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Vendors that sell M5 LED strings with Quick Connect ends?


Mister Internet

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Hello all!

I've been a member of dozens of forums over the years, but only now have joined a Christmas light-themed group. :)  Kids are old enough now that this years display provoked a lot of "can we do XYZ next year??", so.... I've gotten bit. :)

We are members at the Brookfield Zoo here in Chicago, and they do a gigantic Christmas light display every year. Of course I snooped around some of it, and it appears that most of the strings are faceted M5's, and I believe the brand was Wintergreen. What all these strings had that I'd never seen before, though, was "Quick Connect" plug ends that made for a very streamlined and attractive presentation ... you could tell they had 30 or 40 strands connected together, and I personally love the idea of weatherproof connections. Granted, they're not stackable, etc, but I thought I'd try to find some.

I've looked now on all the major wholesaler and retail sites, and contacted Wintergreen directly... no one has any M5's with QC ends. So now I'm curious, is anyone using similar strings, and if so where'd you get them? I didn't get any good pictures (too dark), but I think we all know the basic style I'm talking about. Thanks in advance, I look forward to being a part of the community!

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I can't help you with M5's but I use some "coupling plug" lights like you describe in the 5mm format from s4lights (s4lights.com) - I use their Versaline 24v lights for a few specific elements where I want the low voltage and the coupling plugs are fantastic. They also sell 120v coupling plug 5mm's as well. Sorry I don't have a more complete answer for you, but the term "coupling plug" may help your search. (Like you, I first saw these lights at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens in Richmond, and went digging around their display for a power supply to get the brand name off of!)

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Yea, it's been 14 months since I bought them, but I want to say the 24v versalines with the coupling connects were a shade over $8 per string of 48, I want to say it worked out to about $17 per 100. Which, when you compare to a standard plug LED sealed vendor like HLE, you're looking at about a 50% premium. You also have to buy the power supplies and extensions and such, which arn't horrendously expensive, but it's certainly more pricey than standard plug lights. Again, the main reason I wanted them was the 24V - I used them to build out my light maze, and I thought it important to have low voltage running through there for the eventual kid running through and breaking wires - an added layer of protection on top of the GFI that if anyone did touch electricity in there, it was low voltage. 

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Hey, thanks for the help everyone! I am continuing to explore this... called the zoo and found out they ordered most of theirs through Windy City Lights here in Chicago (http://windycitylights.com/why-led/led-m5-mini-ice/), and actually they come that way from WCL. I would have to assume that they just OEM them from China like everyone else... that seems like a laborious customization to do on individual strings stateside...

On a related question, anyone ever order several hundred strings OEM from Alibaba? :)

Oh, and they used the weather covers from Twist and Seal... I checked them out and they are actually pretty cool too...

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