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About djmille

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 12/27/1964

Profile Information

  • My favorite Christmas story
    There is really only one Christmas story and I think we all know what it is.
  • Location
    Forest Grove, Oregon, USA
  • Biography
    PacMan High score is 44,240
  • Interests
    Christmas Lights, Aviation, RC Models, Weight Lifting, Guitar, Electronic Gadgets
  • Occupation
    Test Engineer
  • About my display
    144 channels LOR with 40000 lights

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  1. Mark, Kevin and Gang. Thanks soooo much ! That was the best CLAP to date. I really enjoyed getting re-energized after taking a year off. Sara, Thanks for the controller; you know it went to a great home. It was great seeing familiar faces as well as meeting new ones. -Darin
  2. Any metal display elements touching or stuck into the ground will act as a grouding rod and do the same thing as having lights laying on the ground. This goes especially for any wireframes and those tomato cage mini trees. Every connection should be elevated above the ground and you can simply let the water flow through with no issue. (use lot's of those little green plastic stakes) Removing GFIs is kind of a "don't ask, don't tell" type of thing and would probably need to be under the "Rogue Practices" and not the "Best Practices" forum.
  3. djmille

    Anybody here ?

    Hey Gang, Is everybody ready to flip the switch? I'm about 3 days behind because of the exciting weather and after last night, I will be re-installing a few items. The wind must have been well over 50 mph in the area west of Portland. -Darin
  4. Hey Washington friends; It's good to see some display setup progress. The Oregon message board was too quiet so I eves dropped on you guys. -Darin
  5. Nice press coverage ! Way to keep the bottom half of the state lit up.
  6. Anything you can do to insulate your mini-tree shaped grounding rod from the ground will help. I have a 4" rule on any type of light string in proximity to the ground. The cage trees are better when the bottom rung is left in place, but it's still metal and it touches the ground. I have used worn out sections of garden hosed split lengthways down the middle and pressed over the bottom metal ring. Then you can put stakes over the top of the ring without metal to metal contact. Mini trees, wire frames, and aluminum stakes are all nothing more than different shapes of grounding rods; th
  7. Anybody used the great weather in NW Oregon to test out their GFI's circuits? I have never had more problems than last night. Over 1/3 of my display was dark. I was outside until after midnight trying to troubleshoot. It turned out to be cumulative leakage by a multitude of channels causing GFIs to trip. Every connection is elevated from the ground and there's not much more I can do. I'm thinking the ultra wet tree bark is providing areas for current leakage to ground. Ahhhh;; Frustrating
  8. Dave, Too bad you're so far away! We'd like to come down and check out your display. Good Job on keeping Southern Oregon Lit UP !!! -darin
  9. Paul, Great work once again. I drove buy your display on the way home the other night. It looks like the Blue C9 LEDs were new? I usually tune in the radio on my way to work to catch daytime Zara radio stuff. It seems to work pretty good. -Darin
  10. Yeah, that's the Planet Christmas rule #2 "You can never have too many extension cords" Rule #1 is "You can never have too many lights" They kind of work together !
  11. Nothing special; I was just using a wireless laptop to connect to the house router which in turn is connected to the LOR show computer upstairs. It's the remote desktop program that comes with Microsoft XP, Vista, 7 running over the network (Local area ethernet type, not the LOR RS485 network) You basically see the same desktop as the computer you are connecting to. It worked better than I thought. Last night I had was troubleshooting a GFI trip issue. I was walking around with the laptop while turning individual channels on/off until I found the culprit. It was easy because I was r
  12. Yeah, I'm a little ahead of schedule, but I hate to brag about it. I got a wireless laptop to remote control the main show computer so I can sit out in the car and make adjustments this year. No more running to the window after clicking the mouse
  13. I usually test all new items right out of the box, then test them again right before they are hung, and then once again immediately after they are in place. Those same lights are sometimes tested when they are taken down, but this is only crititical to determine what needs repaired during the off season. Same for used lights; they are tested before heading outside, then once again right after they are in place. It's also good to run tests with computer when doing an animated display; I found two of my mini trees were backwards and 4 perimeter fence colors were plugged into the wrong
  14. How's it going? I'm at 85% complete and should have no problem going live on the Friday after Thanksgiving. The wind storms in the Portland area have been fun. Those spiral trees are more of a wind vane than a decoration. During a power up test, I found that a few mini trees were reversed. Does anybody work outside at night on the dry evenings? It's fun because you can live test portions of your display, but you also can't see what you are tripping over ! Hope everybody is doing well. -Darin in Forest Grove
  15. Are the Halloween displays going to make it through the week ? We are getting 40 mph winds just West of Portland. I'm still repairing the Christmas items in the shop so I haven't had to venture outside. -Darin
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