Arch Test

November 10th, 2010

Testing the stability of the arch.

3D Star for Megatree

September 3rd, 2010

I just finished the 3D star for the top of the megatree.  It is made from metal tubing, rope lights and lots of zip ties.  Each color is on its own channel. Each half is doubled over to leave the possibility of separating the star into two pieces so next year I can control each half of each color on it own channel.

3D Star

3D star turned off

3D Star

3D star turned on

How-To Christmas Light Arches

August 14th, 2010

After reading everyone elses version of how to make a Christmas light arch I combined what I thought was the best of all of them.  One large factor for me was the need to replace strands quickly if neccesary, and be able to make  modifications during the Christmas season easily.  I decided to take a modular approach for each section and use a support structure that could easily be changed. Read more »

Light Production 2010

August 14th, 2010

This year our light show will have about 15,000 lights divided into 160 channels for independent control of  brightness.  I will be running four Renard SS16 boards and four Renard SS24 boards.  To communicate with the computer controller I will use a Ren-W, one inside and one outside to make the connection wireless.  Included in the light count are four 16 foot lit arches, a 13 foot tall megatree with a 2 foot 3-dimensional star on top, among other items. Here are a few pictures of the hardware I will be using. 


Renard printed circuit boards


Completed Board

Completed Renard SS16

Getting Supplies Home

August 13th, 2010

Sometimes you have to be creative getting supplies home from the store.  I needed 20 foot pieces of PVC for the arches and the only way to transport them was to loop the PVC outside the vans driver side window and back in the passenger window.  Our seven year old son said he was embarrassed as we drove away from the store!

Arch support

Getting the arch supports home