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Thread: DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

  1. #1
    Rebuilding for 2017 :-) kidcole's Avatar
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    Default DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

    I am starting my megatree and have been eyeing the fancy PVC Snap fittings (DUra and Spears) at ChristmasLightShow.com. Has anyone tried simply dry-fitting regular PVC, pre-drilling some pilot holes, and driving in a quick set-screw for each fitting location ? The snap fittings look nice but there must be some simpler ways to build the mega-tree bases and still allow tear-down. Since I don't have any experience with putting set-screws in PVC .. can any of you tell me if this will work or might the fittings crack ?

    I want my megatree to have the lights tuck under the lower ring and then have about 2 or 3 feet of "trunk" down to the ground. I like the construction of the DIY megatree at ChristmasLightShow.com, and I am about ready to order their crank-up meagtree components (I like them a lot) .. But for the base, I would like to just use parts I can buy from Lowes and Home Depot.
    Last edited by kidcole; 09-27-2009 at 08:30 PM. Reason: title change
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    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Moving to Xlights for 2017 !

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    Custom Sliegh Builder Wayne J's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    You might be able to adapt some of my ideas to work. I use a mixture of regular PVC, electrical PVC, and Drinking water grade PVC in mine. I drive steel rods into the ground where the base ring supports go, then then slip the support posts/Tee's over them. I then drill a small hole through both the Tee and steel rod, and slip a small piece of coat hanger wire though to hold the base ring down.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -t2.jpg   -t3.jpg   -mt1.jpg  
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    Rebuilding for 2017 :-) kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

    I appreciate the reply Wayne. Nice tree. And I like the simplicity. Your first picture still shows the slip-on kind of PVC fittings and I am trying to figure out why those are needed, compared with just using regular PVC fittings ?
    Last edited by kidcole; 09-27-2009 at 08:32 PM. Reason: title change
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    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Moving to Xlights for 2017 !

    Falcon - 2 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 256 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
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    Custom Sliegh Builder Wayne J's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    Quote Originally Posted by kidcole View Post
    I appreciate the reply Wayne. Nice tree. And I like the simplicity. Your first picture still shows the slip-on kind of PVC fittings and I am trying to figure out why those are needed, compared with just using regular PVC fittings ?
    They are to reduce the size of the tubing so the tubing fits the steel rods a bit better. Makes things a bit more sturdy. The Tee's were cut in a bandsaw to make them snap on the elctrical PVC.
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    Registered User mschell's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    I have Darryl's 10 foot tree from 4-5 years ago, that use these fittings and it's held up very well.

    He does sell (or used to) just sell the "base" kit that did the 2 foot trunk and ring to go on a flagpole based tree.

    My only thought about the drawback of using screws thru normal PVC fittings is that they will tend to crack, especially when it's cold. Also, the tree will tend to sway a little bit, and eventually I think the normal fittings will wear or crack.

    Wayne's approach looks good, and if I do another tree, I may have to try the base on the ground.
    Mark

    New location - new display. Looking forward to 2015 season!

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    Rebuilding for 2017 :-) kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Fittings for Megatree Construction

    Ah ! Now I get it. I will just cut mine on a bandsaw. I was thinking they were something special, such as a more flexible material. I assume I can use tie-wraps (zip ties) to make sure they don't let the ring slip off.
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Moving to Xlights for 2017 !

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    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    Denny, why are you using PVC?. A black iron pipe with adequate anchors will outlast and withstand more punishment. We recently finished Walter's and it identical to mine. My megatree withstood 55 mph winds the first day it was up without a hitch.
    Al

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    Rebuilding for 2017 :-) kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

    I wasn't as clear with the title of this thread as I could have been. I edited all the titles of my posts in this thread to see if the site would change the name of the thread .. Nope, it didn't change ...

    I am going to make the main pole 18 feet tall out of 1 1/4" black pipe or may go galvanized - I don't like looking at rust. I was tempted to dig a post hole and sink a pipe but decided it's less work to use the 1 1/4" 5-way bottom flange with four 5' long legs. The bottom will be PCV for the two main circles - one on the ground and one about 2 feet above. Then a couple small inside PVC circles for the trunk look at the bottom. I am going to make a free-standing wood platform with a sloped top to hold the two controllers. I may also make room for more controllers in case I add more channels to the tree for next year.
    Last edited by kidcole; 09-27-2009 at 08:35 PM. Reason: title change
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Moving to Xlights for 2017 !

    Falcon - 2 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 256 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
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    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    Oh, that explains a lot. Walter and I are planning a shuttle that will slide up the pole and make matters simple. Due to our unexpected complications (new motorhome) we have put some design considerations on the back burner till next year. Walter has been helping me and I have dominated his free time. We will share to the group how to make the shuttle. I promise. The Walter Star is near completion and will be magnificent too.

    If you are coming to our next meeting we can discuss this in depth.
    Al

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    Custom Sliegh Builder Wayne J's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

    Quote Originally Posted by kidcole View Post
    I wasn't as clear with the title of this thread as I could have been. I edited all the titles of my posts in this thread to see if the site would change the name of the thread .. Nope, it didn't change ...
    It is changed.
    James Family Christmas - 1144 channels of SS Renard channels
    Website - http://jamesfamilychristmas.com/
    Facebook - James Family Christmas

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    Rebuilding for 2017 :-) kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Base Fittings for Iron Pole Megatree

    Yes, I will make the Oct 8th meeting. I look forward to it !

    I have ordered the Megatree Hook Head, the Mega Tree Pully Head and the 5 way cross from ChristmasLightShow.com. I am all for the DIY stuff but since this is my first year, I need some short cuts. I will build a lot more of my own gear as I expand. I think next year I would like to build a cheap DC controller and add some strobes. Then by next year I might be in position to help others (like you guys are helping us newbees) .. !
    Last edited by kidcole; 09-27-2009 at 09:57 PM.
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Moving to Xlights for 2017 !

    Falcon - 2 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 256 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
    10' Pixel MegaTree, CoroFlakes w/Pixel Modules, Pixel RBLs, 2 Pixel Matrix 16x25, 10" RGB Ornaments, 7x230 Pixel Icicle Matrix,
    Classic 20' AC Megatree, TIR Destiny RGB Spots, RGB Blowmolds, Wireframes, and Inflatables with External Light Control

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    Professional Net Lurker Jack Stevens's Avatar
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    Default Re: DIY PVC Megatree Construction

    Quote Originally Posted by Al in Raleigh View Post
    Oh, that explains a lot. Walter and I are planning a shuttle that will slide up the pole and make matters simple. Due to our unexpected complications (new motorhome) we have put some design considerations on the back burner till next year. Walter has been helping me and I have dominated his free time. We will share to the group how to make the shuttle. I promise. The Walter Star is near completion and will be magnificent too.

    If you are coming to our next meeting we can discuss this in depth.
    Al
    Al -

    I have a problem with your statement. Free time? No such thing.

    So when is the next meeting?

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