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angus40
09-08-2012, 09:56 PM
I have begun the task of zip tieing strings to some strapping . this is a real time consumer .

Here is a tip to save you some time if you plan to use the strapping and tie method.

lay out the string to get it ready to tie , start in the center of the string and work out to each end aligning the pixel wire to lay flat .

There is a little trick you will discover that each pixel will need a rotating flip every so often to get it to a nice flat alignment.

to save on the back , i used a chair and sat at the railing of my deck to do the tieing and let the completed section drape over my railing creating tension on the strapping .

I am using 2 ties per pixel and to secure the strapping to the top and bottom ring i have purchased these clips.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=140752678349&ssPageName=ADME:L:OC:CA:3160


hope this helps
Richard

phillikl
09-08-2012, 10:08 PM
I order buckles from http://www.bucklerunner.com for my paracord supplie, they may have some like this and their prices can't be beat.

LightUpMA
09-09-2012, 09:15 AM
I have begun the task of zip tieing strings to some strapping . this is a real time consumer .

Here is a tip to save you some time if you plan to use the strapping and tie method.

lay out the string to get it ready to tie , start in the center of the string and work out to each end aligning the pixel wire to lay flat .

There is a little trick you will discover that each pixel will need a rotating flip every so often to get it to a nice flat alignment.

to save on the back , i used a chair and sat at the railing of my deck to do the tieing and let the completed section drape over my railing creating tension on the strapping .

I am using 2 ties per pixel and to secure the strapping to the top and bottom ring i have purchased these clips.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=140752678349&ssPageName=ADME:L:OC:CA:3160


hope this helps
Richard


How are the clips working? Based on what you said, I may order some if you are successful. Let me know if they hold for you.

-Wayne

angus40
09-09-2012, 09:58 AM
I will let you know when i get to that point . it takes almost 1hr per string to straighten and get tied .

@ this rate its going to be 32 hours of just tieing these suckers. lol

I would like to be testing this tree by this coming weekend.

ags0000
09-09-2012, 10:38 AM
...

I am using 2 ties per pixel and to secure the strapping to the top and bottom ring i have purchased these clips.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=140752678349&ssPageName=ADME:L:OC:CA:3160


hope this helps
Richard

I'm interesting in using this method rather than what I did last year. (While there appears to be significant time/effort to attach the strings to the strapping, once that is done putting the strings-on-strapping up should be quicker. My method requires me to put in the same effort each year).

I can't picture how you are attaching the pixels to the strapping with zip-ties. I believe Walter used good quality electrical tape; I can't see how you can get a good "grip" on the pixel (wire) with a zip tie without having the zip tie deform the strapping (causing it to bend in a "C" shape rather than lying flat). Can you post a picture and/or description?

Also, I would think that to get the strap & pixel assembly to form a straight line between top and bottom of the megatree would require quite a bit of tension. Are you using the plastic buckles or am I looking at the wrong item? If using the plastic ones, do you know how much tension they can withstand before breaking? Will they become brittle in cold climates?

Thanks.

angus40
09-09-2012, 05:53 PM
Here are a couple of pics . I suggest using the black zip ties over the white/clear . the white don't seem to get as tight or stay tight.

Also i don't believe that a lot of tension will be required to straighten these , this is 1/2 poly strapping and as i stated in another post I intend to let gravity assist with tensioning . i will have the base ring collared to the mast and it will be adjustable to create the tension.

the ladder lock clips have not arrived yet , will post results when completed .

Electrical tape sounds like a good idea also , I might use some between every 5th pixel or so to help maintain even spacing.
I cut the strapping 2 feet longer at each end incase i need to adjust for proper alignment.

Cheers
Richard

LightUpMA
09-09-2012, 06:58 PM
Are you sure your ladder clips will accomodate the strapping? I've decided I should go the same route, but want to make sure they are workable before I spend more money. Thanks!

angus40
09-09-2012, 07:10 PM
Are you sure your ladder clips will accomodate the strapping? I've decided I should go the same route, but want to make sure they are workable before I spend more money. Thanks!

By looking at the measure on this page : http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI...E:L:OC:CA:3160


These will be perfect, however if you have concerns i will verify as soon as they arrive.

angus40
09-11-2012, 01:20 PM
Update on the ladder clips . Just as i thought , these are an excellent fit and durable as can be .

I am almost done tieing the strings to the strapping , this will allow me to focus on the tree build .

I am hope to have some video of this tree running hls and some of Sean's nutcracker effects this weekend .

Cheers
Richard

LightUpMA
09-11-2012, 02:04 PM
Update on the ladder clips . Just as i thought , these are an excellent fit and durable as can be .


Awesome! I guess i'll order some too. How big we're those zip ties you used? I think all I have are 8". Possibly 6".

I think I have white electrical tape somewhere I might try also. I think I bought the roll for a buck. So I might use that up before buying more zip ties.

Congrats on the build so far ... Can't wait to see the video!

angus40
09-11-2012, 02:13 PM
Here is the ties i purchased . bottom of the page .

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=280932424119&ssPageName=ADME:L:OC:CA:3160

angus40
09-19-2012, 12:52 AM
Here is the latest on this method of hanging pixels strings .

prior to getting these attached to the top or bottom ring i wanted to make sure the wiring would stay nice and tight with no buckles .

I took 1 string previously attached to the strapping and attached a ladder clip to each end ( fortunately my deck railing are 6 meters apart ) and secured each end of the strapping to my deck railing.

I began in the center of the strapping with hot glue in hand . pulling the zip ties tight to each pixel and applying a dab of hot glue across the ties to prevent them from sliding around , this worked great to secure a tight pixel wire and the spacing is correctly held.

During this it occurred to me that the pixels seemed quite heavy on this light weight strapping , so i proceded to test how the strapping would support the pixels when in the correct tree shape .

in short , not good but i brain stormed a quick fix that resolved the issue better than i had hoped.

I secured the length back to the railing taking up all the tension . cut a length of strapping to match the length of the pixel string i used 3 zip ties to align it to the back of the affixed strapping and hot glued in position .,

Problem solved , now the pixel string has a nice rigid back bone to support it , and is still very light weight and economical.

Here is a tip , cut your initial pieces of strapping 3 feet or so longer than your pixel string length. allow 18 inches at each end to work with .

Cheers

Keebler
09-19-2012, 04:32 AM
Here is the latest on this method of hanging pixels strings .

prior to getting these attached to the top or bottom ring i wanted to make sure the wiring would stay nice and tight with no buckles .

I took 1 string previously attached to the strapping and attached a ladder clip to each end ( fortunately my deck railing are 6 meters apart ) and secured each end of the strapping to my deck railing.

I began in the center of the strapping with hot glue in hand . pulling the zip ties tight to each pixel and applying a dab of hot glue across the ties to prevent them from sliding around , this worked great to secure a tight pixel wire and the spacing is correctly held.

During this it occurred to me that the pixels seemed quite heavy on this light weight strapping , so i proceded to test how the strapping would support the pixels when in the correct tree shape .

in short , not good but i brain stormed a quick fix that resolved the issue better than i had hoped.

I secured the length back to the railing taking up all the tension . cut a length of strapping to match the length of the pixel string i used 3 zip ties to align it to the back of the affixed strapping and hot glued in position .,

Problem solved , now the pixel string has a nice rigid back bone to support it , and is still very light weight and economical.

Here is a tip , cut your initial pieces of strapping 3 feet or so longer than your pixel string length. allow 18 inches at each end to work with .

Cheers

that's great advice.
i have been considering many ways to secure my pixels. and based on your tests and outcome, i now know what i will do.
thank you.

OH, the zip ties can be found DIRT cheap at harbor freight here (http://www.harborfreight.com/4-inch-cable-ties-100-pack-66486.html).
i have bought about 20 bags of these (yeah i wont need that many) but i use them for my PC work as well :)

angus40
09-19-2012, 04:54 AM
those ties you posted are 100 count @ $.99 with $ 6. 99 shipping . check post #11 those ties are 1000 count and free shipping . not sure if us gets a different ad than what i posted.

Thanks for the link , that harbour freight has lots of great deals.

also , i used 2700 zip ties on 32 strings of 42 count.

Keebler
09-19-2012, 05:17 AM
those ties you posted are 100 count @ $.99 with $ 6. 99 shipping . check post #11 those ties are 1000 count and free shipping . not sure if us gets a different ad than what i posted.

Thanks for the link , that harbour freight has lots of great deals.

also , i used 2700 zip ties on 32 strings of 42 count.

you are right, but i don't use shipping. the ad compared to HF is really only about 2 and a half dollars differnce for 1000 zip ties. and quite frankly having the extra inch on the zip tie makes it easier to work and no waiting
i go to the store - no shipping

plus i don't like eBay,
the ad on ebay doesn't list the strength either but i imagine them to be comparable to most others.
and with free shipping, does make it very appealing. however, what was the wait? 2-3 weeks?

eroberts
09-19-2012, 08:01 AM
What is the strapping you mention?

LightUpMA
09-19-2012, 10:51 AM
those ties you posted are 100 count @ $.99 with $ 6. 99 shipping . check post #11 those ties are 1000 count and free shipping . not sure if us gets a different ad than what i posted.

Thanks for the link , that harbour freight has lots of great deals.

also , i used 2700 zip ties on 32 strings of 42 count.



That's a lot of zip ties!! In retrospect, would you still recommend zip ties at all if you end up gluing? Use it every 3rd pixel or so? Also, do you think another product would bond 2 layers of poly together better? Such as PVC cement or epoxy?

angus40
09-19-2012, 12:39 PM
What is the strapping you mention?

I purchased the strapping here .

http://www.buyerspackaging.com/Shipping/StrappingSteel.html#DISPENSER , call for info .

post #6 shows the pixels attached.

i got the 3300 foot rolls @ $35

angus40
09-19-2012, 12:57 PM
That's a lot of zip ties!! In retrospect, would you still recommend zip ties at all if you end up gluing? Use it every 3rd pixel or so? Also, do you think another product would bond 2 layers of poly together better? Such as PVC cement or epoxy?

Yes zip tieing is required , or tape .

you are correct about the glueing ,after testing today the hot glue does not bond well .





I am going to stay with this procedure and add 1 more step . poly tape used for tyvek etc..

The hot glue provides a inexpensive rigid spine that prevents the pixels from turning inwards.


you may also save some time by applying tension to the strapping prior to attaching the pixel strings , if you have the ladder clips on hand or plan on taping .

I was committed to the clips and zip ties and could not wait for the clips to arrive before start tieing.



pvc cement is cheap but toxic as heck ,will test this though . maybe in a squeeze bottle for application .

epoxy could get nasty on the pocket book not to mention the mess working with it .

angus40
09-21-2012, 02:20 AM
I have change this up a bit and have my final method solved.

1 zip tie strings to strapping

2 stretch out strapping with string attached and adjust the strings tension from center out removing all buckles in the pixel wire.

3 use > ( cable - wire - in my case cat5 solid) and electrical tape attach to the back side of the strapping to form the backbone of the pixel string .

for a 42 pixel string @ 5' spacing it took me 2/3 of a roll of tape

tip , your local metal salavge yard will have tonnes of cat5 for cheap.

Here is a quick look at the end result .

http://db.tt/7laGIycB

This was a big learning curve as i did not want to use mesh and wanted to keep the strings overall width to a minimum.

The idea is to be able to see through the tree and have lights on the center pole .

hope this helps anyone wanting similar.

miw01
09-21-2012, 03:04 PM
Here are a couple of pics . I suggest using the black zip ties over the white/clear . the white don't seem to get as tight or stay tight.

Also i don't believe that a lot of tension will be required to straighten these , this is 1/2 poly strapping and as i stated in another post I intend to let gravity assist with tensioning . i will have the base ring collared to the mast and it will be adjustable to create the tension.

the ladder lock clips have not arrived yet , will post results when completed .

Electrical tape sounds like a good idea also , I might use some between every 5th pixel or so to help maintain even spacing.
I cut the strapping 2 feet longer at each end incase i need to adjust for proper alignment.

Cheers
Richard

Sorry this is a bit of a off topic question but I am looking at strapping options and assumed that I am better using rectangular module type leds which have a flat back
15429
rather than the thru hole types?

Am I missing something
Great info though, already realised that its not going to be as easy as I thought

Mike

angus40
09-21-2012, 03:26 PM
Sorry this is a bit of a off topic question but I am looking at strapping options and assumed that I am better using rectangular module type leds which have a flat back
15429
rather than the thru hole types?

Am I missing something
Great info though, already realised that its not going to be as easy as I thought

Mike

Its a 6 of 1, 1/2 dozen of the other type of a thing . strapping these strings without webbing to reinfoce them while hanging ,some form of rigid backing is required.

I like the strapping- ladder lock combo for anchoring and the fact the strapping is flat it stabelizes the string from spinning around cable or wire if they were to be used alone.

In hind sight , now that i have affirmed my method i would only use 1 zip tie per pixel to get them attached to the strapping . with all the tape that i used to attach the

cat5 as a spine the zip ties are just to hold and permit you to remove the slack in the string while attaching the backing - spine . what ever material user decide .

a side note . I was at the metal recyclers yesterday and purchased a few things .

20 x 2 1/2 ' aluminum pole 35 $


while looking around I was surprised to see heaps of cabeling , lots of it still in boxes

from telephone wire to coaxial cable

there was a pile of cat5 -cat6 that was bigger than my truck , this gave me the idea to use it for the strings support.


Cheers

Zeph
12-28-2012, 10:12 PM
Angus, I'm looking at new ways of doing things next year, and I was considering plastic strapping, thus found this thread.

Your images no longer appear to be available in #6, so I'm not really quite understanding your method - things a few photos would clear up immediately I suspect, and which wouldn't occur to you to mention, because once you've seen them it's all obvious.

Like - are you indeed using side wired flat backed square pixels, back wired square pixels, or back wired tubular pixels? Are you using zip ties on the pixel bodies or on the wire next to the pixels? Is the plastic strapping not strong enough to support the pixels by itself, and thus you needed a cable too? What role does the hot glue have in all this (are you squirting it on the junction between stapping and pixel body?) Are you spiral wrapping electrical tape around the whole length of flat strapping and the cat-5 cable, leaving gaps for the pixels? The ladder buckles are just for tensioning the strapping, right? (Does the strapping stretch so much you have to pre-tension it for best pixel mounting?)

I was thinking of mounting tubular pixels on flat plastic strapping with two crossed zip-ties and thought at first that maybe you were doing that, but it now looks like you are doing something quite different.

Thanks for your patience.

LightUpMA
12-29-2012, 11:37 PM
Angus, I'm looking at new ways of doing things next year, and I was considering plastic strapping, thus found this thread.

Your images no longer appear to be available in #6, so I'm not really quite understanding your method - things a few photos would clear up immediately I suspect, and which wouldn't occur to you to mention, because once you've seen them it's all obvious.

Like - are you indeed using side wired flat backed square pixels, back wired square pixels, or back wired tubular pixels? Are you using zip ties on the pixel bodies or on the wire next to the pixels? Is the plastic strapping not strong enough to support the pixels by itself, and thus you needed a cable too? What role does the hot glue have in all this (are you squirting it on the junction between stapping and pixel body?) Are you spiral wrapping electrical tape around the whole length of flat strapping and the cat-5 cable, leaving gaps for the pixels? The ladder buckles are just for tensioning the strapping, right? (Does the strapping stretch so much you have to pre-tension it for best pixel mounting?)

I was thinking of mounting tubular pixels on flat plastic strapping with two crossed zip-ties and thought at first that maybe you were doing that, but it now looks like you are doing something quite different.

Thanks for your patience.


Zeph,

Angus40 has some great ideas about mounting to the strapping. I tried myself to duplicate but ultimately the string kept rotating upside down. However, I believe he and I have different pixels. Mine are 16 strings of 42 pixels each. Ill have to look up the exact type of pixel. But I know they are round. So what I did as a quick fix was mount to 3/4" PVC via 3m packaging tape. One thing he mentioned to me was a difference in the cat5 cable so be aware that may be where I came up short. Good luck keep me posted. Love to see pics of your success.

-wayne

Skunberg
12-30-2012, 12:55 AM
The Munkhouse fix to keep them from rotating and keep lined up is to lace strapping between strings like a basket weave.

Brian