Christmas light strands - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-03-2002, 11:23 AM   #1
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Christmas light strands

Okay, I know that you can pay bunches of bucks and get all these fancy lights for what I want, but I was just wondering about something.

Up in my attic, I probably have enough holiday lights to light up New York City. Well, you know how it goes. You open up the box and see they are all tangled and, dang, a bulb goes out...then you remebered you saw them at the corner drug store or the local Discounts-R-Us for only a couple of bucks and it's so much easier...

So now I have all these extras. What I'm wanting to know from all of you smart electrical people is this: Tiny bulbs, tiny wires - can I put on a tiny 12v plug and put them on the outside of my travel trailer?:chin :omy :duck

I think this is one of those: I can't believe you asked that! But, hey, that's never stopped me before! :o
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Old 12-03-2002, 11:29 AM   #2
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I have a set

Suz, I have a 35 light string of Xmas lights on a 12v plug. Ordered it from Real Goods (a.k.a. Real Expensive) several years ago, and they've been hanging on our gazebo ever since. Of course, even though we put them up under the eaves, they're still subject to a fair amount of sunlight and I know they won't last ''forever.'' Soooo, I too, would love to know the answer to your question.

I mean, I know you can add a 12v plug to the end of a string of lights, but what do I need to consider before I do such a thing?
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Old 12-03-2002, 02:52 PM   #3
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All those tiny bulbs either add up to 120VAC or whatever the rectifier circuit in the plug set puts out. Might get someone with VOM to measure it and see if maybe you just need to cut 120VAC plug and rectifier/transformer off.

About tangles, get cardboard mailing tubes, like wrapping paper tubes only sturdier, or PVC drain pipe or something like that. At end of holiday season, rubber band far end of light string to tube and slowly turn tube until you have wound the whole string onto it. Rubber band other end of light string to tube. Tape spare bulbs in ziplok bag to inside of tube, and put a bunch of tubes in a plastic garbage bag. Next year, plug in end to check bulbs, then just unroll as you go. Really frugal folks will cut a slot in each end of tube in which to insert end, skipping need for rubber bands.

Aside from tangle-free storage, you will handle the bulbs a lot less and they will last a lot longer.

Get your tubes NOW while they are still on trash piles during shopping rush, not later when you need them but they are gone....

Pete and Rats
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Old 12-08-2002, 09:29 PM   #4
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All of the really tiny bulb strings are low-voltage bulbs in series. Usually 1.5 or 2.5 volt rated, it's impossible to tell after you've thrown away the packaging. There is no transformer or rectifier. If you count the number of bulbs in a 120 volt set, then divide by ten, you can cut that many out and put a 12 volt plug on it.
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Old 12-09-2002, 07:28 AM   #5
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sets of bulbs

Now wait a minute. lets go through this one more time E. Kay.
if I have 200 bulbs on a 120volt plug, I would devide by 10 which would give me 20, take out 20 and add the 12 volt to the 180 left or the 20 I took out?
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Old 12-09-2002, 08:02 AM   #6
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Bulbs in series

Jana, what Eric is speaking of, when he talks about ''bulbs in series,'' is the strings of lights where, if one goes out, the whole string goes out. Those are the low voltage ones, and what you propose would work, as Eric says.

But if yours are the kind where you can take out (or burn out) one or two bulbs and the rest of the string keeps burning, those usually are individual 120v. lamps and your proposed method wouldn't work.

Caveat: please make sure your homeowners' and trailer insurance are paid up-to-date before performing this procedure.
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Old 12-09-2002, 12:29 PM   #7
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old christmas lights

I wouldn't do it Suz. Take the old ones to the ARP and start over. after everything that has gone wrong to day, I would get zapped.

be on the safe side.
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Old 12-09-2002, 04:48 PM   #8
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I hear that!

I'm with you Jana...No way. Even if it's fail proof, I can mess it up. So can you imagine what would happen to me if it was dicey? :o

Just thought I'd ask. Glad I did...now I know.
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Old 12-09-2002, 05:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Orginally posted by Thomas and Janifer

* * * * * * I wouldn't do it Suz. *Take the old ones to the ARP and start over. *after everything that has gone wrong to day, I would get zapped.

be on the safe side.
Como se dici, "ARP?" :o
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Old 12-09-2002, 06:19 PM   #10
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ARP

Oops see it's been a bad day. I meant ARC. Arp is that funny puppet right?
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Old 12-09-2002, 09:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
Orginally posted by Thomas and Janifer

* * * * * * Oops see it's been a bad day. *I meant ARC. * Arp is that funny puppet right?
Than didn't help, Jana. I don't know what an ARC is, either. Remember my sign. ;)
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Old 12-09-2002, 11:25 PM   #12
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ARC

well, it's short for something of which I can't remember, like American Recycling Center. but it's a non-profit place to donate stuff, like furniture, clothing for resell and take things to be recycled, like glass, plastic, newspapers, aluminum, etc. They hire people who are handicap. I'm sure there is more to it then that, but that's enough for me.
You know I have a sign too. how can two signs help each other!!
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Old 12-10-2002, 12:00 AM   #13
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Jana :wave

<img src=http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/uploads/3df616e4e94adarclogo.jpg/>

http://www.thearc.org

(PS: Sorry for the typo. I should not try to do things late at night. The type was so bad when I reduced the logo, a decided to replace it with fresh. I just couldnít leave it. Thanks for calling it to my attention. Iím so glad we can edit. ***:red :red :red)
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Old 12-10-2002, 01:50 AM   #14
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ARC

THAT"S IT, I can't believe you found it. thanks, Michael
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