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Old 11th Dec 2019, 1:32 am   #481
Refugee
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I have got 3 sets from a pound shop several years ago.
If I use them again I will put two sets in series.
There should be enough space in the plug to do the splice.
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Old 11th Dec 2019, 1:40 pm   #482
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Connecting two sets in series will hugely extend the lamp life, but will be very dim.
If you have three similar sets, making them into two sets, each with one and a half times the original number of lamps will give a brighter light and still much extend the lamp life.
Joints are easily made by soldering and then insulating with two layers of good quality heat shrink.
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Old 14th Dec 2019, 10:17 pm   #483
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

When I first started reading these posts, the comment about the flasher bulb reminded me that I had two somewhere. I haven’t seen any photos of them on here. So here are both of mine.

I think the one with the white tip is branded Sunshine and the other one is made by Vesta. The Vesta one came from Woolworth and it cost 10p.
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Old 14th Dec 2019, 11:14 pm   #484
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Sunshine was also a Woolworths brand.

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Old 15th Dec 2019, 10:43 am   #485
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Last night I tried insertion of a series 1N4007 diode into an ultra cheap 20 string of (colourless) push-ins which had previously consumed all it's spare lamps. The immediate result: I was expecting a 70% drop in output but my eyes are suggesting it's more like half that. Finding the shimmer rather nice but obviously you wouldn't want all the lighting in the room to be pulsing at that rate. Even the colour temperature is higher than i thought it would be. I think the overall output on a coloured string would be rather low.

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Old 15th Dec 2019, 11:45 am   #486
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

If using a diode on the 20V olive strings, I find the flicker too annoying. I'm going to try an inline dimmer and see what happens.
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Old 15th Dec 2019, 5:40 pm   #487
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I wired an in-line dimmer on my Wink 'n' Blink star lights, but I also have used one of these dimmer sockets. previously. They plug in to an ordinary 13amp socket and then you plug the lights into the dimmer socket. They’re quicker and easier to use than in-line dimmer switches, as they don’t need wiring in.
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Old 15th Dec 2019, 5:57 pm   #488
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiiT View Post
Pifco also produced a "Jack Frost" set of Olive cone lamps which were clear lamps covered in a coloured opaque "frosting". Over a period of time the frosting used to peel off as a result of the lamps getting hot.
It wasn’t Pifco, it was Mazda that manufactured the Jack Frost lights. I have a set, plus some spare bulbs.
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Old 16th Dec 2019, 11:58 am   #489
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I did once try running fairy lights via a dimmer, but the dimmers I had all needed a load of at least 40W to work properly. With lower loads they produced annoying low frequency flicker.
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Old 16th Dec 2019, 12:25 pm   #490
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

With my old miniature olive set, a set of 12 using 20v 2w bulbs I used an in line dimmer but found they flickered due to the low load. I bought a candle arch to add to the output load of the dimmer switch which sorted the flickering problem.

Sadly I have now used up all the spare bulbs for the minature olive set and now use some battery operated LED sets instead.
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Old 16th Dec 2019, 3:13 pm   #491
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

The difference between inline dinners and plug in dimmer sockets, is that a lot of inline dimmer switches have a minimum wattage rating and a maximum wattage rating. However, plug in dimmer sockets, only have a mixinum wattage rating. So they will even dim a 15w pigmy bulb, without any flickering. My plug in dimmer has a maximum rating of 300w.
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Old 16th Dec 2019, 4:01 pm   #492
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In-line dimmers do not have a permanent neutral connection, except through the resistance of the load; which can affect the charging of the timing capacitor and possibly the staying-on ability of the triac. A plug-in dimmer can have a permanent connection to neutral, and isn't dependent on the load.
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Old 21st Dec 2019, 6:22 pm   #493
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

Excellent idea - I have ordered a dimmer plug to preserve my remaining incandescent lights a bit longer
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 12:41 am   #494
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

With all my sets I add a couple extra extra lamp holders from scrap sets. The normal olive lamps tend to last a very long time . It’s the Woolworths novelty lamps that I find don’t tend to last.
I did have a lucky find the other day.2 sets of 12 lamps plus some spares for only £3 in a charity shop. Andy
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 9:47 am   #495
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I have added extra lamps to 12 lamp sets and the olive lamps last for ages. Unfortunately they are fetching silly prices on ebay now. Well done for finding those at a charity shop. It seems worthwhile in looking round them although not all sell electrical goods
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 10:20 am   #496
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I was lucky enough to get these on Gumtree for £3 a few weeks ago, 5 minutes walk from home as well. (Lit picture taken at reduced voltage for bulb preservation and photography)
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 7:25 pm   #497
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I have a set of of Vesta lights, along with other vintage sets. They Vesta ones have oranges, lanterns, budgies etc. Last year a friend of my mams, gave me a set of Novelty lights, by Winfield, with the same bulbs, except that they are newer. I decided to make a set of 16, out of both sets and keep the remaining bulbs as spares. I love them. For some bizarre reason the green budgie used to sometimes go out and then randomly light up again.
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 7:46 pm   #498
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicholas Bilton View Post
For some bizarre reason the green budgie used to sometimes go out and then randomly light up again.
Probably an intermittent short in the lamp base. When it made contact, the current would go through it (and, therefore, the remaining lamps in the set) instead of the filament; and when it lost contact again, the current would have to go through the filament, and the lamp would relight.
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 7:54 pm   #499
Nicholas Bilton
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Default Re: Vintage Christmas Tree lights

I have a tinsel Christmas tree, made by Swan, from the 70s. Every single thing on this tree is genuinely vintage. A lot of the baubles were my grandmas, including the Man In The Moon, which is my favourite. The light sets are Vesta lilliput screw in light sets, and I also have my Wink ‘n’ Blink lights on there too, which I have previously posted on here.
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Old 23rd Dec 2019, 8:00 pm   #500
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Very nice!

The wallpaper looks as though it could have been off the front cover of the instruction manual for a piece of 1970s test equipment!
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