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Old November 7th, 2004, 03:18 PM   #1
Chris Kenny
 
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Building a portable lighting system around compact fluorescent?

This seems fairly straightforward:

1) Get a 12VDV ballast, like this: http://store.aapspower.com/2ddcbafl18.html

2) Hook it up to a reasonably sized 12V battery, like this: http://www.batteryprice.com/product1...ategory_ID=140

3) Get a suitable fixture (I'm having a bit of trouble with that).

4) Use a ~30W CFL bulb. It should run for two or three hours off of that battery, providing more light than a 100W incandescent.

But has anyone actually done this? Are there CFL bulbs (preferably daylight ballenced) which put out a reasonable spectrum for video? Are there fixtures for CFLs which would be good for this application? My Google searching hasn't provided good answers.
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Old November 7th, 2004, 07:47 PM   #2
Chris Kenny
 
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Doing a bit more research, it looks like it might make more sense to just run three or four 12V CFL's with built-in ballasts off of an inverter hooked up to a 12V battery. There are a lot more choices in terms of fixtures that way, because you can use anything with a standard Edison socket. And you've got the added benefit of 120VAC around, which is useful for all sorts of things.

These bulbs would seem to be a reasonable choice: http://www.wattbusters.com/75100Watt...v-p-19463.html. Has anyone tried shooting with these? They've got a very high CRI (93).
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Old November 8th, 2004, 04:18 AM   #3
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Chris, thanks for the link. Here is another I've found in my search, with a CRI of 91+ (whatever the plus means) :

http://www.fullspectrumsolutions.com/compact_fluorescent.shtml

They seem to be cheaper, although I have no way of comparing them to the other bulb. Also, this company sells more powerful CFLs.

With all of the CFLs I have in my home, I find their effective/perceptual output to be significantly less than their advertised power ratings. Am I the only one that notices a 75 watt bulb easily outshines the 25 watt CFL ? I still like to cheer on CFLs. (If you think they're really going to take off, invest in
International Rectifier Corp (IRF) They design the most advanced lighting control chips. CFLs were made possible by such integration).
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Old January 17th, 2005, 10:16 AM   #4
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the 300wt equivalent bulb kicks butt... 3 on a single extension cord outlet with a 3 plug adapter>? it's ridiculous. It's cold but combined with 1 Lowel 1K light it's grrrrreat!
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Old January 17th, 2005, 02:06 PM   #5
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For a good reflector for CF bulbs, check out ahsupply.com They sell kits for making CF light rigs for aquariums, and a 40W bulb in front of one of their reflectors is painfully bright.
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Old January 17th, 2005, 11:51 PM   #6
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Wow -- the ahsupply link is great, thanks for that tip! The 96W kit seems like a great starter kit. It's true, the reflector is the secret to getting enough light out of the fixture.

What you would need with this kit is the shell housing, the bulbs, and a way to attach it to a stand. I guess you could mount a stud on the back of the shell (specifically, a 5/8" baby nail-on plate) and use a c-stand to angle and position it. Seems like a great deal at $60 + lamp.

Baby plates at http://store.yahoo.com/cinemasupplies/mat58babstan.html
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Old January 18th, 2005, 05:17 AM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Robert Crawford : For a good reflector for CF bulbs, check out ahsupply.com They sell kits for making CF light rigs for aquariums, and a 40W bulb in front of one of their reflectors is painfully bright. -->>>

I don't quite understand what box is that the 96w bulb is in. Is that one of the aquarium fiished boxes they sell?


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Old January 18th, 2005, 05:27 AM   #8
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<<<--
What you would need with this kit is the shell housing, the bulbs, and a way to attach it to a stand. I guess you could mount a stud on the back of the shell (specifically, a 5/8" baby nail-on plate) and use a c-stand to angle and position it. Seems like a great deal at $60 + lamp.
-->>>


Shouldn't that part be a "female" type? All stands are "males", as far as I know.


Carlos
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Old January 18th, 2005, 06:48 AM   #9
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<<<-- Originally posted by Carlos E. Martinez :
I don't quite understand what box is that the 96w bulb is in. Is that one of the aquarium fiished boxes they sell? -->>>

I think so. I don't think that would be necessary for a light kit, though some sort of frame to hold everything together would be useful.
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Old January 18th, 2005, 07:23 AM   #10
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<<<-- Originally posted by Robert Crawford :
I think so. I don't think that would be necessary for a light kit, though some sort of frame to hold everything together would be useful. -->>>

The reflector looks a bit fragile and the tube is long and breakable too.

I think you would need more than a frame to hold a system, particularly if it holds more than one lamp.

The whole system looks quite interesting to me, as I am interested in assembling a DIY fluo system that might replace a Lowel Caselite for a much lower price.

Having a reflector is very good. Having a ready made box too. Now I would need a way to tilt it and holding it from a light stand.


Carlos
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Old January 18th, 2005, 08:50 AM   #11
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<<<-- Originally posted by Carlos E. Martinez :
The reflector looks a bit fragile and the tube is long and breakable too.

I think you would need more than a frame to hold a system, particularly if it holds more than one lamp.

The whole system looks quite interesting to me, as I am interested in assembling a DIY fluo system that might replace a Lowel Caselite for a much lower price.

Having a reflector is very good. Having a ready made box too. Now I would need a way to tilt it and holding it from a light stand.
-->>>

The reflector's not as fragile as it looks. I have a 2x40W kit on an aquarium, and one of the reflectors tends to get caught on the handle on the aquarium cover. It's about four years old and the reflector's intact and as polished as new.

I built my own enclosure for the aquarium lights, and probably would do the same if I made some CF studio lights. A heavy board to hold the ballast and mount the reflector, then some lighter pieces to finish the "box" are all you really need. Add some clips or other ways to get a grip on the "box" and you can mount it where you need it.

Here's some pictures of the box I built for my aquarium:

http://www.kloognome.com/gallery/album81

You probably wouldn't want the hinge down the middle, but it gives you an idea how light-weight these kits are.
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