1. New to Christmas lighting? Get started with the AusChristmasLighting 101 Manual:
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Newbie with a lot of learning at an old age

Discussion in 'New Members Say Hello' started by Noel Richards, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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    Just like to say Hi, Just a bit of background I have retired and live on the Central Coast and have limited funds had looked at buying a system from the US but when I asked some questions to a supplier who said to contact another group associated with them as they don’t give that sort of help but happy to sell me the product when sorted, I sent a layout that I wanted to 1 of the companies they said to asking them to list what was required and price that was 3 years ago and still haven’t heard from them. I did do some sums and at that time the cost ended up being way too much for a retired person.
    I am a traditional Xmas lights person who wants to integrate the traditional with animated display, as I have a lot of young children who attend my display too see Thomas and Percy Garden Gauge Railway. So it would be a combination of both styles at this stage.
    What my plan is to have the animation up high and in fact a Mega Tree on its side until my centre piece display packs it in, also looking at 2 smaller trees also 4 half hoops. In the future looking at expanding with singing faces and house and pole outlines also P10 boards and as my traditional lights start to fail will be converting them as well as setting up a Transmitter for cars.
    I have spoken to Chris at Nara and he has given me some good advice I am looking at buying the following strings to start the Mega Tree when my health allows me. Chris has said to post on the site as I could get some good advice that could help me I have ordered a roll of 25mm polyester strapping for the tree, as well as 12mm eyelets to insert the lights into.
    https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.aliexpress.com%2Fstore%2Fproduct%2F18AWG-wire-100pcs-string-DC12V-12mm-WS2811-addressable-RGB-led-smart-pixel-node-with-all-BLACK%2F701799_32599191945.html&h=ATObTahZggIHy7rxQyFXdnMg6LCPx8tgdaeVdmgePGnReMTB4nWhFiV2RW8XTR9A6h5htj4rcCIvojE0K6MgZ5D2bPw3_po8LDSEGLnOAMtIOyG2fl7h3hF0UQk86gCToMP9Mcgc&s=1
    Just wondering what fittings are on these lights if any and if not what fittings from Ray Woo would you advise me to use as I would like order at the same time I do the light order.
    Sorry but will have more questions in the end just going through the Video’s on line and have questions starting but will to get my tired old brain around the terminology and what I need to do.


    Noel 8) 8) :) :)
     
  2. Boof63

    Boof63 Senior Elf Generous Elf

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    Welcome Noel, (will pass on the obvious christmas name joke), a great bunch of people on this forum, post your questions and you will get help.
    Firstly read the manual, link is 1/3rd down this page https://auschristmaslighting.com/threads/auschristmaslighting-101-manual.1889/.
    This contains the good oil on light types, approx costs, controllers etc.
    As for your tree how high do you want it to be. The nodes you choose should work
    Myself i used ws2811 strip and pvc pipe with zip ties. Works fine.
    As for your question about Bits, you can order from Ray the lights with the pigtails/connectors already attached for a small fee (my last lot was $1.00 extra per length (2.5m) of lights for the tree). This is best way as it saves a lot of time soldering and sealing your ends. so i would suggest asking ray for this option.
    Cheers and all the best.
    PS i had no electronic or electrical knowledge and with help form the group here . i have i think a good display now.
    Boof63 :D :D
     
  3. Lishfish

    Lishfish Full Time Elf

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    If you would like to go the cheapest option, I can link you to the ws2811's I brought which have 50 nodes and work a charm. These will run a mega tree great. (thats my plans with them anyway). To run these the cheapest way also is to buy a beaglebone black (from element 14 or pay a bit extra and buy on ebay, aliexpress may have them never checked though) and a pixelbone (smartalec sells the pixelbones fairly cheap also) In regards to running store brought lights alongside as well; I myself asked a question while ago in regards to using arduinos (small and cheap mini computers) to power relays. I figured this was a bit cheaper than buying the 27 channel 'dumb' controllers, especially when you have so many store brought lights (https://auschristmaslighting.com/threads/advice-using-arduinos-to-power-relays.9546/).


    Bear in mind that some newer store lights like to be a pain by reversing the polarity but this can be easily addressed anyways. Easiest way is DPDT switches. (http://www.instructables.com/id/HOW-TO:-Wire-a-DPDT-rocker-switch-for-reversing-po/). Make sure you dont run too much amperage through them though.
     
  4. videoman3857

    videoman3857 Full Time Elf

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    I did not know Ray offered this service.
    I spent many a bleary eyed night soldering mine together.
    My time is worth more than $ 1 per length - I could have been doing something else.


    You live and learn :)
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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    Boof63


    Thanks for that as for the xmas name maybe this is why I love xmas Birthday 22 of the 12, just to top that my wife's is the 21 of the 12.


    Lishfish


    At this stage no plans to convert store bought until I can handle the basic stuff that is ready available through Ray and other suppliers.


    Noel
     
  6. scamper

    scamper Senior Elf

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    Welcome Noel, your wife's name wouldn't be Mary by any chance?


    never mind,
    It sounds like you have a wonderful display already, I would love to see some photos.
    As far as integrating the controlled stuff slowly, that sounds like a wonderful plan and you seem to already have an idea in mind which is half the battle.
    I assume when you say fittings, you mean electrical connectors, in which case, what Boof says is correct, you can email ray and ask him to do almost anything, like add connectors, change the length of the cables or number of led's per string etc.
    If however you meant how to attach it to the strip, then they are rubber case with a couple of tabs that jut out and you can just press them into a hole of the right size or cable tie them to whatever.
    When dealing with ray you are best to get confirmation in the form of diagrams etc as his English can sometimes be a little confused. I have seen many a story where he has sent something that is not what was requested, he will always sort it out in the end though.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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  8. videoman3857

    videoman3857 Full Time Elf

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    LOL


    I think that tongue in cheek joke/comment went over Noel's head.
     
  9. cjd

    cjd New Elf

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    Welcome to the forum Ray :)
     
  10. OP
    OP
    Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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    Videoman3857 have to find my head 1st let alone my brain all gone at my age.
    8) 8) 8) 8) 8) ??? ??? ??? ???
     
  11. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    Welcome top ACL, you will find all the info you need here to do what you want on a budget
     
  12. bluzervic

    bluzervic 65,768 Channels, 185 Universes

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    I am a traditional Xmas lights person who wants to integrate the traditional with animated display, as I have a lot of young children who attend my display too see Thomas and Percy Garden Gauge Railway. So it would be a combination of both styles at this stage.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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    Having trouble with posting pictures.
     

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  14. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    A lot of effort there, looks great
     
  15. OP
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    Noel Richards

    Noel Richards Apprentice Elf

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