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Thread: Started building my mini-trees

  1. #1
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    Default Started building my mini-trees

    Just got back from HD with cages and pvc pipe, gonna start on my mini-trees. Any advice, pointers, or warnings acepted.

    Chet

  2. #2
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    Dec 2007
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    Florida
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    Have fun!!!!!!

    I'm adding more minis this year for a total of 24. I'm in the middle of building mine too. I haven't had the issues with them tripping the gfci so I didn't use the pvc. Click on the mini tree link on my web site just for more info is needed.


    animal

    http://www.pandschristmaslights.com/...es/Page267.htm

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    This is my current dilema.... I made them this way last year, and they were blowing the gfci all the time when it was wet snow or rainy..... I also lost a few SSR due to back voltage either blowing the opto or the triac. So i am trying to find a economical way to make them of all plastic so they wont ground out and trip the breakers agian.

    chris
    [img]http://www.vixenlights.com/sig/sig_h.php/64/64.gif[/img]

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    here's what I did, thinking it's help stop blowing GFI...
    stuck re-rod in the ground - about 2' or I guess the real importance was to not let it get higher than the PVC that I slipped over it, just to support the PVC and keep it standing straight up.

    Then, I took the long single ends at the top of the tomato cages and bent them down inside the tomato cage towards the ground (the peak/top of the tree), keeping them very close together so that,

    I could put those bent over long wire parts at the peak of the tree into the top of the PVC (1.5 inch, from what I remember) and let gravity take hold and it would simply hang from the top of the PVC.

    No part of the wire tomato cage was touching the ground in any way. The PVC was tall enough to keep the base of the cage up a few inches above the ground....but I guess the snow gets high enough to reach the tree. Anyway, didn't have a single one trip a GFI.

    Sure, they would wiggle in a strong wind, but I didn't mind.

    I'll try to find a picture. Aaahh, here they are:

    Last edited by rkhanso; 10-28-2010 at 12:15 AM.

  5. #5
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    Visalia, CA
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    Is the GFCI tripping a common problem with the tomato cage style mini-trees? I plan on building 7 this year and have 2 completed so far, but if I am going to experience circuit problems I'd like to know about it now rather than later, lol.
    “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” -Albert Einstein

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    Hi whatafreak

    All my mini-trees (12 x 3', 12 x 5' and 6 x 6') are tomato cage based and I live in Lakewood, Colorado with plenty of snow. Did not have any gfci's tripping. The metal cages are mounted on metal conduit that is pounded into the ground, but no problems.

    -Robert.
    Lakewood, CO

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    Quote Originally Posted by Whatafreak View Post
    Is the GFCI tripping a common problem with the tomato cage style mini-trees? I plan on building 7 this year and have 2 completed so far, but if I am going to experience circuit problems I'd like to know about it now rather than later, lol.
    This is truly a "your mileage may vary" question ... some people get trips looking at their trees cross-eyed and others can't get a trip if they're sitting in puddles.

    As I've said before, I had a commercial metal tree trip every night for my entire 2008 season, while my mini-trees were fine. But I wrap my mini-trees in clear plastic shipping wrap (aka non-food grade Saran Wrap) before I add the lights and the wires are insulated from the frame.

    HTH.

    \dmc
    ________________________
    The only thing more dangerous than a software engineer with a soldering iron
    or a hardware engineer with a compiler is a liberal-arts major with either.
    [b]Christmas lights:[/b] [url]http://www.PacificaLights.info/[/url]
    [b]uC/LED hacking:[/b] [url]http://www.dmcole.net/[/url]

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    You could consider something like this all made of pvc , there is no metal of any kind anywhere.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeMHErpu01w

    Russell

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    There's also Dirknerkles Hula-Hoop trees - http://doityourselfchristmas.com/for...ead.php?t=7481
    [COLOR=#000080][B][I]Brian[/I][/B][/COLOR]

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  10. #10
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    Sep 2010
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    Default Re: Started building my mini-trees

    Thanks for the help, everyone.

    I live in California's central valley. The distinct lack of precipitation of any kind during any part of the year is to my advantage, lol.
    “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” -Albert Einstein

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