Portable Lighting

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by winsley, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. winsley

    winsley TPF Noob!

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    Ok, So my wife was kind enough to buy me an Elinchrome D-Lite4 setup for Christmas. My question is... I have an old barn available and want to take my lights with me. There is however no power in the immediate area and running extension cords is too far. I have a generator available but will this give a constant power or will it surge and blow the storbes? The setup has standard house hold plugs/prongs. Is there an adapter that I can purchase to convert it to be used in the more portable power systems? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Misfitlimp

    Misfitlimp TPF Noob!

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    My brothers and I run our own construction co. and what not and sometimes when we do re-models on properties that dont have power and im going to tell you thats not something you wanna have running your expensive lighting. One its loud so you would probably have extension chords running in and have your generator outside anyways and two when i would have a compressor and a saw running at the same time the thing would surge and almost shut off and i dont think thats healthy for some lights but i will tell you this ill give you a good deal if you give us the contract to set that up as a studio! haha!
     
  3. winsley

    winsley TPF Noob!

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    If your willing to travel to Canada and about 2 hours north east of Toronto! I have a box built that dampens the noise but allows for proper ventilation of exhaust and heat. It's a 9000watt king generator and is hooked up to a generator panel in my house for when the power goes out. Living in Redneck country it happens. Thought that it my not surge too much though? Then again I'm not the professional.
     
  4. Misfitlimp

    Misfitlimp TPF Noob!

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    Yeaaah I dont think our license is any good in canada!HA! but its a nice thought. I know running a saw and a compressor draws a lot of amps and what not but i dont know aboot the lights. I just dont know if i would risk it because I just googled your light setup and seen that it runs about $850 so yeah i wouldnt wanna fry em, know what i mean?
     
  5. winsley

    winsley TPF Noob!

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    What do you know about a UPS computer back up system? Some else suggested one? Would it smooth out the power surges?
     
  6. Big Mike

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

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    I've always heard & read that these lights require pretty clean electricity...so much so that they say you shouldn't use a regular power inverter, but you need a Pure Sine Wave Inverter.
    You could probably run them off of a generator, but you would probably want something to filter the power before it gets to the lights.

    You could use a vehicle & it's battery, as long as you use the aforementioned pure sine wave inverter.

    There are battery kits available for this type of thing. Elinchrom probably has something, as I know they have battery pack & head products.

    You might also want to look at the Vagabond, which many people consider to be the best deal for a portable strobe battery pack.
    AlienBees: Illuminating the Galaxy with Professional Photographic Lighting Equipment
     
  7. Phranquey

    Phranquey TPF Noob!

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    You can get an AC voltage regulator that will "clean" the electricity and prevent surges....

    Amazon.com: Tripp Lite LC1200 1200W Line Conditioner w/ IsPRar Protection 4 outlets 120V: Electronics
    "Product Description
    Tripp Lite's LC 1200 Line Conditioner provides automatic voltage regulation for computers, copiers, laser printers, fax machines and other sensitive electronic equipment. 1,200 watts of voltage regulation correct brownouts and overvoltages (87 to 140 volts) back to computer-grade 120 volt AC.The unit has 4 outlets, 6-ft. cord, diagnostic LEDs, and built-in surge and noise suppression. Isolated filter banks stop interference between connected equipment. The item is supplied with $25,000 Ultimate Lifetime Insurance."


    But, for peace of mind, I'd rather have something like the Vagabond that is specifically designed for (and already tested on) photo equipment.
     
  8. electricalperson

    electricalperson TPF Noob!

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    i dont think a generator set to operate at 120 volts will cause any surge and fry anything. i am an electrician in MA and i install these to power houses. the reason why a motor causes lights to dim is when a motor starts, it draws a lot of current because the resistance of the motor is very low on start up, when the motor starts to spin it puts a counter electromotive force on the lines causing current to fall pretty quick.

    personally i wouldnt worry about surges with generators. a surge is probably the most incorrect term used today. people say surges fried stuff when 99.9% of the time it was equipment failure and surge was used as a scapegoat. usually surges happen with lighting strikes, motor contactors opening and closing. google transient voltage. if you get a portable generator rated for 3500w or whatever they come in i would not worry about anything like that.

    doesnt a strobe charge a capacitor and when you shoot it releases the voltage?
     
  9. electricalperson

    electricalperson TPF Noob!

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    reason why your generator did this was it was overloaded. get a bigger generator or dont use the tools at the same time. it wasnt a surge it was an overload.
     
  10. electricalperson

    electricalperson TPF Noob!

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    a cheap generator might have a real bad voltage and/or current waveform so one of those conditioners might be a good idea
     
  11. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I use the Innovatronix Tronix Explorer 1200, which is a portable battery and pure sine wave inverter, similar to the Paul C. Buff "Vagabond II" that Big Mike Referred to. This is a small case with carrying handle, and it has a storage battery inside, and the sine wave inverter turns the battery's stored current into pure, voltage-regulated AC current. This device has two, household style plug-in receptacles, and will power many types of NON-digital monolights or studio pack and head systems.

    Checking the company's compatibility list here Innovatronix Incorporated | Products & Services

    I see that the D-lights are listed as compatible. There are two models from Innovatronix--the 1200 model, and the larger XT model. The XT has a larger battery than the Vagabond II, as I recall. This is the type of unit I would look for, and just forget a generator. These are the devices actually designed to run studio flash equipment on location!
     
  12. winsley

    winsley TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the help. Derrel, how do you like that unit? I looked at their website and think that I might go with the XT. Have you had any issues with yours? And approximately how many flashes do you get per charge? If I purchase one I want to make sure that I get enough as there maybe another photographer with me shooting.
     

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