Doll House Lighting Made Easy
Doll house lighting is much easier than most people think. Many new collectors are daunted by the task but there are many dolls house wiring kits that make the job very easy and even a novice can light a dolls house.
You should start planning your doll house lighting even before you build your house. The reason for this is your dolls house will look it's best if you can disguise the wires that run to the electric lights by cutting grooves in the floor's of your dolls house to run the wires along and this is easiest to do while the dolls house is unbuilt.
If you want some ideas on what sort of lights are available take a look below:
Lights Available In The USA
Lights Available In The UK
Step 2 One you have decided on the lights for your dolls house you are ready to get your transformer and wiring. To determine what transformer you need count up the number of bulbs that will be used in your dolls house lighting. Remember that this is the number of bulbs and not the number of lights, so a three armed tulip light will count as three bulbs.
Next count how many lights you will be using to determine how many plug sockets you need. The average socket board has twelve plug sockets so you may need to use more than one. You can run more than one socket board off a single transformer.
Something you may want to consider if you are using a lot of lights is to use two separate doll house lighting circuits, one for each side of your dolls house. You can then use a lower watt transformer and fewer socket boards on each circuit lowering the probability of a fault occurring. Also if a fault does occur it will be much easier to pinpoint.
You should now be ready to get your transformer, socket board and some lights. You don't have to have all the lights for your house at once but here are some tips to follow:
Concentrate on one room or area of your dolls house. It is important to light, or plan where your lights are going to go before you decorate so you can cover wires. If you start with one room you can light it and decorate it then move onto the next spreading the cost of doll house lighting and still enjoying the dolls house.
Start with the bottom floor rooms. If you are having ceiling lights the wires will need to be covered by the flooring in the above room so it's important that you have the lighting in the each room before you decorate the room above.
Ceiling roses look very attractive and can complete a light fixture but these will need to be fitted before the light goes up so now is a good time to purchase these. You should also paint or decorate your ceiling before you fit a ceiling light.
Step 3 Once you have your socket board it is time to decide where it will be positioned. This is the heart of your doll house lighting system and should be placed somewhere that is easily accessible. For front opening dolls houses the best place is on the back of the house positioned centrally and at the bottom. Once you have done this stick your socket board to the doll house, most boards have adhesive tape attached but you could use double sided tape.
You will now need to drill holes in the doll house for the wires of each light to pass through:
You have to drill two holes for a ceiling light, one through the ceiling above and a second through the back of the house where the wire will exit. I recommend you run wires along floors and not ceilings as they are much easier to hide.
Lights fitted to the rear wall of a room are by far the easiest to fit but should not be fitted until the wall is papered. Then you simply drill a hole directly under the wall light to pass the wire out the back of the house and to your doll house lighting socket board.
For all other wall lights the wire should exit from the nearest position on the rear wall and a hole should be drilled hear. Always drill a wire exit hole as close to the floor as possible and try to drill at a downward angle to disguise the hole further. To take a look at some wall lights Click Here Table Lamps & Standing Lamps
These can be fitted after the room has been papered. The wire will trail from the light and let you move the light around the room. Drill an exit hole for each of these lights at the base of the rear wall you can cover the wire up with flooring if you wish.
Drill holes should only be slightly bigger than the wires themselves. The smaller the hole the neater it will look.
If a wire is to trail down a wall or across the floor you should cut grooves in the dolls house for the wire to sit in. Grooves should be a small V shape and can be cut out with a chisel and sanded with a V shaped file. Never glue a wire into a groove or fill the groove with anything as you may wish to move or get to the wire later.
Step 4 Once you have drilled your holes you need to position your lights. If you are using a ceiling roses remember to put these in place first you can stick these down with wood or PVA glue.
Before you can run the wire from the lights through their respective holes and to the socket board you will have to remove the plug. To do this pull out the two pins with a pair of pliers and pull on the wire, the plug should slip off. You can now feed the wire through the holes and along the wire grooves.
Next stick the light in place using its adhesive pad, never use glue. You should also hold the wire in place along its route to the back of the house using masking tape.
You are now ready to refit the plug. Feed the twin wire through the central hole in the plug and then feed one wire into each of the two holes on either side of the plug making sure the end is bared. Refit the pins into each hole.
Step 5 Plug each light into the socket board and tidy up the wires by masking taping them to the back of the house.
Attach the socket board to the transformer and you are ready to plug in your doll house lighting.
What if it doesn't work?
Check that the transformer in connected properly to the socket board
Check the plug socket that the transformer is plugged into
Check that the socket board works. If the fuse has gone the light on the board will be lit.
Check each socket on the socket board
Check each light individually by connecting them to the transformer
Check the plug on each light is making goo contact with the wire, remember the wires have to be bared.
Check each bulb, you may have to replace them to test
Check that there are no breaks in the wire
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