Why Can’t I Just Buy Another Light or Two?

Why can’t you just buy another indoor grow light or two? Sorry but it simply doesn’t work. That scenario can’t duplicate what moving your indoor grow lights will do. With a stationary multiple grow light plan, you now have two or three indoor plant lights doing a bad job with intense, never changing light hitting the tops only and permanent shadow patterns for the vast majority of the plants. Even in large spaces with multiple grow lights, it’s inefficient. The photo below has two stationary indoor grow lights, one behind the other. The two stationary grow lights produce nothing but extremes, and that’s hot spots and shadows. All those shadows are not corrected by having a second grow light, as you can see. (See our LightRail Lab eBook for details on that study and two more.)

Inefficient Light = Inefficient Yield;

More Inefficient Lights = More Inefficient Yield

Tomato Project II tomatoes weighing down LightRail side

Thicker Stalks, More Nodes and Fruit

Here is the close up of the LightRail light mover side. All the leaves get indoor plant light and this photo is looking into the middle of the plants. Every part gets illuminated and because of that the stalks are thicker with more nodes visible, and the amount of fruit is remarkable. Now again, look back at what the two stationary indoor grow lights are showing us. Take a look into the middle area of those plants and compare.

Close Up of Tomato plants under grow light

The New Way Under LightRail

Now let’s look at the difference that moving your indoor grow light will make and you can see that on the right hand side. LightRail will reduce shadow patterns, meaning more of the indoor plant light will get to more of the leaves, and that means more of those leaves are working for the plant. That results in much better yields.

Compare plant growth side by side with fixed light and movable light

And That’s Just Half The Story

The other thing that’s going on is that, by moving your indoor grow lamp, you can get a closer plant to lamp tolerance. Inverse Square Law addresses the diminished properties of light as it relates to the distance needed to travel. When you can get your indoor grow lights closer without the worry of hot spots or zoned light overkill that occurs with stationary grow lights, you can then get much better usage of the wattage at hand. If you can get your light 25% closer or even 50% closer to the plants, the efficiency of your indoor grow light takes off.

Here’s the thing to know: Light = Yield.

Tomato yield comparison - Side by Side - fixed light vs moving light source

Is It Ok To Buy A Light Mover Knockoff?

Just about all the shops stay away from them and know not to even carry them. Here are three imitator LightRails made in China. Sometimes there will not even be a brand label but it will simply say “Light Mover”. Some call themselves rail lights or light rails for search engine optimization results. We’ve tested a number of them on several occasions and the results were disturbing. Those tested ran at very high temperatures (up to 170 degrees F, or 77 degrees C) yet their electrical enclosures are often made of flammable plastic and some don’t even have grounded plugs. Some use electrical motors and components that carry no approval credentials or electrical ratings, some have counterfeit ratings and all of them are inferior in the overall size and quality. Don’t be fooled by cheap imitations. If it does not say Gualala Robotics, it’s not a LightRail.

Find out more…

Beware of knock off, low quality light movers

The LightRail Difference

LightRail is manufactured by Gualala Robotics and is made in the USA by American workers. Our plugs are grounded and we are C CSA US or CE certified, have a cooler running temperature of motor (28-42 degrees C or 82-107 degrees F), are flammability rated (UL 5 VB), are RoHS compliant and we have a two year manufacturer’s warranty. Even beyond the warranty period, we have an in-house service department available to you. Grow equipment should work properly and for a very long time, and that is how our robotic lights are built. We stand behind LightRail light movers.

Notice the name LightRail. Don’t get tricked by anything less and remember, there is no value without quality.

LightRail Movers Made in the USA

What is LightRail?

LightRail light movers will move any indoor grow light, any hood and is an instrument grade, continuous duty device, solidly made in the USA since 1986. Manufactured by Gualala Robotics, LightRail is the industry leader in light movers. A basic system consists of a motor, rail and hardware needed for hanging. There are also Rail Hangers to use in a grow tent or greenhouse so the rail can go anywhere and in any grow light setup.

LightRail With Lamp in Greenhouse

Three Basic Systems

There are three basic grow light systems – LightRail IntelliDrive 3.5, LightRail AdjustaDrive 4.0 along with LightRail AdjustaDrive 4.20, and LightRail 5.0 Side by Side.

LightRail IntelliDrive 3.5 and the LightRail AdjustaDrive 4.0 Series (including 4.20) are very similar and use interchangeable grow lamp parts such as the same two meter (6’6″) rail, the same wheels and they both have the adjustable time delay for the ends of the rail lights run. The only difference between the LightRail 3.5 and 4.0 Series is that the LightRail 4.0 Series  has the added feature of adjustable travel speed as it goes along the rail. This can be set at 6rpm to 10rpm which equates to 2 to 4 feet per minute. LightRail 3.5 has a fixed setting of 10 rpm. All LightRails have the 0-60 second adjustable time delay for the ends of each run and that’s to even out the light time.

LightRail 4 attached to Large grow lamp

LightRail 5.0 Side by Side

LightRail 5.0 Side by Side has an 8 foot rail and operates with crossbars that can hold 2 to 3 indoor plant lights per, depending on the size of your indoor grow lights. One LightRail 5.0 motor can move a total of three crossbars or 6 to 9 lights. (See “Planning Your Space With LightRail” for how this works and also see the product page for LightRail 5.0).

LightRail 4.0 Light mover in action


As part of your indoor grow setup, ductwork is simple. Our Auxiliary Trolleys can easily handle it. When your LightRail is moving in one direction, the ductwork is slowly pulled along behind and when it’s going in the other direction, ductwork is gently pushed out ahead. This is really clever. In this photo, we’re showing how this works with LightRail 3.5 or 4.0 and for LightRail 5.0, perfect balance is key so we recommend that this particular indoor grow kit not be used with ductwork but if it’s a must, there is still a way. (See “Planning Your Space with LightRail“).

Ductworks LightRail


You can customize your rail lights in many ways. First, the run can be determined by you in setting the adjustable Switch Stops anywhere along the rail.

Note: You don’t want to move your indoor grow light too far or plants are waiting too long for the grow light to come back. Moving just 3-4 feet from switch stop to switch stop for larger grow lights or less for smaller grow lights might be just right.

Note: For smaller spaces, the extruded aluminum rail can be easily cut for fitting more exactly, or you can simply use half a rail instead of the full rail.

You can also customize the 0 – 60 second time delay knob (see photo) and this will equal out the light time that your plants will have with your grow equipment. Try a setting of 30-35 seconds for a 4′ switch stop to switch stop setting and feel free to experiment.

LightRail 4.0 AdjustaDrive Motor

And Customize Some More

You can also “add on” and all LightRail grow light systems are meant to be scalable and expandable. LightRail light movers are simple, smart and scalable and you can go as big as you like, end to end and row after row. Along with your indoor grow lights, think of grow light movers as part of your indoor grow kits, as the two should be thought of as one unit that go together.
(See “Planning Your Space With LightRail” for more specific information).

Move three lights with one LightRail 4.0 motor

How Do I Get Started?

Do two things: Read up on our eBooks and articles for great sources of usable information. The second thing to do is to simply begin. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll see the LightRail difference. Indoor grow light quality is the one area you should never skimp. Maximize your wattage the LightRail way.

Light = Yield, and Better Light = Way Better Yield

LightRail Peppers

You Can Do This

Remember, LightRail is simple, smart and scalable. These robotic lights are easy to plan and easy to set up. Stationary lights? That’s the old way to go. We no longer have to settle for hot spots and shadows, and the reduced yields that go along with that. It’s time to light up all the plant and LightRail is the ONLY way to do that.

LightRail Peppers

*Note: eBooks are compatible with full screens or vertically positioned tablets. Once in, click the book to turn the pages.

LightRail 101 Ebook