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Trasher74

Lights stay on - 2 channels

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I think I know where Mega is going with his request, and I agree with him.... (there is method in his (our) madness, it's just why do the rest of you see through my disguise of it being Christmas related......... (I'm referring to how nut ball sounding it is... however,  it's me that is the nutball..........)

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2 hours ago, a31ford said:

...... (I'm referring to how nut ball sounding it is... however,  it's me that is the nutball..........)

all of us nutballs gotta stick together 

😝😝😝

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Okay, I'm going to try reversing the polarity as Mega Arch has suggested when I get home.  I will say, I don't think that's gonna help, but I will try.

As for what a31ford has suggested, I'm still a bit confused.  I'm lost with "vampire" plugs.  Not sure where to get the resistors mentioned (are you other guys on board with the resistor suggestion?), and still confused as to what to do with the resistors.

The "far ends" of the lights are at the top of the flag pole.

So, it is rain and weather on the "far end" female "end to end" plugs that are the problem?  Can I cut off the far end female plug and cap them?  Is this where the resistor goes?  Cut the wires, solder in the resistor and epoxy cap them?

Sorry that I don't always understand....I've noticed that as I get older, it's harder to learn and remember new things.

All of your help is very much appreciated.

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Can get resistors at radio supply stores or online. Don’t cut ends off. Fold wire ends of resistor and plug into the female ends of light strands. Just tape in place to see if it works for your situation. If it does, squirt clear silicone sealant all over it to hold in place and keep moisture out. 

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Alright, this entire conversation has me convinced that I am clueless!  Anyway, reversing the polarity seems to have helped.  Not 100% I don't think, but it did have a affect (effect?).  

Back to the resistor conversation, if I understand correctly, you are saying to take a resistor (similar to the one shown), and insert the wires into the holes on the end plug, like the photo shown.  And then silicone, etc. etc.  Correct?

Now I have a hypothetical question.  Let's say that next year, I decide to get all new lights (16 strings for the MegaTree).  I've considered going all green instead of multi-color.  It seems that the female plug at the far end is the source of the problem.  Why wouldn't you cut it off and end the string with caps, epoxy, silicone, or whatever, obviously not letting the two wires touch?  

Also, now that Radio Shack is gone, can someone possibly find a link to the right resistor please?

femaleplug.jpg

resistor.jpg

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Buy full wave quality lights during presales in early 2018 and shouldn’t have to do anything. I haven’t had issues like this with any of the ones from HLE and they give 3 season warranty. (Haven’t needed the warranty either. Still haven’t had a failure with theirs)

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& the female is not the problem. That’s the easiest place to add the bandaid resistor. Except that it’s up in the air. 

So can tap a vampire at the ground end and do the same thing. Most likely. 

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 LETS get back to basics.... 
 
take the two strings that are giving problems...unplug them at the controller, and plug two OTHER strings into the channels that those 2 where plugged into.... even if you have to use 2 new strings OR simply move two known good strings to these controller channels, this will prove that it is the strings that are giving you problems and not the controller.
 
let us know the results of the test...
 
A) the problem is gone. (the strings are the problem)
 
B ) the problem went to the two other strings you tried (controller is the problem)
Edited by a31ford

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14 hours ago, Mega Arch said:

Buy full wave quality lights during presales in early 2018 and shouldn’t have to do anything. I haven’t had issues like this with any of the ones from HLE and they give 3 season warranty. (Haven’t needed the warranty either. Still haven’t had a failure with theirs)

CDI (Creative Displays Inc) is currently holding their presale of 40% off until January 31st. :) 

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14 hours ago, Mega Arch said:

& the female is not the problem. That’s the easiest place to add the bandaid resistor. Except that it’s up in the air. 

So can tap a vampire at the ground end and do the same thing. Most likely. 

Daniel is correct on both.

I've done it with my mega tree but I didn't add a vampire plug for the resistor. I just added the resistor to the two male prongs on the light plug and plugged it in. Fixed the issue I had a few years ago with some pesky issues.

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2 hours ago, Santas Helper said:

.....I just added the resistor to the two male prongs on the light plug and plugged it in. Fixed the issue I had a few years ago with some pesky issues.

But that’s just too easy. 

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a31ford.......yes, I have determined that it is the two strings that are the problem.

I reversed the polarity, and there was an improvement, but not a total fix.

I don't know about you all, but we don't have Radio Shack any more, so I've not found any local stores that sell resistors, and I haven't pursued purchasing any yet.  Thanks MegaArch for providing the link for the resistors.  It looks like they do not have any in stock.  And at 14¢ each, I'm not sure my budget can handle it!!  I am curious to pursue the resistor option.  So far, all the advice and help I have received here has been good.  

Santa's Helper....... I appreciate the information about Creative Displays Inc. but that is outside my budget.  They might call it a sale, but way too expensive for me.

Why do you guys think these lights stop functioning properly at some point?  They aren't that old.  One day they were okay, the next these problems started.  I still wonder if moisture is my main problem here in the Pacific Northwest.  I've had individual bulbs stop functioning, not because the bulb went out, but because the metal contacts rust and fall off.  I'm still thinking about terminating the light strands at the female end (next year most likely).  They are up at the top of the display and collect a lot of water.

Time will tell, thanks for all the advice.

Edited by Trasher74
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Partly because the lights Santas Helper (Tom) threw at you are full-wave sealed. The cheap ones you have are half-wave and not sealed.

I buy similar from HLE. With a 3 season warranty, are we really spending that much more? Oh, & I’ve not had to try the warranty as haven’t had a failure yet. 

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On 12/18/2017 at 10:36 AM, Trasher74 said:

Okay, I'm going to try reversing the polarity as Mega Arch has suggested when I get home.  I will say, I don't think that's gonna help, but I will try.

As for what a31ford has suggested, I'm still a bit confused.  I'm lost with "vampire" plugs.  Not sure where to get the resistors mentioned (are you other guys on board with the resistor suggestion?), and still confused as to what to do with the resistors.

The "far ends" of the lights are at the top of the flag pole.

So, it is rain and weather on the "far end" female "end to end" plugs that are the problem?  Can I cut off the far end female plug and cap them?  Is this where the resistor goes?  Cut the wires, solder in the resistor and epoxy cap them?

Sorry that I don't always understand....I've noticed that as I get older, it's harder to learn and remember new things.

All of your help is very much appreciated.

There is a Fry's in Seattle :) (but don't count on their stock being complete, if it like the ones down here :( )

A resistor is just a small non-polarized load. You could use a4W  C7 Night light, Glade plugin...

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For my AC strings, I have been using Big Box store strings. They only last a few seasons even though I brought them indoors and left them ON to dry out.  The leads on the LEDS rust off :( at seasons end . If it had been only 1 or 2 LEDs, I would fix. But it was 75% (the leads don't survive bulb removal when rusted).  My first few fails were $20 strings. Now I use $5 strings and just bin them when they fail

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as The Ducks said "A resistor is just a small non-polarized load. You could use a4W  C7 Night light, or a Glade plugin... "

The solution is to get a resistor, a small incandescent light bulb, a glade plug-in (to act as a resistor), what ever, use a cheap 3ft 2 wire extension cord (you know, those ones with a 3 way outlet on the female end they sell in Walmart) plug it into the channel, plug the light string into the 3 way end, along with a real bulb nightlight (not the ones with a light sensor, the old school ones with a thumb switch.) (or you could use the resistor in one of the 3 way outlets (tape it all up with electrical tape so the bare wires are not showing) ), or you could use a male end vampire plug and solder the resistor to the backside teeth, epoxy it (so there are no bare wires, and plug it into the 3 way end along with the said problem string.

Vampire%20-%20full.jpg

 

Bottom Left, is the back side of a male vampire plug, solder the resistor across the pins, epoxy over (so no bare wires), plug into 3 way cord along with light string.

s-l1000.jpg

 

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15 hours ago, Trasher74 said:

 

Santa's Helper....... I appreciate the information about Creative Displays Inc. but that is outside my budget.  They might call it a sale, but way too expensive for me.

Why do you guys think these lights stop functioning properly at some point?  They aren't that old.  

CDI might be expensive but with 40% off, it's worth it for me. I'm still using LED lights I purchased from them back in 2006.

Keep in mind your basic store bought (half wave) lights weren't originally designed or built to be faded up and down like the (full wave) lights from HLE or CDI. That could explain the failure right there.

So which is more expensive? Buying lights every year or buying lights every 10 years. Hummm

But I do understand about the budget thing. B)

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2 hours ago, Santas Helper said:

CDI might be expensive but with 40% off, it's worth it for me. I'm still using LED lights I purchased from them back in 2006.

I'm not as blown away by the prices at CDI now that I read the small print and see that the price is per case, not per string!

Thanks guys.

 

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