A reader writes:
I am a high school AP Psychology teacher here in West Hartford, CT. We are currently studying the brain and I'm having difficulty getting my students to understand serial processing (old Christmas tree lights) vs parallel processing (new Christmas tree lights. Can you tell me where I might be able to get my hands on old Christmas tree lights + some spare bulbs? Of course, I will pay.
I hope you realize that 95% of the Christmas tree strands sold today are series? The little bulbs just have two filaments, one that conducts but doesn't glow, in case the glowing filament burns out.
If you break or remove one bulb they still all go out.
But I know what you meant. The C-6 bulbs that my dad used (and we still had some of back in the 1950s and 1960s) were series, and the C-7 bulbs that more or less replaced them were parallel. So were the C-9 bulbs that were made for outside use.
If you have a Big Lots near you, they are selling an Edison-style C-9 bulb set that is parallel.
I found it when looking for a simple parallel strand for another project.
Unfortunately, LED strand manufacturers have taken to calling their series LED strands C-6, C-7, and C-9 if the plastic shell approximate the size of the old bulbs.
Just about any strand you buy with miniature or LED lights will be series.
If you want to stick with antique lights for the fun of it, contact Fred Fox, owner of NoellKat on Etsy. He has a very large variety. https://www.etsy.com/shop/NoellKat
Fred is in Canada, but he seldom has any problem shipping to US customers.
Hope this helps;
Have a great rest of the week - Paul
-------The reader responded-------------
Paul - wow !!
So fast and so informative !
Thank you - thank you and thank you !!