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J. Lamar King IMPOSTOR

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Everything posted by J. Lamar King IMPOSTOR

  1. If you just want to shoot some light into the pool just use some cheap PAR cans. You can usually find an angle that looks as if the light is emanating from the pool. When working around water be sure to have all the fixtures patched into a ShoKBlock and never let any part of the fixture or cable come into contact with water.
  2. Well if the soundstage is big enough I would be very tempted to pull a few cars in and park them in front of the windows. Put some light on the front fenders and let it fall off in the back. That at least would give you a little depth. You could also take some small units such as inkies and put them as far back as you can with some gel and let them play as distant street lights.
  3. That light you see is just a china ball on a boom pole. looks like one of the nicer ones. You can surely use a paper lantern just be sure the globe can't swing around and ignite it! You can create a huge soft ambiance by bouncing an 18 or 12k off the back of a.....well you better PM me some things are trade secrets!
  4. Well maybe we invented that term here then. :P Good luck!
  5. Exactly, we always measure voltage at the farthest box. I didn't mean to imply that we were measuring at the plant itself. When we have everything struck, usually 2 18K's, 12K, 6K and 4 Jokers, the voltage without load has been around 220, with load 210 or so and it's been stable. That's a little higher than I've had to go in the past though. Usually we setup to around 212 volts fire the lights and then maybe make a small bump. I'm thankful that we got this problem solved before this week because I had a Night EXT. with a condor with 18 and 12K back light. It really eases your stress as a Gaffer if you know the whole company isn't going to get stuck out in the woods in pitch black because your lights went out! The last week of this shoot we are on stage and I've dumped the HMI's for a tungsten stage package. Thanks for everyones help.
  6. I don't know what your budget is exactly but you can set up a 'poor man's condor' for less than a balloon for sure. Do it by running an 8x Ultra bounce top stick on two Mombo's and hit it with a 12k PAR. Use 500 speed tungsten stock and you are good to go. You can cover a fairly large area with this setup and get about a T1.4 to a T2.
  7. Good thing you used Star Trek examples because I think many, many people refer to this effect as a "Kirk Light." I know I do. If you search the site for Kirk light I bet you will get lots of info.
  8. I don't know how old it is but I had my best boy look into it and the reply was 'Damn old.' This genny also puts out rectified DC. I noticed that the DC connectors were all taped over with old nasty tape. The owner said it was because the DC wasn't working right. So yeah, it's a bit whacked! It's just something we really have to keep an eye on.
  9. It's hard to see because of the video compression but that looks like 8K Lightining Strikes Paparazzi strobes to me. If it isn't I bet they would do the job nicely. Definitely a post star effect mixed in there too.
  10. What you are seeing in that shot is more about the colors in the shot. Skin tones, neutral walls brown furniture etc. You could achieve something similar with a dimmed down china ball for the actor, a dimmed practical in the background and use little to no fill. Get up close and take a spot reading of the highlight on the cheek and let that be the only thing that reaches key stop not over.
  11. Well the fact of the matter is you really need sun if that is the look you are going for. Even if you do have lots of lighting power it's still better to shoot with real sun. If you are forced to you can certainly light closeups in overcast weather with a couple of 1200 PAR's and fool the viewer. It's hard to find a suitable background and depending on your setup you may not find one at all. Also don't forget about negative fill it can be your best friend on overcast days. A 12 by T-bone is easy to roll around on one stand. Ultra bounces are the bomb. You can fill in and entire house front with great subtle soft light with a 12 by. Doesn't work that great in heavy overcast really. I recently used a 12 by under a freeway overpass it was very dark under there but with lots of ambient push from hot sun outside. I got an ok edge on one person from about 4 feet away.
  12. Well now I've learned that I'm really just having an old fashioned under voltage issue. I ran 4/0 feeder every day since the last time I had trouble and watched the voltage very closely. On banded we were losing quite a few volts per hour not mention when we added a light. This combined with the A/C's was causing the problem. I have had no trouble the last few days with bigger cable and making sure the voltage remained stable. I never have really had to be as sensitive to voltage before. Not sure what's different, I guess it's the genny. Seems that when we first send power down and take a reading, turn on our lights adjust voltage etc. it's good but then 45 minutes later the volts have dropped quite a bit.
  13. Yeah it's actually kind of weird because I've noticed that cracked lenses seem to happen all at once. Like you'll have a rash of them on one show then not have any for months and months. So I'm guessing it's humidity and air temp or something or maybe it's just a huge swing in temps from a hot day to a cold night.
  14. Yeah it's been a real pain in the A... I went through the whole system with the genny op, had the rental house come out and take a look and they brought us two more 18K's. Today we were really meticulous with balancing the legs and running the replacement lights. We ran an 18, 12 and 4K all day with no problems. Maybe it's just down to bad ballasts. All of these problems and it's only day 7 of 24...we'll see how it goes.
  15. Update: I'm still screwed. :angry: Yesterday I ran my two replacement 18's and a 6K all day no probs. Today however I got no strike from either 18K! One ballast kept saying 'Lamp did not ignite' and the other was just displaying giberish. Finally I got one 18K to strike and it ran about 30 minutes then shut off. WTF! I went through everything again can't find anything wrong with distro or Genny. No A/C's on the line either. I was able to keep a 12K, 6K and 4K up with no probs so we got through the day. Rental house can't seem to help either. So I'm just going to get a different set of 18's from a different rental house. I can believe this shi-ite! :blink:
  16. In my years in the biz I've seen probably a hundred lenses from smaller units crack during cooling. 4K's being the worst. Watch out for cool humid air at night.
  17. Couple of notes about 1200's and bigger PAR's to expand on what was said before... 2. Just press and release the button. On the occasional ballast you made have to hold it. Others you will press and release and there will be a delay before the strike. Try not to press it again too quickly. 3. Rarely but you can certainly use it without a lens in place. 4. The technical terms for the lenses are Super-wide (stipple or Fly's-eye), Wide, Medium, Spot and fresnel. The fresnel is roughly equivalent to a wide I believe. 5. On most 1200's you can get the scrims in front of the lens, some you have to put them there. On a bigger unit like an LTM 12K put the lens in the center slot and scrim behind because you can barely fit two in front of the lens the other way round and they sit right against the hottest part of the glass. 7. Most HMI's 1200 and up you leave burning while moving them in the same setup. Avoids hot re-strike problems though 1200's typically aren't that bad to restrike. 4K's will usually be on a combo and one electrician can safely move the unit while burning if he knows how. Bigger lights are usually on super-cranks or roadrunners with wheels. 9. Be aware that all 4K PAR's of any brand have the recessed lens (crap) design. Really hard to get that lens out when its sitting on a combo, very hard if it is sticked up. The trick with 4K's is to go up a latter so you can grab the lens from above the beam. Rookie mistake is to do it from the ground usually resulting in a burning sleeve because you reached across the lens. Arri 1200 PAR lenses are of the same design. When you pull hot lenses and put them in the box. Leave the box open for it to cool. Shutting the hot lens inside the box often results in a cracked lens. 10. You can pack it away face down, lens removed, it's fine. However don't put a hot light away like this as it can warp the reflector and shorten the socket life. 12. I don't really know the life of the globes either though I'll tell you that most brand new globes I come across start life in the 6100-6150K area. Then work their way down to around 5600K fairly quickly. When they are going bad they get blue, like if you measure one at 8000-10,000K, good bet it is going and going quick. Reject it. 13. Again not much until it's going bad. When smaller lamps fail to strike the microswitch is usually the culprit. Switch off the ballast open up the face and turn the microswitch plunger counter clockwise a bit. Close the face and that will usually get it to fire. If you are renting several 1200's an easy color temp check is to fire them all at the same time and point them at an even colored floor or wall. It's easy to see which ones are too blue or too magenta and sometimes too green.
  18. There is also the lingo particular to that crew. On my crew if you want some black wrap you just call for some 'Run DMC.' :lol:
  19. This is good advice. I do it almost without thinking about it because you need some horsepower to hit people with edges in wide shots so you go clean. When you move in you inevitably fly a frame in to soften and knock it down.
  20. They are the small portable studio ones that run off 120. The only thing I could find on the unit was 8 amps. I don't believe that though. Maybe when it's just blowing but every time the compressor kicks on I know it draws down a pretty big amount of power quickly. In fact I noticed it would dip the tungsten lights in the lunch box it was plugged into also some of the units would trip the breaker. Unfortunately the call sheet changed and we did all Night Int. today so I didn't burn any big guns. I'll feel confident the problem is solved if I can get through a few days with no problems with my guns and no A/C's on my lines. I was aware they were being plugged into my system but it was one of those political things where you feel you have to help out. But if they are causing a problem production is going to have to keep a small genny around just for the A/C units which they did today.
  21. Hey guys thanks for the reply. I would never pull a ground, too dangerous. I think we were within limits with the banded. If it was any hotter outside I would have ran 2/0 feeder. Anyway I think I've remedied the problem and I wonder why I didn't think of it in the first place. Production has been plugging in those mobile A/C units on my lines. :blink: I'm convinced that when the compressor kicks on in those things that it draws a ton of voltage out of the lines. That sag in turn shuts some or all of the lights off. Those A/C units showed up for the first time on the last show exactly when this problem started. Now on this show we have it again. I didn't burn any HMI's today but tomorrow I will and those A/C units are out. If I don't have any problems then they are never going back on my runs that's for sure.
  22. China silk is one stop and an artificial (poly) is one and a half.
  23. Maybe someone with deep knowledge of distro and generators can solve this one for me. Never had this problem until recently on my last feature during the last week one day we fired an 18K and used it for about an hour. We then fired up another 18K then about 15 minutes later the 1st one shut off, 5 minutes after that the second one shut off. This started to happen every day with all different combinations of lights. Mostly I could run an 18K and a 6K at the same time. Today two months later on another feature same equipment vendor we get the same problem. Never had it in the past for three features. So today I was running a 1400amp genny, 3-phase 208, 50' of banded to threefers then two runs of banded 100 feet each. LTM 18K/Power Gems ballast on one run. LTM 12K PAR/Power Gems and LTM 6K PAR/Power Gems on the other run. 18K went down first, we restruck when cooled. Then 5 minutes later everything goes down. Restruck 18K only and it stays up. Genny is running at 210 volts measured. I find a warmish threefer on the black leg but nothing abnormal. Genny is running at 60.03hz I adjusted it to 60.00 to .01hz. Those are hundredths of a HZ so I don't think that was the issue. We saved the 18K to move it to another position. This time I have to have all of my lights. Fingers crossed I struck the lights in order this time. 6K first, then 12K, then 18K everything ran for the rest of the day. The last time this happened I thought I had tracked down the cause. I found two sticks of 2/0 that had been run over and crushed by the water truck. (crossovers do no good if the drivers won't aim for them!) This time it's the first day of shoot everything checked out fine the day before. I don't think it's the lights or ballast themselves because I've used so many heads,ballasts,feeder combinations and still have the problem. The only other clue I have is sometimes the ballast read "Ground Trip" as opposed to "Output Ground Loop Trip" which is the head feeder or microswitch. Any ideas what could cause this vicious anomaly? Other than LTM must be French for POS. I suspect a bad ground connector somewhere but I have brand new D-boxes. Maybe I'm lucky enough to get the same bad stick of banded or bad threefer again. Tired of having a heart attack then fanning 18K's all day.
  24. I think you can get away with a smaller one about 30 feet wide. Just depends on how much you want to dolly really. Skypans are the way to go. You can light a Translight that big from the floor with just three 5K Skypans on turtle stands.
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