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Old March 10th, 2006, 01:25 AM   #1
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Britek Softbox - POS?

Okay, I just got my brand new Britek lighting system in today, and so far it all looks pretty good.

However, the softbox that comes with the kit won't keep it's form. There is no built-in tension in the supports of any kind, so when you place the softbox on the light, the top struts just fall down OR the bottom struts just slip out of their fittings OR BOTH HAPPENS.

I'm getting pretty frustrated. Anyone who has a Britek softbox have any tips or workarounds for this problem?
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Old March 10th, 2006, 02:01 AM   #2
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it's good that you brought this up because i have the same exact problem. followed the directions but just can't figure it out.
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Old March 10th, 2006, 09:03 AM   #3
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The way my softboxes from Britek mount are similar to other softboxes I've used in the past, execpt the hole that you put the supports moves instead of being in a fixed location.

This is how mine works...

The ring has 4 mounting posts that have a slip joint. This slip joint allow you to move the position of the mounting post. You pull the slip joint of the mounting post and position it so all 4 post point straight up when the ring is on the ground. Now place the 4 wire supports. Now place the black portion of the softbox onto the supports. (There is a sleeve in each corner that the wire fits into) Now this is the tricky part, you now have to move each mounting post until it's pointing straight out horizontal with the ring. The slip joint of the mounting post slips into the hole to keep it in place.

I'm gonna try and give you a mental example of what I'm explaining. Picture your hand. Now straighten your fingers. Now pull all your fingers until they're touching each other. This is what it looks like while you're mounting the softbox. Now spread your fingers out. This is the position the mounts should be in when you spread them out. This keeps the tension on the box.

Now you mount the white face on the softbox.

It's a little tricky at first and takes some practice to get the best feel for how best to move the posts while holding the softbox in place but once you figure it out, it goes fairly quickly.

Good Luck!
Rick
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Old March 10th, 2006, 09:41 AM   #4
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So Rick... you are saying that the soft box isn't a POS, just confusing and difficult?
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Old March 10th, 2006, 09:55 AM   #5
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i have one of these, and they're actually quite good, just confusing and difficult (where's my winkie smilie emoticon????).

if i remember correctly, i had to do a web search on assembling the softbox, and there were some good instructions put together by an equally frustrated group of people. was it over on dvxuser, perhaps? i don't remember precisely, but the info is available online to help you get it together. i'm thinking dvxuser, but do your own web search, and you should cough it up. if i can assemble this, anyone can, because i'm an idiot at the mechanics of things (which is why it would be useless for me to attempt an explanation myself). but someone, somewhere has done it. the directions they supply are terrible. do the web search.

these work great once you get them assembled. i keep one of mine fully assembled at all times so that i can refer to it whenever i have to reassemble one.
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Old March 10th, 2006, 10:06 AM   #6
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I would consider myself very mechanical and it still took me a few minutes to figure it out. The directions didn't help. But once you get it figured out, it works well. You just have to manhandle it a bit. Don't worry too much about breaking the supports, they're made to bend. The slip joint is the hardest thing to get into place.

All my other softboxes for my flash heads have to be sort of strong-armed into place. Just the nature of the beast I guess.

Rick
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Old March 10th, 2006, 11:13 AM   #7
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Just wait until you have to take it apart for transport! That is even tougher (in my opinion).
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Old March 10th, 2006, 12:12 PM   #8
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I find that to take it apart, if you push a corner down, hold the support wire down with one hand and slip the softbox off the support wire, then it comes apart easier. It's much harder trying to get the slip-joints out while they're under pressure.

Rick
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Old March 10th, 2006, 12:28 PM   #9
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Just got a reply from Tom at Rostronics (where I ordered the lights). The mistake I was making was that you have to move the support holders back into their original positions (into the original slots). I wasn't doing this because I didn't want to break anything.

I haven't had a chance to try it yet, but I'll bet it works.
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Old March 10th, 2006, 04:29 PM   #10
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Okay, finally got a chance to try out Tom's advice. It works. Once you have the softbox assembled, you have to pull the supports back into their original slots. The support wires will bend, but that's okay.

I found it easiest to work on one support, then move to the opposite support. Trying to do 2 at the same time didn't work very well. Hope that helps!
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Old March 11th, 2006, 01:51 AM   #11
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Do it on the floor.

Trying to manhadle one of these things on the stands will bring a tear to your eye. The first 3 are pretty easy but the 4th is a real ball buster and it's way too much leverage for a lightweight lightstand.
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Old March 11th, 2006, 05:23 PM   #12
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I just got done shooting with the kit today, and it all went pretty well. No complaints on the lighting.

My only complaint would be that afterwards, I found it impossible to take the softbox apart. The tension in the rods and the angle of the supports is pretty incredible. I'm just going to leave it together I think, even if it is a pain to store and transport that way.
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Old March 11th, 2006, 08:08 PM   #13
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You have to put the softbox on the floor, sitting on the ring. Then, you have to push on two opposites support wires at the same time. This way you will be able to change the position of one holder, releasing the pressure on all the wires.

This is pretty easy to do after you acheive it one time... I now have some Chimera softboxes and the way to assemble an disassemble them is almost identical. You will get it!
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Old March 11th, 2006, 08:16 PM   #14
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Maybe I'll try it again then. Must be like assembling one. It's a pain, but once you do it, it's easier to do it again.
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Old March 11th, 2006, 08:46 PM   #15
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Ya. I have some of these and some Lowel Rifa boxes too...

The Rifa's go up and down in about 30 seconds with no bending or hassle at all. But, they are WAY more expensive.... Get what you pay for, I guess...

So, I leave my cheapies set up in the studio all the time, and the Lowells are packed up ready for travel.

Best,

- Ben
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