I do outdoor lights, but I wouldn't call it a huge display. I put up around 100 feet of icicle lights on my front soffit and dormers, around 75 feet of icicle lights on the banister of my wrap around front porch, red and white alternating strings of lights making my front porch posts into candy canes, and a bunch of candles lining my front walk.
It takes my around three to four hours to put them all up, so I don't consider it huge, by any means.
I would not say huge, but a bigger display then average. It's a full day, dawn to dusk set up with 2 people. I would love to go blow mold but storage is the problem. Can't beat those old school blow molds.
I wish I had some pictures, but they got lost when I had a computer crash earlier in the year. The pics do not work too good since the lights are animated to the music, they are always blinking on and off, so any one photo looks like there are a bunch of lights not working. Hopefully this year I will be able to get some good video.
All of my stuff is hooked into a contoller of my own making for the animation. I started with one of those "lights and sounds of Christmas" boxes they sell at Lowe's. I took it apart and wired in an output jack for the music. Then I took each one of the six light channels and ran each through a 15 amp solid state relay. I supplied each pair of relays with a seperate 15 amp source of power, providing for 45 amps of lighting power, and staying well below the limits of my relays. Each relay is mounted on an aluminum finned heatsink, with an electric fan for cooling. All of the above is mounted inside of a large plastic tool tote box. All of the connections are mounted in boxes on the outside so hooking up everything is as "easy" as possible. Then it is a matter of running power to all the lights and hanging the lights so the sequences look good. I have over 25 big tote bins just for extension cords to run the show. I have TWO sheds just for holding all the stuff for the display. Oh, and the output jack for the music is hooked up to a Ramsey FM transmitter. I have a sign out that tells what channel to tune your car radio to so you can hear the music that the lights are set too inside your car on your stereo. And all of the above are run off of power strips that are all syncronized to turn on and off from one keychain remote control
Then there are all of the blowmolds. For those who do not know, blow molds are the "Old School" light up hollow plastic figures that were really popular the 60's and 70's. I have several different full nativity sets, and hundreds of different santa's, snowmen, nutcrackers, candles, ect. I have retrofitted most of the large ones with compact flourescent bulbs and the smaller with LED's. Most of my light strings are LED's as well. Not because I believe that global warming crap, but to help with the power bill, which gets pretty high in November and December. I have to start putting up lights at the end of October in order to be ready to light them all up on Thanksgiving night. It is a ton of work, but I like electricity, and my kids and my neighborhood have come to expect it <grins>
Sounds very nice...I put some up takes about a day, day and half. Have about 7 or 8 light trees. a 4' Star. Lights in live tree , around house and some time the deck. Neighbor,brother in law and I have about same amount..It looks nice driving through the community..
Well he was telling me when we were putting up our lights that his wife had bought these new led lights I'm thinking they were $20.00 a box . With all the snow the neighbor didn't get his lights down till about the first of Feb. Well these new lights were run up the side of his house and then 1 strand was on all the shrubs around his garage. I'm on the 2305 blowing his driveway one evening just after he left , I got just a tad to close to his shrub seen his bush move and then I see this green cord OH S_ _ _ !!!! Just wound that strand of lights and just ready to start on the extension cord when I hit the pto switch ... Took my snips out of pocket and cut up his new led lights... Told him the next day I would buy him a new set and he told thanks but no thanks..
Quick way to take down Christmas lights.. Only trouble can't reuse the lights....!!!!
Use to put up a big display at our other house. Would take me two days with all the cords, reindeer moving, snowman tipping his hat, singing angels and lights on 15 bushes/ trees.
But we moved 5 years ago and since our house is set back from the road no more decorations. You can't see the house from the road. So it's just candles in the windows - all 14 of them! But it does takes 3 or 4 days to decorate the house - including the 14 foot tree we put up every year!
i add a little every year, my wife starts calling me Clark Griswold come about Thanksgiving. i don't do anywhere near what you do, but i do have the biggest display in my neighborhood. the wife gets mad just because you can see the house from 4 miles away, i keep trying to tell her it is because she is looking across open fields on her way home!
i have not set mine to music yet, that may be my addition this year. as it is it takes 6 LARGE totes to hold the lights, not even counting the extention cords.
Don’t do much outside anymore. At the old house I had public service put my own transformer on a pole so they could run 5 separate 200-amp services in.
I put up on the house and property.
8755 C9 bulbs. (350+ 25 bulb sets)
2500 C7 bulbs. (100+ 25 bulb sets)
35,000 twinkle bulbs (350+ 100 bulb sets)
48 blow mold ornaments
6' x 8' gingerbread house
6' x 8' manger and nativity scene with 40 blow mold sheep
5' diameter Star 60 feet in the air suspended by cables between three trees
With lights coming down to the manger from the points.
25 sheets of black painted plywood with various holiday greetings on them.
A 30' wide 20' high Star Spangled Banner (American flag) laid out in C9 bulbs on the
Roof with the words GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS under it.
6’ diameter igloo made out of 1-gallon plastic milk bottles all with a 50 string of clear
Bulbs in them. And about 35 lighted penguins.
All of the C9, C7 bulbs except the flag were Red and green.
At the time I didn’t like blinkers in the display so the only blinker was one C9 red bulb in Rudolph’s nose.
When you threw the main breakers the transformer on the pole would hum.
I was always one string of lights away from a tripped breaker .Man it was fun setting it up and getting it ready every year. I hate faded bulbs and I would replace all the C9 and C7 every other year. Upkeep and expansion was about six thousand dollars a year. At the time it was well worth it to the wife and I.
I did the display for nine years and won a few contests in the professional divisions. They wouldn’t let me in the non-professional divisions.
At the time I didn’t have kids but all the neighbors did. I just liked to watch the cars go by with a load of kids with all of their noses pressed up against the windows .I got some nice thank you letters from strangers in the mail box which was really nice to know the display was appreciated
I stopped when some of the neighbors started to complain about the traffic and noise.
For a few Christmases Santa would stop by on his borrowed fire truck and give out
Candy and presents.
YES I DID FALL OFF THE ROOF ONCE INTO A SNOW DRIFT!!! OWWWWAA!!!
We don’t talk about it in front of the wife if you know what I mean.
I don’t have any digital pictures to post. I am fighting with the wife as I type thid to find the pictures in the closet and get them scanned.
I have heard others who have had problems with the neighbors. Thankfully the only problem I have with mine is the constant "when are you going to start?? You ARE going to do it, aren't you?? I have people coming to see it!!" They all seem to like it, and if they don't, they at least keep it to themselves for November and December