Up and Up

Michael Martin from TrueNorth Church in North Augusta, SC brings us this great LED tape design.

Materials:

  • LED Strip lighting
  • 20 decoder boxes
  • 20 power supplies
  • Cat5 cable
  • Lumber
  • Black paint

Dimensions:

20’ tall x 30’ wide

Techniques:

From Michael: One of the greatest challenges came from attempting to mount the LED tape to the structure. The adhesive that comes on the back of the tape is not strong enough to hold the tape over long runs. We found that clear zip ties worked the best in holding the strip to the wooden frame. When the LED strip is on, the zip ties are not visible.

We purchased our LED materials off of Amazon (made in China) to help keep the cost down. With this, there are some quirks. These boxes do not work well when chained with DMX. We found that running into the first box DMX and then chaining the remaining 19 boxes with Cat5 worked the best.

For any of our sets that we build, one of our goals is to create a set that is low profile and takes up a small amount of stage space. This set took up less than 2’ in stage depth. We used three 2”x12”x10’ board for our base. This weight alone made the structure stand without moving, but we felt we needed more security. We sat 5 gallon buckets filled with concrete (painted black) on the base and then chained the top of the triangle to a beam directly above the set.

We really enjoy using LED strip lighting in our sets. One of the greatest benefits comes from the fact that we are adding more fixtures to our lighting rig. With so many sets before this, we were trying to uplight structures and set designs. This always took lights away from their main purpose. Whenever we add more fixtures to the set, we find that it has a bigger WOW factor.

7 responses to Up and Up

  1. What kind of issues did you encounter with the DMX cables vs. Cat5? We are experiencing color matching issues with ours currently.

    • Michael Martin April 10, 2017 at 9:28 pm

      The main problem was no communication. However, I have had color matching issues. I found that this is one of two problems.

      1. Is the strip was created using a different batch of LEDs (this has happened a lot).

      2. I was connecting too many strips together without amplifying my chain. I now use the Supernight amplifiers over long runs (+30′). Hope this helps!

  2. I’m looking into this design for an outdoor worship night. Do you have an estimated total cost for it?

    • Michael Martin April 10, 2017 at 9:32 pm

      Cost was around $1000. You can bring the cost down a lot by not having individual control of each strip. We used 20 decoder boxes (20 diagonals to create 10 triangles). By connecting all of the together, you could save between $400 and $500.

      • Hey Michael, great design! Was wondering if you could tell me what are the exact dimensions/layout of the frame (do you have a drawing you could send with the layout)? What board/pipe is the LED tape attached to?

  3. Hey Michael, great design! Was wondering if you could tell me what are the exact dimensions/layout of the frame (do you have a drawing you could send with the layout)? Is the LED tape attached to PVC pipe? What brand of LED tape and decoder boxes do you guys use?

  4. Hey! sweet set up! what kind of haze do you use?

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