Question on incandescent Christmas lights.

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Old 09-15-15, 01:14 PM
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Question on incandescent Christmas lights.

Hello fellow DIY'ers,

A friend of mine, who works for a small community theater troupe asked for some assistance with a few props they have in the works.

The props in question are three individual lighting fixtures(probably Christmas wall decorations) each with 10-12 mini-incandescent bulbs located inside. He would like to re-purpose these as part of a single characters outfit, so the 120 plugs have been stripped off with the hopes of using batteries to power them and in turn making them portable. He came to me after testing one of the strings on a 5 volt battery without any success. I would assume this is because the lights are in series, and have a 12-10v rating(Hence the initial 120 plug).

My questions are: If I re-wired the lights in parallel, Would two 9 volt batteries in series be too much voltage on their own, The last thing that's needed is a small explosion on stage.... Would this project be more simple(weight/safety/time) by scraping the existing series incandescent lights and moving the process to LED's?

I'll try to get pictures up within a few days of the lights.
I have moderate-high experience with electronics, but every piece of input is appreciated!!!

Thanks,
SmallFrei
 
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Old 09-15-15, 03:04 PM
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Why not LEDS? They would be much better for this.
 
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Old 09-15-15, 05:02 PM
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With mini lighting strands you divide 120v by the quantity of bulbs. If it was 12 bulbs they would be 10v each. You could connect maybe one or two in parallel on a 9v battery but would have short battery life.

Larger light sets..... like 50 bulb ones..... the bulbs would be 2v. You could connect several on a D battery and expect more life than using a 9v battery.

Like Ray said though..... now, LED's are the way to go.
 
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Old 09-15-15, 07:43 PM
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Try Googeling "costume LEDs". Here is a sample result: High Quality Waterproof Portable RGB LED Striping LED Controllers And LED Kits
 
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Old 09-16-15, 06:20 AM
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Fantastic! I figured LED's would be easier, now I just have to convince him Thanks again for all the input, i'll be spending the next few hours perusing the website from Ray for ideas and inspiration.

PS. Before I came to help with his inquires he was contemplating using 120 volts from the wall and an extension cord for the actor on stage :NO NO NO: .....Thank goodness for low-voltage LED's
 
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