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Light rope

justTISH's picture

Light rope (post #175787)

in

Well, I think that these light ropes are a find, but the jury is still out.


We have two bedrooms with 70-inch wide windows and no overhead light fixtures.  Each room has a wall outlet controlled by a light switch by the door, but the outlets are directly under the middle of those windows.  I insist that there be a light source that is controlled by the switch and which provides enough light to move freely around the room.  After all, boys live in these rooms and the floors are booby-trapped.  We've tried desk and dresser lamps which light only a small area, and hanging lamps which leave ugly cords hanging across the room in front of the windows.  The light ropes are our latest experiment.


The cords are run around the windows, hidden by curtains and furniture.  The light ropes are mounted on the walls just below the ceiling and encircle the room.  They fill the room with even, but soft light.  Already we've found pros and cons:


Pros



  • They are cheap.  We used two 18' and one 6' length for one room, at a cost of about $30.00, and one 48' length for the other room, as a cost of about $24.00.

  • They are easy to install.  They come with clear plastic clips that screw into the base surface.  Each set has enough clips to put one every two feet along the cord.

  • They are warm but not hot, and they do not draw a lot of power.  Up to 200 feet can be plugged into a single regular-duty outlet.

  • They provide a very even light- no bright spots or dark corners.

  • They come in 2', 4', 6', 12', and 48' sections, maybe more, and each section has an extension cord.  So each section can be used alone or connected to another section.  There are no gaps in the light when you join sections (unlike christmas light strings).

Cons



  • They burn out in segments of about 12" and you have to replace the whole cord.  We've already realized that even though it was cheaper to buy one long cord for one room, the other room with its sections will be easier to replace when it burns out.

  • There are no "add-on" sections available.  Every kit comes with an outlet extension cord.  If you're adding sections to make a long rope, it's wasteful.

  • The plastic clips are brittle.  It's easy to snap the ropes in, but hard to get them out without breaking.  We took a rope down to change the position and 4 out of 5 clips broke.  Extra clips are sold by the dozen.  Know before you start exactly where you are going to put the ropes.

If the manufacturer were to ask us what to do, we would advise that the clips be made of a more flexible plastic and that the lengths be available with or without the extension cords.  If a friend were to ask us what to buy, we'd advise using a mix of 2' and 4' lengths in order to facilitate replacing burned-out lights.  We had one small section of a 48' rope burn out in a day, but decided it was not worth the work of returning it.  If burnouts happen a lot, these things won't be worth anything.  If they're long-lasting, they will be great.  That's why the jury is still out.


We bought ours at Home Depot.  There are pictures in the Interior Decorating folder, in the "boys design, mom works" threads.


 


 

If a woman is to have a well-kept home, she must have power tools and a tool shed to call her own.

(post #175787, reply #1 of 5)

A friend of mine bought a whole whack of indoor/outdoor rope lights for her backyard. She mounted them along the top of her fence, circling the entire yard. Helps her figure out where the dog is - and if there are skunks out there before the dog goes out.  The lights have been out there almost 3 years now, only a couple of minor burn-outs.  I bought a big bag of them at a sale at Garden Ridge in November - they'll be going around my yard as soon as the snow melts.  I'll be getting a switch for them, so I can turn them on before the dogs go out.  I think the whole rope light idea is brilliant!


 


If you can't play a sport, be one.
If you can't play a sport, be one.

(post #175787, reply #2 of 5)

Aha, that's what the mystery line in your photos was! I was wondering about that.


We used rope lights/light ropes in the kitchen in our old house. We weren't there long enough for them to burn out (about a year?) but we loved them in lieu of ugly fluorescent cabinet lights.

(post #175787, reply #3 of 5)

Some of the Cons you mention could be alleviatd by having a professional electrician instqal a circuit of rope light for you. It can be any length and the higher quality does not burn out that I have ever heard. It is securely fastened.

Another pro/con thing though, is that rope light is considered more of a local task light or decorative light rather than an area light. Sounds like you are trying to light up the room with it,which is beyond it's designed intent.

 

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Welcome to the
Taunton University of
Knowledge FHB Campus at Breaktime.
 where ...
Excellence is its own reward!

 

 

Oh Well,

We did the best we could...

(post #175787, reply #4 of 5)

I am and am not lighting the room with it.  The light rope is not the only source of light in either boy's bedroom.  They both have lamps at the head of their beds and at their primary work and play areas.  The room is really not lit without those lamps.  However, without some over-all ambient light, those lamps create puddles of light in a dark room.  I simply cannot bear that kind of lighting.  The light ropes bathe the room in a soft light that smoothes out the total lighting.  Being controlled by a switch at the doors, they are the first light in in the room and provide enough light to avoid impaling bare feet on legos. 


The most important thing they do is provide a soft, even light throughout the room.  They are better at that than anything else we've tried. 


 

If a woman is to have a well-kept home, she must have power tools and a tool shed to call her own.

(post #175787, reply #5 of 5)

Right, most good room lighting has at least two different kinds complimenting each other.

 

 <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


Welcome to the
Taunton University of
Knowledge FHB Campus at Breaktime.
 where ...
Excellence is its own reward!

 

 

Oh Well,

We did the best we could...