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Should I Set Up My Christams Display Now?


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Hello All,

 

I have read posts that some of you are setting up your Christmas displays NOW! I understand for the sake of time that you have to start early and give yourself time to troubleshoot, check and re check. But my questions is: Is there a concern of wear and tear considering your display is outside for 4 months (september to January) rather shortening that time by erecting your display closer to show time? You guys with the mega displays need 3 months to set up and check? Now this is my second year. Last year I used 50 channels and 5000 lights, and this year that has doubled to 102 channels and 9500 lights. My display only took 20 hours to set up last year. I figure that will double with everything else. I was just concerned on lights getting loose, vandalism, bad weather, and anything else that can happen. Or, by the wisdom of "been there, done that", Should I Set Up My Christmas Display Now??? Thanks!

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I think most people who start this early do so simply because it takes that long to set up their display. The display could be huge or maybe they can only work on weekends ect.  Since I usually do a Halloween show I can't start on Christmas until the Nov. 1st and try to get everything done by Thanksgiving night. My display would go up faster if I was young but I have to keep taking geezer breaks due to my back pain and other age problems. UV rays from sunlight can deteriorate the light string wiring and can fade incandescent bulbs paint. Not to mention hail damage. Those who do start early usually start on their roofline first and yard decorations last due to grass still needing mowing.

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It's all in what works for you.  I start in Sept because I travel a lot in Oct for work and have very little time in Nov.  Do what works for you.  One word of warning.  If you have doubled the size of your display, the time involved won't just double.  It increase geometrically.  Depending on how complex your display is, double the lights and channels will probably increase your time by a multiple of 4 or 8 times.  Every additional channel and string of lights is another set of problems to solve.   It's all in the challenge.  :) 

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Like others have said, there are a lot of drawbacks to starting  set up this early. Unfortunately, some of us just dont have a choice if we want to be up and running by Dec. 1. I took a needed break last year but my 2011 display took over 300 hours to set up and beat me to death. It's a catch 22 situation as each year I get older and slower and yet, at the same time, I feel compelled to add new elements. Somethings got to give. With 350,000 lights and 53 controllers I really cant wait any longer, soooo........It's ladder time!

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Of course I'm sequencing year round, but last weekend I started putting up lights. I'm working on my RGB ribbon lights around the roof line (almost 250ft), should have those finished up this weekend.  I may starting running the network/LOR lines tomorrow, the weather is nice and dry this weekend.  Most of the stuff I put up this month will not be generally noticed by the public. A lot of the "behind the sceans" stuff.  Next month I'll be builing a bunch of RGB trees in the garage. The weekend after Halloween I kick into 4th gear and stuff starts going up fast.  By that point everything will be assembled and tested.

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I live in Arizona and that would destroy my light strings. I will be waiting until beginning of November but would be funny to see my neighbors faces.  :P

 

I'm with ya in the Valley. Come the first week of November and it's go time!

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Thanks everyone!

 

350,000 LIGHTS!!! and 53 controllers!!!

 

I will heed your advice ChristmasJunkie and start even earlier than planned. I did double and added a mega tree.

 

I am in Tennessee and weather is terribly unpredictable.

 

Thanks again!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I try to wait as long as possible to minimize incandescent bulb fading.  Having said that I don't control much about when I start.  I am afraid of heights so I hire someone to put up lights on the 2nd story. So those go up based on their schedule, or more accurately working around their deer/duck hunting plans.  I also put a lot of lights on trees and have to wait 'til the leaves drop before I can do those.  I confess that I've been taking the leaf blower to the trees to try and speed up the process!

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This time of year, I start running extension cords.  All of the main feeders get run first, then the smaller cords go last.  First turn is Halloween which is why I start so early then I put Christmas up as I take Halloween down.  All of the wireframes, blow molds, etc. get done Black Friday.

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We don't have that many, but we do most of it Black Friday. We may string some lights earlier, but we don't light them. The biggest reason is that I remember when I was a kid, you could go into the malls before Thanksgiving, and nothing, but the day after BOOM. It was like magic. They had decorations up, lights, moving figures - it was like elves came in and transformed the place.  

 

Now, you see things out, well, NOW. I think some Christmas things were out as early as August. I can definitely understand why people, particularly those with bigger displays start earlier, but, for me, it's magic when it goes up right after Thanksgiving.

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I have been stringing mini trees, running comm cables and speaker cables and video cables all September. My lighting ceremony is right after thanksgiving dinner. I start on 10/1 because I work and go to school so I can only dedicate an hour or 2 each day, my goal is always to be up and semi running by 11/1 so I have 3 weeks to tweaks sequences and run test shows so everything is perfect. I have a hard time waiting till October. I get so excited I wanna start decorating now

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  • 2 months later...

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