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tanya

do i need 1 or 2 light linkers?

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ok, so i'm planning on buying a starter package (16 channel) and am trying to figure out if i need one or two light linkers. i want to be able to run it off of my computer without any cables running through my windows or doors to get outside. the set up pic i think is showing me that i need two but i'm not sure why. i know i need one to go from the computer to outside, but does it take another one to go from the first light linker to another light linker to the control box? i think that's what the pic is showing me. a little confused. thanks for your help.

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You need two - one inside to do the sending and one outside to do the receiving. The one outside is where the Cat5 cable originates to go to the first controller.

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But running cat 5 cable outside is easier than you might think. The $250 you save with the light linker can buy you more channels. You can simply run the cable through the same hole that a water pipe, phone cable or electrical cable uses. All of them have soft puddy like Playdoh in which you can seal the house back up....

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KenL_MCSE wrote:

But running cat 5 cable outside is easier than you might think. The $250 you save with the light linker can buy you more channels. You can simply run the cable through the same hole that a water pipe, phone cable or electrical cable uses. All of them have soft puddy like Playdoh in which you can seal the house back up....




I have an electrician coming buy to put one of those multi boxes and some conduit(sp) thru the wall so all i have to do is plug the Ethernet from my usb thingy into the wall and do the same outside. he is putting an all weather cover on it plus we will run speaker wires thru it. coming in a lot less than the linkers and will use the savings to buy another 16 channels.

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I actually use a flat phone cable for my first run through the window. Its flat enough that it runs between the storm windows and under the window sill without having to leave a gap. Granted, I have old windows but it works for me.

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Brian Mitchell wrote:

I actually use a flat phone cable for my first run through the window. Its flat enough that it runs between the storm windows and under the window sill without having to leave a gap. Granted, I have old windows but it works for me.
fortunate or unfortunate for me we replaced all our windows a year or so ago so that option was a no go from the boss. she let me run them thru a side door this year with a promise of a better solution before next year.

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you guys are great, thanks so much for the ideas on how to get the wire outside. i'll have to look into that some more. i could definately use the 250 bucks for something else.

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I bought one of those foam "Insulating Tubes" for copper pipe (less than $2)...

Cut it to the length of the width of the window (about 3')...

poked a few small holes thru it for the cable and speaker wires (used a Phillips screwdriver)

put it into the channel that the window slides down into

closed the window onto it, thus sealing out any cold air

For security, you can then place a piece of wood between the top of the sliding window and the top sill (sorta like putting a piece of wood into a sliding glass door so it can't be opened).






Attached files 237025=12932-foam-pipe-insulation1.jpg

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I'm probably going to be looking into runing more cables out this year. I currently have two that start upstairs, near the front of the house, run to the back, through a half height wall into a small atttic space over the garage (that has no formal access) and down into the garage. Cable then runs under the garage door, and all the way around to the display..

But, it sounds like I may want to plan for at least 4 cables for this year, so I probably ought to give this some more thought, to a more permanent, or more direct solution..

One other thought.. Since at least two of these are likely for CCB, should I instead be figuring out how to get extension cords outside, and have the injectors somewhere in the house.... Hmm..

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this is my 2 cents about it.....I just brought a new house last year and this year was the first time for the display at the new location, and i setup the computer and fm transmitter in the garage and just ran the cable under the garage door to my first controller but at times during the season the garage got really cold and i was sick of going outside very night to hook everything up so this I got a plan to use one of my phone jack in the wall by one of my front windows. (we dont use the phone jacks in our house since everyone these days have cell phones) So this way i could just hook up the computer to the jack on the inside and hook up the CAT 5 cable to the outside of the house where the phone line comes into the house. NOW i know what you are thinking that the phone line isnt CAT 5 cable.....but guess what it is......dont know who and why they put CAT 5 cable but they did so i got really lucky when i found out that.

But if you have some basic knowledge about replacing phone line with CAT 5 you could hook it up thru the inside of your house.....

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aaron wrote:

this is my 2 cents about it.....I just brought a new house last year and this year was the first time for the display at the new location, and i setup the computer and fm transmitter in the garage and just ran the cable under the garage door to my first controller but at times during the season the garage got really cold and i was sick of going outside very night to hook everything up so this I got a plan to use one of my phone jack in the wall by one of my front windows. (we dont use the phone jacks in our house since everyone these days have cell phones) So this way i could just hook up the computer to the jack on the inside and hook up the CAT 5 cable to the outside of the house where the phone line comes into the house. NOW i know what you are thinking that the phone line isnt CAT 5 cable.....but guess what it is......dont know who and why they put CAT 5 cable but they did so i got really lucky when i found out that.

But if you have some basic knowledge about replacing phone line with CAT 5 you could hook it up thru the inside of your house.....


a lot of new/newer houses these days are wired with Cat5 instead of plain old phone wire. there isn't much difference in cost plus the house I had had a "smart box" inside the coat closet that let me designate certain jacks as phone jacks and certain jacks as ethernet. put my cable modem, ups, and wireless router in the coat closet and i was pretty much off to the races.

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Actually, most in wall phone cable is at least cat 3, and much better than the silver satin that LOR will run on.

The usual challenge is that if you have any wire besides a straight run between the two jacks, you may interfere with the correct operation...

But I will agree that our 8 year old house also used cat5 for the in wall phone wiring, so that is all good, and they ran individual runs from each of the serviced rooms to the outside pannel, so I could even separate them out. I'm just also using them to redistribute the internet phone service to a couple of places...

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I have an older house (55+ years) but remodeled inside and out very nicely. To keep it looking nice on the inside and outside this is what I did: My computer is in my office in the front of the house. I simply used a long 1/2" bit in my hammer drill and drilled a hole from the inside sheetrock all the way through the ouside brick. I then cut an old work box into the sheetrock and pulled the wires needed (that was a bit of a trick, but with my son's help, we finally got them through). I put a cover on with snap in modules---Home Depot---for cat5 (network) and coax (antenna). On the outside I planned it to be right behind the gate in the fence so it doesn't show. I surfaced mounted a weatherproof box, with the same cover and snap in inserts. It took some time, but wasn't that hard. It's very clean, works great, and I don't have anything running through the window like last year.

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CKSedg wrote:

I have an older house (55+ years) but remodeled inside and out very nicely. To keep it looking nice on the inside and outside this is what I did: My computer is in my office in the front of the house. I simply used a long 1/2" bit in my hammer drill and drilled a hole from the inside sheetrock all the way through the ouside brick. I then cut an old work box into the sheetrock and pulled the wires needed (that was a bit of a trick, but with my son's help, we finally got them through). I put a cover on with snap in modules---Home Depot---for cat5 (network) and coax (antenna). On the outside I planned it to be right behind the gate in the fence so it doesn't show. I surfaced mounted a weatherproof box, with the same cover and snap in inserts. It took some time, but wasn't that hard. It's very clean, works great, and I don't have anything running through the window like last year.
I think that is what my electrician has in mind for my place.

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aaron wrote:

this is my 2 cents about it.....I just brought a new house last year and this year was the first time for the display at the new location, and i setup the computer and fm transmitter in the garage and just ran the cable under the garage door to my first controller but at times during the season the garage got really cold and i was sick of going outside very night to hook everything up so this I got a plan to use one of my phone jack in the wall by one of my front windows. (we dont use the phone jacks in our house since everyone these days have cell phones) So this way i could just hook up the computer to the jack on the inside and hook up the CAT 5 cable to the outside of the house where the phone line comes into the house. NOW i know what you are thinking that the phone line isnt CAT 5 cable.....but guess what it is......dont know who and why they put CAT 5 cable but they did so i got really lucky when i found out that.

But if you have some basic knowledge about replacing phone line with CAT 5 you could hook it up thru the inside of your house.....




Arron,

Why do you have to run out to the garage and hook everything up every night. My show computer moves to the garage (detached) when I setup. I start it and forget it. I monitor the display everynight from the comfort of inside, to make sure all works. Only touch the computer if there is a need.

Chuck

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When I re-wired the entire house many years ago, I decided we needed some outdoor receptacles. It started as a small project, one out front, one out back. Since that time I have added to the outdoor receptacles. I now have 4 out front, three on the side, and 3 out back. I also ran Cat5 out front and to the side and into the computer room. The speaker wire and feeds to the FM transmitter also come into the computer room. Lucky for me, I'm a electrician, so it's no big deal to me. Since I plan on switching a lot of the display to LED's, I think I have enought power to run the 3 new controllers I have planned for 2011. It's not all that hard to run most of your own electrical wiring and save a few buck. Get your own parts, pull your own wire. Hire the electrician to make the terminations. The more you do yourself, the more you can save.

Think of it this way, you call us to hang a light fixture. Do you really want us to pick the fixture out for you? My wife knows if she does that, she's getting a bulb socket with a 60watt bulb in it hung where she wants the light :D

Tom Straub

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testraub wrote:

When I re-wired the entire house many years ago, I decided we needed some outdoor receptacles. It started as a small project, one out front, one out back. Since that time I have added to the outdoor receptacles. I now have 4 out front, three on the side, and 3 out back. I also ran Cat5 out front and to the side and into the computer room. The speaker wire and feeds to the FM transmitter also come into the computer room. Lucky for me, I'm a electrician, so it's no big deal to me. Since I plan on switching a lot of the display to LED's, I think I have enought power to run the 3 new controllers I have planned for 2011. It's not all that hard to run most of your own electrical wiring and save a few buck. Get your own parts, pull your own wire. Hire the electrician to make the terminations. The more you do yourself, the more you can save.

Think of it this way, you call us to hang a light fixture. Do you really want us to pick the fixture out for you? My wife knows if she does that, she's getting a bulb socket with a 60watt bulb in it hung where she wants the light :D

Tom Straub
i took that one step further and had the electrician put my outdoor outlets on their own breaker. One for each side and one for the front. Now no worries if i plug in a vacuum cleaner and the circuit trips (had that happen two years ago before i got creative).

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caniac wrote:

testraub wrote:
When I re-wired the entire house many years ago, I decided we needed some outdoor receptacles. It started as a small project, one out front, one out back. Since that time I have added to the outdoor receptacles. I now have 4 out front, three on the side, and 3 out back. I also ran Cat5 out front and to the side and into the computer room. The speaker wire and feeds to the FM transmitter also come into the computer room. Lucky for me, I'm a electrician, so it's no big deal to me. Since I plan on switching a lot of the display to LED's, I think I have enought power to run the 3 new controllers I have planned for 2011. It's not all that hard to run most of your own electrical wiring and save a few buck. Get your own parts, pull your own wire. Hire the electrician to make the terminations. The more you do yourself, the more you can save.

Think of it this way, you call us to hang a light fixture. Do you really want us to pick the fixture out for you? My wife knows if she does that, she's getting a bulb socket with a 60watt bulb in it hung where she wants the light :D

Tom Straub
i took that one step further and had the electrician put my outdoor outlets on their own breaker. One for each side and one for the front. Now no worries if i plug in a vacuum cleaner and the circuit trips (had that happen two years ago before i got creative).


1 out back and 2 out front (the original ones) are "shared" but on seperate circuits. The 7 "New" one's (installed last year) are each on seperate 20A breakers. I am adding another subpanel this year with 4 more. The subpanel is going to be plugged into a 50A receptacle I install a few years ago for the Parents RV to plug into when they visit.




Attached files 237048=12933-DSC02092.JPG

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Another thing my set up has allowed me to do is sit in my office and see almost all of my display through the window, from the comfort of my desk chair. Just open the blinds, turn off the lights, and no one knows I'm there. That way I can view the sequencing and change things without going out in the cold at all. It's worked out nice for me.

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Tanya,

As you have read a lot of good ideas here, one that you may want to consider is a second computer. You can get a cheap new or used laptop for about the same price as a light linker.

The cons: you could have spent that cash on lights or controllers.

The pros: you can put that "show computer" in the garage or lock box and still have a computer to use while your show is running. This is a huge pro to me.

Remember that whatever additional audio you use on the computer that is playing as well as the show will ALSO play via the FM transmitter. A second computer let's you sequence while shows are running.

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i've thought about using a second computer, i have a couple old ones laying around. the problem is my garage is on the other side of the house from where most of my display is, and the big problem with that is if i ran wires or cables going to my show then it's in the way of where i snow blow. haven't figured out a way to get around that yet. i want to dig some holes under with some pvc in the ground so i have outlets and cables and everything going underground so they're not in the way of the sidewalk and stuff but that's going to be a whole lot of feet per cord.

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tanya wrote:

but that's going to be a whole lot of feet per cord.

Does that mean you are thinking of putting the controllers in your garage as opposed to out in your yard?

If you are running just lines to power the controllers (out in the yard) then you could use individual wires (black, white, green) in the conduit as opposed to Romex and save some money...

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tanya wrote:

i've thought about using a second computer, i have a couple old ones laying around. the problem is my garage is on the other side of the house from where most of my display is, and the big problem with that is if i ran wires or cables going to my show then it's in the way of where i snow blow. haven't figured out a way to get around that yet. i want to dig some holes under with some pvc in the ground so i have outlets and cables and everything going underground so they're not in the way of the sidewalk and stuff but that's going to be a whole lot of feet per cord.


One word... ATTIC. Use it to run from point A to B

Tom Straub

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testraub wrote:

One word... ATTIC. Use it to run from point A to B

Tom Straub


I have actually thought about doing that. You could easily put an after market Cat5 socket in the ceiling of your "computer room" and then do the same in the eave of the house. You wouldn't see it, and the eave would protect it from the weather (especially if you placed it deep in a corner).

BRILLIANT!!!:dude:

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