This is a simple grow light stand made out of PVC that has been modified based off plans from the University of Maryland Extension. We have been reading up on how to grow peppers from seed, which is no easy task if you want peppers before September. The stand is roughly 4 ft long and can fit two flats for starting seeds.
For parts, we cannibalized our daughter's Science Olympiad project from a few years ago. This gave us the fittings and most of the PVC pipe. The shop light and bulbs were purchased for around $25.
Step 1: Tools/Materials
- 1/4" Drill Bit
- (1) 10 ft long 2.5" PVC pipe **
- (2) 2.5" dia. PVC 'T' connector joints
- (2) 2.5" dia. PVC elbow joints
- (2) 1/4" x 4" eye hooks
- (4) 1/4" dia coarse thread nuts
- (2) rubber washers
- (1) 4' shop light
- (2) T8 Floresent bulbs
- (1) pkg hanging chain
** The PVC pipe lengths shown are based off a single 10' section of pipe. I grew the the uprights by 10".
Step 2: Drawing
You will be building to this drawing. The parts are color coded for reference.
Step 3: Cut Pipe
Start by cutting the the PVC to the lengths shown. I used a miter saw but almost any saw will work. Note that my version has the cyan colored pipe (upright) at 28" long. This gives me an option for larger plants or a different light configuration.
Hold off on drilling the holes in the cross-bar. These locations should match your shop light.
Step 4: Leg Assembly
This is an iso view of the leg assembly. You will be building two of these. Since we want to break this apart after use, no glue was used for the joints.
Step 5: Eye Bolts
Drill 1/4" holes through the cross-bar and place the eye bolts all the way though the pipe. One nut will be on the eye side. Place the rubber washer and the second nut on the top.
Step 6: Ready to Build
You are now ready to assemble the sections.
Step 7: Add Light
Once the stand is assembled, tweak/adjust/slightly rotate the legs so that everything is level.
Now is the time to hang your grow light on the stand. Start by hooking the chain to one eyebolt using an 's' hook. Then, hold up the end of the grow light high enough to give clearance for your seed starting tray and its cover. Give 2" clearance at this time above the tray. Trim the chain to this length (plus any extra) and connect the chain to the light. We were not happy with the "s" hook provided with the shop light fixture, so we used two spring "s" clips we found at the hardware store in the key section (see picture above.) Do the same to connect the other side of the shop light.
Make sure to place the lights in the fixture. Level everything up one last time. Now, you are ready to plug it in and turn it on!
As the plants grow, the chains can be shortened by hooking a link farther down the chain.
Step 8: Pictures
It won't be used outside but I needed contrast for the photos.
Step 9: In Action
Here is the light stand assembly in action on our dining room table. The seeds should starting spouting in about 3 weeks.
We are happy with how it turned out. Thanks for viewing!