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Question for JonB about the Academy matrix in the vendor room

Started by FireMedic4Christ, September 05, 2013, 03:30:42 PM

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FireMedic4Christ

Trying to work out my design for my pixel tree and had a design question. I would like to make the strands multipurpose and use them as a matrix too. I noticed at the academy yours was made of 1 1/2 pvc with holes drilled thru and the nodes pushed in from the back. I've already purchased the nodes, so can't really change my mind on those. My primary question or concern is will 1 1/2 pvc be sturdy enough at roughly 16'. They would be secured by a hook at the top and a bottom bracket without support in the middle in tree form. As a vertical matrix, I would have a rectangle frame and use spacers between to get the spacing right much like your demo model.

I have read that I can get 15' to 20' pvc from a hot tub supply store.
Brian

JonB256

There was a Vertical Matrix at The Academy and it is Sean's. He used Flex Strips, not pixels.
My big horizontal was right next to it. It was also Flex Strips, tie wrapped to 14 feet of PVC tube.
Also at the Academy, in David's booth, was my smaller, black PVC matrix with the drilled holes and pixels. But it was also Horizontal (40 pixels wide).

I used Sched 20 PVC to keep the weight down. Drilling the holes did not seem to weaken the PVC at all. I know that Sched 20 would be very wobbly at 16 feet. Sched 40 would be much stiffer but still a little wiggly. If you could get a continuous piece that long, then I'd put it under tension. A hook at the top and bottom and a turnbuckle. I don't know how much PVC shrinks as it cools. You are correct about vertical placement, though. PVC will hang nicely from a hook.

Jon
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

sielbear

I built my megatree using banding strap and electrical tape 2 seasons ago.  It's starting to have some spacing issues due to the tape's exposure to the weather.  I'm considering using PVC myself as I can't find anything better for similar price.  I noticed that the 1/2 and 3/4 schedule 40 seem to allow the pixel to be pushed through both sides with wires running on the back side.  1 and 1/4 would certainly be stronger, however, the weight would also go up significantly.  I also like the reduced profile size of 1/2 or 3/4 in terms of visibility.

What do you think of using this smaller sized PVC?  I would be putting it under tension t help pull any curve out. 

JonB256

Quote from: sielbear on December 22, 2013, 04:03:21 PM
I built my megatree using banding strap and electrical tape 2 seasons ago.  It's starting to have some spacing issues due to the tape's exposure to the weather.  I'm considering using PVC myself as I can't find anything better for similar price.  I noticed that the 1/2 and 3/4 schedule 40 seem to allow the pixel to be pushed through both sides with wires running on the back side.  1 and 1/4 would certainly be stronger, however, the weight would also go up significantly.  I also like the reduced profile size of 1/2 or 3/4 in terms of visibility.

What do you think of using this smaller sized PVC?  I would be putting it under tension t help pull any curve out.

Since my PVC tube matrix was never intended to be "see through," I didn't worry about the 1inch diameter. Since you need to drill a 1/2 hole, I don't think 1/2 inch PVC could work. 3/4 inch you could test, but you need to be sure the hole is very centered in the pipe.

I really like the 1 inch sched 20. The body of the pixel actually fits inside the pipe so only wire is out the back. It is very protective, even from water (dew, rain, snow).
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

sielbear

I guess if using while pieces I can couple together. How would schedule 20 hold up at 18' sections? There will be tension, so perhaps not an issue. I got some 1/2 and 3/4 to play with. Will post results, likely tomorrow.

MyKroFt

Why not 2 of these http://www.christmaslightshow.com/dura-3-4-snap-on-tee.html and a short piece of pvp to use as a brace in the middle?
They have 1/2, 3/4, 1, 1-1/4 versions......

Tony

sielbear

Hmm... Had not considered those. Might be a convenient option for sure.

JonB256

As an add-on comment about the PVC matrix I had at the Academy. It was made from 1inch PVC, sched 20, and everything was drilled and spaced for 2 inch spacing between pixels (TM1804 Ray Wu smart string pixels).

It is 40 across, and wired for 3 rows of PVC, so 120 count pixels.
There were 24 rows at the Academy, so it used 8 strings and 8 channels on a Falcon 16 (and driven by David's beta Pi computer (FPP and FPD).

I mention this because I'm about to add 2 more strings (6 rows), expanding it from 40x24 to 40x30.  This is for several reasons. First, I have the room to add on at the bottom plus I have two strings from a recent Ray Wu delivery. :) Second, and perhaps more esoteric, it puts the matrix in a classic 4:3 ratio that we all lived with for years on Standard Definition TV screens. I'm thinking that it may look even more like a video screen to the viewers at "street distance."  Some have asked me what kind of projector I was using. Anyway, traffic is down and I'll be taking video soon.

[attachment deleted by admin]
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

ron

You planing on having these at the Academy again this year? I've got some questions and I'd like to see them. Before I ask a bunch of questions in this thread is there any other thread or presentation about them I can check out?

I'd love to,see some video of them in action in your show.

arw01

Also did you slot the back of the pvc to slide int he wires etc?

Would a TM1804 flex strip work in the same fashion mounted to a flat surface and mildly protected?  I was thinking a small plexi non glare cover or something like that.

Alan

JonB256

I did not slot the back of the tubes. It is a simple 1/2" hole all the way through. (12mm)  It can be a tight fit, but the 12mm pixels will fit inside the 1" PVC tube. The bullet nose sticks out the front. On the back, you only see the wire loops from hole to hole.

Alan, you say TM1804 flex strip but you probably want TM1809. The TM1804 is 3 LEDs per pixel. The TM1809 is 1 LED per pixel, so pretty tight resolution. You can definitely zip tie Flex Strip to PVC pipe. I've done it horizontally, but prefer vertical to avoid "drooping."

Ron, David Pitts has asked me to bring the matrix to the Academy, so yes, it will be there.

Video will be shot tonight or tomorrow. Traffic is way down and I hate cars in the shots.
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

MyKroFt

One thing about using the bullet pixels and pvc - drilling the hole all the thru, and then if you can slot the back - you can push all your wires thru the slot and have no mess on the back.

Tony

CaptainMurdoch

How much does slotting affect the rigidity if there are already holes every few inches?  I'm planning on working on frames in the next few months and have been mulling over the various methods.
-
Chris

arw01

Quote from: JonB256 on December 28, 2013, 04:39:36 PM
Alan, you say TM1804 flex strip but you probably want TM1809. The TM1804 is 3 LEDs per pixel. The TM1809 is 1 LED per pixel, so pretty tight resolution. You can definitely zip tie Flex Strip to PVC pipe. I've done it horizontally, but prefer vertical to avoid "drooping."


Thank you, yes.  Quite a bit more for that one, maybe makes pixels on strings more attractive, but with .75" resolution, might work well.

jnealand

I put nodes for my porch columns in slotted PVC that I made.  This might be something that could be used as well.  Attached is a link to a pdf file I put together on the process I used.  I'm only doing a 6ft piece of PVC and longer ones would require a longer support system when making them.  I've seen other ways of making the slot so this is just one way to do it.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/12558815/Cutting%20PVC%20pipe%20to%20hold%20RGB%20nodes.pdf
Jim Nealand
Kennesaw, GA all Falcon controllers, all 12v Master Remote Multisync with Pi and BBB P10 and P5

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