On a LightRail light mover, there is a genius product for keeping power cords moving in sync. It’s how to tie grow light cords out of the way while allowing movement. And, this works with LightRail 3.5 Kits, LightRail 4.0 Kits and LightRail 4.20 Kits. As we know, how to keep grow light power cords can be an issue. And, that’s especially true with a longer run. So, we might be running a single full spectrum grow light that requires less plant light time, and that would be in addition to moving our regular grow lights, each with a normal travel distance. Or, we might be using UVA grow lights / UVB grow lights as in CleanLight grow lights to fight powdery mildew or to increase yield. Even if we are growing in a greenhouse, we might have longer grow light runs because of the availability of some natural indoor plant light. So for any of those longer runs, we’d have longer grow light power cords to deal with. So, how to keep grow light power cords requires a little ingenuity.
First to the longer grow light rail travel
The first thing to plan is the end to end Rail, and that’s if we are moving the grow lights longer than typical. So, we may want to purchase extra 6’6″ Rails. Then, to allow the Motor to cross the seam from one Rail to another, we need Rail Alignment Pins. Next, we plan our grow light system cords.
Cord keeper in the form of the auxiliary trolley
The good news is LightRail has a cord keeper in the form of the auxiliary trolley. This grow equipment accessory item has a lot of other uses including festooning ductwork and moving grow light #2 or grow light #3 with a push pull extender rod. That’s as part of the LightRail Add A Lamp Kit and can come in the standard version or the Extreme Duty Version. But, there is another use and that’s as a cord keeper. So, as part of how to keep grow light power cords, the LightRail auxiliary trolley is perfect. Here is how this grow light system accessory superstar works.
We can accordion out our grow light power cords by tying each section. And, that’s tying onto the bottom eye hook of the LightRail auxiliary trolley with a zip tie (see photo). So, as the grow light moves along the light mover rails, each auxiliary trolley moves along as the power cord travels out, see schematic below. Then, when the grow light comes all the way back, these auxiliary trolleys all contract back to one end. However, it’s not just that easy. There are important grow equipment details to keep in mind to make this all work. And, here is how we do that.
Set up our grow room design like this
The rail of the LightRail grow light mover has switch stop stoppers that go onto the Rail. Those stoppers are placed wherever we want our LightRail motor to stop, pause and then reverse direction. And, they are placed in the actual rail. So, nothing gets past them on that rail. And, that’s an important detail as we plan out our grow room design. So, when we use auxiliary trolleys as part of how to keep grow light power cords, we will set up our grow room design like this.
Stop, pause and reverse direction
First, we will use one switch stop stopper somewhere on the one end of the rail. This makes sense because the auxiliary trolleys will never make it all the way to that stopper. The Motor will make it, however, and will make contact with the stopper to stop, pause and reverse. Then, after that reverse, the Motor now travels back. As it does, it will, one at a time, slowly push each auxiliary trolley back to the other end. So, there is the closed accordion action with each cord looping as it gets gently pushed by the grow light mover motor to the other end. Hint: The electrical power source should be positioned at the one end of the Rail series for this accordion action to work properly.
Auxiliary trolleys scoot by freely in this grow light system design
Now comes the finessing for our grow equipment and for our indoor grow light. But first, we want the auxiliary trolleys to stop at the end. So, we’ll put another stopper on this end of the rail to stop them. So, on that opposite end, and that’s where we want all the auxiliary trolleys to accordion closed, we have a dilemma.
Once the auxiliary trolleys are all bunched up and stopped at one end of the light mover rail, we need the light mover motor to make contact with something. That’s to tell the motor it’s time to stop, pause and reverse direction. And it has to be something that just allowed all of the auxiliary trolleys to scoot by freely. And, that’s before the motor arrives last.
Simple but smart grow light system hack
So, as part of how to keep grow light power cords moving on a light mover, we will make this very simple hack. We’ll put a drywall screw vertically into the board that we originally mounted our light mover rail too. And, that screw will be outside the rail area. But, it will be in position and lined up to move the black slide bar on our LightRail motor. That black slide bar is the very thing that communicates with the motor that it’s time to stop and go the other direction. So, because the screw is not in the rail like the switch stop stoppers, the drywall screw will stop the motor. But, it will let the auxiliary trolleys pass by first.
How to keep grow light power cords moving in sync with the LightRail light mover
This is a smart grow light system design for the accordion action of the grow light mover with the auxiliary trolleys. And, it works. It’s just a matter of putting the stoppers on the outside. Then, for the accordion-closed side, we want the Motor to have its own “outside the rail stopper” as it travels in last. This is how to keep grow light power cords moving in sync. And, that’s all while the LightRail motor maximizes our grow light system. Smart.