Cost to install a camlock?

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
  • "Friends don't let friends buy Behringer."
  • "I wouldn't trust that as far as I could throw it."
  • 3-phase mains supply (one phase possible at lower output power)
  • Notice anything missing, like output receptacles? How much would it cost to buy and wire an output panel?
  • Another thing missing: listed, by NRTL. Might not be an issue to you, but will be to your AHJ and insurance carrier.

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TechGeek

Active Member
my old summer camp had full racks of these and they lasted a pretty long time, we did have them installed in correctly power wise but they still worked fine. I was gonna slap socapex on the back of them and call it a day. By the looks of it, I can use a regular 4 wire 30 amp plug (appliance plug) that I can get at my hardware store?
 

MPowers

Well-Known Member
You are right, my bad. The Packs are 8 channels, I believe I'm using 120v power.

The packs are 8 DIMMERS, NOT 8 Channels. Channels exist in a control panel, dimmers exist in a rack or a pack (or in some cases built into a light). For example a single incandescent lamp, ERS for example uses one Dimmer and one channel to control that dimmer. An LED fixture uses many channels to control the color and intensity, but uses zero dimmers.

Please, one of you lighting guys who knows how to explain this better jump in here. I stopped dealing with lighting when we phased out salt water dimmers.
 

TechGeek

Active Member
The packs are 8 DIMMERS, NOT 8 Channels. Channels exist in a control panel, dimmers exist in a rack or a pack (or in some cases built into a light). For example a single incandescent lamp, ERS for example uses one Dimmer and one channel to control that dimmer. An LED fixture uses many channels to control the color and intensity, but uses zero dimmers.

Please, one of you lighting guys who knows how to explain this better jump in here. I stopped dealing with lighting when we phased out salt water dimmers.

I know, when I said "8channels" I was refering to a dimmer pack with 8channels, which obviously means that there are 8 dimmers in the pack since dimmer packs are 1 channel per dimmer.
 

DavidNorth

ETC Rigging General Manager
Premium Member
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Departed Member
Let's look at a number of decisions and costs here.

If you have camlocks and want to put cams on the wall, not only do you have cams, conduit and electrician costs there, but you also need camlock cables to go from the pack/rack to the wall. If you also are going to install socapex connectors on the packs, that is going to add up to a lot of work and money, especially since I am not aware of anyone that supplies precrimped socapex female with lead wires. Crimping socapex pins takes a special tool and soldering them is certainly fun based on the size of the pin and the wire. Have you done any of this work before?

Changing over the packs from camlocks to 4-pin 30A dryer connectors is an option, but you have to make sure that each bank of 4 dimmers [2 banks in each pack] only uses 30A or less. If the lights are on for more than 3 hours, then you might even need to get that down to 24A, but don't forget that this is current when dimmers are at full, which your lights may not be. Now you would be looking at rewiring the pack inputs, rewiring the pack outputs and putting 4 connectors on the wall with conduit and boxes.

You can rewire the feeds to 50A connectors, as Derek suggested, which you to fully load the packs as needed, but this is indeed much more expensive than the 30A connectors. This may be cost competitive with the cam option.

I would suggest that work with someone that has done this work before and help you make decisions based on your specific use and budget. It make more sense to use a different product.

I don't believe I have actually helpd much here but instead am hoping that you will get another set of eyes on your situation.

David
 

BillConnerFASTC

Well-Known Member
What a confused mess. And just when you thought it was safe to go backstage.....

4 cords with plugs and 4 receptacles - 40 amps - I'd have to look up right plug config but the parts are probably $100-200. A qualified electrician for a day - or journeyman and apprentice for half probably - $500? You might cut a better deal.
 

BGW

Active Member
Can NEMA 14-50 plugs not be used in theatrical applications? I'm about to hit the sack but I'll look it up in the morning.
 

themuzicman

Well-Known Member
Can NEMA 14-50 plugs not be used in theatrical applications? I'm about to hit the sack but I'll look it up in the morning.

If the wirings right, and everything is up to code, I see no reasons why it can't be used in theatre. It's one of many suitable plugs for certain applications, regardless of it being in a theatrical environment.

I have a buddy with IATSE so I'm gonna ask him too

That doesn't mean too much. I'm an IATSE stagehand, and I would stare blankly at you if you asked me to do this. I consider myself fairly knowledgable but I'm no electrical contractor. Stick with the guys licensed to do this sort of work, not the guys paid to push boxes around a stage.

I'd consider bringing in outside help around now...watching this thread devolve into a confusing mess and don't want anyone to get hurt. You're in high school, just accept that there are certain things you shouldn't be doing, and learn from the pro's when they come in to help you.
 
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techieman33

Well-Known Member
Can NEMA 14-50 plugs not be used in theatrical applications? I'm about to hit the sack but I'll look it up in the morning.

I use them occasionally. A local ballet company did a spring ballet in a local high school when the PAC wasn't available. They have a pair of circuits with that plug that we ended up plugging a pair of portable CD80 packs into. Obviously we couldn't have all 24 2.4k dimmers on at the same time, but with careful circuiting we were able to make pretty good use of them. I also see them in banquet/meeting rooms occasionally. We have a couple of boxes to split them into 2 20 amp circuits (with their own breakers of course).
 

TechGeek

Active Member
I think it might be cheaper to just go LED then. This is WAY too much work then what I currently want to get into, I have to order stuff for shows that open soon so maybe I'll consider this in the future but for now I think the LEDs are easier since I can just get 20amp outlets put in right next to one and power link them.


Why must electricity be so complex-ish? I know and understand the basics but dont get the whole 3phase, bi-phase stuff.
 

josh88

Remarkably Tired.
Fight Leukemia
The complexity is why you need a professional and also why their time costs so much money too. Buying a bunch of LED's that actually look good is going to cost even more. Those ADJ lights you linked aren't going to be great. They are 3 watt LED's I've got some 30 watt LED's that aren't even that bright in my small blackbox space. And I've got a couple of these

they weren't worth the money at all, but I took a chance that they might be passable when I had some extra cash. You won't be happy with the colors and how focused most of this range of LEDs are at this price. Just a warning
 

themuzicman

Well-Known Member
I don't understand how you go from inquiring about installing a cam panel to thinking about purchasing LED's. As I said before, you're in high school...bring in someone who knows what they are doing and has done things like this before, allowing you to watch their process, learn from it, and let the job get done right the first time.
 

venuetech

Well-Known Member
Departed Member
Why must electricity be so complex-ish? I know and understand the basics but dont get the whole 3phase, bi-phase stuff.

You may "understand the basics" but for the task at hand you need a deeper understanding. At this point the best way is to work directly with someone who has that knowledge. It is not something that can easily be done on line at a forum such as this.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
... Why must electricity be so complex-ish?
Short answer--because copper wiring is expensive -ish.

...I know and understand the basics but dont get the whole 3phase, bi-phase stuff.
  1. Use the CB wiki, and spend some time with the search feature.
  2. Post your questions here (although we'll likely point you to a previous discussion).
  3. Ask your licensed electrician to explain the parts you don't understand.
  4. Buy/borrow, read and comprehend, the book Electricity for the Entertainment Electrician & Technician: Richard Cadena: 9780240809953: Amazon.com: Books .

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LavaASU

Active Member
This might be a good short term solution: 4X Pro Quality Par Can 36 x 3W LEDs DJ Stage Light RGB | eBay . Those are the equivalent of a 300-500W parcan in intensity. Rick Massey is a good guy-- owns a production company and sells these for a low profit margin. The *are* chinese LEDs, not the greatest, but we own 8 of them and all the problems we've had are due to physical damage from them being used in a concert/rental environment. I suspect they'd be fine if but in a venue and left there (or gently carried across the street). I would not suggest throwing them in trucks, SUVs, cars, ect (without road cases) on a daily or weekly basis unless you have a staff that can do repairs.
 

avkid

Not a New User
Fight Leukemia
Just caught this.
We are at the NJ shore.
Would be glad to offer any assistance and recommend an electrical contractor.
 

STEVETERRY

Well-Known Member
What a confused mess. And just when you thought it was safe to go backstage.....

4 cords with plugs and 4 receptacles - 40 amps - I'd have to look up right plug config but the parts are probably $100-200. A qualified electrician for a day - or journeyman and apprentice for half probably - $500? You might cut a better deal.

First, let's have a look at what the NEC says about portable feeders in section 520.53(P):

(P) Qualified Personnel. The routing of portable supply conductors, the making and breaking of supply connectors and other supply connections, and the energization and de-energization of supply services shall be performed by qualified personnel, and portable switchboards shall be so marked, indicating this requirement in a permanent and conspicuous manner.

Exception: A portable switchboard shall be permitted to be connected to a permanently installed supply receptacle by other than qualified personnel, provided that the supply receptacle is protected for its current rating by an overcurrent device of not greater than 150 amperes, and where the receptacle, interconnection, and switchboard comply with all of the following:

(a) Employ listed multipole connectors suitable for the purpose for every supply interconnection

(b) Prevent access to all supply connections by the general public

(c) Employ listed extra-hard usage multiconductor cords or cables with an ampacity not less than the load and not less than the ampere rating of the connectors.


From this thread, I think this installation fails the qualified personnel requirement.

Next, let's review where we need to use single conductor feeders: in cases where the load is over about 100 amps per feeder conductor, making multi-conductor cable and multi-pole connectors impractical. Also, single conductor cables may not be used in sizes smaller than #2AWG. It would appear that the loads in this installation are broken up into small enough pieces that a small breaker panel with multi-pole outlet is the more reasonable solution, and would be covered by the Exception above.

ST
 

BillConnerFASTC

Well-Known Member
Can NEMA 14-50 plugs not be used in theatrical applications? I'm about to hit the sack but I'll look it up in the morning.

I'd concur. Some panels on the existing cabinet might have to be blanked but 4 pigtails with NEMA 14-50p plugs and 4 NEMA 14-50R Receptacles- basically an electric range set up - would seem to run in the $15-20 range each component - so under $150 for all of the parts - plus pipe and wire and qualified install. I "think" Steve Terry would concur. I agree emphasizing the necessity to find qualified personnel to do the installation and modifications. Probably not one or two useable LED units - and they require jumpers and other wiring.
 
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