venuetech

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A speed square is usualy hanging around. I taped a string with a small weight onto the back side




with the electric at spike you can stand at the desired focus point, and line up the fixture with the back of the square. make note of the angle



fly the electric in to a working hight then pan the fixture to line up with the focus point, then set the angle to match your notes.



this could work with a protractor
 
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derekleffew

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venuetech, I suspect there are supposed to be pictures attached to your post. Further, it sounds as though you've made your own inclinometer, and then followed the directions in the article (which, BTW, was written by CB member dwt1, Dana Taylor) referenced in the wiki entry bounce focus.

In any case, it's a great idea.
 

venuetech

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Well I think I got the photos working.
I did see Dana's page, the advantage to this is you have likely have a speed square hanging around the shop. a student likely has a protractor in his or her locker. Its a quick low cost solution.
 
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NevilleLighting

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Wow, what a great idea. I have a show loading in next week that will probably have at least 120 units over platforms that I can't get a lift to. Considering focus tracks but I really hate them for safety reasons.
 

Footer

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Wow, what a great idea. I have a show loading in next week that will probably have at least 120 units over platforms that I can't get a lift to. Considering focus tracks but I really hate them for safety reasons.
I want a picture of Max's face when you tell him what you are planning to do for focus...
 

venuetech

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So what do you do for shutter cuts?
Add Bounce.


I really have only used this once or twice as it just occurred to me when I was fiddling with a speed square on stage one day.

for all i know there could be a inclinometer app for your iPhone, so you could do the same thing with your phone.
my phone just talks to me.

David; I would think that focus tracks would be the way to go with that many units. It is the only proven way you can be assured of quickly getting the desired results.
 
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chausman

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For all i know there could be a inclinometer app for your iPhone, so you could do the same thing with your phone. my phone just talks to me.
Yes, there is an app for that! Free Level

Or there are more in the app store that you can pay for that do more things.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

RyanC2186

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Hey everyone! I recently became a part time TD for a local high school and I was wondering if any of you have tips for bounce focusing. I have a winch electric for my FOH position. No ladders will reach. Using a genie is out because the pipe is over the seating. The equipment is also incredibly old. StageBrite system installed in 1970 with no upkeep or maintenance. This winch takes 2-3 minutes to lower and 5-10 minutes and several students to raise. I can't think of anything but bringing it in and out over and over again until we get it right. Are there any tricks or ways to come close on the first shot? Any help would be appreciated! Thanks
 

derekleffew

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In the wiki entry for bounce focus is a link to an article about one clever method, specifically for TILT. [The link is broken; I've notified the powers that be; here's hoping they fix it.] Basically it involves using a homemade sextant or inclinometer
(
or
,
or a spirit level app for the iPhone) from the focus point on stage to the fixture at trim, to find the elevation, angle of, then using a protractor/inclinometer with the batten at low trim to manually set the correct angle of depression (same angle). Setting the PAN, or left/right, is that same no matter how high the luminaire. Shutter cuts will always be trial and error, wing and prayer tricky.

The only "tip" that might lessen the number of trips a batten takes is to assign one student per fixture, and of course they'll get better with practice.
 

AudJ

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In addition, I have done the following for area lighting: Do some math, and make a miniature outline of your stage closer to the pipe on the same ratio as the stage, using the angle tools suggested by @derekleffew. Position fixtures within the outline as you would on stage when the pipe is lowered. This does work for shutters and similar adjustments, but again, not perfect, and might require a redo. I have only used this with bars above the stage, so your challenge would be to create a scale flat area, presumably over your seats or pit. Maybe with a tarp or other removable object you can consistently replicate positioning once the math is all completed.

This does not work for lighting verticals, but it can be a help for approximating scenery and objects if you have a scale model of the stage.
 
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Les

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Also, schedule a rigging inspection!
 

JohnD

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Also, and this may be obvious for the seasoned yo yoiste: For easy adjustments of beam edge at the ground, find an object that's a comparable distance to your throw distance from you, and adjust for focus on that, and then go for any pan/tilt/shutter adjustments as needed. You could actually calculate the distances and measure things out, but with a bit of practice, roughing it in is accurate enough, even for gobos.
 

sk8rsdad

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Adding to @JonathanHarpur 's post, this is a great opportunity to put all the stuff the students learn about similar triangles and ratios of sides into practice. All the angles are constant, one of them is a right angle.

If your batten trim height is consistently 2m for focus (or some other readily reachable height) and the trim height when flown is constant (say 8m for this example), then the ratio is constant (4 in this case). You can build a custom ruler scaled accordingly.

The catch is tilt and pan needs to be set for each fixture using the scale, measuring out then over. As the batten goes up the focus of each instrument is shifting in 2 dimensions. If you want to focus 2 fixtures to the same spot at high trim, they won't look like the same spot when at low trim.
 

mikeydoesstuff

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The last place I worked, we installed a permanent focus chair track with a removable chair for this exact problem. Works great, needs an adult on hand and constant/consistent safety training, but I loved it. Out biggest complaint was the max weight on person-in chair, because often the long armed types were close or over the 200lb limit.
 

venuetech

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As an option, sometimes a Little Giant Skyscraper ladder can get you to hard-to-reach positions. They can be used on a rake and can often straddle seats. Not cheap, however.

https://www.littlegiantladder.com/skyscraper/
it is a great ladder but it is heavy. almost 100lbs a crew of 3 to stand it up.

A speed square with a string can be made to work


but these days you can get a clinometer app for your phone or pad and use that.
just glow the filaments

even if you have a 6' ladder that you can get into position that may save time cranking down and cranking out.