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Thread: Mega Tree Hints and examples

  1. #1
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    Default Mega Tree Hints and examples

    Ok, After partaking in acouple decussions in chat on how to setup a mega tree. I thought I'd start a thread on it. I know this wont be the first nor the last on the subject. But what I'm hoping is to get a good selection of example ( Pictures of actual Mega trees) to showcase different designs. As well as example of different anchor methods for bith the top and bottom of the tree. I have included a drawing of the basics of a mega tree, I hope its helpful


    Pete
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    But what I'm hoping is to get a good selection of example ( Pictures of actual Mega trees) to showcase different designs. As well as example of different anchor methods for bith the top and bottom of the tree.
    I put a few shots in this post:

    Quote Originally Posted by djulien View Post
    this is my first year with a mega-tree (so I may be doing something stupid), but here are some pics of what I have so far
    I'm not sure if those are the style you are looking for. If so, I can upload some more.

    [EDIT] I finally wrote up what I did. It is at http://downloads.eshepherdsoflight.c...d-MidiTree.pdf. There is a section showing topper, base, and setup/connecting the light strings.

    don
    Last edited by djulien; 03-17-2009 at 03:32 AM. Reason: added link to write-up
    Click for display details >>
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    I had a metal post with 8 sets of white lights and 4 sets of red and 4 sets of green. I had mega troubles with my gfci tripping...
    It may be the wooden box I used for ssr.
    anyway we had a bad windstorm dec 27th and the whole thing came down.
    SO next year I have to do better at guy wiring it up.
    Jesus is the Reason....

  4. #4
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    Default Converting a Basketball Goal into a megatree

    It probably shouldn't be called a megatree, because it's only 10 ft tall, but its the tallest tree in my yard, so it's mega for me. It could easily be adapted to taller designs.

    My design goals were:
    > Use things I already had and others were likely to have or could get easily and inexpensively
    > Make it very strong to handle the winds and bad weather we have around here.
    > Easy take down/setup with minimal storage space requirements
    > A big goal that I couldn't find on other designs was an adjustable tension system on the lights so the light strands stay taught and don't flop around in the wind. The strands tend to stretch over time so it had to be adjustable multiple times as the strands stretch
    > capable of high strand density so it looks great and can do smooth spins and other effects
    > Have more of a tree shape and not so much of a tent shape
    > Work with the 23ft light strands I had on hand
    > Avoid GFI trips
    > Inexpensive to build. I like the lights but would rather spend more money on my family than on blinking lights.

    We have this basketball goal that never gets used anymore and my wife wanted me to get rid of it. So I did, but not in the way she expected It's one of those cheap ones that has a plastic base that you fill with sand or water for weight. I was tempted to continue to use the base, but it doesn't sit level in the yard, and it had fallen over before in high winds and dented a car, which really made me mad , so I decided to ditch the base and make my own.

    You could just as easily use PVC pipe instead of the basketball goal post, so if you don't have the basketball goal, you can still do this project and keep it cost effective. One of the benefits of using the basketball goal post is it's height can be adjusted so I was able to lower it to 9ft so it would fit in my garage while I was building it.

    What I came up with is a wooden octagonal base which supports the post and the bottom end of the lights, with a PVC drain on the top of the post to support the lights at the top of the post. The octagonal base of the tree looks round from a short distance and can be built out of wood fairly easily (if you have a miter saw - lots of angles to cut).

    I completely disassembled the basketball goal. The main part I wanted was the post. It's strong, adjustable height, painted black, just perfect for my use. In the end, I ended up using almost every piece of metal from the basketball goal. By the way, you can do this without destroying it, so if you want to keep using your basketball goal when done with the tree, keep all of the parts and put the goal back together. I had a mandate from my wife to get rid of mine, plus I was still not happy about it denting a car when it fell over, so I was more than happy to make this a permanent change.

    I attached what I could of the build instructions, but I couldn't post all the photos due to attachment limits. Will be happy to email detailed photos, etc for anyone that would like them.
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    Last edited by TonyK; 01-18-2009 at 06:49 PM. Reason: add build measurements and instructions

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    TonyK-
    Thanks for posting your example of the converted basketball goal. I really like the octagon base, and am interested in any measurements/instructions you would be willing to share. I appreciate the creativity. Regards,
    tlh
    When life gives you dilemmas, make dilemmonade.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    The wires for my mega tree(12ft) are permanently strung on rewire.
    Four panels are hooked over a top ring and placed in an octagon configuration with the back two panels missing.
    Two pieces of 1/2 inch rebar hold each panel a foot off the ground.

    In the off season the panels are stored flat against a wall withe the lights still on them.
    No tangles.
    No stretched cords.
    Let the wind blow, this design is unaffected.



    Joel
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Converting a Basketball Goal into a megatree

    Quote Originally Posted by TonyK View Post
    If anyone is interested I can post measurements and complete instructions on how to build this.
    Yes, please do so.

    Thanks.

    \dmc
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    As everyone has different Idea's on their mega tree I thought I would show off my ever evolving design.

    The pieces consist of:
    1 6inch wood bun
    20 1.5 inch wood eyelets bent open.
    2 3/4 in floor flanges
    2 1 inch machine thread eyelets
    1 8 inch 3/4" pipe
    2 10 inch pieces of fiberglass
    1 1.5 inch sink drain pipe 2 inches long
    lots of epoxy

    Start by slightly bending open the 20 eyelets. Then screw each on in to the wood bun working around the circle trying to keep them even. I used an across method. One across from each other until I had all 20 in. After all the hooks are in mix epoxy and cover the entire bun in a thin coat and work 1 peice of the fiberglass on top. Cut the fiber glass cloth to go around the hooks. When on side is dry complete this step on the other side. Your wood bun is now a reinforced wood bun. After the epoxy dries mark the center of the wood bun and drill a 1.5 inch whole in the middle of the epoxy covered wood bun. Cut a piece of sink drain pipe to fit inside the wood bun and stick out about 1/4 of and inch on each side of the bun. Now starts the messy part. Mix up a big batch of fiberglass resin and pour it over the top of the bun put a thick layer on it but do not cover the top of the drain pipe. Let it dry and repeat on opisite side letting the epoxy put a thick coat on the wood bun. Now you have a light strand holder for your tree.

    Now take the 2 flanges and screw them together with the machine thread eyelets. Screw in the small piece of 3/4 in pipe make sure the pipe is on the side with the eyelets openings.

    The next step is to decided how tall you want your mega tree. I use chainlink fence top post. To mount your tree toper place the end of it in the fence post. Select the heigth of tree you want and guy wire it from the top. Use some 3/8th in rope to run through your bun up to the eyelets pointing down then back to your bun. This is the raising mechanism. Attach your light strands to your hooks and hoist them up.


    I use this design on my 16 ft tree with 60 strands of lights and raise it by hand. The strings are heavy and may requre some help to raise them with out a wench.

    Pictures are attached an you can see my mega tree in my photo album.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    Nice pics RichF

    I'll be stealing this design for my Mega tree next year =)

    One change I can see is to replace the 3/8" rope with 1/4" braided steel cable used for garage doors or other things, and use a ratchet or "come along" from a cargo tie down strap, band clamp it it the pole near the base and you have an inexpensive hand winch.

    A cable eye with wire cable clamp can add extra safety/lock point.

    A simple pull on the ratchet will tighten up or a flip the lock level and slack it off.

    I'm sure it wouldn't take much from the other guys here to figure out a way to mod it to a crank or wrench turn if you want to go that way too.
    Cheers!
    Steve

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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Mega Tree Hints and examples

    I plan on a ratcheting wench next year. I did not think about the garage door cable. Looks like I will be making some changes. If anyone needs any more pictures let me know.
    More channels then I can use.
    More light bulbs then I care count.
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