Vintage Lighting Believe I know a guy that specializes in that...


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Budget Manager wants all the 1950's Leko’s in the house to be RGBW in matching the chandeliers (A Go!), so as to keep effect going in control and colors, and also continue the old look for the space. My ears perked up in staying out of the big boss’s conversation.... can do this - I know someone (in pointing at me all in the meeting knew). The week before, me in presenting a RGB 4.5x6.5 Hub radial (Altman 360 series) fixture I had just re-done and fitted with a E-26 based RGB self color changing lamp. Total luck and sales I had in the previous week given them this fixture as per a prop light they now want all the old Leko's in the space to be.

Interesting... the Budget Manager, as did the House Manager a week before the Leko was presented to, were pulling on the Leko’s shutters in asking is this what changes the color? Difficult to explain quickly on the spot in holding attention of the money people the purpose of a Leko shutter. No, this lever doesn’t adjust the color....

Type 1368 Kliegl Leko 8" Leko with step lens a prototype. Amongst a bunch more 1950's / early 1960's fixtures from 8" to 4.1/2" all to go individually addressed RGBW prop lights to match the theater’s chandeliers in each of 12 lamps, and the bottom wash light RGBW pendant. No real output from any lamps on the chandeliers, except for from the pendant, the new lighting grid and movers and PAR’s will do this for the stage, as will the other ceiling lights added.. There will be discussions about the need for at least two actual leko positions, and at least one in the ceiling positions, before wiring of the FOH is done. Have to fight my "PAR and Go" boss on this.

The ask was like bringing together what I have in the past years on old lights for free in bulk verses LED stuff done for pay, together as one. I do a lot of LED stuff, and I also restore a bunch of old lights. Paid gig also now in restoring lights? Just very difficult in preserving some I don’t have for the museum, verses providing prop lights for their needs. Broken lenses, or wrong lenses also a challenge - someone installed a 6" Fresnel lens to replace a step lens for instance, and all the 4.5" front lenses are cracked. To make this work, I will have to pull from donation stock two Altman 360 fixtures already restored & take them apart for re-painting & color matching. A shame, but not enough 4.5x6.5 lenses to make 4 of 6, and this in math will ensure one for the museum. That plus I was the only one to note there was a Altman 360Q 6x9 fixture hanging in the house amongst other 4.5" Leko’s. #6 missing Leko showed up, but has problems. Noboy will not the change of fixture and it will look correct design wise. This among house boom corner problems in what is what. I have a very decorative plot... have to Management get this done.

Theatrical display of various 1950's lights, there is enough stock between me in surplus and them to make this happen in even going 6x12 for poper prop lighting for the position.., and also provide examples for the museum. Going RGB for the light source, I have done... but not on budget to fix the fixtures and make them RGBW DMX before... Glad for the fun project. Short time in me four days a week and late hours living out there, than coming back to the shop for parts or to work in it two hours away when not on-site. Have a great assistant to help at the shop, especially while I'm on-site. But needs instruction for how to do what is needed. No problem in he will as per a roadie, but in spare time trained in what my department does... he will do it well. Already shown himself to be a great painter, and good at wiring. All my normal people are laid off. Adventure!!! Have to make some Altman 360 radials become Hub - a challenge, but my assistant has proven so far to be up to the challenge in other paintings.

Life coming together on this project old/new. Hard work for younger people I normally would have do for me soon coming up.

TBA if the Osram RGBW node at $26.00 will work out, verses the 3+x more output also Osram node for also 3x the price. Showing the protype will be Wendsday. Tomorrow add the nodes, resistors and PSU's a and decoders to a restored 1950's 8" Leko. Hopefully I have the bench focus correct and most efficient to the filament center.


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You are one of the busiest lumen-ators in this here pandemic, Ship. Always good to see your restoration work.
DMX feed thru & Edison cord. Sleeved all cable in fiberglass sleeving, tough to get two single pair XLR/DMX cables into the fixtgure bushing - literally had to put cables into a bench vise and squeeze, than further pull with pliers. Space between reflector and outer shell has enough room to easily shove both decoder and power supply into it. Once I get to the 4.5" fixtures, I have to have a remote PSU/Decoder, and Environmental Lighting seemingly is the only one with a 12v version. The actual 6" Kliegl fixtures similar to the 8" in design, never seen before so don't know how I'm going to deal with them.

Tested the fixture today on bench test in the electronics dpt. Slight and a little more bench focus adjustment needed, but good output. Kind of like output from a 100w lamp. It's ok, but I think I need to sand blast the step lens given it's a prop light and it's output should not have an actual role in lighting the stage this had on the ceiling.... Or no, who would sand blast a step lens - sand blast some 1/4" polycarbonate.

Problematic also was the step lens itself - could be the "point source" of the LED star node. Never seen the steps of the lens projected before. 1/4" polycarbonite sand blasted solves my lens problem, projection of light on stage problem & output on the lens surface problems for prop light look in lenses I don't have enough of.

Other part of the project, converting two Altman 360 series radial fixtures into Hub - the same... It's the same casting, just trying to fake the textured charcoal gray/black with a hint of brown paint is giving me stress.... in handing the project over to an an assistant who did well on chandileer orniments, but not so well in reproducing Hub paint. I have a large spray paint color stock to match with. Just more a dusting of black.... I did that, more than this we get dots.... Kryaylon dulling spray will blend... but just not yet right.

Oh' and I still need to come up with star node LED to EGE conversions for the Altman/Hub 6x9's.

It's an adventure for sure. Back to the theater tomorrow. Rushed today both me working late last night, and the electronics dpt. today. We almost had a DMXter presentable fixture.... than later in the day... Nobody will be there to present the light to. Kind of a good thing in figuring out the different lens need, but a lot of extra effort for the chance to present it to the client in paying for the downgrade project.


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Might it be easier to use one double-pair DMX / RS485 cable and split out the connectors at the tail of the whip? Or, if the whip is short enough (which this, at least in theory, does not appear to me to be), to wire the in and through/out DMX connectors together outside the fixture and just send a pigtail to the decoder gizmo?
Brilliant idea, thanks! I'm a barbaric type of old school person in forcing to make work and never thought of those options. If I still stay DMX, I know I have some 1/8" OD single pair cable about I would rather go with - just used to soldering it to XLR jacks. On the other hand, my boss in discussions today mentioned the other RJ-45 based control system for these and other lights.... I so dislike terminating RJ-45... but am going to have to get used to it for the rest of the year. That and install and apply the ETC specified methods of termination of cable - suck!

Bench focus center of filament from the plentium on a 4.5" or 6" radial is 5.3/8". Assuming I got my 120 degree angle correct to place the led node parallel to the lens, and assuming I got the node in the up/down position, the lamp filament was set at. Didn't think of that detail on the 8" Leko but it seemed like it was on center to the lamp cap as opposed to up/down on a 360 radial Leko actual location. Luckily I have lots of the rectangular Altman Plentium plates - I never use the aluminum ones - I made steel triangular ones. These plates should make it easy to mount the node bracket. Photo is mockup - bracket not bolted to plate yet.

Never said this before.... It should be easier to bench focus the radial Altman 360 Leko's on this project, than the four screw Kliegl #1966 8" Leko's. literally in bench testing, removed the lens train, reached my arm in and bent the mounting plate on the prototype. All good in concept, will try the polycarbonate lens, or sand blasted (gelled to simulate) or just 8" non-step lens for what's best TBD. As with work on the 4.5 and 6" fixtures TBD. So much work to do, and mostly coming home three days a week while not on remote job site.. Busy next few months or at this point almost year for me.

Also visited the local community theater to this job today, Yep, they will take all the lights I have and more I acquire... Great! Enough lights to light a small theater, in back to factory spec. better and even upgrade to GLC - medium Bi-post lamp base from last generation Century/Strand Leko's that were radial. Fresnels, PAR cans, lamps and gel. Lots of room cleared up once delivered.


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Told after plans & R&D, we will just be slipping some lamp sockets and TMB marquee lamps into them without any service call to the fixtures, or modifying them... Just kind of slipping a lamp into the fixture and expecting...

We will just shove some inefficient lamps in them, not change the lenses and hope for some output in on-site installations of the fixtures even needing a lens cleaning - if not broken lens and not safe... Plan is to just shove some lamp socket and marquee lamp into existing fixtures on-site and not deal with asbestos, fixture problems or even cleaning them.

So un-inspired in I thought I was in on the game plan, and it will have been really cool.. Angry' Thought I understood the goals and the concept, but it changed. So frustrated.
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