Difficulty with the home made lightbox

Discussion in 'Commercial/Product photography' started by Nicolas Alary, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    Hello guys !

    I'm having some troubles building this home made lightbox ! The thing is that I'm living in France and it's really hard to find the good stuff !

    http://www.studiolighting.net/homemade-light-box-for-product-photography/

    Joseph Holst says that he paind 4.99 bucks for his foam board and I paid 20 for mine ! It's the same for everything !! Bloody expensive ! But I don't mind paying a little extra when I find the stuff but I can't find this : (cercled in red)

    [​IMG]

    The only one I found are in plastic, are expensive, and are limited to 40 Watt ! I looked on the Lowe's and The Home Depot website but I can't find them, same thing on e-bay !

    Do you know where I can find some ? How would you call them ?

    Thank you for your help :)

    Nicolas
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I would call that a 'clamp lamp' or something like that.

    I have a few of them in my garage somewhere...and I would think that Home Depot would carry them...but they are a pretty generic product so they might not be on the web site...which doens't help you very much.

    If you haven't seen it before, have a look at this site for other ideas about home made photo accesories. http://www.diyphotography.net/
     
  3. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    Big Mike, you are the man !! Thank you for the useful link (added to fav) and for your help about the clamp lamp :)
     
  4. user3977

    user3977 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    here in the USA we have the devil (walmart) they have them for about 4 or 5 dollars usd. not sure on shipping to you but hey if you want i can find them. oh yea, not sure how they would work on the power conversion in your part of the world
     
  5. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    Thank you so much user3977 !! That's a really nice of you to offer me your help ! They should put a wallmart right in the middle of paris ! Let me get a little bit more info about american power in France and I'll keep you in touch !

    Thanks again !

    Nico
     
  6. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry TPF Noob!

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    Power shouldn't matter, change the plug and the bulb to French types and all will be fine. H
     
  7. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    You right ! That could do it ! Thanks ! I sent a mail to a friend of mine who is pretty good about all those stuff, I think I'm getting closer ! Thanks again !
     
  8. John_05

    John_05 TPF Noob!

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    another tip on the clamp lights...

    they are usually rated for a regular incandescent bulb. they rate them for the heat the bulb puts out, and not the actual wattage the light uses IIRC. if you have one thats limited to 40 watts, you could get those spiral shaped compact fluorescent that are rated for 40 watts, but puts out about 200+ equivalent watts of light. ive used 250 watt fluorescents in the clamp light i have, and never had a problem with it.
     
  9. Joxby

    Joxby TPF Noob!

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    Do not buy American clamp lights and change the plug.
    American stuff is 110v, they're non too bothered about earthing their metal cased equipment since voltage to earth is 50v = kinda girly and non-lethal.
    French mains voltage is 220v, any fault to the metal case will mess your day up, unless its protected by an rcd, in which case you'd probably live but have a bubble perm for a few weeks.
    Buy French or British
     
  10. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    Hey guys !! I eventually managed to find those clamp lights in a french store ! 20 bucks each, 100 Watt. I just received my 2.8 SIGMA 50mm Lens and it's just great ! I'm having GREAT fun testing all the stuffs I can do with those new equipements !

    Here is my lightbox :

    [​IMG]

    Here are some tests :

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Thanks for your help through this whole thing !
     
  11. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    This is not quite correct. Standard voltage in the US is nominally 240 VAC. Three wires come into the panel. At the peak of a cycle, one wire is +120V, one is -120V, and the third is 0V (the neutral, connected to ground). The total voltage between the two "hot" leads is 240 VAC, while the voltage between either "hot" lead and the neutral lead is 120 VAC. House circuits are produced by using one "hot" lead and the neutral lead. As a result, the voltage to earth is 120 VAC, not 60. And even 50V can ruin your day (I've had it happen more than once).

    In any case, these sorts of clamp-lamps that I've looked at do not have a chassis connection to the circuit. The lamp socket is isolated from the metal reflector and clamp. I don't especially like this (the chassis should be grounded to an earth ground, the third pin on a three-pin plug) because, although you should be alright if the chassis should come into contact with the neutral line, ruination of your day will occur if the hot lead comes into contact.

    Incidentally, voltage overseas tends to follow the same pattern: 440 VAC comes into the distribution panel, and 220 VAC circuits are formed from two halves (including the neutral lead) of the 440 VAC circuit.

    Also, be sure to check your lamp's ratings to ensure that it will not be overloaded by running it under 220V (this includes both socket and cord). Usually, this isn't an issue, but with cheap parts, it could be. Current capacity shouldn't be an issue at all, as the current draw will be less under 220V than 120V, but it can't hurt to check this as well.
     
  12. Nicolas Alary

    Nicolas Alary TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the very detailed info ! I solved this problem for the moment but it still can be handy for later !

    I uploaded a quick web page to post my test : http://nicolasalary.free.fr/lightbox.html

    Thanks again !

    Nico !
     

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