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Peter Friedlander June 26th, 2015 08:25 AM

DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
I am looking to build a 1000w DIY dimmer for incandescent lights. Where would I find the power connectors, metal box and dimmer switch itself?
I've searched online and I could get the same for $20 or so, but want to see if I could build one cheaper.

Oren Arieli June 26th, 2015 11:52 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Your prayers have been answered. And for only $19.99 Router Speed Control

Handles 1500W (15A). I have three of these, and can confirm that they work with tungsten lights. Expect a change in color temp and some possible RF noise bleed.

Mike Watson June 27th, 2015 01:36 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Dimmer switches at Home Depot are 600W. If you need bigger than that, use the router control, linked above. Harbor Freight regularly publishes coupons in the paper and in mailers. Keep an eye out, they almost always have one for some % off any item.

Peter Friedlander June 27th, 2015 10:06 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
That you guys a lot! This helps

Jody Eldred June 27th, 2015 10:32 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Oren Arieli (Post 1890745)
Your prayers have been answered. And for only $19.99 Router Speed Control

Handles 1500W (15A). I have three of these, and can confirm that they work with tungsten lights. Expect a change in color temp and some possible RF noise bleed.

Agree 100%. Been using those for many years, as have most of my colleagues shooting for 60 Minutes, 20/20, Nightline, Good Morning America, Today Show, Oprah, PBS, Nat Geo... by FAR the best bang for the buck.

Router Speed Control

Jody Eldred June 27th, 2015 10:33 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Peter Friedlander (Post 1890679)
I am looking to build a 1000w DIY dimmer for incandescent lights. Where would I find the power connectors, metal box and dimmer switch itself?
I've searched online and I could get the same for $20 or so, but want to see if I could build one cheaper.

Without question: Router Speed Control

Many pros on respected news magazine and docs use them (I have several.)
60 Minutes, 20/20, PBS Frontline, Good Mornng America, Oprah, etc...

Gabe Strong July 3rd, 2015 11:26 PM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
I've been using those for years, just remember to re white balance anytime
you adjust the dimmer.

Steven Digges July 10th, 2015 12:16 PM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Glad I found this. I have been through all kinds of dimmers. Most more costly than this. Do they have a three pin socket for ground pin or just a two pin receptacle?


Steve

Oren Arieli July 10th, 2015 01:40 PM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Three-pin is standard on these dimmers.

Steven Digges July 10th, 2015 02:15 PM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Awesome, about ten years ago I bought two dimmers from Coolux. I think I paid about $50.00 apiece. When they arrived they were just cheap consumer plastic junk. And I was shocked to see that dimmers from a lighting company did not even have a ground pin receptacle, I had to lift them. A month later I saw the exact same dimmer in Target for $15.00. I paid $35.00 for a Coolux sticker! They were not even safe to use. Live and learn! I never bought from them again.

Steve

Paul R Johnson July 11th, 2015 01:57 AM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Nowadays building kit is just not economic. I needed eight powercon distribution units, in, loop out, breaker, and two outlets. I can buy them from my Chinese supplier, but wanted something smaller and lighter. Using the cheapest components I could source, making them, even ignoring my time, cost 50% more than importing one from China. I did make them up, but if lightness and size had not been important, I'd have bought them made up without question. Dimmers are the same. Casing and connectors are a big proportion of the cost. At that price, buying the router dimmers makes sense, even though they are not filtered very well and can annoy your sound kit when running around half brightness.

Steven Digges July 11th, 2015 02:49 PM

Re: DIY Cheep Dimmer Switches
 
Paul,

Like you, I do a lot of large scale production work. Except yours is theater and mine is corporate AV shows. In regards to dimmers here is a link to a very common one we use in ballrooms. Its cost and weight makes it unrealistic for my personal video lighting kit. But they ARE nice units. We use them on Lecos and par cans.

https://www.magicgadgets.com/product/prodimmer/

I did not jump into your conversation about electrical wiring in the audio forum because you are way over my head on those technicalities. For ballroom power I always order a 60 amp power drop box from the house. That means they literally drop a three phase box. The box has three separate 20 amp circuits. All audio goes on the "A" circuit all video on "B" circuit and everything else on "C". That is for our technicians area in the FOH so everyone gets clean power. Then I order additional drops rear of house to provide all the additional power our stage lighting requires.

Steve


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