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Discussion Starter #1

Here's a link to a video I uploaded not too long ago. This video is just to show what the finished product will look like. So here's the things you'll need:

-Aluminum construction lamp
-Light bulb (I went to ACE and got a 40Watt refrigerator bulb for $2)
-Cheap wire extension (Lowe's has them for $2)
-Fluorescent starter(s) (Get the FS5. You can find these in the electrical section at Lowe's right next to the long fluorescent bulbs)
-Wire strippers
-Exacto knife/Utility knife
-Wire cutters (or scissors if you don't have cutters)
-Soldering gun, solder, or electrical tape

Step 1: Lay out the wire extension and cut one side of the wire in half.

Step 2: Strip about a half inch to an inch of the wire on both ends.

Step 3: Take out an FS5 and wrap one end of the wire around one knob and the other end around the other knob.

Step 4: Solder the wires so you don't have any exposed wires. Or you can just use some electrical tape and tape it up.

Step 5: Screw in your light bulb, turn it on and wa la, there you have it. You should now have that creepy flickering light effect. It's cheap, easy, quick and is an awesome effect! Hope you enjoy it and found this helpful :)
 

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thanks!! will definitely be using this tutorial for next years festivities!! :D
 

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I saw this thread only a few weeks ago.
Brilliant!!!! I made my shopping list and can't wait to get started. Any who has used this in different applications please feed some input. Post pics and or videos.
I plan, eventually, to build a figure like the grave digger in Disney's Haunted Mansion ride and utilize this candle flicker effect in his lantern. I started buying loads of Spirit Halloween's flickering candles because they had this same random flicker effect, rather than the regulated obvious strobe look most LED candles had on the market years ago. (many LED fake candles nowadays are better though)
This is so awesome.
 

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I did this with 5 lights spliced into an extension cord with one fs2 starter on the cord. With all lights is I get no flickers. But with only 2 lights in I get a flicker. Any tips?
 

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I built a box for this with a dimmer switch in line to the outlet with the fluorescent starter on it. It's a string of 10 light sockets and I use the dimmer switch to get the right effect. When the switch it all the way up, it doesn't flicker. When I have it from 30% - 50%, I get the best results. YMMV
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Dom08 - I would use the FS5. I used the FS2 and it didn't really work then I switched to the FS5 and it worked a lot better. Stick with a small amount of lights being used at once for each starter.
 

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Certain LED designs have a very sharp voltage threshold before they illuminate. That means, it needs enough voltage from the starters, before it will illuminate, otherwise it just stays off. It doesn't "glow" or "swell" like the incandescent bulbs can.

So if you try this idea, get the dimmable LED bulbs. They're quite expensive, though. Might be cost-preventive, but worth one experiment to let everyone know if it works or not.

Also note, this "cycling" of the starter is definitely fatiguing to it. Luckily they're cheap, so buy a fistful and have em handy, just in case.
 
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