2013 Construction

I have taken a few weeks off to recover from the 2012 display takedown and think about what I want to add for 2013.  I won’t spill all the beans this early in the year, but will try and post as I am building new items.

A lot of people are concerned with not only how their display looks at night, but also how it looks in the day.  Now I certainly have a lot of cords and wires running across my yard, but those aren’t really visible during the day unless you are on the sidewalk looking into the yard.  But one thing that does stand out as not being very attractive during the day is all the wires for the megatree.  I decided this year I am going to create a “skirt” for the bottom of the megatree to try and hide those cords and wires.

I bought some strands of garland from Garden Ridge during their clearance sale in December.  I also got some plastic poultry netting from Home Dep0t.  I cut this into 9 foot sections (the same length as the garland) and then attached the garland to the netting.  I have six strands of the garland that will make the skirt about 18″ from the ground.  I then put some LED lights in between the garland.  You can see pictures of the garland being built in this gallery.

The plan is to attach this to the PVC base of the Megatree, creating a way to hide all the wires and cables.   I will add those lights to my sequences, probably keeping the colors the same as whatever the megatree has on.  I have built about 2/3 of it and need to wait until Garden Ridge puts out it’s Christmas items as a I was a couple of strands short.

I hope this will create a much better daytime look for the meagtree.

Stay tuned as I continue preparations for my 2013 display.

September Update

Wow….September has flown by too and set up is approaching fast.  What I’ve done this month:

  1. I am adding 2 Cosmic Color Ribbons to my display this year.  I have spent a lot of time just figuring out how to program them.  Thanks to some help from all of the Christmas forums, I think I am ready to give it a try.
  2. I have spent some time with a display for Halloween.  I’ll have one large Singing Pumpkin and then 8 smaller ones, all from HolidayCoro.  I will have 4 sequences that they will sing to.  I hope to have it set up the weekend of Halloween.
  3. I have also been adding a couple of circuits to my power distribution panel to handle the additional load.
  4. I attended an RGB workshop from Lone Star Holidays.  Thanks to David Moore of HolidayCoro for opening his workshop and teaching us how to build components with RGB.  I am not sure if I will get the corostars in for this years display, but they will definitely be there next year.

On to October.  It will be a busy month as I wrap up changes to the sequences and start gearing up for set up the weekend after Halloween.  My goal is to go live Thanksgiving night.
Thanks for stopping by.

August Update

I haven’t posted much lately, but that doesn’t mean I am not busy getting the 2011 Christmas on Rose Dawn show ready to roll.  Some projects I have been working on include:

1.  Creating wiring harnesses with 36 pair and 24 pair multicable.  This should cut down on the number of individual extension cords I need to run to the elements.  I’ll have about 10′ of SPT at the controller, then the multipair cable, and then SPT at the element with varying lengths.  Set up should be much easier.

2.  I finished the Dual JUMPs, but haven’t had time to capture pictures.

3.  I bought some spotlights from Seasonal Entertainment as my first entry into RGB.  I have been trying to figure out how to program them.

4.  I will also have dual 10′ vertical arches with a 4 channel star at the top.   I also will have a larger star on top of the megatree and will be moving the old one to the top of the light ring.

Then I still have to update all my sequences to include these new elements.  I’ll be busy from now until set up in November.

And on top of all this, I attended the Lone Star Holidays Academy III in Conroe in early August.  Two days of workshops with other Holiday fanatics.  It was hard to talk about Christmas with the temperature so high, but we did have an artificial snow machine from Illumimax to put us in the mood.

Stay tuned!

Dual JUMP Construction

I have decided to replace the A-frame that was holding my light balls last year with dual JUMP’s (Jack-up Mega Pole).  I built one last year for my Megatree, but these will only be 10 foot tall instead of the 20 foot for my Megatree.  That will make them a little less complicated as it will only be a single-stage JUMP instead of the dual-stage that is for my Megatree.  So I got started a couple of weeks ago building my portable hole and preparing the 2″ and 1 1/2″ EMT conduit that will be part of the JUMP.  Here are a couple of pictures of the portable hole prior to pouring in the concrete. 

My plan is to put a “T” coupler at the top of each JUMP and then put a ten foot 1 1/2″  EMT conduit between the 2 of them for the light balls to hang on.  I will bore out one of the “T”‘ couplers for 1 end to slide through and then the other end of the ten foot conduit will screw into the other “T”.  I’ll put a rigid coupling on the end that I slide the conduit through to ensure it doesn’t slip back and forth between the two JUMP.

I’ll post some more information as I complete these and as I work on other projects to prepare for Christmas on Rose Dawn 2011.  If you want more information on building a JUMP, check out the webstie of Walter and Jackie Monkhouse.  He’s the inventor of the JUMP and has fantastic directions on building one at this link – http://www.magicchristmasnews.org/ (see the link on the left hand side for Build the Monkhouse JUMP and portable hole.)