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Old 11-05-2004, 01:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Christmas Lights

I am a college student and need some extra money and have talked to a few guys who said you could make thousands putting up x-mas lights for people. Do you use staples to put the lights up on the house or is there another way. Also if you can think of any problems we would run into that we would not be able to figure out without any expierence. Thanks
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Old 11-05-2004, 02:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Make sure you have some health insurance in case you fall and break your neck or something. Have a good set of ladders and wear sensible shoes to prevent falling. Personally, I believe staples will be a pain in the ass to remove and might be harmful to the wires. There are a kind of plastic loop you nail to the wall for supporting wall-climbing plants that I've used for x-mas lights.

Anyways, the most important tip is to test the lightbulbs before you put them up! Good luck!
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Old 11-07-2004, 08:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Ah yes, the old, "I don't have a clue how to do it, but hey that never stopped me before" idea.

More power to ya kid.
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Old 11-15-2004, 04:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I guess you could start with senior citizen complex in your area. Find out if they prefer to use clip-ons or nail-in for their lights. I used the clip-ons (clip to rain gutters) but didn't like them. This year I switched to the nail-ins.

Do test out the lightbulbs as Pip said, if you have the icicle type bulbs in series, it's possible to have a segment out while the rest in series still lit.
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Old 11-15-2004, 07:05 AM   #5 (permalink)
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if you've got access to wheels, and a good eye, do a christmas tree delivery service, or wreath delivery. The customer would tell you how big a tree they wanted, and relative fullness, you deliver it and stick it in the stand.

Work with a tree lot and get a cut from the price of the tree.

Putting up christmas lights is a tough gig... I haven't lived in my parents house for more than 20 years, but every year I put up their lights, why? because I'm fussy, one year they paid someone to do it, and it looked like crap, I took them all down and put them back up the way I wanted it to look.
(this would be pretty good if you were near an apartment complex or somewhere where people might not have access to trees.
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Old 11-15-2004, 07:06 AM   #6 (permalink)
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good idea [for money, seriously, though you don't know what you're doing ]

Anyways, a search on google brought up this - http://www.ehow.com/how_11044_string...or-lights.html

[btw, this thread was #1 in "how to put up christmas lights" on google.]


hope that helps.

keyshawn
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Old 11-15-2004, 10:20 AM   #7 (permalink)
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My Advice, watch Christmas Vacation first and make sure not to do anything Chevy Chase did.
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Old 11-23-2004, 01:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Location: Tracy, ca
I did this last year. I made a lot of extra money. It is really scarry because usually we would work in bad weather. We charged $150 for 2 stories and $80 for one story. The real money is in selling the lights with it and any other decorations. What we did was offer complete complete set up and take down after the season. I went there first and met the cust. asked what they wanted then make an appointment for put-up and take down ask for all money upfront if people wont do that get half at least. We had to rent a huge latter to do the 2 story homes. The best way to get the word out is classifieds or flier. I had a blast but it is dangerous.
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Old 12-14-2004, 07:24 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Location: Seattle, WA
I'm doing this next year. Have heard a lot of stories, and have never put up a single Xmas light in my life. Guess I have a whole year to study up on it huh? :-P
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Old 12-14-2004, 09:13 AM   #10 (permalink)
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(From someone who has done this for years) Okay. Putting up christmas lights is a lot of fun. Just remember:
-Make sure you measure all of the areas that you are covering, THEN go buy the lights and extension cords.
-Buy indoor/outdoor lights for both inside and outside lights, as indoor lights are crap.
-Usually you can put nails on the underside of the roofline, but in cases that you ca't I suggest slipping part of the wire between the gutter and the gutter support.
-Make sure the nails are no more than 3 and a half feet apart, as the line will noticibally droop between the nails otherwise.
-Use color schemes to make sure the house looks good. Look at other houses in the neighborhood to see if they are mostly clear/multi-colored/single color to choose. If in doubt, go with clear.
-Only hang icicle lights from the roofline, as they are obviously meant to represent icicles.
-Light blankets (the christmas lights that are strung together in a usually 6'x4' rectangle, meant to cover) usually go on small to medium bushes. I do not reccoment using them on the roof or grass.
-Light spheres are meant to be hung from medium trees, and only from the bottom most branches. Make sure they are spread out evenly.
-Decorate lamps/tree trunks with the candy cane type application; start at the bottom and walk around the pole in circles moving up.
-Don't worry about covering extension cords with leaves/grass. Leaves will be cleaned up later, and grasss will be cut. If you have to put them across a walk way ALWAYS cover it with an outdoor rug, as someone tripping on it will make you at least partially liable.
-Do not overdo it. Most light strands can only take 3 or 4 strands together before you start blowing fuses. Make sure that each extension cord supports no more than 6 to 8 strands total. Make sure that all the cords are plugged in at one or two outlets, and if posible put them on a timer.

I'm probably forgetting something, but that's the gist. Have fun.
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Old 12-19-2004, 10:11 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I learned this about how to prevent sliding on steep roof pitches, couple of pieces of foam egg crate step/move on one to the other.
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Old 12-23-2004, 06:48 PM   #12 (permalink)
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get a good staple gun and right staples. go to home depot and ask what they recommend for the job. I have a friend that makes a lot of money with lights, he puts them up at shopping malls at car dealerships, and when i helped him we put one staple on each side the light...keep things straight. No icicle (spelling) lights!!!!
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Old 12-26-2004, 07:32 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Oops

Also avoid cords with switches on them. I have seen the switches blow up when they are to heavily loaded. Remember you can overload an extension cord causing it to overheat and burn, so be careful and read the instructions.
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Old 12-26-2004, 01:09 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D Rice
I am a college student and need some extra money and have talked to a few guys who said you could make thousands putting up x-mas lights for people. Do you use staples to put the lights up on the house or is there another way. Also if you can think of any problems we would run into that we would not be able to figure out without any expierence. Thanks
So, ahhh, how did you do? did you get it together in time?
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