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Newbie Extraordinaire

I've decided to write this blog to help out all the Newbies out there. I've never written a blog before nor have I done Christmas lights to the extent of the folks on this forum and the may other forums that I have now found thanks to this forum.

Christmas of 2009 was my first year of sound and music dancing lights. I used a "Mr. Christmas" type display. 6 channels. The plan for year 2 is to have 6 times that many channels. As I figure out what I'm doing, I'm going to try to post here my findings in hopes that others might find it useful.

  1. Time to start the mini-trees

    With my successful acquisition of 125 light strings this past week, it's time to start on the mini-trees. Ace has a "deal" on plant stakes online where they are 25 for just under $70. So I bought all of them that my local Ace had. They weren't in the 25 pack, but had the same number on them. Ended up working with the manager to take all he had off his plate. Even took the ones that were damaged a bit (bottom rings were already off - yea!). Of course, when I got home, I realized that I ...

    Updated 05-10-2010 at 11:38 AM by scottmcl

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  2. 0 to 112 in three days!

    Mercy!!! What a whirl wind weekend. From a quick post by William about someone selling controllers, I'm in the process of suddenly going from planning to full scale way too deep and over my head! Let's see I'm going from 0 channels to 112 in just a few days. I'm going from about 16 planned channels with my current lights to needing 64 channels just for my property (or more!) depending on how much stuff I end up getting. I'm not even sure that there is enough room in my front yard for all this stuff. ...

    Updated 05-08-2010 at 03:18 PM by scottmcl

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  3. small trees

    On a recent trip to HD/Lowe's/Ace, I priced out some tomato cages. They were between $3-5 each. Then you add in lights and wire ties and they start to get expensive.

    Am I seeing those numbers right? Can I just take some wire mesh and turn them into cones and go from there? Or is that not any cheaper? Need to really figure out how many trees I want to do, especially at those prices. Now I know why you guys are shopping for stuff out of season...

    Updated 05-08-2010 at 03:27 PM by scottmcl

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  4. to do list keeps getting longer and time is getting shorter

    No new work from my side on lights. Updated to do list:

    - I've signed up to get the steel for the star workshop, but I already have plans so can't make it. Have to work on getting the steel, borrowing the template later, and getting a buddy to help me weld it together. Fun part: where to put this. I was going to put it over the windows over our garage until I realized that it only slopes toward the front of the house and there is no peak. Now I have to put it on the top of the house ...

    Updated 05-08-2010 at 03:28 PM by scottmcl

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  5. TASL followup...

    Whew... Today's TASL meeting was really good. There were lots of great presentations and I got to see things that are literally bleeding edge technologies in this field. Good stuff, guys! I can't wait to build a Bethlehem star. My house is at the end of a cul-de-sac and my driveway leads right up the street. With that bad boy on the house, people will KNOW which house has the light display on it when they turn onto our street - from over 20 houses away!!!

    I also took along a brief ...

    Updated 05-08-2010 at 03:28 PM by scottmcl

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