Opinions About This Setup From PA Hydroponics

I’m curious is anyone has any experience with hydro setup, or has an opinion on it based on their knowledge and experience?

On the one hand, it’s expensive for what you get, but also seems to be much lower priced that most similar systems. The guy who makes then has a YouTube channel and has videos of setting it up, and stuff, as well as how to make your own, and also sells a DIY kit without the holes cut.

I’m completely new to growing my own, so would you suggest I start in soil, or would something like this be good to start off in?

*edit: removed unauthorized link. Screenshots of the product is fine


Honestly I’d say first shot go with coco coir if u have the time for the watering. It’s basically hydro with a medium what u posted would be great for growing with coco also as coco requires to be moist always without any dry spells the system u posted would.cut out all of your watering part of the grow u would just have to mix nutes for the res and make sure the res pH stays in check @Nicky uses auto pots and a few others also I’m sure he can point u to them alot of names slip my mind til I see it pop up lol. Welcome here and happy growing.


Thank you, I’ll definitely look into coco coir. I had basically written off starting with hydro to cut down the start up cost, but most DWC systems I’ve seen were 2-3 times the cost of this, and really don’t seem as well thought out as this one.


If you are wanting to do hydro, rdwc for example, you have to make up your mind that that’s what you want to do. Do it right.
I would not recommend dwc!

For me, rdwc is as about as easy as it gets provided you have your system automated with the correct plumbing and water pump.

I’ve had mine going for 2 years and am loving it.
It’s a diy built with two 20 gal totes from HD and a 18 gal garbage can from Wallyworld. It holds about 22 gal with water level 2” below the net pots.
Pvc glue and cutters big enough to cut 1.5” pvc.
One 1.5” pvc 10’ long. (All sch 40)
Four 1.5” pvc elbows.
Four 1.5” pvc cut-off valves.
Four 1.5” bulkhead union from Tractor Supply.
25’ roll 3/4” black tubing, active aqua (I think).
Two 3/4” bulk head unions.
Two 3/4” elbows.
One 3/4” T
3/4” hose clamps
One 400 gal/hr active aqua water pump to keep water flowing.
A 1/4 hp water chiller.
Air pump and 2” x 2” round air stones.

And a plan.


You can use this as a general idea of how to connect it.
I use Jack’s 321 nutes and it doesn’t get any easier. I would highly recommend Jack’s no matter how you grow. A lot of folks here use it.

This was my last grow if you’d like to take a look. You might get an idea or two.

If you have any question just let us know. Good luck with whatever you decide. Good luck! :+1:t2::v::sunglasses:


Thanks, so what is the difference between dwc and rdwc?

To the mods: Sorry, I thought links were okay, as long as they weren’t to competitors of ILGM? Guess I was wrong. :grin:

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Dwc (Deep Water Culture) is just a bucket that holds water and air stones. You can grow plants but may have many challenges depending on how you want to grow.

If you plan to scrog, how you gonna do it?
How you gonna change / add water? (With a scrog?) It can be done. But, for a new grower, one can get frustrated with the challenges of dealing with just the aspects of growing in water. Then you have all the other environmental conditions, nutes and such.

Again, there are folks that grow dwc all day long, but they may have also been growing for some time which makes it sound and look easier than it is.

Rdwc (Recirculating Deep Water Culture) which also uses buckets and air stones but with an added reservoir allowing you to mix nutes outside of the growing area.

RDWC also incorporates a water pump to circulate water throughout your system helping to maintain a more stable growing environment for your roots.

They both will grow big plants. Rdwc takes a little more to set up but once you get it dialed in, you can set it and forget it so to speak.

Dwc, you will have to add water more frequently then rdwc.

Hope this helps some. Hydro is one of those things, if your thinking about it, and you want to grow that way, you need to go all in and do it right. It will reward you in the end.

I have two grow sites with each flower foot print of 28” x 36”. I grow about 10 a 14 oz for each plant. Everything works and reacts so much quicker in water. You’ll love it!

Which ever route you decide to go, good luck! :+1:t2::v::sunglasses:


Well said. I would never recommend DWC to a new grower. Better to concentrate on the low-hanging fruit like good lights and correct environment. Spend money on lights. Go through a couple of grows. Use coco and Jack’s. Once you start to feel comfortable with that setup you can start to branch out.


Okay thanks.

Here is the system I am considering, although I’ll likely do my first grow in soil, just to insure it’s something I can, and want to continue to do going forward. I’ve got severe back problems, and the grow will be in the basement, so all of this depends on finding a strain or two that help my back pain enough to allow me to grow my own medicine.

The complete ready to assemble kit is $475 and comes with everything except a top off res, which is optional. It’s designed specifically for a 4x4 Gorilla Grow Tent layout, but will fit any tent with openings in the bottom.


the system i just bought for him was the stirponic with 1 inch holes and i had him drill them out for me works perfect but the heavy weight for 15 gallons of water made the hoses leak not the bulkheads so i just simply placed clamps on the hoses and their was no issues set it up 3 days ago and works like a champ if you want bigger plants without having roots clogging the circulation then go with that big one your showing but much much more water and nutrients will be needed and its meant for a much larger plant . im using the 5 gallon bucket stirponic from him 4 buckets in a 4x4 tent which is perfect in my own opinion .

i started the seeds and top watered them qwhen they got stressed i put the water into the system ph 5.5-5.9 ish and added hydroguard then noticed roots in one day shoot out like crazy i cracked seeds and first day of light was dec 20/2021 . i think the system ur going to choose is based off how big ur plants will be mine are just going to be big enough to scrog a 4x4 the bigger one for you that u want is for like 6x6 scrog or something similiar

his system works very awesome to me

soil is more adaptable but ph is 6-6.4 and better when using top feed dressings and have bugs that grow in the dirt

hydro is better no bugs just make sure to cover shit up to not have algae or brown roots which is simple use hydroguard keep the roots white and never will u see any bugs as long as ur not in a shitty basement or garage


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i did the add a drip kit but i just got the dippers and made it myself instead of buying more product i found cheaper black stuff in town

good luck my friend

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This other system I found is pretty interesting called vortex by alien I wanna try this out but it’s a Europe version and more on the price side of a grand or so.

The other pics are recent from yesterday of mine and before I started it no leaks

Yeah, I saw that Alien system, someone linked it in thread here on these forums, can’t remember which.

If I go with this system, my main issue would be that I would need to stick to the smaller size buckets, as they are 5” shorter, and my basement is just about 6’ tall, so I’d need to use the Gorilla Grow Tent Short, with its Included extension, which would make it 5’8”, although I might see about just building a similar sized grow room to get a few more inches in height.

I haven’t really decided anything yet, as I’m trying to find strains that help with my back pain, if I can find one, or some, then I plan of growing it, but figured I’d spend the time learning about it ahead of time.

Sadly I was supposed to see my pain manage doctor tomorrow, for the medical mj card, as they claimed they couldn’t do it during a regular appointment (I’m drug tested there monthly, so once I have the card, then I don’t have to worry about failing due to mj,) but last week they called and canceled, as the doctor who gave me the appointment date, decided he won’t be in the office. And here’s the kicker, they said they could do the card at my regular appointment on the 24th. So it seems there’s nothing stopping them from doing it, but if they make it two separate appointments they can be paid by insurance for one, and me for the one for the card.

God I hate that office, and with any luck, I’ll find something that will help, and I can tell them to keep their various cocktails of expensive pain meds, not one of which has helped at all, so the last several years have been spent trying to keep my mind busy so I don’t realize how miserable I am.

Sorry, but I guess I needed to vent a bit. :joy:

thats ok just find a card doc they give em to ya on the spot

Yeah, none around here, I mean this doctor does, his office is just a Royal PITA to deal with, as he makes his money via volume, and barely listens to anything, unless it’s something he wants to hear.

But I guess he just wanted to get an extra office visit, despite knowing I come from an hour away, but he can do it at once, if its to his, instead of my, benefit.

Although I warned my son, that if the police show up while he’s waiting for me, that means they tried to back out of doing both appointments at the same time, and want me to come back at a later date for the card.

I can buy recreational weed at dispensaries on the nearby Indian reservation, as the Indian reservations have the only legal recreational dispensaries in NYS so far, as the state hasn’t even decided on what will be required to apply for a license, but the reservations don’t abide by state regulations, other than full bans. So once NYS legalized it, the various tribes were free to allow stores to open on their reservations. Ironically, that took a lot longer than I thought, as I expected them to start opening the very day the law went into effect.

I can’t wait to see the state Governor and legislature go nuts over untaxed recreational weed on the reservations, just as they have been for years over them selling gas and tobacco without any NYS taxes on them. And NYS being so insanely taxed, I expect weed from licensed dispensaries to be more expensive than black market weed. :rofl:

i totally understand where you are comming from sorry to hear hope your card thing pulls through so we can help with any concerns of diagnosis or questions . if so ask us as the community or the main people who are makers of this website they will have the best tips g2g

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Oh, I’ll get it, it’s just a recertification, as my old one expired more than a year ago, and the doctor went back to various other drugs, and while the mj only helped a little (well, unless I totally snowed myself, but I can’t live like that,) but I’ve had enough, and I’ll settle for any little bit of relief I can get, as in his words “the meds we have had you try are for muscle pain, but won’t help with nerve or bone pain,” and my response was “but I’ve been telling you for, what 3-4 years now that most of my pain is nerve and bone pain, and that the worst effect I get from muscle pain is from spasms, because they jerk the spine around, causing the bone pain to increase even more.

But anyway, he fully supports medical mj, it’s just that dealing with his office is a bit of a PITA. I really hope to find something sold on the reservation that will help, as if nothing else, it will save me from monthly trips to his office to try more assorted drugs that don’t work, because those that do are currently out of favor with politicians.

Yes, opioids were MASSIVELY over prescribed, as are virtually every other type of drug on the market. But don’t make them such a nightmare that doctors won’t even prescribe them for those who actually need them (I was on oxys for more than 15 years, and despite building a bit of a tolerance at one point, never showed any signs of addiction, and when my old doctor moved away, this new one completed eliminated the oxy and methadone I had been in together for 4 years (again, with no addiction, as I took. Them not to get high, but to help mask excruciating pain.)

Not surprisingly, I’ve been homebound ever since the med change about 6 years ago. Now before that I wasn’t out doing laps, but I could get out of the house, go to movies, dinner, even go out of town for the weekend, as long as it didn’t require a lot of constant walking.

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Sorry that I went on yet another venting rant here, I’ve got to stop responding here when I’m exhausted, as not only does that allow my pain issues to make me grumpy (okay, grumpier,) but it also deletes my brain filter and I will occasionally just ramble on like the above.

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It’s ok brother. We are all there in some form or another. May you find peace and happiness in what your doing. :+1:t2::v::sunglasses:


I just recently started growing, I went with soil round one. I am really glad I did because I learned so much.

I hated the constant watering and maintenance though so I upgraded to rdwc on my second grow.

Personal I don’t like how the pa setup branches the water going into the buckets. If those branches are not completely leveled with each other then the flow rate will be different for each bucket.

I also needed something that better fit the space I had available.

I recently had a back fusion, so while our situation is not the same, I wanted to say good luck with everything your dealing with. I got my medical mj card shortly after my fusion early 2021. It was so helpful that when growing became legal in va in July 21 that’s when I started. The mj really saved me and kept me from continuing to put years worth of ____codone I my body.

Like others have stated here I would recommend starting off in some sort of soil/medium other than hydro. It will be more forgiving and will allow you to learn. Your first big ticket item should be a great light it is the most important.

I am extremely happy with my HLG light I bought for my first grow.

There are many detailed grow journals here and no one way is the right way.

Tones of great people here to help and guide.

Here are some images of my current rdwc build.
2x4 tent, hlg light, 3 auto flowers from ilgm


Thanks to both of you.

Nice pics. Well, the guy that makes them says all the hose runs are the same length, so each should get the same amount of water, but I don’t know enough of fluid dynamics to know if that would be true at this size scale.

What did you have fused? I’ve been fused from T3 to S1. The issue is L2-L3& L3-L4 we’re fused originally in 1993, and I had no issues until about 10 years ago, at which time the removed the old instrumentation, and fused the discs below the original. Then while removing, various other issued developed that had to fuse from L3-T3 over 3 separate surgeries. But that small fused area from 1993 was solid, but ultimately started straightening out, instead of remaining curved, so it forced by upper body forward at about 45 degrees.

So now my new neurosurgeon, my orthopedic surgeon retired, says all he can do to help is open up my entire back, from my neck to my ass crack, remove all the rods, pins and screws. Cut notches into the spine at select locations, and then literally tug and pull by body around until they get my spine in the correct alignment, and them put in a double set if titanium rods down my spine (two of each side of the spine, as I’ve already got two broken rods in the rods from my recent fusions,) and fasten it in with a buttload of new screws and plates.

If it works, I won’t gain any range of motion, but I should be able to stand up straight, which will make walking a LOT easier, and should help with the pain. The issues are that not only is it a 12+ hour operation (that’s a huge risk itself,) but it has a complication rate of 38%, with the effects ranging from infections, paralysis and even death. Honestly given the choice between being paralyzed from the waist down, or dying on the table, I’m not sure which I would consider worse.

We got a second opinion, and the other neurosurgeon was great, and said although he doesn’t do this procedure anymore, in his words “12hr plus surgeries are for younger doctors, as is trying to manually align a spine. :joy:

But he said that he agrees, my options are, live like this, or try the surgery, but he suggested I postpone it a year, and lose as much weight as possible, since every extra pound I have on me, increases the chance of a rod breakage, or screws ripping out my the vertebrae during recovery, which might not cause issues if it happened, or it could severe my spinal cord. Well, when he put it that way, I’ve been on a diet ever since, 42 lbs down, another 80-100 to go (I’m 6’8”+)

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