Wednesday, March 31, 2010

News Crew Near Copeland Christmas

We lost a hometown soldier in Afghanastan last week. He was 24. I think it was a mine. Anyway, the funeral this afternoon took place behind our house and it was a sight to behold. White clysdales carried a glass casket cart with dozens of military personnel in the procession. Two ladder trucks hung a humongous flag between the raised ladders while the street was shut down. Horns and bagpipes were playing and the local veterans bike group was in full force and joined in the procession. Neighbors all hung flags and some even went to the public open casket viewing.
I took other great shots of the procession from my kitchen window, but I won't post them because I think it was a private funeral. Here's the Chopper 5 that circled the house all day. He needs to come back at Christmas to see the lights from up cool would that be!

By the way, our house is "A". The funeral home is "B"

Easter 2010 at Copeland Christmas

We have decorated for Easter here at Copeland Christmas.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, March 29, 2010

Half of the north poles are done

Today, I wrapped the north poles in red duct tape after I sanded the extra spray foam off them. I made a little paper template so that I would get the same tape angle on all the north poles. This is one thing that always bothered me about the last set of north poles...some had wide stripes and some had narrow uneven stripes.

Posted by Picasa

Spray Foam Expands Over 48 hours

I filled the north poles with spray foam (Great Stuff Big Gap Filler) and let them cure for 2 days.

The north poles fell over because the foam pushed out the bottom...which is what I wanted. Today, I used a saw and sander to make the bottoms nice and smooth.

Posted by Picasa
Here's the video of the spray foam air pocket on the bottom of one of the north poles.

Here's how I cut the notches for the cords at the bottom of each pole.

Lastly, here's the video of the conduit being glued to the inside of the north poles.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Cleaned the Globes on the North Poles

Yesterday I cleaned the globes from the north poles. I soaked the globes in a diluted Rustaid mixture which worked really well. I had to lightly scrub each one with a kitchen scrubbing pad, but all 16 only took me 30 minutes. I was worried the Rustaid would etch the globes, but since I hosed them off, there was no damage.

I also soaked the fixtures in a baking soda-water mixture then scrubbed each one with a wire brush. There was green corrosion on the metal parts. I was very happy to use my new boat batter cleaning skills to clean up the north pole light bulb fixtures!!! Now, I just have to find out if I can put dialectric grease on the light fixtures...that's what I do with a boat batteries, so it would make sense to follow suit.

Today I also purchased the new couplers and 3 inch poles. I got the red duct tape and 3 cans of Great Stuff Big Gap Filler. Yesterday and this morning I experimented with crack filler and gap filler. Lesson learned........if you use a big stick to push down the crack filler, it will deflate and never expand.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Outdoor Christmas Decorations for Copeland Christmas

Back in 2007, I made north poles for our Christmas display. Below are some current photos. The 2010 display will not feature these north poles, but instead north poles version 2.0.

Here is a closeup of the water rust discoloration on the globes. Last week, I dipped a globe in Rustaid and it cleaned up beautifully! So, we can re-use the globes!

The red duct tape we used to stripe the north poles has faded and begun to separate and peel off. So, the PVC will have to be replaced because I am not stripping all this tape off 16 poles.

The 3M hooks we used to hang the rope lights have rusted. These will need to be replaced.

The light sockets we used have held up well. We will reuse these fixtures. We can also reuse the cord and all the bulbs.

So, to update these north poles, we will have to purchase new 3" pipes and 16 new couplers. We will also need to purchase new paint/tape for the stripes. I have plastic hooks and zip ties for the rope lights.

A major upgrade is that we will not use rebar and concrete to anchor the north poles into the ground this time. Instead, we are experimenting with spray foam and rebar. We have a couple reasons for staying away from the concrete this time around. First, the concrete makes the north poles very heavy, so storage is cumbersome. Next, the north poles take a beating each year when we hammer them into the ground. If we just have to hammer rebar into the ground, then place the poles on top of the rebar, it will be much easier on both us and the north poles. Another option is to use flanges.

Copeland Christmas on Facebook and Youtube

We just started a facebook group for Copeland Christmas. We have also posted a link to the Copeland Christmas Youtube Playlist.

2009 photo

Here is the link to the Copeland Christmas Youtube page. The Facebook group is called "Copeland Christmas"

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Copeland Christmas captured by Google Street Vehicle

I'm thinking the Google Street Vehicle came through our neighborhood early to mid-January.

I figured this street view shot had to be one of Google's messiest shots. I was wrong. After googling "Google Street Vehicle" to see if the vehicle had a name, I found dozens of websites dedicated to bizarre Street View photos.

The vehicle cam captured everything from ET to sunbathers to crimes in progress (allegedly). I'm sure most of the photos are bogus but it sure makes me feel better to know it could be much worse.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, March 8, 2010

Copeland Christmas Garage Updates

We painted the garage floor this weekend. It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Overall, I'm pleased with the project. We used Behr products and chose the standard light grey. The best part was sprinkling the color flakes after the second coat.

As with any home project, the prep work was the hardest part. The paitning was easy and somewhat fun.
Our floor wasn't greasy, but it was very drity and the existing paint was chipping off. I used a Behr cleaner/etcher and a putty knife to get up all the lose paint. I primed the parts where it was bare concrete. I think it needs a full week to settle before I can pull the new car into the car.........
Speaking of new cars...we got a new car! Thank you John soooo much!!!