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anyone else having a hard year


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Ok so saturday was the big show and we get an ice stormand itdelayed the show , took out strings of lights on roof, animated deer light went out. mega tree light bulbs broke, snow man wont stay up, we fix the problems in the moring and come time for the show we come up with this lor program problems ( songs would stop in middle of show so we would have to start it again) finally gave up and cancelled show last night email lor and got it fixed with upgrade. urrr. startingto pull out hair out. but wont stop us from doing it again next year. Hopefully everything tonight will work.

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and didn't you guys just have a bout of really strong winds also this past weekend?

here we're recieving the winter weather you guys just dealt with... mostly strong winds no precip.

me i'm just having issues with controllers and $$$.. so far my cheapy lights are still up and lit.

so far.

how many lights you have so far?

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I'm having a tough year, but it's my first year with animation and I jumped in over my head with 96 channels + dmx + video + building a 20' z-tree and 8' wreath/video screen and 8 mega mini pvc trees.. etc...

I would have been ok, but the haunted house I direct sucked the life out of me and put me three weeks behind on setup/sequencing.... (I built all the stuff last summer).

But, I am not a quitter and the show should go live by tomorrow night..:cool:

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Issues, issues, issues. Eveyrday a new issue to deal with. First there was the electric meter fire, got that fixed (ka ching). Then there was the computer not starting after the power fire, it started working. Then there was the circuit overload issues, installed more circuits (ka ching). Then the X-10 outlets weren't turning on, emptied the interface memory and it solved that issue. NOw my computer is rebooting when ever it feels like it. Not sure if that has something to do with it not turning back on after the power was fixed, but it rebooted in the middle of a show last night. Now my mega tree is falling apart so I am working to get it fixed.

Yeah, I have had some issues, but the show still looks great ands no one knows about the issues but me and my family.

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I got a late start (my own fault :D) along with the weather not cooperating has put me behind quite a bit from where I wanted to be.

I was discouraged and had thoughts of "sitting out" for a year but didn't... The show is a least a week away from being ready... I will have less up this year than the last 2 years most likely...

And you know what??

I am LOVING it!

THIS year... I am making certain to NOT get stressed, taking time out to NOT make my family "father-less" during set-up, and accepting help from my youngest daughter who just turned 7 and now puts her coat on and WANTS to come out every single time I go to work on the display. She has held boxes of light clips, handed me the extension pole, climbed the ladder to supervise (only a few steps up after I realized she knew no fear and set limits for her), and offered words of encouragement when she saw me wrestling with something. For example... last night I went out as it was mild, calm, and had stopped raining it seemed, yet as soon as I started the winds picked up (35 mph) and the temperature started falling fast and made it hard to use the extension pole (20 ft) to hook the lights to lift them up to the top of the tree with all that wind.... Out she came all bundled up and said "Dad, I can hook them for you!", and she grabbed and placed the light strand in the hook for me so I could lift them up as we worked around the tree. We finished the tree and came in and dryed off and got warm with a cup of hot cocoa (coffee for me). She looked at me and said, "Dad..... I love the lights this year!" as she gave me a big hug.

We all like to make memories with our displays... this year I am realizing that the ones being made as I set up my display are the most important ones! :)

So while it may be hard this year... it is all worth it!

Terry

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I have had a tremendously rough time with the LOR software this year. Ranging from the show stopping and locking up the computer, to the software not saving the the LSC files to the correct directory. If I were to go missing, there is no way anyone in my family could get the show up and running, let a alone restart it when the software decides to go astray!

Just check out the threads over on LOR

http://lightorama.mywowbb.com/forum71/

Last year was my first year. I attacked 48 channels and a 24' mega tree. The season was a huge success, even with the steep learning curve. Once I had the sequences completed, the shows built and scheduled, I never had to worry about being there during the times it was scheduled to work, it just worked perfectly.

This holiday season I will be a home-body. I need to be at home monitoring the system so that I can reboot and restart.

It has pretty much drained me already and we are only 3 days into December. Not sure if I am going to do it again next year. This is supposed to be a festive, happy time of the year...I am anything but....

Look for a big fire sale on eBay if things don't get better!

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Yes! But I'm not a quitter either......

1st year and was lost during set up. Download this, do that, upload, rip songs and tear my hair out is what I did!

Then I got everything working YEAH!!

Then, software problems. Fixed that after fighting my computer for a few days.

Then, I set up my transmitter. Two days to get that thing dialed in and set up right.

I put up more lights alomost everyday. I'll be completely done this weekend.

Ha ha Ha!

I haven't had one person drive by yet either. The neighbors think it's cool, but I'm wondering if anyone will show? Oh well, I'm doing it for my own reasons and best of all, my daughters are helping me and learning too. I'm really proud of my 11 year old. She's programming songs, making Peanuts figures and helping set up eveything. I think it's something she'll always remember. I just hope I won't pull a Clark Griswold hissy fit when it all goes south when there's twenty cars outside, honking their horns and yelling, "Come on! Where's the Show?" .....That was a dream I had the other night.

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Finally, some measure of success. The show is running tonight. Ironing out bugs and working on another sequence.

Learned that when the monitor goes into power saving on the computer that also kills the video...doh!

The moving heads aren't on, acting really weird...will try to get them going for the weekend.

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I've had a rotten year so far, have thought about throwing in the towel and just packing up what is already out. The weather has been horrible and isn't cooperating so we lost most of this past weekend to snow, hail,freezing rain and wind.I've only got one controller out so far, up on the roof, haven't finished our 80 foot Maple, just too much to do. But, I'll keep on punching it out and hopefully get it done so that we can light up this coming weekend.

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Planned to have our display up by Sunday 2nd Dec, but due to rain and wind we got behind. We also realised on Sunday that we would not have enough extension cables so had to buy more cable yesterday .mad.gif

With a lot of luck we should be up and running this Saturday. keeping fingers crossed as its our 1st yearusing LOR.

Linda

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All I can say is misery loves company. WIND. Was a day away from showtime and have had a solid day and one half of gusts to 50 miles per hr. I havent even had the time to add up all the damage. Had fifty led stars suspended in trees a quarter of which have come down pumeling ground props. Don't know when I'll be up and running. I was so stressed yesterday I almost decided to throw the towel in....130 hrs. in setup and this.

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Well I had a few glitches the first week. Nothing terrible.

Weather changed this weekend and I had a tree blow over Sunday. A tree blow over Saturday, a fire frame go down... so I'm told.

I wasn't around to see any of it. I was in a Hospital from 4pm Friday until 10pm Monday cuz they though I was having another heart attack.

I hate it when that happens :D

I'm better now (out of the hospital). No I have to get my really nice neighbors to put the trees back up for me cuz the wife won't let me lift anything heavier than a fork right now.

That's a pretty hard year. :happytree:

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Are you kidding? I've already bagged this year's LOR display and I'm on to plan C--a static display. But in my case it was due the the FACT that I didn't get all my lights in time for two major components of my display (had a REALLY bad LED light supplier) not to mention everything took a LOT longet to build than I anticipated. Oh yeah, AND thestrong winds preventing me from getting up on the roof for a week. If I am lucky, I'll have everything up about a week before Christmas.

Here's to Christmas '08 :]

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This one will get you laughing. All the issues I stated earlier just seem to fall by the side now that I have decided (2 weeks into the display) to add 2 more colors to my mega tree since I have ot fix it any way. That in itself is no big deal, but I have 17 songs that are programmed for the way the tree looks now. So I have brought myself more issues now that I have to resequence all of my songs to change the mega tree portion.

On the bright side, I will start with the Grinch and just make the mega tree stay green the entire song. :laughing: One down, sixteen to go!:waycool:

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While I have dodged LOR issues this year by leaving the controllers sitting in their boxes, I have had my share of light and weather issues.

Strong winds and a large truck succeeded in ripping all the lights out of the canopy of my large tree after only one week. I completely replaced those lights last weekend only to have another round of strong winds goof it up again this week. The circuit that tree is on is still popping the GFCI, so I can't tell how bad the damage is until I can fully trouble shoot.

The most irritating trouble this year, however, is with the crappy quality of Target & Wal-Mart mini lights that I purchased last year. While I used all new mini lights this year, I have had repeaded issues of strings going half-dark when they are only days out of the box. I even have a couple of strings where the plugs don't make a solid connection whenplugged into each other.

This causes untold frustration when I go out to fix it only to have them light up when Isimply look at them funny,then go out againonce I'm back inside.

This is the sort of trouble I was used to having with 2nd and 3rd season strings. Maybe it's the unusually rough weather we are getting, but I suspect quality issues are playing a large roll.

The new LEDs are working great, though. Long live LEDs.

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Ok, so now I don't feel so bad! I have had so many problems and this is my first year! First it was the LOR board! My hubby got done solder the first board the week of Thanksgiving....well, he solder something wrong and so we had to get another one! Well, he got done solder the new board last week and it works great but the adapter is not be recognized so now we are waiting to get another one from LOR so instead of having the lights on the day after Thanksgiving like planned.....they will be on Thursday or Friday night....almost two weeks behind than usually! The kicker though is everyone in my neighborhood is done with the decorations.....my one neighbor down the street was even taking pictures of their decorations!

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Whew! Finally! I have not looked at PC in 2 weeks, except very rarely. My Adult job sent me to APAC for 2 week right at the beginning of the set up season! Got home and finally working (on the display) on 11/14. The weather was awesome to get set up, then, over this past weekend, the luck turned. I had 8 inches of snow at my house over the weekend. Sunday mid morning, it warmed up, and has been raining ever since. You all have seem the news about the cities of Woodinville and Bothell, WA. Fortunately I am up on a hill, so I would like to say we can't flood, but, it is possible. The ground is SO saturated. We have not lost power yet, not like last Dec when we went 10 days with none.

Yesterday I had to compete all the final power connections to 6 boxes and 15 controllers. I found 2 LOR boxes (3 controllers total) soaked that I had been working on and thought I shut. Winds! Yikes! No Mega damage yet, keeping the fingers crossed, we learned our lesson last year. I took the star off the top so that it would not assist with wiping. Worked so far. Last nights testing went fairly well. 2 items to manage today, but LIGHT OFF tonight! Man what a haul this year was. After tonight, it's small punch list stuff to complete. Happy Holidays to All, last night was a good night

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Misery loves company. Due to weather, I could not do any roof or ladder work. I got about 1/3 of my display up but I'm having a heck of a time with sets going 1/2 dark also.

What I'm finding is the mini light sockets are not sealed that well and water is working their way in and shorting out 1/2 sets.

Since the wind died down yesterday, I was out there last night putting my mega strings into my high trees. Wind has delayed this action also.

My biggest PITA is my darn flood light holders. Water gets in and is trapped in them, it freezez and fries the socket and the bulbs.

This is not a good year so far. As it is, I'm basically doing the same show/setup as last year with maybe 1 add'l song.

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Second year doing this, first year with 32 channels of d-light. Can't complain about the boards but the software has been a nightmare. I wanted to go live december 1st but again software would not allow that. It is all related to the scheduler program that they have packaged with their software.

But - the good news I am finally up! I fixed it up sunday night and went live (too late really to count sunday) So with that I am happy! It has run for 2 days now with only small amounts of studder after running for 2.5 hours or so.

Snow blowers should be here sometime this week and that will be the last thing that I add to the display this year. (YEAH RIGHT)

Anyways hope everyone continues on the path of pain to get their displays up. I love seeing the shock and awe facter in the faces of the little one when they come by!

Merry Christmas all!

Lee

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Boy I can sure relate to all of your problems! Mine this year was being *sick* off and on from September through last week! We've had some nasty cold/flu thing going around here in Kansas that just won't let go. All of that time I was supposed to be coding sequences, building my last few statics, etc all meant that by the time I felt good enough to get outside the nice weather was gone.

Well back to plan "B", the static display went up over the last week. It looks good but man, it's so boring compared to what we had planned.

We did discover a few things as we put up a third of the yard fence C7s. We discovered that we completely HATE those green plastic light stakes. They're too flimsy, don't want to go in straight and we really don't want to use them next year when the whole 160 feet worth of three strands of fence goes up! Time to find a better solution!

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bhays wrote:

I'm having a tough year, but it's my first year with animation and I jumped in over my head with 96 channels + dmx + video + building a 20' z-tree and 8' wreath/video screen and 8 mega mini pvc trees.. etc...

I would have been ok, but the haunted house I direct s***ed the life out of me and put me three weeks behind on setup/sequencing.... (I built all the stuff last summer).

But, I am not a quitter and the show should go live by tomorrow night..:cool:

Its not easy every year... from August until November 10 or so I was fully involved in building "grandma" a cabin in back to keep her out of a nursing home and went with sore as heck elbows, knees, shoulders and back from construction into setting up Christmas display 3 weeks later then usual. We pulled it off and started lighting around the usual time but the back walkthru is still loads of work ahead of us... I am constantly exhausted because I havent been able to heal yet from putting a shingle roof and pouring a front porch slab for the building which involved 100 each 80 lb backs of concrete mixed, mixed by hoe and shovel and then the very late nights of trying to catch up my new programming of new songs this year. Then add to it the poor economy we are having down here is putting restraints on expansion. Been trying to order new controllers for weeks and cant get connected to AL to process the order, got 2 controllers at the factory being repaired, waiting weeks now on their return... yes having a very hard year this year too.

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well another weekend here and more problems. Finally got it working monday and worked all week fine even during the snowstorm thursday now today problems problems problems. grr breaker keep tripping suddenly I have 30 amps when last week it was 16 ?????? divided all the contollers on different breakers and some strands are not working on the roof. Also every once and awhile it decides not to turn stuff when it is suppose to???? The best part more snow/ice called for tomorrow. All I want for Christmas is 1 good weekend with no problems

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