Scott O'Brien

Projects, Ramblings and Resources of my (online) life

NFT Hydroponic System

2022-01-02 00:00:00 +0000 UTC

As my hydroponic experiemnt has shown success, I wanted to scale this up. My plan is to build an NFT hydroponic system for the yard, and dutch bucket for tomatoes.

From my light study I found the fence and some areas that may make some good light.

I found that describes NFT Hydroponics is 4-6 GPH required for my pump. I’m going to start with one trough, but plan on scaling this up to 3 if it works, so will require 18GPH of total flow. 7 feet of height is required if I want to mount this on the top of the fence.

Build Guide

Note: This is a work in progress. Will update as it gets built!

Hydroponic Kratky Lettuce Attempts

2021-12-05 11:01:04 -0800 -0800

This year i’ve decided to start playing with Hydroponics as a hobby. I’ve been interested in starting with the Kratky Method of gardening. The idea is to grow lettuce in mason jars and see how growing without soil does. I’ve previously enjoyed growing my own alfalfa micro-greens, so this is the next obvious step.

Attempt #1

These didn’t go so good. I had planted some seedlings in Rockwool, and left them in a container out in the sun to act as a mini-greenhouse. In the SF Bay area getting towards winter, I feel it may have been too cold, and most of my seedlings ended up dying off. The mason jar didn’t do so well once it was planted either. ~6 weeks in I’d call my first attempt a failure.

Attempt 2

  • 22nd November: Planted seeds in Rockwool
  • ~29th November: Started moving to a half-nutrient watering solution
  • 5th December (+13 days): Moved to mason jars

I decided to try and move indoors. I got a 150 Watt LED bulb (5000K) to provide the light, and turned my old proofing box to a simple 9 hour a day timer. I find this is a good time of a year for indoor growing as the temperature with the grow light on is between 14c and 23c of a day. The ideal temperature for growing is 13-18c, so I’m curious to see how they go indoors in the warmer climate.

I’m using this guide for measuring the lettuce levels:

  • PH: 5.5-6.5
  • EC: 0.8-1.2

note: Work in progress. Will update once plants have had more of a chance to grow.

Custom Study Desk

2021-11-10 00:00:00 +0000 UTC

My partner and I recently started renting an old place in Palo Alto. With COVID, we’ve been working from home for almost two years now, and sharing a desk at times things felt a little cramped (especially with the occsional electronics project).

I’m no expert in woodwork, so decided to 3D model it before building the desk. This also helped as my father, who’s a carpenter, could then give me tips when I shared my computer screen with him (being on other sides of the planet). I’m pretty happy with how the design came out for this one.

Only thing I’d change if I were to do it again is the supporting plywood on each side. If I had made them longer than the main surface, it could have also been used to support the side returns. The frame is designed to butt up against the wall on each side to hold the desk steady. The two support beams are then bolted together to hold it firmly.

Paragliding Tasks Checker

2021-09-20 00:00:00 +0000 UTC

It’s so easy to build react apps these days. Over two nights, I knocked up a quick website to be able to upload igc flight files, and an xctask files to locally compute if you managed to hit the targets.

It’s something to play with more later, but I’m hoping to start putting these widgets into my logbook app to be able to log flights against tasks when they’re done.


Source code:

I followed this guide to host on github pages. It basically entailed:

  1. Adding homepage in package.json
  2. Adding in predeploy and deploy scripts package.json
    "scripts": {
    "predeploy": "npm run build",
    "deploy": "gh-pages -d build"
  3. running yarn run deploy to deploy it.

demo video