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Thread: Making lights fit

  1. #1
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    Default Making lights fit

    Ok, this is my first year doing any type of "display". I usually just throw up a few net lights on a few bushes and be done with it...but not this year!

    What I dont understand is how people fit lights perfectly around something with just lights they buy at say lowes. I see people with lights outlining a window or a door and I dont get how they fit perfectly or how I take a string that is say 2 ft or 10 ft too long as use it to perfectly outline something whether it be the roof, window, door, etc. I hate the thought of damaging the lights I bought but how do people do this?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    If you use regular (not LED) C-7 or C-9 lights, you can cut the strings to the exact length you want, because each bulb runs on 120v. If you use mini lights, you can sometimes put them a little closer together than the normal wire spacing, or use blackout caps (or electrical tape) on the extra lights. I am in the process of finishing up wooden frames for my front windows, and had to close up the spacing on the mini's so they would look uniform and not have any extra's............

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Around windows, you can keep going around until the set ends. Same thing on gutters, if you get to the end, go back the other way with the strand. Please don't use the extra from the gutter to go to a nearby tree.:p

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Quote Originally Posted by WakeFan View Post
    ....... Please don't use the extra from the gutter to go to a nearby tree.:p
    Some classic advice there! LOL
    Thanks,
    Brian, your friendly site Admin.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Quote Originally Posted by WakeFan View Post
    Please don't use the extra from the gutter to go to a nearby tree.:p
    We'll there goes my plans, back to the drawing board I guess.:D

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Quote Originally Posted by WakeFan View Post
    Around windows, you can keep going around until the set ends. Same thing on gutters, if you get to the end, go back the other way with the strand. Please don't use the extra from the gutter to go to a nearby tree.:p
    Yes, use that extra to span to the neighbor's house instead.

    One thing that is tempting to do on mini-lights, is to replace the end of a string that you don't need with burned out bulbs. This is a bad idea. I don't remember all of the technical background, but in essence each bulb offers some resistance to the set which is part of the limit on the string. The more bulbs that are burned out, the higher the voltage on the remaining bulbs. This increases quickly to the point that a few blown bulbs can overload the existing good bulbs, resulting in blowing out even more bulbs. So you end up with a completely dead string of lights because of a few dead ones.
    Last edited by deplanche; 11-04-2008 at 10:20 PM.
    1 channel, 0 dimmable. Powered by a man flicking a lightswitch to the beat.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Quote Originally Posted by rstehle View Post
    ... If you use mini lights, you can sometimes put them a little closer together than the normal wire spacing, or use blackout caps (or electrical tape) on the extra lights. ...
    I used black electrical tape on the left over bulbs at the ends of the strings in my Star of Bethlehem, I'm not sure how well that will hold up in the extreme cold. Anyone have any sage advise (experience) regarding that?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Thanks for the replies, it is funny....I always tend to make things more complicated than they have to be. I was considering, if i had to, cutting off the cords...figuring out how much resistance the loss of the bulbs and wire would add, adding a resistor...etc so as not to stress the other bulbs. WAY TOO COMPLICATED and damages the cords for future other purposes. But electrical tape....simple and effective! Great guys....thanks.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    is there an easy way to remove the residue left over from the tape sitting on there during the season?

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Making lights fit

    Quote Originally Posted by zoommedic View Post
    is there an easy way to remove the residue left over from the tape sitting on there during the season?
    There's this stuff called "Goof Off" that takes off adhesive residue very well. You can find it at most hardware stores as well as Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, etc. It also works good on crayon, for all those parents out there.
    Last edited by omzig; 11-24-2008 at 02:31 PM.
    Don

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