The Traveling Grower - The Struggle From the Road



@dbrn32 when I got down to my tent this morning at lights on, the rail didn’t turn on. :frowning:

I took it out and cut away the heat shrink tubing to check the connections to the power leads and re-soldered them. Still no joy.

What’s the best way for me to go about trouble shooting this? There doesn’t appear to be any visible issues (no burnt looking areas or anything) and all the wires seem to be connected to the LEDs properly… I guess now that I have it out of the tent I can re-wire it properly as well.

As an aside, the plants are doing okay. GL was showing early signs of a lockout (tips starting to curl down) last night, but looked perky this morning. I topped them off with plain water with 2.5ml of silica per gallon. PPM in the GL is at 796 and it’s at 1170 in the SSH. They were at 870 and 1070 when I gave them fresh reservoirs on Sunday, so it appears the GL is happy around 800 ppm, but the SSH might not yet be ready for 1200 ppm.


Your new year is off to about the same start as me!

As you’re going through the wiring, look to see if any of the connections came loose. The downfall of series wiring is that it’s all or nothing. So any open in the circuit would behave that way.

Another thing to check would be if the dimming leads touched. Pretty sure you said you’re working with b dimming driver.

Otherwise, a skinned wire making contact with anything will throw the driver into protect as well. I’ve only seen one burnt cob, and you could identify it as failed right away. You’re not pushing them hard so I wouldn’t suspect that as an issue unless you have an issue with thermal path.


I will take all the wires off the cobs that I already re-wired. A couple were hard to get through the tiny holes in the heat sink so it is possible I skinned one of them. I’m surprised it showed up out of the blue like this if that’s the problem though - I don’t think I was bumping the tent all that much yesterday or last night and it was on last night when the lights went out. Hmm.

But yeah I will take it all apart and put it back together again when I have time later.

The dimming leads are capped with wire nuts - no way those things touched each other.


Ok cool. I suspect if that’s the case it was maybe combined with the wires heating up and/or some air movement.


My 9am meeting was cancelled so I have time now. :slight_smile: Going to go re-wire it and see what happens.


Go back to first principles: make sure there’s input power before doing anything else. @Donaldj had a power cord fail recently IIRC.

@dbrn32, being diodes would a meter put on each strip show conductivity only 1 way? Check each strip to see if one has failed.


We can get into checking the diodes later if need be, but that’s a good idea.

I was assuming @Bogleg may not have a multimeter?


I have this:

No idea how to use it.

Okay so I redid the power plug:

Ignore the crappy tape job it’s temporary.

And then I rewired the COBs except the negative in from the driver and the positive way going back to the driver:

The dimming leads are definitely capped:

I’m at a loss. Wish I had a backup driver so I could eliminate that.


Assuming you have peeked at the manual for the meter, have you looked at YouTube videos as to how to take voltage and resistance measurements?

I can walk you through taking some measurements, but I obviously don’t want you getting zapped or damaging anything. When you say you have no idea how to use it, I get a little nervous giving instructions haha.


I hear you. I will RTFM.


I got it working again. Not sure how. Lol


This guy right here:

Seems to have a touchy connection.


Hmm. Won’t let me upload a pic from my phone. And I just blinded myself. :slight_smile:


No worries about the pic. Is it a cob connection?


Yeah it was a connection in one of the holders. I think that holder might need to be replaced eventually, but for now I will just keep an eye on it.

At least this little bit of extra work got me to put a longer power cable on the driver. :smiley:


Okay, I’m back to cooking with gas, as they say:


Lmao a 12 gauge cord this summer between ballast and light shorted out for no reason and burnt yes


I thought it was you haha! I must have been sober when I read it lol.


I have luck like that bulbs blow up cords rated to run welders short running 300w light


My life is a comedy of errors so I get where you are coming from. Occam’s Razor is my motto, since I am constantly trying to solve problems I cause for myself.