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Kiln turned nursery?

Florida Dave

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So I am working on a fermentation kiln using a discarded refrigerator. Is there a good reason why I shouldn’t add a light and use it as a place to start seedlings?

In my mind, I should be able to control the temperature and humidity better than just in the garage or guest room.

It’s all an experiment still…
 

Bottenslam

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After starting seedlings in it, it would need a serious disinfection wash: soil, soilless mix, and seed starter mixes are loaded with mold spores.
I wonder If it really makes a difference tho, as tobacco from the feald also has an bunch of spores on it. As long as the temperature is kept above the temperature where mold grows during the curing time, to my mind it seems like it won't actually matter.
 

ChinaVoodoo

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I recognize that a fridge is a nice container with shelves and walls, but the insulation is going to mean that if you have enough wattage of light to grow, you're going to cook your seedlings and they will die. I'm really surprised this thread went 6 posts before someone noticed this.

Consider the fact that my kiln is 80 Watts running maybe 20% of the time, outside, in Canada. Consider that grow tents are not insulated at all, and often have ventilation fans.
 

Florida Dave

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Easy experiment. Put a thermometer into the space, with the proposed lights on. If it gets over 90°F, then seedlings will roast.
Done! As of 5 minutes ago I have the led grow light, and the 4” duct fan running with a Govee for tracking installed. I still need to secure the wiring inside and give it another wipe down - it still has a slight ‘old refrigerator smell’. For the record it is starting at 77 degrees but we were back in the 80’s here today.
 

Florida Dave

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Well, @ChinaVoodoo was right. Even 19 watts brought the temperature up to 92 degrees over night With the doors closed. I have some round gill plate vents coming tomorrow that I was planning on installing on the side. I don’t know if those will help, my target temperature for this experiment is 80*.

Worst case I will need to leave a door cracked open…
 

Laredo

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Well, @ChinaVoodoo was right. Even 19 watts brought the temperature up to 92 degrees over night With the doors closed. I have some round gill plate vents coming tomorrow that I was planning on installing on the side. I don’t know if those will help, my target temperature for this experiment is 80*.

Worst case I will need to leave a door cracked open…
Is the 4” duct fan just stirring the air inside and doesn’t let any external air in or out? If that is the case, I would install the grill vents so one is on one side near the bottom and one on the opposite side near the top. Then get a simple on/off temperature controller (like an Inkbird) and use the duct fan as an exhaust fan. Hang the duct fan inside at the top of the fridge and plumb the outlet of the fan to the upper grill vent. Leave the vent at the bottom attached to nothing, it is your fresh air intake. let the temp controller drive the exhaust fan and have it turn on when the internal temp is too high. I would also get a small 5 or 6” clip on fan to stir the internal air. Your seedlings will need fresh air (CO2) and can’t be sealed inside a closed box like you do when kilning.

On edit: maybe even do the two grill vents at the top of the fridge on opposite sides so that when the duct fan comes on when it is too warm, the warmer air at the top will be drawn off. I’m just wondering if the vent at the bottom would let too much “cold” air cross over your seedlings.
 
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Florida Dave

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Our pups wouldn’t leave the seedlings on a windowsill for very long. I want the kiln to ferment this years harvest but won’t need it until the 1st of March or so. Using the kiln as a place for the seedlings was a thought to keep them out of the way and out of danger from spillage and another way to do some more tinkering.

The vents are going to be installed high and low near the 4” fan which is primarily to circulate the air. I am using a Ketotek KT100 controller for temperature and humidity wired to a small ceramic heater and an ultrasonic mist maker.
 

CaptainAubrey

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So I am working on a fermentation kiln using a discarded refrigerator. Is there a good reason why I shouldn’t add a light and use it as a place to start seedlings?

In my mind, I should be able to control the temperature and humidity better than just in the garage or guest room.

It’s all an experiment still…
A problem with the simplest temp controllers is that they don't have enough temp hysteresis. However I think I remember that Inkbirds do have min and max heat temps. I wondered why did some plant temp controllers had start and stop temps. I was thinking any old thermostat with a couple of degrees of hysteresis would be adequate. Then I read an article from NC State Extention that stated germinating seeds liked a temp swing between 68 and 86 degrees. The article was for pelleted tobacco seed but it seems loose seed would want the same. So NC State learnt my brain a new wrinkle real quick (the brain being the one place one should enjoy a new wrinkle). So here I was smothering my seeds with love and heat and they did not want it all the time.

Here is the link tho the title leaves much to be desired, certainly does not lend itself to searches.
From the Field-Agronomy Notes: Vol. 2, Num. 2

John
 
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Laredo

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A problem with the simplest temp controllers is that they don't have enough temp hysteresis. However I think I remember that Inkbirds do have min and max heat temps. I wondered why did some plant temp controllers had start and stop temps. I was thinking any old thermostat with a couple of degrees of hysteresis would be adequate. Then I read an article from NC State Extention that stated germinating seeds liked a temp swing between 68 and 86 degrees. The article was for pelleted tobacco seed but it seems loose seed would want the same. So NC State learnt my brain a new wrinkle real quick (the brain being the one place one should enjoy a new wrinkle). So here I was smothering my seeds with love and heat and they did not want it all the time.

Here is the link tho the title leaves much to be desired, certainly does not lend itself to searches.
From the Field-Agronomy Notes: Vol. 2, Num. 2

John
When growing plants indoors I always let them have a temp swing. Warmer during the day and cooler at night. Seems more natural to me. The only time I control heat is when the lights are on and things may get too warm. When it’s lights out, the temp swings back down to room temp, which in the winter is 65F at night. During the day with lights on, the temps get close to 87F. I generally keep my humidity constant 24/7. I only grow indoors in the winter when it is easier to control the heat and humidity, plus electricity is cheaper. :)
 
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