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baelinc

Problems With Rgb Nodes After Rain

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I setup my new RGB arches Saturday, and everything worked fine. Sunday we had about 3" of rain. Now I have whole sections of 50 nodes turning on for no reason. I get a random strobe effect. All of this happening when they should all be off.

 

I purchased these RGB nodes (http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/100nodes-DC12V-WS2811-LED-technicolor-pixel-waterproof-RGB-full-color-in-WHITE-color-case-and-WHITE/701799_1953354751.html) in a length of 50 pixels per string with waterproof connections on each end. I am running 3 strings of 50 (3 arches) per output on my sandevice 6804.

 

Does anyone have any clue why this is happening? If these have waterproof connectors, shouldn't they be waterproof and be able to rule out water being a problem? Yes these connection where on the ground and with 3" of rain they might had been submerged in water for a couple hours.

 

Thanks,

Johnathan

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I saw a youtube video of a guy doing rgb reviews of various types of pixels. He had a specific video of this type in which water could get inside the joints where the wires entered/exited the pixels. 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ci4vniDuHMs

 

that would be my guess.....or water has gotten into your connectors.  I would try opening up the connectors to check them.  Also, use dielectric grease on the connections (available at autoparts stores in big tubes).  The grease will help keep moisture at bay in the connectors and prevent corrosion.  It does not conduct electricity so apply it liberally. 

 

Also, a bad ground with 2811 pixels will cause them to go crazy.  I have seen this with multiple power supply setups without tying the grounds together.  

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I checked all of the connections and there doesn't seem to be any water. I have been chatting with Ray and his recommendation is power injection. I was running 3 strings of 50 without power injection and he said if they do not have enough power they could start doing what I described.

 

So I went out added power injection between the 2nd and 3rd arch. That stopped the lights from going crazy, but presented a whole new problem. When the power injection is hooked up nothing on the controller works.

 

As soon as I start disconnecting the power injecting, the candy canes start working.

 

On the Sandevice E6804 I have it setup:

Port 1: 3 candy canes using 10 2811 12v pixels

Port 2: 3 candy canes using 10 2811 12v pixels

Port 3: 3 arches using 50 2811 12v pixels each totaling 150 pixels

Port 4: 3 arches using 50 2811 12v pixels each totaling 150 pixels

 

I'm using the 12v 250w power supply (http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/12V-250W-IP68-waterproof-power-supply-size-205-125-45mm-AC90-130V-or-AC170-250V-input/701799_590873181.html)

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How are you doing the power injection?  injecting power at the pixels should have no effect on your controller.  You should have it wired so that the data wire is continuous through all three arches start to end.  The second most important wire is the ground because the data uses that ground too.  So....where the power comes into your first arch, tee off the V+ and V- and run that to the beginning of your second arch and then again at the beginning of the second arch to the beginning of the third arch.  You don't need to cut the V+ and V-  between the arches so really you have a long V+/V- power run just teed off at the beginning of the arches.    It is also ok to inject the power down the back end of the pixels so you could also continue that V+ and V- line down to the end of the 3rd arch and inject the power there too.  But remember that ground wire, make sure you keep your arches connected together V- at the end of one arch to the start of the next 

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I purchased these from Ray (http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/3core-T-type-waterproof-splitter-white-color-the-male-connect-s-diameter-13-5mm/701799_601823340.html). I then cut a extension cable and connected the blue wire from the power supply to the blue wire on the extension cable. Did the same for the brown. Then ran that extension cable to the T.

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Those make it pretty straight forward....I would use a voltmeter and confirm that your wires are injecting to the correct pins then.....

 

If it worked fine before and then you inject power and get nothing....it has to be a wiring problem with your injection pigtail.  I can't think of anything else that could be wrong?

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I may be the exception, and I realize it may not be possible for everyone, but I have my RGB elements set up so that when it rains I can take all of them indoors. It may not be practical, but it works 100%!!!!

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There is no way for me to do that. I have 6 arches, 6 candy canes, a 16x50 matrix, and a star on top of the mega tree. Plus in Louisiana you never can predict what the weather will do.

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so what you guys are saying the rgb nodes are useless in the weather waterproof  or not. i was going to place a big order to start my transition for old school to the rgb. im assuming the waterproof strips have the same issues?

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I figured out why when the injection was plugged in it caused everything to stop working. On the power supply it had brown as + and blue as -. So, that was the way I hooked everything up. But when I checked with a volt meter I mapped out the pins and the way the pixels are the Blue is - and Brown is +. So I fixed that by redsoldiering the 3 cables on the power supply.

I check each string alone on their respective ports on the controller. It was ok for a second then showed the same symptoms.

I took video tonight of what is going on.
http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLXd0b0G2NVu71utA_NADCSQMrb1iMvIZ-

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My matrix is all RGB and the candy canes in my video are RGB. They all run fine. The only problem is I had some nodes fail on my matrix, I bought them from Ray and he has a 2 year warranty. So he is sending me all new strings. I havent had this many problems since I started adding RGB until these strings.

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dordap...I got 250 of the same style with C9 covers going up.  I did look at them closely when they arrived and the wires are tight in the injection molded nodes.  I expect them to hold up just fine in the elements. 

 

baelinc....but if you remove the power injection they go back to operating normally?  I would run a test pattern and ensure the basic red...green...blue all work.  Any chance the pixels or power supply could have been damaged with the power wires hooked up incorrectly?  I would contact Ray...cause that is crazy the way some just get stuck on white.

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I doubt that the incorrect wiring damaged them as they were getting stuck on write before I started injecting power

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does it pay to use led nodes on bushes i used three colors for halloween and 4 for christmas i would say about 5000 lights x 7 for both holidays its alot of work on the bushes alone put up lights break down and put up again for second holiday . 

also for every 500 lights do i need 500 nodes or are they so bright i need less 

i used lor 9 controls i say 20,000 lights  for halloween and 30,000 for christmas 

i will changes over to nodes and strips for mega tree, arches , mini trees and tomb stones but the bushes i know will save on time and power but $$ wise does it pay (note bushes looking to use dumb nodes)

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There is no way for me to do that. I have 6 arches, 6 candy canes, a 16x50 matrix, and a star on top of the mega tree. Plus in Louisiana you never can predict what the weather will do.

I have a 10x90 matrix, a 4 x120 matrix on each side of my door, two arches and 8 - 120 node strips mounted in fluorescent tube protectors under my gutters. The only item I don't take inside is the strips that are under the gutters. And those are the only item that I have trouble with. I am in the cold, wet northeast. I can see how taking them down would be difficult when you don't know what weather is coming and taking the star off of the mega-tree would be a deal breaker for me. I tried both ways, leaving all my flexible strips out in the weather and taking them in, taking them in worked every time. Like I said,it may not be possible for everyone but I recommend it. Most of the RGB vendors are very forgiving, Ray Wu always lets me return items, maybe your vendor will do the same?

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Well I think I have a bad batch. That is the only thing I can think is the problem. I have ruled out the controller.

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Can you disassemble the arches and hook up just one arch at a time with no power injection.....that should help to confirm that you have a bad strand?

 

I like the way you made the arches....the lights look great when they are running!

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dordap...It might be worth it for the bushes.  The RGB bullets are set about the same spacing as light strands so you would need the same number of RGB LEDs that you have in a single color now on the bushes.  the bullets run approx. $20 for 50.  The problem I see is that the RGB are only visible from the front so I am not sure how you would get them to all point the right way. 

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I just did that tonight. Had the only power hooked up to the controller. Only had one arch at a time. It would run for a minute then the problems would start. d0145cb418c2e3f866b31db3cde2a47f.jpg20d1614970a305c2d7c2b3c1ee79823a.jpg

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So every  strand of pixels develops the problems after a min?  But your candy canes run solid with no issues, right?

 

You sure it is not the controller?  Have you swapped candy canes over to and checked port 3 and 4? 

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Yes, used candy canes on 3 & 4 for about 10 minute with no problems. I also tried arches on 1&2 same problems. Even swapped arch 1 that is normally on port 3 to port 4 and the problems carried over

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I have been in contact with Ray Wu regarding this problem and he is doing a warrant exchange on them for me.

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perfect...sounds like you have done all you can do to troubleshoot.  How long did it take to make the arches?  Did you just zip tie the pixels on?  I know you said you have 50 on each, how big are the arches?

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Each arch is a 10' PVC with 100 zip ties per arch. Not sure on the time as I did it a couple months ago. They are about 3.5' tall. Last year my arches were the old incandescent bulbs. 8 sections and each section was 200 bulbs. They were heavy and 6' tall as the used 2 10' sections of PVC. These new arches are so easy to carry and setup.

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Honestly I have never been a fan of the arches...but watching yours with the pixels I am converted.  They flow so much better than the conventional incan arches and that style pixel fits them nicely.  I think I will add in a set next year along with converting my mega tree to pixels.

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