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cutting shapes in coro...


tng5737
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For 2011 I would like to put some snowflakes on my roof. I want to use coro for this but from what I read cutting shapes in coro is difficult since you are going against the flutes.

Does anyone have any experience doing this? What tools would I need?

I should be offering RGB snowflakes for 2011:

If you are thinking just a single layer coro snowflake, I'd recommend reading this post before attempting it:

http://forums.planetchristmas.com/showthread.php/39166-More-Structual-Coro

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Those snowflakes are beautiful.

I use coro a lot. I sand off the rough edges. i use a jigsaw to cut my coro. The flutes aren't much of a problem except with 10 mill coro, it is a little easier to mess up, especially on the sanding part. I don't worry too much about rough edges because the items are so far away from the public, they never see it. I sand the edges for me.

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I should be offering RGB snowflakes for 2011:

If you are thinking just a single layer coro snowflake, I'd recommend reading this post before attempting it:

http://forums.planetchristmas.com/showthread.php/39166-More-Structual-Coro

Any chance you would also offer these for 5mm LED lights? I read your post from July (in the link you ref'd) asking if there was any interest in that product. I read the instruction about the coro RGB stars and it seems like with all the tools and other parts it would be a rather expensive solution. My ideas was to have twelve flakes (16-24" each) on the roof half of them would be white the other half blue, but I might just put both blue and white LEDs into each for a little more flexibility!

I like your coro stars but they seem like they are meant for level ground. Not sure what you would do with the angle of the roof.

Edited by tng5737
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Any chance you would also offer these for 5mm LED lights? I read your post from July (in the link you ref'd) asking if there was any interest in that product. I read the instruction about the coro RGB stars and it seems like with all the tools and other parts it would be a rather expensive solution. My ideas was to have twelve flakes (16-24" each) on the roof half of them would be white the other half blue, but I might just put both blue and white LEDs into each for a little more flexibility!

I like your coro stars but they seem like they are meant for level ground. Not sure what you would do with the angle of the roof.

No, it's not likely I'd offer Snow Flakes then for use with mini-lights for the structural reasons discussed in that link I posted. When I offer the CoroFlakes for sale, they will only be designed for use with RGB - there are plenty of good offerings for mini-light based snow flakes already.

You are correct - the CoroStars are not intended for use on a roof - they are intended for use on the ground or some other level surface.

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- there are plenty of good offerings for mini-light based snow flakes already.

I only found one source of flakes the around the size I wanted was a place called 'SnowFlakesInMotion' Unfortuneately, they are out of stock (maybe forever).

If you offered a kit RGB snowflake, how would you handle the addresses? In the manual for the corostars it says you need a special unit to assign adresses to the unit.

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I only found one source of flakes the around the size I wanted was a place called 'SnowFlakesInMotion' Unfortuneately, they are out of stock (maybe forever).

If you offered a kit RGB snowflake, how would you handle the addresses? In the manual for the corostars it says you need a special unit to assign adresses to the unit.

I'm actually testing two different inexpensive DMX controllers, both of which have dip switches instead of requiring programming. Of course you could also use a standard LOR DC controller at around $100 per snowflake. There are also some other controllers like the Tiger 48 DC controller at around $130 that could control three different snowflakes.

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These are a little washed out on the video but here is one of my videos on mine;

I have to give Chris1976 credit for these. Go to my site www.burtonchristmaslights.tk and then go to the projects page (towards the bottom).

4222966.jpg?479

(Several other pictures on the site. Stars are on the site too.)

I use a jig saw for mine. Rough edges...it didn't matter to me. Zipped tied it to trees and worked great for me. Ended up color washing 4 of them with the 4 Rainbow Spots I had. Wish I had 3 other spots this year...but didn't have them. Will order more for next year.

BTW...they are 2' x 2'. Had a bunch of comments on these for the people who saw them in person. REAL easy and cheap to make. Used the thin stuff too. What...4mm??? Flimsy...yeah. Needs support? Yeah. Putting them on the roof would work great.

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BTW...they are 2' x 2'. Had a bunch of comments on these for the people who saw them in person. REAL easy and cheap to make. Used the thin stuff too. What...4mm??? Flimsy...yeah. Needs support? Yeah. Putting them on the roof would work great.

I get people who want me to prove products are good in 50+mph winds...and 4mm, unsupported, flat coro wouldn't cut it in 20mph, so hence why I skipped on producing them. They do look good.

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Those snowflakes are beautiful.

I use coro a lot. I sand off the rough edges. i use a jigsaw to cut my coro. The flutes aren't much of a problem except with 10 mill coro, it is a little easier to mess up, especially on the sanding part. I don't worry too much about rough edges because the items are so far away from the public, they never see it. I sand the edges for me.

What type of blade do you use in the jigsaw?

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Yep...your right. They wouldn't hold up in 50mph winds for sure! Zipped tied them real tight against the tree trunks for that reason. Wouldn't think about flapping after that ;-)

On the holes... Guess I should put that on the page. I ended up drilling the holes with a small bit. You can put several of the snowflakes together (cut them out ahead of time ;-) when drilling the holes. I didn't write down what drill bit I used but I did use a small one, then worked my way up to the size of the mini light bulb. They stayed nice and tight throughout the season.

I uploaded the pdf of this snowflake and star on my website. It is on the projects page here.

Edited by RobertB
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Forgot to mention this too.

If you are good freehanding, draw it out so it will have 100 lights. Otherwise you will need to get a 20 count set of lights to add to it. I tried to add just the amount of lights and cut out the ones I didn't need (count came out to something like 114). If you look at the video, the 2nd one from the left has a really bright leg on it's snowflake. Not sure why. Might be the resistance of the over all line. I ended up just using the full 120 and taped with black tape the ones I wasn't using. Tucked them away behind it. Worked just fine :-)

Again...want to give Chris1976 for this great pdf and idea for this whole snowflake and star thing 8-)

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  • 3 weeks later...

I took your pattern up to my local copy center and had them enlarge it to be approx 18". Next I used light adhesive to glue it to 1/8" mdf and cut the outline out with a scroll saw. I mod'd it a bit in order to use 100ct strings. Each leg now has 16 lights. This will be my pattern to either hand cut or route the coro flakes using a pattern bit. Still trying to figure out whether to use minis or 5mm led lights. IF I use the minis then all I have to do is drill 3/16" holes and shove the bulb thru. The leds are more problematic since they don't protrude thru the other side very much. I tried back-cutting the holes but it leaves the coro too weak and probably wouldn't hold up. The alternative is to drill holes large enough to put the whole led thru and simply glue it in place. I will use shelf brackets attached to the back and mount the other end on baords so they sit at an appropriate angle for the roof. At any rate just wanted to give you an update on my little project. thanks for supplying the pattern!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I thought I'd upload a few photos. Not sure how many of these I will make because with the strings attached they are really flimsy.

Enlarged the pattern to approx 18" then made a template out of 1/4" mdf

post-12401-0-97156300-1296669156_thumb.j

Next I used a router with a flush trim bit to make the coro flakes and drilled 3/16" holes for the lights. I added four lights to make it an even 100 ct. One is in the dead center and the other three I spaced about a quarter of the way in on every other leg.

post-12401-0-72930500-1296668849_thumb.j

Next added the led string and secured with hot-melt glue

post-12401-0-46966000-1296668853_thumb.j

This is a pix of the led lights from the front. as you can see they don't stick out very much.

post-12401-0-22326700-1296668851_thumb.j

This is a photo of the lighted flake - they are really bright.

post-12401-0-22151100-1296668852_thumb.j

Pretty sure these wouldn't survive the winter on the roof, but I might make a few for the front of the house.

Edited by tng5737
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My plan is to use this pattern for the lights but not cut out snowflakes. I will use a square piece of black coro. I plan to attach this to wood on two sides and place them on my roof. These should blend into the roof fairly well during the day and be invisible at night until they light up. I think this will solve the problem of them being too flimsy with the lights attached. I may put sandbags on the "runners" to keep them from blowing.

My inspiration for this are the "nite light" patterns sold by Windfield. I'm going to do the same thing with their poinsetta nite light pattern.

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Well, I started thinking about a similar approach - instead of cutting out the flakes just leave them in say a 20"square then build a simple wood frame with dados cut near the top to slide the coro into. however, I was going to just place a flake pattern on the coro and spray the whole thing with flat black paint like Krylon after it dried I'd remove the pattern which would leave a white flake shape in the center then jus t drill and put the lights into that! when you get yours done I'd like to see some pix if possible!

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