Cheaply lighting a 3x3 tent with DIY light strips


Last week I had the money to order 16 strips. Figured I’d have time later to look over drivers. Rather I do a 15 or 16 strip build matters not to me.

I just have to pick out the driver(s) and parts. I have a local source of Al when the time finally comes.


That’s correct for the most part, but You also have to assume the first connector and last connector could see full line to line voltage under a fault condition. In terms of would it work, I think you’re correct. But something like that would never see UL certification.

I’d have to look, but I have always assumed that 300v was the limit of any connector that style. I’m pretty sure I seen it in one of the bridgelux documents too. I’m always of the idea when I give someone advice through here I prefer to account for stuff like that. Just like parallel connected leds on a cv driver. Just because I would do it, doesn’t always mean I would suggest others do.


I would not worry about the connectors on each strip, since there is only about 25 volts there. But I would worry about the driver positive and negative leads shorting to the heat sink. That’s 300+ volts and in high humidity conditions it might arc (several thousand degrees) and start a fire or even kill you. Much safe to go with two lower voltage drivers.


It’s always recommended that you ground your heatsinks, for sure.
I found out the plug I had my light plugged into wasnt grounded to the breaker box this way. Everytime I would rub up against the driver, I would get shocked a bit. I thought it was the driver at first, contacted HLG and they sent a new one right away. When the second driver arrived and did the same thing. I looked elsewhere.
Come to find out, the outlet box was receiving around 20v from not being grounded, and that was sending it to my heatsink and driver.


$121 - 14 EB Strips
$56 - Driver
$16 - 24x18 AL
$21 - Parts
$214 Build

I will be building another one eventually, but that should only cost me $190 with the leftovers from my initial investment.

A special thanks goes out to @dbrn32 for his help consulting with me for this build.


sweet @Budbrother, luv new grow toys!
did you give yourself some breathing room between plate and driver?
i had to use a couple of extra jam nuts to give my driver some clearance for cooler running temps…


He should’ve lol. Pretty sure he did same thing or used a couple stacks or large rubber o-rings.


I did :blush:
Thanks @BIGE I’ve noticed the new light has dropped my tent temp my tent temp by 8 degrees.


i can run my lights now at night without worrying about using a/c…
bigtime energy saver in my book…lol
your set-up looks great!


I just flipped the lights off yesterday afternoon. Today the lights will come on at 6 pm - 6 am. Gotta beat the heat, light at night :laughing:


You could physically give up a lot of weed and still win on gram per kwh level if you can stay away from ac. The consideration that you’re more likely to gain in yield department makes it a big win.


Nice job on the build @Budbrother!




Great build. I’m glad I’m not the only one that had a hard time deciding which way to go. I still am not 100% sure just waiting to see if arrow will be doing a sale or discount code soon. Are the strips only held to the heat sink with the double sided tape stuff? Lol I can’t remember the name of the tape at the moment.


They sure are, peeled and stuck on both sides. No screws needed.


Awesome I was hoping it would just didn’t know if it would hold up with the heat.


Yup, it actually seems to be more solid bond after heating up. Like not removable.


On one side I laid out all the tape first and then the strips. Figured it’s just tape and any excess would easily come off. Well I tried to lift it with a razor blade, nope. Alcohol & razor blade, a lil better, but in the end I just left it stuck.


I put the tape on the strips, then applied to the heat sink.


So did I after those first 5 fiasco