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Extension cords for light strings or for powering controllers?

I use  SPT1 for light strings and buy in 1000 ft spools

Daryl

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Not sure if I would trust used as the shipping alone for cords would be much more than what you can buy them at Walmart for. They do have 25-foot 3 prong cords at Walmart for less than $6 each.  You can even find them on their website and get free shipping.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Hyper-Tough-1-Outlet-25FT-Candy-Cane-Extension-Cord-Red-White/735522295

I use these for Christmas. Best price out there.

 

Edited by GriswoldStyle
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I wouldn't go used unless it is someone cleaning out there garage at a yard sale (limited use).  those things break down and get brittle depending on you environment (I know first hand, when we moved to the midwest stuff was left behind and not stored properly - long story).  When we returned lots of it was not usable/safe.

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I shop Walmart.  Know what lengths and GAUGEs you will need.  Know current Prices for each gauge-length. Grab good deals. Avoid season starts (except for a Pre-season kick-off sale ), be ready at season close to grab bargains.

IMHO be flexible on cord colors you will accept. (use colored Zip Ties at both ends to identify different cords of the same color)

Be current and voltage drop aware in your layout and cord selection.

I feed from the outlet with 12 or 14 (triple-tap end) , split off to other controllers with 16 at the first controller  (None of my controllers draw more than 400W all on)

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Option #1: Sometimes I just go to Home Depot and look at their wire selections, they have good prices on triple wire cord, and then I just buy the type ends {male and female} I need to use on them there as well. 

Option #2: If I can't find a dual tap or triple tap end that can be wired directly to the cord wire, I'll use a weatherproof outlet cover and a GFCI outlet that I can wire the cord directly too, this way the outlet is kept dry and safe, as well as keeping the display {and some humans} safe. 

The #2 option listed above is good for CTB16PC or any ~AC~ controllers that are powered with 2 cords that have the grounding plug on them.   CCD controllers are only 2 prong, so even though there is no ground wire here, this still works very well for them too.

Myself, I try and keep all my CTB16PC controllers all near each other and just run SPT1 or SPT2 extension cords to each item these controllers control.

But getting into RGB Smart Pixels this year, those controllers need to stay with the light strands they control, so powering them is going to take some new extension cords and some new longer cat5 cables as no way can I put them all in the same area and run their lights from them and have them work reliably.

But used extension cords, you're better off buying new, depending on use and type, these do and will break down over time, so replacement would be necessary and you could be buying cords that are already near or in this state of needing to be replaced, then you've wasted you money for unusable extension cords.  Always try and buy new when you can, you'll be much happier than trying to figure out why things may not be working correctly or if at all with used cords!

Good Luck!

 

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Costco carries a 2 pack of 50' 12/3 cords for like $30-$40.  I've cut a few shorter to length and used plug ends I bought at Home Depot.  Still cheaper than buying shorter cords sometimes.

If you're looking for 2 prong 16awg SPT2 cords,  I've bought 6' cords from the Dollar Store.  When I need them longer, I cut them in half and solder in some SPT2 cord to make them longer.  Sometimes it's cheaper than trying to buy SPT plugs during the off season.

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  • 1 month later...

Menards is where I’ve gotten most of mineleading up to Christmas, and the At Home Store when everything goes to 75% off after Christmas. I think I picked up 15-20 chords in January that are 12 feet but have three female outlets on the ends. 

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