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Brass Fasteners in Gel Holders or not?

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by soundlight, Mar 18, 2008.

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Do you use brass paper fasteners on your gel frames?

  1. Yes, always

    6 vote(s)
    9.2%
  2. Sometimes

    13 vote(s)
    20.0%
  3. Never

    43 vote(s)
    66.2%
  4. No idea what you're talking about

    3 vote(s)
    4.6%
  1. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    Ok, so Charc and I were having this discussion, and both decided that a CB poll was necessary.

    Do you use brass fasteners in your gel frames to hold the top two corners closed? I am of the opinion that they're really not necessary, and have never really used them. I always make sure that my stock of gel frames is tight, and if there are ones that are loose, I bend them back in to shape so that they don't need the paper fasteners. Besides, putting in those brass paper fasteners takes forever, and they only can stand a few uses before snapping, with my experience.
     
  2. Charc

    Charc Well-Known Member

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    Two corners? Just one, upper-left.

    So what? They're very cheap. Let 'em break.

    A pain? Awl, punch, push, bend. If dropping a whole bunch of gel, I can see the advantage, plus it's just sorta nice to know your gel won't be floating away.
     
  3. porkchop

    porkchop Well-Known Member

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    I've used them twice. both times on a cyc fixture that had very shaky frames and the added stability helped them stay in place. In that case I didn't even really care about holding the color in place. Using fasteners to keep the gel in place.... never done it only would if I had an oddball cut that needed to stay more or less exactly were I put it
     
  4. Synchronize

    Synchronize Active Member

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    Ohhh so thats what those holes are for. lol I didn't even realize that they could be fastened shut. I just slide the gel into the frame and slide the frame into the light. And if you think we have tight gell frames... yeah right. They naturally sit open at like a 25 degree angle. Sad, right?
     
  5. LD4Life

    LD4Life Active Member

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    I usually try to keep my frames tight and don't have any need for fasteners. I also find them to be a pain as has been expressed. As long as you keep your frames tight and keep your fixtures' frame clip aligned correctly, you should have no need to hold the frame shut.
     
  6. Charc

    Charc Well-Known Member

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    What if you're dropping gel for the entire plot, or sending an intern up there to do it for you?...
     
  7. porkchop

    porkchop Well-Known Member

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    I don't even find that you need to worry about loose frames. If your gel falls out of the frame, you either put the frame in the unit wrong or gravity will soon tell you that the unit is upside down when the frame follows suit. I really don't think I could find someone to pay me to fasten every gel in a show to it's frame.
     
  8. Charc

    Charc Well-Known Member

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    So I should just be better at bending some of my frames back to shape... makes sense, and it's one less thing to worry about, I'll strike brass paper fasteners from my list then...
     
  9. LD4Life

    LD4Life Active Member

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    Probably a good call. It does save time.
     
  10. Sean

    Sean Active Member

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    Brads are so not worth the time.

    If you _really_ need to fasten the frame, a tab of blacktak will do nicely.

    And, if your gel frames don't stay shut, then just use a hammer to "crimp" the bottom of the frame a bit.

    --Sean
     
  11. Capi

    Capi Member

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    In my limited experience, the only times I've used fasteners were in cyc frames because the frame is two separate pieces. However, I've had gels fall out of frames enough times while just carrying the frame up the ladder, that it's a practice that I wouldn't mind starting around here. Although, I've never tried bending the frames back, so I'll have to give that a shot as well. Out of curiosity, anybody know of anything that works better than brass fasteners, besides the blacktak already mentioned? Something readily available?
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2008
  12. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    Brass fasteners are just not worth the money. Sure, it is good to have some spares for the boomerang in a follow spot, but for color frames, forget it. It just makes it harder to change color. Unless gravity is strange where any of you are, then gel shouldn't fall out of frames that are right-side-up.
     
  13. LD4Life

    LD4Life Active Member

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    If you absolutely have to hold a frame together, there is always a small strip of gaff, like quarter of an inch wide. I guess gels falling when climbing a ladder would be about the only time I can see that they would fall if everything is positioned properly. However, as Alex said, if you hold them right side up that shouldn't be a problem.
     
  14. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    BlackTak is next to impossible to peel off, even with a courtesy tab, it rips in the wrong place. Likewise any tape on any color frame (except spotlights, where one has to tape down the tails).

    If ever doing an outdoor show, you'll find paper fasteners are a must. I only do one per frame, or two if it's outdoors. Hint: use a drywall screw to poke the hole through the gel first, then insert the brad, they don't make them like they used to.

    I like to stack my color by position, and then hand someone the stack and say "go to it." I hate when a piece of color falls out along the way. But that's just me.
     
  15. Charc

    Charc Well-Known Member

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    Derek sums up my points, but as the others have mentioned, it's not worth it. I really just need to find a dozen to steal to replace those missing from the folllowspots. I could also use another handle, and some other followspot parts, and perhaps plug it into a non-dim... :mrgreen:
     
  16. Sean

    Sean Active Member

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    I have to disagree a bit.

    We do a large outdoor show each spring. I've never used brads out there.

    The only fixtures (well, other than cyc lights) that I've ever really had troubles keeping the gel in were 5 degree Source-4's. On those, a small tab of gaff at the top center worked nicely. 10" frames might see the same treatment if they're really beat-up.

    I don't usually tape anything into frames (well, other than gel shield, but that lives in its own frames marked with direction...."this side toward lamp"). Oh....and the **** Altman T-3 frames that are just two squares of metal. Occasionaly, because of gel changes during a show, etc we'll tape frames closed, but that's about it.


    --Sean
     
  17. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    Wow, I have to say I am very surprised at the fact that I am definitely in the minority in using brass paper fasteners.

    Here's my reasons:

    1) I was "taught" (cannot remember by who) that ideally, you would use 4 fasteners, brass or staples if a paper frame (I know, I know) to support the filter in the frame, with the theory that as the filter blocks out unwanted light waves, it heats up, then tends to soften and fold. I have observed this, even with modern filters such as Lux and Lee. As the filter folds, it tends to fade faster along the area's that get more heat then other sections. Or so goes the theory, though I do see this with colors, especially blues and greens, that's seen some use and are getting wrinkled. Thus using at least 2 support points helps alleviate premature fading as it keeps the filter tight in the frame. Note that I would only do this if an event was running long term (weeks), and never do it for one-offs.

    2) I only use one brass fastener, always to keep the filter in the frame when distributing color - I.E. from milk crate out of the gel room to the work table. Then in the bag that goes to the FOH, or to the electricians hands as they load the electrics. We use paper frame in all fixtures except the PAR64's - where paper doesn't work as the gel frame support tabs are (on our vintage fixtures) too small to properly support the paper frame, and use metal in our S4 Parnels and may have to use them in our on-order S4 Pars, when they arrive, as paper in the hotter units blackens and burns around the circle. If you have the cash, paper frames are safer and generally easier to use. Makes it easier to fit 2 frames in a frame holder - Frost plus Color as example. I also tend to staple my assorted frosts - R119, R132, etc... in the paper frames to indicate that we keep these diffusion's prepped and ready and to not strike them when putting away an old color order.

    3) I never use any kind of tape on a color frame as all it does is heat up and leave a gummy residue on the frame. I would have the electricians that used tape remove it if I see it used.

    Steve B.
     
  18. Grog12

    Grog12 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    The only time I have ever found brass fastners useful or nessecary is when you have cyc frames that are two separate pieces or when you're working outdoor theatre. Otherwise waste of time and money.

    If its windy and the fixtures stay outdoors its a must. There's nothing like coming in in the morning to find your gel scattered across the stage with burrow prints on it.
     
  19. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    "Super Summer Theatre" at Spring Mountain Ranch? You didn't work on Barnum, did you?
     
  20. musictom

    musictom Member

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    Let me throw in my vote with the others who just put a small piece of gaff tape on the corner(s). Comes off easily, no residue, and I've never had one burn up at all.

    Now don't even get near the gels with duct tape! Ugh. What a mess!

    Tom
     

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