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Gebbinn
12-17-2010, 01:35 PM
Ok, I know that if I shorten my light strings, I run in to problems with blowing bulbs, but I have need to create a bunch of short 2' sections of lights. Rather than taking a 50 light strand and doubling it back on itself a bunch of times, I am wondering if there is a way to cut a strand to this length, calculate the load, and add a resistor of some kind to the end of the string to keep the load correct for the remaining bulbs.

Either that, or can someone give me a different way to outline my house in lights to give the same chasing effect that you get from the arches?

I want to be able to create a cascade of lights from one side of the property to the other, like a wave.

chilloutdocdoc
12-17-2010, 01:44 PM
Ok, I know that if I shorten my light strings, I run in to problems with blowing bulbs, but I have need to create a bunch of short 2' sections of lights. Rather than taking a 50 light strand and doubling it back on itself a bunch of times, I am wondering if there is a way to cut a strand to this length, calculate the load, and add a resistor of some kind to the end of the string to keep the load correct for the remaining bulbs.

Either that, or can someone give me a different way to outline my house in lights to give the same chasing effect that you get from the arches?

I want to be able to create a cascade of lights from one side of the property to the other, like a wave.

Try to find the higher voltage bulbs, like used for the 10-35 count strings. 2' is short for an incandescent string.

bnradams
12-17-2010, 03:07 PM
I cut my icecycle lights into thirds (originally 150 bulb count) and this made about 2' sections. Would icecycle lights do what your asking?

chelmuth
12-17-2010, 03:30 PM
You could always use a C9 string. Cut it up and put plugs on the ends. Just space the bulbs 3-4" apart. Optionally I'm planning on running 4-6 seperate strings all the way around my house with the standard 12" spacing and just staggering the strings by 2-3" and use one color for each string. Then I have the option to light house in 1-6 different colors and or create a chasing effect with all the colors. It wouldn't be a one end to the other chase like the arches but still cool I think. Ideally they would be the C9 Retrofit LED bulbs also.

Cory

tstraub
12-17-2010, 08:58 PM
How about using rope light? Most can be cut at 18 inch intervals, but I think some can be cat at 24 inches.

wonko
12-23-2010, 11:33 AM
I've been thinking about doing this as well. Although I know it would take a whole lot of lights, I was thinking about cutting 4' sections of 1" pvc and wrapping lights like I would an arch. Then I would mount the "light poles" using home made clips made out of 1 1/4' pvc mounted to the fascia board. I did a test, and a 100 ct. string of mini incan's looks pretty good, and the spacing is't too bad. Plus, it has the advantage of easy installation and removal, and storage shouldn't be too bad. I considered C9's as well, but I really trying to get away from all the high amp stuff to avoid having to do a complete rewire of my service panel. Of course, after some thought, I guess that many mini's would still end up drawing allot of amps. Looks like part of my budget for 2011 will go for electrical upgrades.

dirknerkle
12-23-2010, 01:04 PM
I've been thinking about doing this as well. Although I know it would take a whole lot of lights, I was thinking about cutting 4' sections of 1" pvc and wrapping lights like I would an arch. Then I would mount the "light poles" using home made clips made out of 1 1/4' pvc mounted to the fascia board. I did a test, and a 100 ct. string of mini incan's looks pretty good, and the spacing is't too bad. Plus, it has the advantage of easy installation and removal, and storage shouldn't be too bad. I considered C9's as well, but I really trying to get away from all the high amp stuff to avoid having to do a complete rewire of my service panel. Of course, after some thought, I guess that many mini's would still end up drawing allot of amps. Looks like part of my budget for 2011 will go for electrical upgrades.

You could probably get the same net effect by cutting the 100-ct string in half (at the two-wire break) and instead of wrapping them around the PVC, just loop it up/down the length of the pipe and zip-tie it to the front. You'd probably get 3 lengths on the pipe out of a half-string like that, and at night, it'd look fine yet take only half the power.

n8huntsman
12-23-2010, 04:45 PM
Would this be to create a chasing sequence across the fascia? I've always liked my C7's but this could look interesting too with the additional control it would offer. If you try it, make sure to post some pics.

Gebbinn
12-24-2010, 01:15 AM
Yeah, I like the idea of cutting 100ct in half and doubling it back a few times to get the desired length. this will be for next year's show. I am thinking about using some 1/2X4 slats, stapling the lights to the slats, so I can just put a couple screws to hold it to the fascia. That way I can do it in easy 6' sections that stow easily. each section would be 4 channels, at 1.5' per channel, which would be roughly 10 loops of an average 1/2 string 100ct incans. (30' / 2 / 1.5') should be easily able to fit 10 loops on a 4" section of wood. Staples are a wonderful thing.

I will definately have pictures and videos, but thats all a year away. Maybe when I get them made I can put pics up and a video of the raw product not in a show.

Thank you all for your input here. My original plan was thrown out the window, but hey, thats what we are here for right?

holtzj
05-12-2011, 11:04 AM
My application is the same such that I need to cut the length of incan lights. I want to spell words with the lights such that each channel would be a letter. Therefore I would like to have a string be possiblly only 5 lights long and controlled by a channel. I know how to cut a 100 count down to 2 50 counts. I believe that in vixen that there is a way to limit the amount of brightness for a channel, which maybe the answer I have have not tried. My guess is that instead of 100% power as a max I maybe able to limit the power to 10% max and therefore limit the power to the 5 lights.

Anyone tried this before, Any thoughts?
Thanks

budude
05-12-2011, 11:20 AM
My application is the same such that I need to cut the length of incan lights. I want to spell words with the lights such that each channel would be a letter. Therefore I would like to have a string be possiblly only 5 lights long and controlled by a channel. I know how to cut a 100 count down to 2 50 counts. I believe that in vixen that there is a way to limit the amount of brightness for a channel, which maybe the answer I have have not tried. My guess is that instead of 100% power as a max I maybe able to limit the power to 10% max and therefore limit the power to the 5 lights.

Anyone tried this before, Any thoughts?
Thanks

Dimming does not work that way - you would still get the full voltage across the lights. This would be a big drop for a resistor as well. How about switching to DC? A 24v supply would do a number of 2.5v Incan lights.

mschell
05-12-2011, 12:33 PM
I don't think that the voltage will be limited enough by setting the channel to 10% to make this work. Each bulb is rated at 3 or 2.5V each. 50 of those added in series can handle the 120AC V that comes out of the wall. But only 5 bulbs will only handle 12V and even at 10%, the triac will only allow some percentage of the full cycle of 120V, but that won't average out to just 12V.

The way you usually get around this issue is to put blackout caps on the remaining bulbs. There are also some 20 or 35 count strings that use higher voltage bulbs that need less bulbs to blackout...

dirknerkle
05-12-2011, 05:35 PM
I can unequivocally attest to the fact that just cutting them shorter works fine and the lights are extremely bright, although the downside is that they stay lit for a very, very short period of time... sometimes only seconds... :mrgreen:

IdunBenhad
05-12-2011, 05:49 PM
Hi:
Yeah, dirk. The life span of those short strings are like my memory nowadays. Very Bright and Very Short!

Capt'n Jack
05-12-2011, 08:15 PM
I used this method to complete the lights around windows and doors with 35 light sections and it worked great with dimming.

from alanp under Power/Electric, Shorten Mini Incandescent, post #8

Re: shorten mini incandescent
I will take a standard string of 100 and split them into two sets of 50.

Next I remove 20 of the bulbs and add a diode like a 1N4001 in series where the other 20 lights would have been, by adding the diode it drops the voltage to around 60 volts.

This will give you a nice set of 30 blubs, I tried for 25, but they become to brite.

The nice thing about this is that you can use standard 2.4v bulbs as replacements and not have to worry which bulbs to use.

I've been doing this for two years and it works great.

JamesL85
05-17-2011, 11:52 AM
I can unequivocally attest to the fact that just cutting them shorter works fine and the lights are extremely bright, although the downside is that they stay lit for a very, very short period of time... sometimes only seconds... :mrgreen:

It doesn't matter how bad my day is going, I can always log in here and read posts to get a chuckle. This is just another fine example.

James

ErnieHorning
05-17-2011, 03:37 PM
Dirk is also the owner of the one time use strobe. A fantastic effect for the finale. The exploding bulbs are just a bonus.

Skunberg
05-17-2011, 04:39 PM
This how to from the library is for chasing icicle lights. Very similar to what people are talking about here.

http://doityourselfchristmas.com/forums/dynamics/showentry.php?e=34&catid=17

"If I had had enough channels, I probably would have divided each icicle string into 6 segments (2’
each) for an even smoother, arch-like chase (I will probably do this the next time I work on icicles)."

Brian