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Rant about Action Lighting C9 Strands

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Well I bought about 14 25' SPT2 C9 Strands from Action Lighting.


The sockets on these are terrible quality. Many of the sockets you really have to screw in the C9 bulb tight. Some you have to tighten so much it is on the verge of breaking in your hand. One bulb I had to tighten so hard that the base snapped off. Some times you can get the bulb to go on but after about an hour it turns off and you have to tighten it some more.

I have one socket that is driving me nuts. You must tighten the C9 Bulb very very tight and then loosen it a little and it will turn on. You bearly bump it, and you have to do the process again. What makes this really frustrating is that this C9 Socket is on top of the roof line. I really don't feel like bringing my dremel tool to the top and carefully cutting the socket off and then trying to get another socket on.

I also bought a bag of C9 Sockets last year from them and they have the same quality issues.

I bought a 1000' spool of C9 wire/sockets from them and they work great! After comparing the two sockets, you can tell they are a different design. The sockets on the spools are much much better.

I picked up 14 strands of C9s from Hobby Lobby and every socket works flawlessly. You would think for the price you have to pay for these "commercial" strands that they would work better.

It is frustrating when you are so far behind already and have to put up with this kind of stuff.

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mountainwxman wrote:

Richard... disconnect the string then take a flat screwdriver and pry the center pin upwards a little. I had to do this so my strobes would make contact.

I agree these sockets should be better quality than they are.

The one where you said you had to back off a bit to make contact pull out the side tab also.

I had the same problem with some of my Goodwill bought strings.

If you have a old nut pick try that , the little hook gets under the tab easy

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I was kinda bummed when I found out about the quality of them after ordering...

I thought they would be like a normal bulb...where you have an entire metal screw thing for the socket to go into. No such luck! It's a tab on the bottom and a piece of copper on the side! Anyway...I had some trouble liek you, Richard...but I twisted hard and thought I broke some...twisted MORE, and they finally went on!

I got bags of light holders...and crimped them on myself...it worked great.

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I'v had had those problems with C-9 sockets also. I found that it wasn't the tab in the bottom, but that the bulb was seating against the riminside the top of the socket. If you look inside on the angled edge of the socket, some have a "casting" ridge, and my bulbs would seat on that line, not allowing the bulb to screw all the way down. Some of these ridges were small and some were larger. I think thats why some work and others dont. I just took out my pocket knife and rolled it around inside the problem sockets to remove that small line. Now the bulb will screw all the way down to the tab..................Mike

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There is a solution so you do not break the bulbd.

I took my mini grinder and just took about 1/8" off the socket and they work perfect.

You can use a file or what ever but it just takes a little to get the job done.

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lkcubsrule wrote:

I thought they would be like a normal bulb...where you have an entire metal screw thing for the socket to go into. No such luck! It's a tab on the bottom and a piece of copper on the side!

You won't find any Christmas light type sockets made like that except in very old sets. To get "full" sockets you would have to use pin type sockets rather than the holiday type sockets. The pin type cost around $1.00 each and that is if you order from Action Lighting or Creative Displays. (They can be2 or 3 dollars at Home Depot or Lowes.)


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I had to cut about 100 of them last year. Took my jig saw and placed it upside down in my portable workbench vise. I then placed a wood guard about 1/4 of an inch away from the blade. Perfect cut everytime. Just like with any tool, usecommon sense and take your time to avoid injury. I was able to cut all of them in about 15 minutes.

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