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Rick Gates

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Everything posted by Rick Gates

  1. First terror, then success. I took Gregg's advice and the two halves of the casting fell onto my workbench! But that exposed the top third of the sleeve, so I used a pipe wrench to rotate it into place, screwed the casting back in place and viola! Good as new. Thanks Gregg!
  2. On a recent shoot, I had some rookies putting away the C-stands. These are Avenger stands with the separable turtle base. I did see some of the stands carried off without separating the base first. For some reason, the inner sleeve in the base got turned so that the hole in the sleeve rotated, and now I can no longer screw through it to secure the riser (see photo). My questions are: 1. Has this happened to anybody before? 2. How do you fix it? I've tried using a deep socket to loosen the screw at the bottom of the junior receiver, but I think I'm just loosening a spring that is
  3. Wow, that's way thinner than my Avenger C-stands, which in SAE are 1 3/8", 1 3/16", and 1". The gobo arm on the C-stand is 5/8", same as a baby pin. Good to know. Thanks!
  4. I recently made a decision to try out some of Kupo's 3-way and 4-way clamps as a way to lower my gear footprint. The clamps wrap around the riser portion of c-stands and combos, and hold baby spigots and receivers and J-hooks and such. So I measured my stand's riser diameters to see where the clamps could fit. Turns out that the three risers on my c-stands measure (from bottom up), 35mm, 30mm and 25mm. And the risers of the combo stands are 45mm, 40mm, 35mm and 30mm . There's 5mm difference in diameter between each riser. But all my c-stands and combos are Avenger products. Is t
  5. Gabriel, I'm not looking to rent, but instead to buy my gear. I decided to go with two menace arm kits as I already have the combo stands and speed rail. I'll hang a 300D with space light attachment from each. Thanks for the suggestions.
  6. Exterior at night, and under a tall mercury vapor lamp post in a parking lot. I will use 2 10' sections of 1 1/4" speedrail joined with the heavy Matthews connector, and secured to the combo stands with Big Ben clamps. Wish I could find an affordable truss system, but after looking around I determined I'm looking at several thousand $, even for one based on speedrail. We will sandbag the hell out of combo stands, and tie rope to each and secure to other vehicles behind the combos. I'll send pix of the final setup.
  7. JB Earl, it would be nice to do it all on the combo stands, and I know I wouldn't have to worry so much about safety that way. And getting them further out from the car is also good. But to also hang the 8x8 frame from the same goalpost? It sounds like you're saying that I could attach 4 ropes of equal length to the goalpost and tie them off to the corners of the 8x8 frame and have the frame hang down enough (like 4 ft) that the 300Ds get enough spread before they hit the diffusion. Is that about right? I also have an 8x8 "silk" that came with the frame, and I think that would
  8. Oohh... I like that idea. He will be parked under a street light. That gives me 3 points. Thanks Satsuki!
  9. Not for bounce, for diffusion. Our plan is to hang the goalposts above the 8x8 and blast 3 lights through some 1/4 grid. We're looking for diffuse toplighting for the character who gets out of the car and looks around with a flashlight. I'm just trying to figure out how to suspend the 8x8 (aluminum frame) with 1/4 grid above the car without having 4 combo stands. An 8x8 frame is the biggest thing we have. Cool idea on how to hang a large bounce though.
  10. Hey all, I'm trying to figure out how to rig an 8x8 with some diffusion about 4 ft above a car. The plan is to blast 3 Aputure 300Ds into it from a goalpost constructed of 16 ft of 1" square tubing and 2 C-stands with mafer clamps. I also have 2 combo stands that can reach 18'. My only idea so far is to tie two ropes to the top of each combo stand, and tie these to the 4 corners of the 8x8 (and sandbag the hell out of the combos). But I would be remiss if I didn't check with all of you. So thanks in advance.
  11. The current on the battery is listed as 12 amps. It's a 14.8V battery, which is what the DC specs for the light says. Got a new light (Falcon Eyes 18TD) and new battery coming. The second I see it flicker I'm going to gaff tape it in place. Thanks guys.
  12. I've had trouble twice now, with V-mounts that don't quite fit snugly into light controllers, and when they move around they create a short that ruin the battery, and in this most recent case, the controller: https://www.tendrile.com/2020/8/5/pzwfzl077owncvntqsdlqo51k61vey This $150 battery is now toast. The mangled lead you see actually melted enough to pull the sleeve away from the controller with it. My question is "How have others dealt with this issue?" The best I can come up with is to gaffe-tape the hell out of it so it doesn't move around.
  13. I'm building a set for a 1940's era private eye office. It's for a film noir, which will be delivered in black and white. I've found a good, older door that I could use. But I couldn't find any period style windows in the local (Eugene), used building supplies stores. So I figured, what the heck. I could make my own window by building a simple wooden grid in a frame. Behind the window we'll stretch a silk and rear project a 1940s era cityscape. But my question for all of you is "Should I make it a real window with glass panes?" It would be much cheaper, faster and lighter t
  14. Greetings, I have a teleprompter from Listec. It's the type where a tray hangs in front to allow you to use your tablet to display the scrolling text. The Listec 15mm rods have 1/4x20 female sockets on one end, and the front tray screws into these. These specialized rods are several inches shorter than the rods I normally use on the base of my camera rig. So when I need to use the teleprompter, I have to break down my entire rig. What I'm searching for are either much longer rods that have a 1/4x20 female on one end, or something that screws together that provides the same thing.
  15. Aha! That makes a lot of sense to me David. And of course, since the reflected eye light is at the upper end of the exposure, increasing contrast will really make the light pop against the pupil. To me, Tony Shalhoub feels more intense in the second shot. I'm also wondering if bringing up just the whites would do the trick without having to crush the shadows more. Off to Premiere (and possibly Resolve) to try this out. Thanks so much! This forum is the best.
  16. Wow David! That sets me back to square one. In the close ups I've shot so far, I can always see the shape of the light (a softbox or tube light or whatever) in the eye. I'm blown away that these all come from keys or fills. Here's a thought. I'm a very small producer and the largest light I have is an Aputure 300D II. Because I have such low powered lights I'm generally getting them in as close as I can to bring up exposure, which would allow the shape to show in the eye. Do you think it's likely that in Westworld the reason that we're not seeing the shape of the light in the ey
  17. Though I know it's not to everybody's taste, I really like the small, hard eyelight used in Westworld. Particularly for the hosts (robots), I think it makes them feel colder. I'm working on a short production that will be shot entirely at night, and I'd like to do something similar. Usually, my key or fill serves as an eye light. However, in the following images, I'm not certain the key or fill is the source of the eye light. At least it doesn't look like it. Any idea what they're doing? Thanks as always for the collective wisdom.
  18. Thanks Phil, this will help a lot. I especially appreciate the safety concerns. Cheers!
  19. We are trying to light a barn in a remote location at night. Even at over 100 feet, the generator is too loud to allow us do noise-reduction on the dialogue. All our lights are LEDs. The main 3 lights we want to use are the Aputure 300D (300w), and 2 Aputure Lightstorms (120w each). We are thinking about trying to hook together a couple of deep-cycle batteries with an inverter. The numbers say that we should be able to power all 3 lights for a few hours. But I thought we should ask the pros before making the purchase. I hate ADR!!! Rick
  20. Here's the ceiling grid we put up: This was a low key piece, so we ended up not dropping lights further down from the grid because they didn't make much difference compared to the flex-light over the table.
  21. OK, I've come up with what I think will work for dropping lights into the alcove behind the talent for the seated mediums and closeups. (In the images below, please note that the goal post simply simulates the wall-spreaders/pipe-stretchers that I'll put up high in the alcove) I used 3 pieces of speedrail and 4 cheeseboros to create a U-shaped structure hanging down behind the talent. The bottom of the U can hold whatever lights I need. Again, all my lights are LEDs so I'm not talking about much weight. So what do you think of this approach? Safety? Efficiency?
  22. So I'm planning a shoot where I'll build a speedrail ceiling grid in a tight 7x10 alcove with 10 ft ceilings. I'm planning on two wall-spreaders/pipe-stretchers, for the 7 ft span, and then 4 cheeseboros to add a couple of 10 ft cross rails. This should allow me to light the wide shot the way I want. The talent is seated below. However, when we get to the mediums and the closeups, I'd like to drop a light down behind the talent and get a nice reverse key. I could probably boom in a light from outside the alcove, though it would be a hassle. But it occurred to me that if I could ju
  23. The rail I'm getting here in town is schedule 40 6061-T6 extruded aluminum. I measured the OD at 1.657. The info from on B&H from an "Avenger Expert", is that the clamp range 1.65" to 2.04". I don't have any experience with Big Bens. Are they usually designed to work with both 1 1/4 and 1 1/2 speedrail? Ed must be right about the optimal minimum diameter, and I'm at the bottom end of the range, so I guess it makes sense I'd run into this problem. At least I can easily wrap the pipe ends with silicon before clamping. Thanks!
  24. Hah. Kupollini. Good instincts JD. The speedrail was indeed turning. So I cut a couple of pieces of silicon mat, wrapped them around the ends of the speedrail and clamped down on that. Result? Absolutely no movement on the fixture. It stayed completely vertical throughout all jostling of the goal posts. As always, thanks for the help.
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