit only xx amount of lumens, but percentage wise, the smaller bulb’s lumen output is higher. This fact should be carefully considered when adding CFLs as “side lighting.”



The color temperature (Kelvin) of the CFL bulbs is very important.
Easy Rule:

6500k (Daylight, also referred to as Blue) = Vegetative cycle
2700k (Soft / Warm, also referred to as Red)= Flowering cycle

Although,
Your plants will grow under all 6500k bulbs, or all 2700k bulbs.
Your plants will flower under all 6500k bulbs, or all 2700k bulbs.

Using all 2700k bulbs for veg will give you slightly slower, less vegetative growth, less lushness. But she’ll thank you during flowering.
Using all 6500k bulbs will give you lush green and abundant vegetative growth, but will hinder or slow down bud development and could possibly have a negative effect on yield.
You can start off using 6500k from seedling till the end of the vegetative stage, and then exchange them for 2700k. Or use a mix of both spectrums from start to finish…. Mix and match at will. But remember the Easy Rule and your plants will be happiest.



Seedlings love CFLs. They can climb right up to them and if you’re using smaller bulbs, there’s very little danger of burning them. The leaves will wither and probably turn brown and die if they are allowed to touch the bulbs. Never leave young plants unattended for longer periods of time with the lights close! After the fast vegetative growth (autoflowering plants) has stopped, you can get the lights in real close.




The positioning of the lights is another very important aspect. I’ll let the pics tell the story:



Improper placement can be a waste of good wattage.
A good reflective material is always a plus.

The glass part of the CFL bulb is much cooler than the ballast. The ceramic/plastic parts; that's where the heat comes from and it is a very good idea to have circulation around this part of your setup.



Here are a few resources for setting up an easy CFL rig:
Andy Botwin made this:


Find that article here---> https://www.autoflower.net/forums/authors/andybotwin-2192/

My adaptation of Andy’s setup:





Get them while they're hot, folks- LED's are taking over quick!

:smokebuds:
 
Last edited:

Duck Commander

Bio-Bizz Organics
Jun 13, 2012
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About time you done a CFL sticky king CFL Noods :bow: always great to see your work CFLs are awsome for yeilds if used properly im getting there :bong:
 
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Noods

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Sep 25, 2011
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Thanks guys! As the title implies, it's just very basic stuff. I remember just starting out and searching and searching and all the conflicting things to read... confusion... I would have liked to have been able to find this post. :smoke:
I'll leave it as simple as it is, and if need be, we have lots and lots of empty forum pages to talk about all kinds of CFL things!
:smokebuds:
 
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herbal.experience

[NOVICE] micro.grower
Aug 31, 2012
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nice one cfl master!

cant go wrong absorbing any good info -- specially from a proven grower.

:smokebuds:
 

milkman

Auto Warrior
Dec 3, 2012
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Hey noods great work.

I have just switched over to CFL's from HPS. First time growing with 1 x 125w 6500k CFL and have 2700K bulb to use when flowering starts. I am growing in a small cupboard W50cm x D50cm x H1.4m. I have small computer extraction fan from top of cupboard, temp is set at around 28 celcius, small desk fan in grow area with intake from 2 x 25mm side holes. I have three auto plants in first 9 days from seed 1.white widow 2.green poison 3.AK-49. They are in 8 inch containers with mix of sand perlite and standard potting soil. All seem to be growing to expectations, however I am wondering if the light output from the CFL will be strong enough to get a solid yeild? Any tips tricks or advice would be appreciated.
 

Noods

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Sep 25, 2011
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milkman, please forgive me for not answering you sooner! I just now saw this. Sorry.
That's tight with that big old bulb in there, eh?

The more light the better, of course. The 125w bulb will be plenty for those three plants in that space to get a real good start. But then after about roughly four weeks, assuming all other factors are good, they'll have lots and lots of foliage that the 125 watts just won't be able to penetrate. I know you didn't want to hear that, but I know you want the truth. If you have the room for it and the heat doesn't become an issue, I'd add the 2700k bulb as well, when they start to flower. Is it also 125w? You'll also have to tuck your leaves, to help penetration.

Start up a thread with your setup and all and maybe a few pics and let's have a look and see what you have going on! Again, sorry I missed that! :smokebuds:
 
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