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    Flagpole or Steel pole???


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    I really want a 20 ft. high megatree for next year's display. I already bought 64 strands of lights for it. The only problem I have is that I don't know if I shoud go with the kit at http://www.christmaslightshow.com/xcart/product.php?productid=32&cat=5&page=1 with the Telescopic Sunsetter Flagpole orinterlocking steel pole. I would really prefer to use the flagpole but if it won't work, there is no reason to do it that way.I need your help!

    Sunsetter Telescopic Flagpole

    Pros: 1.) Made of aircraft grade aluminum

    2.) Looks nice year round

    3.) Since it is telescopic, it would be easier to attach the lights

    Worries: 1.) The pole will not be able to withstand the weight of 64 strands of lights and our almost always 50 m.p.h. winds. I don't want to have to try to take out a broken flagpole cemented into the ground!!!

    2.) I am worried that the weight of the lights will make it impossible to raise the pole

    Interlocking Steel Poles

    Pros: 1.) Would be a lot stronger

    Worries: 1.) would look aweful durring the summer with just a cement foundation with a hole in the middle

    2.) HEAVY

    3.) Storage

    4.) Where do I find interlocking poles?

    5.) Cost?

    Please let me know your suggestions and opinions!

    Kirk

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    Kirk,

    I would recommend against the flagpole. In fact I would recommend a 20' sch 40 steel pipe. I got one for about 60 at a plumbing supply house. I ended up not going 20' because my yard won't support it. But a single piece of pipe will be much stronger.

    There have been many Mega trees collapse lately. I would overbuild so that you don't end up with a heap on your lawn.

    If you go with the flagpole, be sure to clamp the sections together to reduce the strain on the pins, and guy it in the middle and the top.

    J.

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    Not the weight per se. When the tree is balanced you shouldn't have a problem. It's when the wind kicks up that you may have a hinging effect at the coupling.

    (I'm not an engineer by any means, just seen a lot of tree designs by people here)

    Theres no way to guarantee (at least by our means) what will and won't work. My only advice is that you err on the side of caution and safety. Rebuilding a broken tree will be no fun. I've seen too many posts of "I did this, and never had a problem..." followed by "Mega tree down" in a later post.

    Anecdotal for sure. But something to think about...

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    :waycool:I vote Sunsetter Flagpole. Mine has been used 4 years without problem, Clamp it at the joints. Make a metal plate to attach to the top bolt, Drill 12 holes for eyebolts, Raise 1st then run 3 support wires, then hang your lights after pole is up.

    Been through 60 mph + winds here.

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    I don't use the Sunsetter flagpole. I use an AEP flagpole. Same concept but a little different in design. I have 64 strings on it and I guy it 4 ways using nylon rope. We had some good winds here this year and it held up with no problem. I plan on adding 64 more strings next year. I am debating on adding rubber boots to the joints. So far I am happy with the pole.

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    kirkmbrown2001 wrote:

    Tfischer, it would only be 6,400 lights. 64 strands each with 100 lights

    Oops, typed that from memory which is obviously woefully short these days...

    I would *think* 6400 lights would be ok, properly guyed and with the Fernco clamps on each joint... But then I only have one tree's data to go from, and mine has 5400 lights, a topper, and 12 strobes in it...

    -Tim

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    Tim,

    Just a quick question, have you ever thought about using a clevis or hitch pin at each section rather than the fernco couplings? The reason I ask is that based on what a Fernco is made of that it may be more likely to compress under the load where the pins wouldn't and the load would be transmitted to the pole directly.

    I'm thinking of making this change to my mega tree this year because even with the Fernco's I've noticed some compression wear at the pin holes.

    Tony

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    the flag pole would work great for 64 minis we are using 96 on our mega tree.So we are using 4 " square tubing on ours. The advantage to the flag pole is you can fly old glory until next year.Our 12' tree's we built our out of steal not pvc. We can lower them with a boat winch attached with the lights still attached to them,they will lower to 8' where we can store them away until next year.

    The key is to storage and being able to set up quickly.We are using 24 lor boxes so we got a lot of lights to set up, in a short time. 128 mini' 64-10'leaping arches 5 -12' trees.4- 17' palms 7 light poles. and various othergifts, drums, 16 color minis ,etc placed around.

    Here is a video with our 22' mega tree we could not find lights long enough to go 25'

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    I'm using the sunsetter and the kit base. This was my first season with it and we had over 50 mph winds during a recient storm, and the pole tever had any issues. My setup used only 32 strands of lights though but did have the big 5 sided star (purchased from Daryl at PC2007) on top that I wraped with ropelight. I used 4 ropes to keep it from moving to much at the top.

    -Patrick

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    Kirk,

    I use a 50lb theatrical lighting base and a 1.5' x 21' steel pipe. I have a metal flange fitting on top that screws onto the pipe and I terminate the light strands there. This tree has 48 strands of red and gold for a total of 9600 lights.

    The aluminum ring at the bottom of the tree is 9' in diameter and is placed on top of wood stakes driven into the ground and secured with a metal strap.

    I don't even have to use guy wires with this set-up.

    Charles

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    Charles you cheat though, you forgot to metion you had your elves build that for you...:laughing:

    I use 2 10' 1-1/4 steel EMT that is threaded on each end that are able to be screwed together with the threaded coupler to make the tree 20' total ans made me a buried sleve for it.

    Now I have a tutorial on how to make a cement base for these that is buried and you never see it during the offseason. I just need to upload the pictures and write it up which I hope to have done by the end of the month.

    Pretty much what I did is I got a 2" PVC schd 40 and must be schd 40. Dug me a hole about 2-1/2' and got me a 8" dia cement form. I put the form down in the ground about an inch lower then the surface. The PVC is being held inside the form with 4 peieces of 3/8" rebar for strengh with the cement is poured. I make sure everything is level and pour the cement in the form double checking along the way to make sure the pvc stays level in both directions. I need to mention though that the PVC is sticking about an inch higher then the cement form. So once I finished pouring the form I pour cement on the outside of the form in the hole to give it extra strength. Once all that has set for a couple of days I filled everything back in with dirt and if you did everything right dirt will fill the hole and level with the top of the PVC and the form will be buried as well. Then you just paint the drain cap green, screw it on and you set because it sits level with the ground and you never see it during the summer or matter of fact during the winter.

    I will have a more detailed how-to and pictures up in a month. Yes they are heavy but not nothing a couple of people can not put up. You can by the poles at Home Depot for about $32-34 for each 10' section. So when you are done for the season you can just unscrew them and store them in 2 10' sections and call it a day. The nice thing about these poles is if you use Darryl Browns tree topper it will just screw right on top of the pole. The pole fits in the sleve perfect and it is soild.

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    Tony Furst wrote:

    Tim,

    Just a quick question, have you ever thought about using a clevis or hitch pin at each section rather than the fernco couplings? The reason I ask is that based on what a Fernco is made of that it may be more likely to compress under the load where the pins wouldn't and the load would be transmitted to the pole directly.

    I don't want to drill into my pole, since it gets used as a flagpole the rest of the year...

    I've never had the problems you describe, but what one could do is not engage the pin at all... have one person hold it just a bit lower than the hole (e.g. the section about 1/2" or 1" lower than normal) then secure the fernco connector. Then the pin won't be taking any of the weight at all...

    -Tim

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    How does that 50lb stand wrk out? Pretty stable in the wind? I am doing a 15ft tree this year and don't really want to put in a permanent sleeve in case I don't like the location. I would think you could still guy wire it to make it more stable. Where did you get it?

    Scott

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    kirkmbrown2001 wrote:

    Interlocking Steel Poles

    Worries: 1.) would look aweful durring the summer with just a cement foundation with a hole in the middle

    2.) HEAVY

    3.) Storage

    4.) Where do I find interlocking poles?

    5.) Cost?

    Please let me know your suggestions and opinions!

    I don't know anything about the flag poles but here's some thoughts on your worries about the steel poles.

    1. If you do it right all you would see in the summer is a cap. The one thing I would change from xxxxxx's description is to have the cement 4 to 6 inches below the ground so that there is 4 to 6 inches of dirt on top. Otherwise soil won't drain properly and the grass may not grow.

    2. Yeah. Builds muscles? ;)

    3. Garage maybe?

    4. Home Depot, Lowes, any hardware or plumbing supply store.

    5. Less than the flag pole I think.

    TED

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    schristi69,

    We are just about to take the last mega tree down. Here are three pics of this tree. The base is a 24" x 24" x 1/2 steel plate with a center threaded hole for the 21' x 1.5"pipe and four smaller holes for stakes.

    This tree has been sitting just like the pic for 6 weeks now with no wind problem. We have had several 35-40 mph winds come through and all it does is shake the lights.

    There are no guy wires at all. The 9' diameter aluminum base ring is sitting on top of wood stakes and held in place with metal strap. The light strands give the whole rig it's stability. There are 4800 reds and 4800 gold minis on the tree. If I lived in Chicago or Boston I would probably guy it anyway.

    I had a shop make the ring and the base.

    http://lightstomusic.com/Lee/treebase.gif

    http://lightstomusic.com/Lee/treering.gif

    http://lightstomusic.com/Lee/21treepic.gif

    Charles

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