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Panic time is here!
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Discussion Starter #1
I was reading the "Thunder and Lightning on the Cheap" thread and asked a question there but I think it is better that I ask it in a new thread rather than take that thread in a whole new direction.

I would like to have thunder and lightning in my yard but I don't have trees to put lights, and my front yard is small. I am also thinking of having some lights flickering in the garage at the same time.

Otaku suggested I build some circuits but I don't know how to do that or if I can do it safely. Is there a cheap way to do both using wireless speakers or regular speakers to set both things off separately but synchronize them?

Also don't know where to put lights in the yard. Mount them on the house:confused:

Any suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks
 

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Hi HB. I read the other thread, and I've been giving it some thought. It seems you either need to mount the lights on your house, or make your own trees, lol. I was thinking that a few lengths of PVC attached together, with some old branches stuck on, and the lights also obscured by fake or dead branches might do the trick. I wouldn't suggest doing it with a metal pipe unless you ground it, real lightning + tall steel pipe could = zzzzap. You could run both lightning systems off of the same lightning controller. The lightning FX unit has multiple outlets that can handle up to 500 Watts total. Just run one extension cord up the inside of the PVC tree, or to the lights mounted on the house, and another to the lights inside the garage.
 

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HB, I don't have trees either what I did was I went to walmart and bought two of those work lites that have 2 500 watt halogen bulbs..I got then home and spray painted them all black, I then was able to "hide" them behind a couple of tombstones. I used the I-Zombie 2400 dual channel lightning controller. If you yard is small like you say a single channel would be plenty. After you have thunder/lightning you will never go without it again.

Troy
 

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I have the same problem at my house, no trees. What I did was use one of those board clamps you can get in the tool section of Home Depot or Lowes and attach two floods to it. These ratchet down tight enough to hang the lights on the eave of your house without having to drill any holes. Mines welded together, but the same thing can be accomplished with nuts and bolts. I put the lights on a longer steel extension to keep them from hitting people in the eyes, and it also gives a better angle for the "lightning" on the front of the house.
 

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Panic time is here!
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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all of the suggestions.

They are all really good. Any other suggestions are welcome. I have to research what I can put together and keep it kind of inexpensive.

I do have a question about the lights. Does it matter what type of lights? I imagine halogen would give the brightnes and color. I read somewhere that people use photography bulbs.

and.....I just confused myself.....
The lightning outside would come on with the thunder sound but the lights inside would have to go off....I know nothing about this stuff can anybody straighten me out? I may have to buy 2 different things or modify something?

If I can make it work I'll be more than happy to post it when I get it done!

Hee Hee I am getting a little worked-up! Getting ideas!
 

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Yeah, in order to have the two effects you're looking for (lights out inside-lightining outside), you will need two different controllers, one along the lines that Jrzmac listed a few posts up and something like one of the Lightining F/X machines that pop up on Ebay for about $25 or so (look under "halloween props"). I just built a "Disney Flicker Circuit" from the Phantasmechanics site for indoor use (pretty simple to build), and an F/X machine with a thunder cd outside. Photography lights react really quick, but I've been getting decent enough results with two plain old 150w floods. Oh, and Jrzmac, I don't think the device you have found will work on your porch light. Those lights are usually hard wired into a wall switch, and it looks like that "power out" simulator only controls lights that can be plugged into the unit.
 

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Panic time is here!
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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Good Deal!
So I can hide them or hang them from the eves or build a tree LOL!

Will be looking into all my options!
I still am not to keen on wiring things myself. My Dad was an electical engineer...he pretty much made me really afraid of anything electrical but I might get somebody else to wire things up for me. I just have to make a decision.

I didn't know there were sound activated strobes. Learn something new everyday. Thanks.
 

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I purchased a Chauvet DMX-4 four channel dimmer/relay pack off ebay for $60. It has different settings for a stand alone unit or you can get a Velleman usb-controlled dmx interface that will give you total control via you computer, I bought one for about $65 and its awsome, It runs with my VSA program or you can use the software that comes with it. I also used this setup to run a christmas light show.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
That is fairly inexpensive to do all of that.
I don't know anything about running programs from the computer. Wouldn't even know where to begin.
Now I don't know what to do because of the time change.....I may have to buy an enclosure and just do the flicker lights..ARGH! I don't even know if I will have an hour of darkness to use the lightning outside.

thanks for the information.
 

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I got mine from Hauntmaster Products. (as jrzmac had posted). I bought it 2 years ago when it was a little cheaper. I love it, and particularly like the delayed lightening effect.

I used 500 watt photo flood bulbs. A search should provide you with many sources.

halloweengoddessrn: I've never seen sound activated strobe lights, but it sounds interesting. I'll have to do a search on that one. Any idea on the wattage of these?

I can still plug more into my TLF effect without overloading it, and more lightening in different areas will add depth to the effect, especially if it is slightly staggered in time from the delay of the unit I have.
 

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Panic time is here!
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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for your input on this.

I am now not sure what to do because of DST. I may have to forget about the lightning outside and just do a flicker inside.
If I decide to get real fancy I guess I could have a false window inside and make lightning flash from behind it.
I don't know.
 
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