Monday, November 15, 2010

November 15, 2010

November 2010

What a month! I thought last month was busy. I have been takingn every Monday and Friday off this month giving me 4 day weekends just devoted to getting things completed and staged for setup, it’s actually relaxing to go to work now, since I only work 8 hours on the job, versus my 18+ hour days at home. This year I actually have used my time off wisely and completed a lot of the Christmas projects, but it seems like every time I finish something, I remember I still had to work on something else I never finished, one of these years I will stop expanding the display and actually have a schedule I can keep. One more week and we start hanging the lights, I have 9 days off this comming week and it's all devoted to the display, and with any luck we will be fliping the switch the day after Thanksgiving.

We received the correct controller boxes. I still have not heard back from Broadband regarding my return, the last they told me was they were waiting on approval for the RMA (2 weeks now), I don’t think they want this order back. Anyway, the controllers fit perfect in the new enclosures and I highly recommend them for the LOR controllers.

We had to order additional rubber grommets for the wire taps on the enclosures, and after checking Lowes and Home Depot, who used to carry them and have now decided they didn’t need to stock them, putting me into another Google search for grommets, man! these things are expensive, I was getting prices up to $20.00 per 100; finally, I thought I would check Grainger and I’m glad I did, I purchased over 600 grommets for around $12.00 and Grainger has a depot just down the street from my office, plus I get a discount from my work, can’t bet that, I will definitely have to source them in the future.

The new Rainbow Floods have been installed into the fixture enclosures and tested; I was a little disappointed on the performance of the LED Floods, the color is outstanding but the projection of the color is about half of a 150 Watt flood light, I will have to do some tests once we set them up to determine if the will be adequate for my needs, if not, I can possibly incorporate some incandescent bulbs to reach higher up the front of the house.

We added another 3000 feet of SPT wire for all the new elements in the display this year, I have calculated 500 feet already for the elements, but I know we always come up short and with adding another 7 controllers this year maybe the extra 2500 feet will get-r done! (Feature Note: we are approaching 3 miles of electrical cable in this display)

I came across a great deal at Home Depot on-line for SPT1 Vampire Plugs, typically a good price on these is around .60 cents each, HD had them on-line only for .30 each in lots of 100, I don’t think I will ever need that many but couldn’t pass them up at that price, I ordered 100 mail and a 100 female plugs and now I have extra for next year.......Hmmm, I wounder what I can build now?

We started restringing our custom C9 strings with the new C9 Retrofit LED bulbs, and found that I ordered short by 125 C9 LED bulbs……Still trying to figure out how I came up short on the order, the only thing I can think of is; I only counted one string instead of the 3 strings we have, and at $1.00 each per bulb makes this my first Oh-oh expense this year (Laura can only handle so many Oh-oh expenses per season). After logging-on to my friends at Action Lighting and seeing all the C7’s out-of-stock, I really began to worry, but lucky for me they had the C9’s in stock and have already shipped, close call!

We just installed the new EDM-TX-RDS Transmitter antenna on the new EDM transmitter and all I can say is WOW! The clarity is outstanding and the distance is unbelievable, I drove completely around the block with it set at 10mW and heard very little static on the station, it’s so powerful I’m actually going to have to choke it back a bit so I don’t find myself breaking the law. The RDS transmission part of the transmitter still is not working correctly and I’m not going to push to get it configured this year unless I have the time to get figure it out as I have more pressing things to do.

I sent an e-mail to Toys-For-Tots last weekend asking to be a collection point again this year. In the past we have alway collected toys for the Marine Corps Reserve Toys-for-Tots and it has always been a great success. I need to remind myself they don’t always respond promptly and I need to be patient and wait for the reply, but they have always come through in the past and this display has always added a few more toys for them to pass out for the Christmas Season.

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