Lighting a trail?
We have a portion of our haunt that takes the victims through the woods. We have used fires in barrels, kerosene lamps/lanterns, and tiki torches. This year the trail was primarily tiki torches for lighting. This is a HUGE pain because of the expense in fuel for the torches but mainly the amount of time it takes to fill them all. Does anyone have any suggestions on an alternate method to light the trail. We have some Precision Alpha LED lights purchased from darklight and we've discussed using them but aren't sure it will give us the right lighting for the woods. Also with suggestions, keep in mind that we have power issues. Meaning; it is a long trail and running extension cords to power lights is really not a possibility.
My assumption is that we aren't the first haunt to tackle this obstacle and that some of you will have some good suggestions. Any advice is appreciated! :D
Back in our early years we had to rent a generator yearly and actually strung together orange and purple Christmas style lights to run along about 200 feet of trail. This was a pain because you can only have 5 strands together but with today’s technology of LED lights you can actually connect up to 43 strands of 20'-30' lights. Before things like that were available we graduated to using LED lights focused on points so walking the trail was like playing connect the dots. This was easy to do off a single power source wire ran all the way along the train and linked into wherever we wanted LED's.
I had to light over 3,000 feet of dark trail. I used two 4,000 watt lights and a LOT of extension cord to power colored flood lights in tricky areas, blacklights, and sound systems. However I lit the trail from beginning to end with my own creation of diffused LED lighting. Each light was a 2 foot PVC pole, with a 9volt case and battery and one diffused colored light. I pointed the LED down and covered the thing with a cheap plastic Dixie cup. The result was a green glow covering the trail. I had to make 500 to place one every 8 feet. Each one cost under $2 and was completely self-contained. It was the best I could do for my needs and budget but not sure it would be useful to you.
Dark lights work great
I went to a larege trail haunt that used a combination of dark lights every 20-40 ft and solar powered light stakes to illuminate trail and props.It looked pretty sweet.
Let me caveat this by saying I have not tried it yet, but as we were looking at a haunted trail idea I was looking mainly at solar powered lights. The great thing about today's solar lights is that most use a small solar panel that charges a set of re-chargable batteries. If you have an area where the trees are too thick to let the lights charge themselves, it is easy to switch out the batteries. I found quite a few sets that look like rocks and aren't quite as obnoxious as the regular floods.
It may not be a perfect solution, but I think it could be used in combination with other sources.
Thanks for the suggestions. hauntpro I assume you are talking about the LED lights that darklightsystems.com makes? They are awesome and we will most likely use them.
I had never thought about using solar lights Amanda, but as you mentioned it may be a problem because of the forest the solar panels may not get enough light. Also, just thinking out loud, what do you do when the light stops working because it looses power? Also, I failed to mention that I HATE batteries! LOL :D
mrfoos, I am very interested in these lights you built. I would like to see what they look like and what the light they produce looks like. Also, maybe you could do a quick tutorial. ?
If you don't know about the lights offered by darklight, check them out. I am not affiliated with them in any way but we used their products for the first time this year and it is AMAZING stuff. Also the help/tech support you get from them is second to NONE! Unless I see a better alternative looks like that is what we need to go with.
The parts list:
Originally Posted by TheTwistedForest
9v battery (90 cents)
9v battery case with on/off switch (50 cents)
diffused colored LED (10 cents)
2 foot PVC (40 cents)
piece of duct tape
piece of electric tape
piece of garder training wire
I got the general idea of making my own LED lights from Allen Hopps LED tutorial. I put it all together myself and hammer it into the ground with a rubber mallet. Here are some close ups:
Thanks! I like that promo video! I met Allen with Stiltbeast Studios at TW this year. He is AWESOME. We've used a lot of his video's to make some great looking stuff on a low budget. Love that guy! Going to look into these for sure!!!
Man that video was awesome! And the lights looked great too, I never would've guessed they were that price!
HEre is the tutorial for the LED lights that Mrfoos modified, Im sure with it and his list you can piece together what he did and make your own.