Vintage Lighting Times Square Follow-Rite restore help!

zavikan

New Member
Hello All!

I've got myself an older Times Square Follow-Rite spotlight. A paper tag on it says q900. Used at a rural town hall with 0 budget. I'd like to get it operating as best as possible as cheaply as possible.

No stranger to mechanical things, I am new to theater lighting.

I'm concerned that the internals may have been 'reorganized' by someone over the years...

I've got (from right to left in pic)

Reflector, bulb, lens slot with no lens, lens slot with lens, iris/doors, moving lens.

Am I missing a lens? Is this in the right order? Does anyone have a schematic or operation manual for this? Am I correct calling it a q900?

Any and all info helpful.
 

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I don't think we've ever discussed that exact light. TimesSquare at one point, made their living selling copies, (some good, some not to good) of Altman fixtures. Capitol Stage Lighting was similar but with a slightly better reputation.

Am I missing a lens?
Probably not. The empty mounting plate may have been for something else or never used. Easiest way to tell is to fire it up. If something in the optical train is significantly off, you'll know right away when you can't obtain a crisp, sharp edge to the beam.

Does anyone have a schematic or operation manual for this? Am I correct calling it a q900?
Am I missing a lens? Is this in the right order? Does anyone have a schematic or operation manual for this? Am I correct calling it a q900?
Altman made the 901, 902, and 902 Jr. , and also the Q1000. I suspect yours is most similar if not an exact match to the 901. It makes sense that a manufacturer who would copy the fixture would use a similar model #. So TimesSquare q900 = Altman 901. Maybe.
No, I don't remember the exact differences between the model numbers. Some had a top door that ran the length of the unit, others had a short door that only covered the lamphouse. Here's a thread that may prove helpful: https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/dating-a-vintage-altman-follow-spotlight.45301/ .
See also this post https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/name-that-followspot-capitol-1001.21460/post-191540 and posts following.

Good luck. Should you decide to put it back into service, you'll want spare lamp. DTA 1500W 100hour lamp is $88-149 from quality vendors via a quick search.
 
Well after getting it home, replacing 7 wood screws with machine screws, cleaning cleaning cleaning, graphite lubing, adjusting bits of bent bits here and there.......Seems to focus just fine and do all operations as intended. So you were on the money with the empty lens housing. Weird set up. I have one part of the edge that isn't perfect. After a ton of head scratching, I came to the conclusion that it was actually poor quality control on one of the cast lens mounts. I could disassemble and sand the ridges smooth, but it is not bad enough to be worth the effort.

There are two small chips in the middle rear lens that are noticable in the beam. Anything I can do to coat those or something? Pretty small.

This is going to be used in a small space where non-actors will often be in the light. I don't want anything super bright.

The paper tag says

"Interchangeable lamps for No. Q900 spotlight:
BVV1000 WATTS
CWZ1500 WATTS
BVW2000WATTS"

As far as figuring out what it is a clone of,

Here's an outside shot. Helpful?
 

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Either the condition wasn't as bad as it seemed, or you've done a remarkable job in cleaning. It looks almost new. Good job.:clap:

No way to repair a chipped lens. I think you got lucky as the BVV/CWZ/BVW line of lamps are less expensive and have a longer rated life than the DPW/DTA/DTJ.

"As far as figuring out what it is a clone of,Here's an outside shot. Helpful?"
From the outside, one would have difficulty telling this from an Altman 1000Q. However, the innards are totally different. The Altman 1000Q uses a 1000W FEL lamp and reflector from a 360Q ERS. Altspot and DynaSpots use a spherical reflector, P40 Base 1000/1500/2000 W lamp, "conza" lens, and large adjustable front lens.

"I don't want anything super bright."
I'd keep a BVV 1000W on the shelf then.

EDIT:
Should have said this before:
Check every inch of the wiring, internal and external, looking for broken, cracking, or flaking insulation. There may be asbestos-covered wiring inside, around the lamp socket. If you see the tell-tale white fluffy insulation, you're done. Wheel the fixture outside the building and call an asbestos removal professional. Buy a used Altman Comet for ~$500 and enjoy the rest of your life.


Below is an exploded view of Altman 902. I know it doesn't belong here, but didn't want to lose it somewhere else. Some of the lenses are same as yours, but in different places.
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