My Attempt at Bulding the Food Computer



My attempt at building a food computer.

I’m going to attempt a build of the old food computer, and probably the new one after that as well.
It would be great if people could point out my mistakes as I go along.

Step 1: Research

Helpful links:

My understanding is to just look through the BOM on the gro-hardware repo and start buying stuff right now.

Will update as I go along.


Step 2: Buying Stuff

I’ll just start by buying all the stuff on the BOM on gro-hardware. I recently moved to the US so I need to get some tools as well, but I’ll leave those out since most of the tools look pretty accessible.
My concern was that the BOM looks incomplete in regards to the shell and mainframe.
There’s a github issue regarding this as well.
However, excel spreadsheets have multiple tabs/sheets on them. It took me an embarrassing amount of time to figure this out, the hardware/kit BOM is in separate sheets.


I went to Home Depot today and bought some more stuff. Realized 4’ x 8’ boards don’t fit in my car though, so I should probably do something about that. I noticed that the 2" Diameter standoff mentioned in the Mainframe Assembly Instructions weren’t really something you buy, I assume you use a hole saw on the remaining PVC board and cut it out?

Step 3: Assembly


Made some progress on the shell assembly today. I started cutting it with one of those retractable blade knives, but the cuts get dirty and it’s difficult to cut straight with them. I switched out to a circular saw and that worked perfectly.
Everything was pretty straightforward following the instructions on the PDF, cut the insulator to size, apply hot glue. I did run a bit short on the foil tape though, so I guess buy 2 rolls. The corruplast has yet to arrive, so I might do work on the Main Frame in the meanwhile.


how do i get an invite to the Slack channel? the link only gives the sign in option… :stuck_out_tongue:


Ah, I’d forgotten about that since it’s been a while.

It was mentioned in this github issue, which directs you to this signup page.




I was reading about the Slack channel - how is plantcubed affiliated with this community? Just big supporters?

I signed up out of curiosity, not really sure what to expect. They emailed me my password in plain-text, which seems less than ideal… I guess that’s why we don’t reuse passwords.


Honestly, no idea.

There’s minor discussion going on there, but it’s better than nothing!


I want to update this but I guess you can’t edit older posts?

a discourse topic on discourse seems to discuss this.

Any chance to see this in the openag forum?



Since it seems like the editing thing will either take a while/not happen I’ve moved the diary to a github repo which I’ll be updating.

The repo also has some extra stuff over the original gro-hardware repo like markdown documents courtesy of seanslerner, some notes on parts not listed on BOM, and some dxf files for parts written out from the CAD files.


Kind of irrelevant to the v1 PFC since I’m making a modded v2 PFC with different hardware, but I got my hands on a power isolation circuit for the pH and EC sensors and the values are moving as they probably should be :slight_smile:


thanks for this guide, am new and in love with openag