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Old 12th Dec 2020, 4:23 pm   #601
The Philpott
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Some of mine are old enough that the colour-coat has faded from the hottest part of the lamp, but the coloured plastic surround still remains unbleached. The combination creates quite a nice washed out effect. We experimented with using LED and filament sets to complement each other this year, and although I'm not really a fan of the LED sets I must admit it works well.

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Old 12th Dec 2020, 5:24 pm   #602
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

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Originally Posted by broadgage View Post
With series wired incandescent Christmas lights ... use higher wattage blue lamps.
Assuming I've understood Ohm's law correctly, won't the voltage drop across a higher-wattage bulb be lowered by its decreased resistance, bringing its brightness back down again?
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Old 12th Dec 2020, 6:24 pm   #603
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

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Quote:
Originally Posted by broadgage View Post
With series wired incandescent Christmas lights ... use higher wattage blue lamps.
Assuming I've understood Ohm's law correctly, won't the voltage drop across a higher-wattage bulb be lowered by its decreased resistance, bringing its brightness back down again?
Yes, but what I have done is to use higher wattage blue lamps in dedicated strings, not in series with the other colours.

Blue lamps, 20 volt, 3 watt, in series strings of 12.
Red, yellow, green and pink lamps, 6 volt 0.75 watt in series strings of 40 lamps.
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Old 12th Dec 2020, 9:17 pm   #604
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Now I understand. I thought you meant a multicoloured string with a mixture of high-wattage blue lights the other colours at a lower wattage.
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Old 13th Dec 2020, 12:18 pm   #605
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

That would be unlikely to work correctly, or at all. It would be a theoretical possibility if one could locate blue lamps and other colours with different wattages but identical currents.
20 volt 0.15 amp blue lamps are easy, but suitable coloured 0.15 amp lamps in much lower voltages are hard to find.
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Old 21st Dec 2020, 12:07 am   #606
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Pifco Christmas lights , two sets in different boxes ,they always bring back fond festive childhood memories.

1970’s set and accessories.
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Old 22nd Dec 2020, 9:49 pm   #607
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Those sets don't appear very often. Very nice lights. I'd imagine they date from the 1960s, as the box doesn't appear to have the BS 4647 approval mark on, which was introduced in 1970.

Last edited by Nicholas Bilton; 22nd Dec 2020 at 9:58 pm.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 12:00 am   #608
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Some of the shades from that period make me wince- i have some even sharper 'stingers' than the ones featured in post No. 606, clear plastic (possibly unexpanded polystyrene)
They don't belong to a set of lamps at the moment, they're loose in a box, and can't actually be removed manually without injury- you have to upend the box.

(Photo follows- it's hard to believe they were made in the first place- beautiful but vicious!)

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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 12:40 pm   #609
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I found these lurking in a long forgotten box in the loft
Sadly, every one of these is a dud ( I only managed to find 6 others that were still intact)
I love all the fancy shapes !

Andy
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 12:55 pm   #610
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Also retrieved from the box were these. Made by Noma in the USA. ( 110v parallel string )
Must be at least 60 years old.
Each lamp had a coloured vial fitted above and once up to temperature the liquid would 'bubble' merrily away for hours. The game was always to shake each one to see if the whole set of ten could be made to bubble. With their high light output it made for a very impressive tree
Sadly the plastic lampholders have done a massive 'self-destruct' over the years and the ones in the picture are the only ones still just about intact. Although it's hard to see in the pic, once warm these ones were still bubbling away !!

Andy
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 1:14 pm   #611
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by yestertech View Post
I found these lurking in a long forgotten box in the loft
Sadly, every one of these is a dud ( I only managed to find 6 others that were still intact)
I love all the fancy shapes !

Andy
My favourites have always been the crisply moulded Mazda (?) olive types- clockwise from 1 at the top they're 3, 9, 11, 12, 14 and 16. Somehow they just look better to my engineer's eyes.

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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 3:51 pm   #612
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

"bubble lights" are still made ! and can be found on line. Although of modern production they are very similar in design to the vintage ones.
Usually paralell wired for American 120 volt mains, transformers are readily available.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 4:35 pm   #613
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by yestertech View Post
I found these lurking in a long forgotten box in the loft
Sadly, every one of these is a dud ( I only managed to find 6 others that were still intact)
I love all the fancy shapes !

Andy
I think they are mainly from Woolworths. They sold very good Christmas back in the day.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 5:03 pm   #614
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

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I think they are mainly from Woolworths. They sold very good Christmas back in the day.
Sounds like a down-market version of Margot Leadbeater from The Good Life attempting to buy her Christmas from Harrods.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 6:37 pm   #615
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Good evening all (and seasons greetings too).

Seeing how my main interest is vintage lighting and lamps, it shouldn't come as any surprise that I also have a few old Christmas light sets. Most have been pushed my way by friends who have upgraded to LEDs or are awaiting repair (or just need untangling).

Anyway, I include a couple of photos of my small display. These include a 5' length of 1950s MES batten lampholders (complete with reflectors). I rescued this from an old electrical shop in Hyde, which was closing down. Despite being in the attic for many years, the old rubber coated wire is in fine condition. I am using old stock 12V bulbs and the result is pretty good.

The second item I have is an Osram 'Lilliput' Christmas tree which I got from a car boot sale many years ago. Probably circa 1950/60s, it is still with its original box and comes out to play every year. I managed to pick up enough spare LES lamps, to keep it going for many years yet.

Kind regards. Andrew.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 7:33 pm   #616
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I meant to say Woolworths sold good Christmas decorations. We still have a couple of boxes of those glass ornaments with an indent in one side from the 1960s. I can remember being taken to the massive Woolworths in Liverpool (which I think was their first shop in this country) and choosing replacement lamps for our set of 12 from a selection of many shapes including Father Christmases, snowmen, glass lanterns and plastic Chinese lanterns.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 8:09 pm   #617
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Yes, I assumed you meant something along those lines, but I just couldn't resist the temptation.
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 8:20 pm   #618
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Still using the 40 bulb set that I bought cheaply from a London street market trader in the late 1970's whose stall was piled high with them and no other goods: Britram labels covering Winfield. No doubt Woolworths had disposed of them due to the then-impending change in regulations that required double insulated flex and a pre-fitted mains plug: the trader used a Safeblok to test each set before sale. No doubt Woolworths did not want to be left with unsaleable stock. I have a good stock of clear bulbs of the correct voltage & current rating but with different bases: changing base involves gently crushing the old bulb with pliers as they are glued in, unlike the newer ones.

However the point of this post is that I had previously coloured the clear bulbs using transparent Humbrol and Revell modellers paints. Ths year I tried using a newly-acquired set of Sharpie marker pens, and they have worked very well. The Sharpies include hues that are not available in the modelling paint ranges and as a bonus, dry quickly.

Last edited by emeritus; 23rd Dec 2020 at 8:35 pm. Reason: Typos
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 11:13 pm   #619
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

-Talking of sharpies, here they are (there's no bayonet arrangement inherent in the moulding, so they must have been push-on.)

Failed the pencil test!

Dave
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Old 23rd Dec 2020, 11:18 pm   #620
Nicholas Bilton
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Hello.

I thought I’d share these, as they’re more unusual, than the standard olive cone bulbs.

This is a old light set I’ve got. The set was manufactured by Ediswan, but the bulbs are made by Osram and are larger than the regular 20v 3w bulbs. See the photo for comparison. These have the same E10 screw base, but these are rated at 20v 6w. The bulbs are painted with different paints, as some have a sheen and the others have a matt finish.
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Last edited by Nicholas Bilton; 23rd Dec 2020 at 11:25 pm.
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