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Protecting lights from rain


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Rain is forcast tomorrow night, but I am scheduled to shoot a scene outdoors. Is there a quick and affordable way to protect the lights?

 

 

well quick and affordable rarely go hand in hand.

 

quick: you can get some celotex, which is an expensive wire mesh with a heat resistant film that you can clamp to the yoke of the unit with a-clamps. you can buy celotex at any film expendable store.

 

affordable: you can use c-stands with solid flags wrapped in garbage bags. and sand bag the crap out of them so that is its windy they dont fall down.

 

either way, make sure that all cable connections are tightly wrapped with plastic and resting on a c-stand and that your power source, and all your units, are grounded

 

what lights are you using?

 

 

 

 

cheers

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Use 6x6 Griffs.. or 4x4s with some sort of gel/diffusion on them.. fly them above the Lamp and have at an angle so the rain runs off the back side.. in a low low budget situation just use large umbrellas in c-stands...raise ALL connections off the ground using apple boxes etc...

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Use 6x6 Griffs.. or 4x4s with some sort of gel/diffusion on them.. fly them above the Lamp and have at an angle so the rain runs off the back side.. in a low low budget situation just use large umbrellas in c-stands...raise ALL connections off the ground using apple boxes etc...

 

I checked up on this a few years ago with a UK gaffer and others have confirmed this method. Ensure you have weatherproofed your connectors and then just leave the lights on, don't switch them off. The heat from the lights just boils the rain drops away. I used Redheads and 2K Blondes in the rain without any problems, although they did have protective glass on the front face of the lights, which would prevent the rain directly hitting the lamp.

 

On that shoot wind proved to be a bigger problem than the rain

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We have shot for days in the rain... or man made rain.. this way. Of course we used 12x12 or 8x8 frames over 20ks but we do the same with 4x4s over 1200 pars, 2ks, 1ks.. etc. .. even 2x3 frames can do the job. The main thing is not letting a bunch of cold water hit the fernel.. (glass lens) The light bulb (Globe) will be fine for the most part as most droplets evaporate by the time they have slithered down and into the interior of the lamp (if it makes it there at all)... however, the main concern is cold rain (water) hitting the hot lens.. C-R-A-C-K!

 

Like Adrian said.. milk crates are great for protecting connections.

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I would forget about using grip frames for rain protecting the lights. It makes things too cumbersome when you have to start moving things around. Using Cellotex is the only way to go. It is wire screen with some sort of heat resistant fibre glass coating. It is malleable and can easily be cut down to different sizes for a variety of lights. We use it every time it rains on lights as big as 18k's and as small as tweenies. One common misuse of it is to leave it one when it stops raining. This is a mistake. The screen is heat resistant and when it rains the boiling off of water keeps it cool. When it stops raining the heat from bigger lamps burns off the fibre glass coating and you have a big hole on top right where you need it the most.

 

One recommendation is to use heat shield or UV filter on the lamps of larger lights to protect the fresnel if it is windy.

 

Best

 

Tim

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Rain is forcast tomorrow night, but I am scheduled to shoot a scene outdoors. Is there a quick and affordable way to protect the lights?

 

I've always just used big umbrellas on C-stands and put them over the lights. For combos and mombos I mount a maffers clamp and a grip head to attach the light and the umbrella on the same stand. Just be sure to place the umbrella at the proper height above the lamp. We don't want a melted umbrella.

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