finally fixed the first string of party lights that's been out for weeks. I never understood how the damned things were wired, which made diagnostics difficult, but this guy figured it out, and with that webpage as a guide I had a plan. I got out a spool of wire, stripped both ends, and plugged one end into neutral. how did I know which was neutral? I tested each wire at the outlet to ground. one read 110V. the other read 0. but hot to neutral tested at 146?! that's Mexican wiring for ya, I guess. anyway, with the black meter probe connected to the other end of the long neutral wire with an alligator patch cord, I went probing from the far end, pulling every few bulbs and checking for voltage on the upstream side. eventually I hit one with nothing and worked back one at a time. suddenly, plugging one back in the whole string lighted up!

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