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Santa Sleigh

Discussion in 'How is your display put together...' started by MarcD, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. OP
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    The sleigh is back together and almost all of the painting has been done. I just need to do another coat of white on the interior and touch up a few bits of the black. We also attached some of the LED strip light around the edge and it doesn't want to stick. Youngest has plenty of contact adhesive, so we might have to use that.

    Sadly though, it looks like the dashboard won't make it in time. Most of the buttons I ordered off eBay have not arrived after 40 days. Even if they do arrive, I'm not sure we'll have time to get everything mounted and wired up.

    Regardless, the sleigh looks good and should still be a hit with the kids.
     
  2. Bird

    Bird LOR user

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    It's a shame about the bits for the dash, the sleigh looks so nice.
    Kids will love it the way it is.
    But look at it this way, next year kids will get to see something new. :)
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    I've pretty much had to accept the fact that my sleigh won't have a dashboard. It's been 42 days since I ordered the buttons off ebay and there's still no sign of them. I did get lots of stuff like the switches, power supply, LED strip and individual lights, but none of the buttons. The main ebay seller has offered me a full refund. The other two haven't yet.

    I priced up similar items from Jaycar and the price difference was overwhelming. $49 from ebay and $180 from Jaycar and that didn't include everything. I'll give it until the end of the week and then decide if there's time to build a cut down version or whether to just give up on the idea altogether. At least I still have a set of reins which will keep the kids amused.
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    After a great deal of frustration and countless e-mails back and forth between ebay suppliers, everything which didn't arrive is being refunded. We managed to find all of the missing buttons with one supplier on AliExpress who also offered discounted air freight. So, we made a no guts, no glory decision and chose to go ahead with building the dashboard. If it's not ready, we leave it out.

    So, about a ream of paper later, I finally got the template for the dashboard printed and mounted ready for marking, punching and drilling (blurry photos attached). After looking at the photos, I found that one section was out of alignment and have made some adjustments. I'll take that part out tonight and replace it.

    My father has added a third step to our set of spa steps to make it easier to get in and out. Hopefully I'll get all the painting finished this weekend and we can focus on wiring up the dash and installing lights on the house.
     
  5. mborg10

    mborg10 Michael Borg

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    You will get it done and it will be awesome. What's a few sleepless nights. It's amazing what can be done. Can't wait too see the finished sleigh.
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    Despite some (preventable) setbacks with the dashboard, I did make significant progress on the weekend. All of the painting is complete. The extra step has been added. The dashboard has been cut, although the labels will have to be replaced. It turns out that if you touch the print, it will wipe off. They'll have to be redone.

    A question for those more knowledgeable. What is the best way to attach LED strip to painted timber? The adhesive on the strip just isn't cutting it and I'm pretty sure it will give way completely in the hot sun. I need something that will really hold it firmly. Any suggestions?

    Here are some update pics.
     
  7. mborg10

    mborg10 Michael Borg

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    I have used the cable tie mounts with the double sided tape to hold some lights under eaves which is painted, but everyday a section falls down. I use a hot glue gun to stick the cable tie mounts back up bit still when it gets hot some sections still fall down. Next step silicon. If that doesn't work who knows. Liquid nails and a nail gun haha
     
  8. Habbosrus

    Habbosrus Back again

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    I can't speak for led strip (this is my first year) but for other materials I have used a small amount of hot glue to hold items in place quickly and then use silicon. Hot glue is more rigid and should stand up to people bumping it as they get in and out of the sleigh though.
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    So I have a meeting with a client today who's a sign maker and he's talking about some of the jobs and some of it sounded familiar. I mentioned what I was doing with the dashboard and showed him pics and he said they do that sort of stuff all the time. He's offered to print two copies of the dashboard layout as single sheets with industrial strength adhesive and laminate them. I told him they'd be outside and he said that the stuff they use should last seven years. Best of all, he's doing a contra deal so it's not costing anything.

    We decided to bite the bullet and start from scratch. I went out and bought a new piece of aluminium sheet. I'm hoping it won't require (much) cutting. Starting over gives us the opportunity to fix earlier mistakes. There were several places where we didn't leave enough space between items such as switches, lights and borders. Being on a single sheet means I'm no longer restricted to everything fitting on A4 pages, so I can expand some things.

    We decided not to alter the layout, so the wiring currently underway will still work. It will just be a case of pulling everything out of the original and moving it into the new one. We'll certainly be taking more care this time with marking, drilling etc. It will delay things, but we've just resigned ourselves to the fact that it will be ready when it's ready. If that's December 1 then great. If not then kids will have to make a return trip. Even without the dashboard, the sleigh will be lit up and it will have the reins covered with bells.
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    Wiring loom complete. I know it looks messy, but the whole thing has to be moved from the old sheet of ally to the new sheet once the sticker arrives. When it's in place, the plan is to put cable tie holders on the back to keep things in place. We can't test it until the rest of the buttons arrive. Hopefully next week.
     
  11. DoubleD

    DoubleD New Elf

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    Great job on the sleigh, the kids will love it that's for sure! I like how
    The idea of a dashboard with a couple of lights turned into a full on
    dash which looks like it came out of the space shuttle!!!


    Well done!
     
  12. OP
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    Pretty sure the dashboard will be the death of me...almost literally.


    Did a test run after getting all the LED strip fitted. Plugged in the dash and found buttons not working. Then found everything getting hot. Long story short, after advice from Jaycar and the auto electrician, we've replaced the power supply with a 3 amp one. The original was 21 amp. Lots of melted wiring to replace, but I think we're back on track.
     
  13. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass! Community Project Designer Generous Elf

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    The power supply being a higher current capability (than required) won't have caused a fault. It sounds like you have one or more wiring errors.
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    We didn't understand the pinouts on the buttons. Incorrect assumptions were made and the test button was basically shorting out. That's what melted the wires. That plus the wire we'd used was thin and only rated to 3.5 amps.


    Very steep learning curve. :-\
     
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    MarcD

    MarcD Full Time Elf

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    Wiring loom version 2.0 almost complete, the remaining buttons arrived this morning and the new sticker will be ready on Thursday. There will be a dashboard in the sleigh this Christmas.
     

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