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ben&bobbi
09-18-2016, 02:43 PM
Last year, i missed out on a local selling his old sign. So i figured out how to make my own.

I downloaded an image i like from the internet, and grid traced the letters onto a piece of cardboard.

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Then i got this wire from Tractor Supply and formed it around each letter.

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Pair of pliers helped with the tight bends.

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ben&bobbi
09-18-2016, 02:47 PM
I just attached LED light strings to each letter, and let the extras just hanging. I tried covering them with black tape, but just sitting in the house, that fell off. I will look for little caps to cover them instead.

Today, we attached it to the fence sections. Actually got some help from my wife!

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I build one PVC frame, but thought i had more here, but guess i used it all! I will paint the frames black, zip tie the fence sections to the frame. The Christmas is broke down to "Chris" and "tmas" that will be connected with a T fitting. this will allow me to seperate them for storage. Merry will be it's own seperate piece.

Thanks nutz4lights for the idea!

Reddy_Kilowatt
09-18-2016, 03:23 PM
I tried covering them with black tape, but just sitting in the house, that fell off. I will look for little caps to cover them instead.

Looking good!

McMaster Carr has screw covers that work great.
http://www.mcmaster.com/#9753k14

-Craig

nutz4lights
09-18-2016, 04:43 PM
Looks great Ben ! I wish I could take credit for the original idea but Christmas In Kent did the very first version I think and then there was one other person that modified the design which I copied.... I will miss my sign this year and will have to make a new one some day (with pixels! )

Louie

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ben&bobbi
09-18-2016, 09:29 PM
Looking good!

McMaster Carr has screw covers that work great.
http://www.mcmaster.com/#9753k14

-Craig

that is about the only place i found them so far. I was thinking the next size down. I had a couple here i tried. one measures @3/16, and fit nice, the other was 1/4 and too loose. these are the little LED lights. How is shipping from them?

ben&bobbi
09-18-2016, 09:38 PM
Looks great Ben ! I wish I could take credit for the original idea but Christmas In Kent did the very first version I think and then there was one other person that modified the design which I copied.... I will miss my sign this year and will have to make a new one some day (with pixels! )

Louie

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Your is still the first i seen! My previous sign was rope light attached to the fence. Rope light came from ebay and we had nothing but trouble with it. I am hoping these LED's will last a little longer, if not easy to replace. I can see a few advantages to using pixels, but for cost, i didn't think it was the best place for me to put pixels. plus i had bunch of LED's to use! Good news, the wireframe should last beyond the LED life, and then i might switch them over.

Ruppro
09-19-2016, 12:17 AM
Blackout caps can be found here http://www.christmas-leds.com/productinfo_v3.aspx?productid=LED-BOC

algerdes
09-19-2016, 12:19 AM
Blackout caps work great when you have to cover lights "between" letters, etc.
Wouldn't it be better to just put the excess in a bag, or small box? I've seen this done many times.

ben&bobbi
09-19-2016, 07:35 AM
thought about a bag, but didn't want it to hold water. What type of box?

rdj6107
09-19-2016, 10:20 AM
Depending on if you are wanting each letter to be controled individually or not, you could always splice the wire and add some wire that will get you to the next letter. i did this last year with some snow flakes and it turned out great. get 3 different colors of tape or sharpies to mark each wire to keep yourself straight when you are splicing.

nutz4lights
09-19-2016, 10:56 AM
I did this with a black static bag before... you just have to cut a corner off the lowest point of the bag and water drips out.

Louie

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ben&bobbi
09-19-2016, 11:09 AM
Depending on if you are wanting each letter to be controled individually or not, you could always splice the wire and add some wire that will get you to the next letter. i did this last year with some snow flakes and it turned out great. get 3 different colors of tape or sharpies to mark each wire to keep yourself straight when you are splicing.

these will be individually controlled using a RenSS24. I am using 16 channels, with a bigger C in white, and a bigger T in white to look like a cross.

T.D.Sutton
09-19-2016, 11:38 AM
Regarding blackout of individual LED's, I use 5.0 mm or 6.0 mm internal diameter normal heatshrink and pinch the free end when it is still "hot", works great. Sorry about the metric measure, that is all we get down here :-)

Terry

algerdes
09-19-2016, 05:46 PM
thought about a bag, but didn't want it to hold water. What type of box?

I've seen everything from small Cable Guard boxes (T-100?) to Tupperware. Just needs to be big enough to hold your extra lights and opaque.
One guy even used a Pringles can (empty - of course).

Whatever works in your situation.

ben&bobbi
09-27-2016, 03:10 PM
I ended up ordering caps. Shipping was something like $6.20, with 2 packs, plenty room in box for more.
http://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/122/3827/=14cqcf3 part number 9753K31

they were too small. I was able to get them on, but took some effort. dish soap actually made it harder. i recommend the next size up - 9753K12, but i have not tried them.

i ordered 200, and ended up 20 short. I didn't think i had that many extra bulbs! I finished up using the heatshrink as recommended earlier.

ben&bobbi
09-27-2016, 09:50 PM
Here's the finished product. Might have made a mistake with the white zip ties, but it's done for now. The white zip ties are red, and Capital C and big T are in cool white.

With fence piece zip tied to the PVC it all stiffened up great. I can carry it with one hand and it not wobble all over.

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nutz4lights
09-27-2016, 10:12 PM
Great job! Show it lit up!!

Louie

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