RGB String testing

Nixay

New elf
Joined
Jun 19, 2010
Messages
6
Sorry, I'm not entirely sure if they're 6803 or 2801? They're these ones:
http://www.aliexpress.com/product-fm/314089657-12mm-diameter-Through-hole-LED-channel-letter-DC5V-input-RGB-waterproof-0-3W-120degree-beam-angle-wholesalers.html

The lights were strung through gardens and bushes. The ones in the bushes failed first because, as I mentioned earlier, they were hanging and due to their weight do tend to hang in a downwards-facing direction and I observed that water can run into the back of them.

I thought I could see silicon inside them to stop water penetrating but upon inspection I have managed to poke a flathead screwdriver right into them from the back without any resistance so obviously water can get in just as easily.

I've brought them inside for now (we have some very heavy rain forecast this weekend) and I'll see if I can dry them out.

- Nixay.
 

AussiePhil

Dedicated elf
Administrator
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
1,386
Location
Canberra, ACT, Australia
Nixay said:
Well, I've been running these light strings on my display for 5 nights now, and unfortunately they are not living up to their "water-proof" description. We've had some rain but had our first real downpour last night and now I have a dead short between green and common on one of my strings (2x 50pcs joined end to end) and another one which has green doing a slight flicker across the whole string. Also a number of reds have either stopped working or are flickering on individual LEDs. Rather disappointed that I haven't made it past December 1st with these.

- Nixay
Nixay,

The need to add some additional sealing has been discussed quite a bit, if these are plain RGB pixels then drying them out and then sealing them should bring them back to life..... (you may have already done this of course)

The other trick I have used on my Megatree was to zip tie the wires were they exit the back of the pixel to remove the strain that seperates the wires and allows for easy water entry.

Phil
 

Nixay

New elf
Joined
Jun 19, 2010
Messages
6
Hi,

Yes, I'm not a frequenter of these boards (yet) so wasn't aware of discussion of sealing on these particular strings. They are not pixel lights, just straight RGB strings.

I should have updated this some time ago actually, but I did pull these strings indoors to dry out over about 3 days. They dried out and came back to life again, so I put a line of silicon on the back of each light between the wires and put them back outside. They are much more resiliant now, although in lots of rain, water is still seeping into some of them. They seem to dry out pretty quickly now though so there mustn't be much water getting in.

Nixay.
 

AussiePhil

Dedicated elf
Administrator
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
1,386
Location
Canberra, ACT, Australia
Hi,

Understood that often info slips past un-noticed.

One additional trick from my array, grab a syringe with a 18G needle and some nuetral cure silicon and actually inject the silicon into the pixel itself.

Phil
 

Greg Young

New elf
Joined
Feb 18, 2011
Messages
39
Location
Holland, New York
Have any of you guys tried using hot glue instead of silicone placed between and around the wires? It should make a tighter seal that silicone..
Another consideration may be using the paint on rubber sealers that are used to insulate electrical connections...
Greg
 

TimW

Full time elf
Joined
Jun 15, 2010
Messages
168
Location
Melbourne
There's been a lot of trial and error on this subject over the last couple of years...
The problem with hot glue (and silicone for that matter..) is that it doesn't seem to bond strongly with the pvc on the wires. The way these type of lights are built - when you hang them in a string there is a natural tendancy for the wires to pull apart.. and it doesn't take much flexing in the wind for the gap to reappear.
There was once concern about the uv stability of that pvc liquid tape/plasticote stuff... I never tried it (its pretty expensive in Australia)
I am aware of 3 potential solutions to this problem (there may be others)
1) buy better engineered pixels (although you pay more for this)
2) Seal 'em with something like selly's all clear...( just wear gloves and don't breathe it. I bet Its not a fun process). Some folk thin it... others don't....
3) use some other sticky adhesive that likes plastic and weather. I used a polycarbonate roofing flexible sealant on mine... seems to hold pretty well and is water based.
 

fasteddy

I have C.L.A.P
Global moderator
Joined
Apr 26, 2010
Messages
6,645
Location
Albion Park NSW
Another option that has some success is placing a cable tie where the cable comes out of the LED so this will ensure the cable does not pull apart allowing water to seep in between the cables at the entry of the LED
 

kane

Dedicated elf
Joined
Dec 23, 2010
Messages
1,033
Location
Trigg (Northern suburbs of Perth)
Fasteddy said:
Another option that has some success is placing a cable tie where the cable comes out of the LED so this will ensure the cable does not pull apart allowing water to seep in between the cables at the entry of the LED
Just got some tm1804 pixel strings, so might have to use the cable tie trick to make sure they stay closed.

Might also use some spray on clear liquid insulation tape for extra protection?

Anyone got a site that sells cable ties online - sunlec (www.cableties.com.au) seems to be $50 minimum order - don't think I need that many!
 

kane

Dedicated elf
Joined
Dec 23, 2010
Messages
1,033
Location
Trigg (Northern suburbs of Perth)
Fasteddy said:
I used OzCableTies.com.au last year but it appears their site is currently offline. Their minimum order was $20 with free shipping and the prices were excellent.

Or you can get these from ebay for $20
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/500-Cable-Ties-200mm-x-5mm-UV-Stablised-/330583176201?pt=AU_B_I_Electrical_Test_Equipment&hash=item4cf84af409
Aha, yes, I used OzCableTies.com.au last time as well.. Wierd - was searching my old email for "cable ties" (as I was sure I'd ordered some online at some point) and didn't come up with anything, but a search for ozcableties.com.au brought up my last order.
Those ebay ones are probably a bit wide (bringing the pixels even closer together), but grabbing some 2.5mm ones instead.
 

Greg Young

New elf
Joined
Feb 18, 2011
Messages
39
Location
Holland, New York
Thanks for the tips. I had not thought of the wire tie idea, which is a great suggestion to use in combination with one of the sealants mentioned!
Greg
 

fasteddy

I have C.L.A.P
Global moderator
Joined
Apr 26, 2010
Messages
6,645
Location
Albion Park NSW
Re: RGB String testing - New Improved Form Factor

I was given some samples from Ray the other day to show at the Sydney and Brisbane mini. There was one string that caught my eye so i had a much closer look and found that these are a big improvement and rectify a lot of the issues with the traditional strings.

The LED and board are encased in solid resin with a clear plastic cover so the electronics are sealed from water ingress. The wires now come out from the sides and not the back, this eliminates the issue of water getting in between the wires especially if there is any tension put onto the string. This also allows these pixels to be easily mounted onto a flat surface.

Currently it looks like Ray has these in the 6803 and the 3001 IC so it would be great to also see these in the 2801 and the 1804. Looking and playing with these it appears that these are a great evolutionary step that rectifies many of the issues that can plague some of the traditional strings from Ray. I know what ill be getting now when it comes to strings (just need them in 2801) as it looks like there should be no additional sealing required.
 

Attachments

Nath_From_NT

Apprentice elf
Joined
Aug 31, 2010
Messages
55
Location
Yarralin - NT

fasteddy

I have C.L.A.P
Global moderator
Joined
Apr 26, 2010
Messages
6,645
Location
Albion Park NSW
Nath_From_NT said:
They look really good. From what I can see on Rays site, the waterproofing is pretty good.

http://www.aliexpress.com/fm-store/701799/209889132-474536611/led-pixel-module-LPD6803-DC5V-input-IP68-50pcs-a-string.html

There are some pictures on his page showing the resin or whatever it is coating.

Why does all the new stuff start coming out all at once? The 44's, AVD's controllers, PIXAD8's, I may need to start selling my kids to be able to buy everything I need (want).
Looking a couple of those pictures and there seems to be 2 types there, one with the cable coming out the back and the other with the cable coming out from the side. The samples I have come out from the side which makes this great for mounting on flat surfaces.
 
Top