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Design Issues and Solutions Truss Layouts: share some tricks?

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by Jamie, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. Jamie

    Jamie Member

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    Thought this would be an interesting topic to start/discuss/share. While it applies more to concert and live music than theater, I know that it overlaps. Here we go.

    every concert has the fundamental truss and motors. usually 120k of PARs on an upstg and dwnstg truss. maybe some movers thrown in. but then there are shows that kick it up a notch such as TSO with there moving truss cubes that pack showguns in the middle of them, or Schoenfeld's Bob Seger tour with the curved pieces that moved to create many different looks. what have you done in the past or present (maybe future) to bust out of the ordinary with rigging?

    as a topic started i suppose i should start:
    doing a gig this fall for a 'large' church. greatest challenges include cannot touch rep system, only have seven rigging points, and of course the fact that whole shindig has to be close to free.
    foh wise i'm planning on droppin two vertical sticks of truss w/ sidearms to support the four mac700 pro/wash on each. two rigging points down. sightlines knock out another two. so i'm down to three. and oh, these three.
    while these rigging points are above the stage, two use the same cieling 'holes' as the main rag. the third is a tad bit upstage of the rag, but not super load, bearing. solution? imagination and math.
    to keep the feel consistent, i'm using the same vertical sticks of truss w/ sidearms design for two towers that are just upstage of the main rag. but to keep these towers oriented correctly and off the rag, that third upstage point becomes a cable pick.
    beginning of show these towers start about 20' above the stage. curtain starts to go up, towers start to go up, and a beautiful solution is born.

    i know more people have done crazy things with spansets, cheeseburgers, and shackles. come on, open up and share!
     
  2. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    This comes into a TOS area... be aware.

    TSO on the other hand, did their moving pod with winches, not chain motors. Yes, you can do the same thing with winches, but as the show my fiance is currently working on found out either this week, when you run chain motors during a show they make noise, a lot of noise. This is the reason TSO went to winches this year instead of chain motors which they did the year before. I worked the Brad Paisley tour a few months back and they had these HUGE versa tub panels that they flew on motors during the show, you could EASILY hear the motors moving, 16 motors moving together makes some noise. I hate country, but this gave a nice effect, they did some crazy stuff with them.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?d...isley+concert&ei=WZ92SNW0MqWCrALPm4CXCw&hl=en
     
  3. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Jamie, as [user]Footer4321[/user] said, we do not discuss rigging on Control Booth, so I've edited the title of this thread. While I can understand your desire to do something different than the 40' DS and 40' US trusses, I must ask why? How does hanging trusses vertically (and you'll need two points per truss if you don't want them to spin) help you as a Lighting Designer use the Four controllable properties to achieve the Five functions of lighting?

    Wacky, even asymetrical, truss layouts can add to the "look and feel" of a production, but often they create more headaches for the Lighting Designer than they are worth. That being said, one of my favorite ways of creating interesting truss shapes is to make a 3,4,5 right triangle. Using a two-way corner block and two hinge plates, the sides of the triangle can be 15', 20' and 25'; or 30', 40, and 50'. The hypotenuse of one becomes your front truss, parallel to the downstage edge of the stage for consistent front light. The hypotenuse of the other can be parallel to the US edge for consistent backlight. Add truss toners, and maybe cover the whole thing in white spandex to use as a projection surface for your floor lights. Also, there's no law that says trusses must be level. While I would not slope everything left to right, having the DS side higher than the US adds a forced perspective to a rig and makes it appear larger than it really is.

    Various sized circles, or parts of circles, can be added to straight truss as well. Most of these options require more rigging points and flexibility than it appears you have. There's a good reason (several, actually) TSO has never been booked into your church.

    I must disagree with your statement "every concert has the fundamental truss and motors. usually 120k of PARs on an upstg and dwnstg truss." The last time I saw that was for Huey Lewis in 2002, who is notoriously against moving lights. I can only think of a few events I've done in the past year that had any ParCans at all.

    Even more disturbing is your statement: "i know more people have done crazy things with spansets, cheeseburgers, and shackles. come on, open up and share!" No one on Control Booth will tell you what to do with these items. We will tell you: To consult a qualified, professional rigger, each and every time. The life you save may be your own, or a loved one, or a total stranger. Doesn't really matter whose life it is. Gravity kills. Stay safe.
     
  4. soundman

    soundman Well-Known Member

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    The coolest low budget truss effect I have seen didn't even involve chain motors. It was for a club tour where the house would provide the needed lighting (90 or 120k as the case may be) and the tour brought in the effects. They stood truss (12 X or 20 X it was 4 years ago) on floor bases wrapped it in gauze and put an LED bar in there. On some of them they fixed a studio spot or wash. The towers were spread over the stage a total of about 8 in total but they were staggered to create an interesting picture and while I did not stick around for the show at dimmer check they were pretty neat. I have also seen double hung prerigged stood on end and used as side light. I am not sure if many people make floor plates for 30" X 26" though.
     
  5. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Hardly anyone, but outriggers such as the ones shown here:
    [​IMG]
    work well, provided one can abide the increased footprint. Anything greater than two sections (15'-6") REQUIRES a top pick. Not a bad idea to safety off ANY vertical lighting position, if at all possible. For indoor use only!
     
  6. soundman

    soundman Well-Known Member

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    Well than I might have to get into that market, my old boss recently got a 4' X 4' CNC plasma cutter that will cut up to 3/4" steel. That with a little bit of welding and I got a market cornered.
     
  7. Pie4Weebl

    Pie4Weebl Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    derek you have been in vegas too long, tons of shows still go out on the bread and butter of a 120K rig.
     
  8. DCATTechie

    DCATTechie Active Member

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    Apologies for getting off topic, but, what do you mean when you say "90 or 120k". In addition, what does it mean when someone says they have a 120k "fill in the blank" Rig?
     
  9. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    90 or 120 1kW PAR64s. Pre-Rigged Truss has 6 cans (single hung) or 12 cans (double hung) in it. Almost all 120K rigs have 60K (5 pieces of Pre-Rigged Truss) upstage and 60K (another 5 sticks of PRT) upstage.

    Here's a pic: [media]http://www.northernsound.net/Sales/trussingandlifts/applied/doublerowdroptruss.JPG[/media]The cans drop down for focusing: [media]http://www.formfonts.com/requestFile.php?type=1&id=4115&img=small_1_PRT_120i_60deg.jpg[/media] (this has more than 12 cans in the stick, but same idea)
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2008
  10. soundman

    soundman Well-Known Member

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    Or 5 sticks US and DS of double hung which is something I see alot more of than single hung because ten sticks of single hung is over 75 feet long and that is one hell of a stage.
     
  11. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    My bad...I meant 5. Fingers were ahead of my brain.
     
  12. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    5 sticks US, 5 sticks DS, and 5 sticks single FOH with 5 lekos and 2 mole fays is what I see come through most often.
     
  13. Jezza

    Jezza Active Member

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    Don't forget about the omnipresent ACL racks on the US stick -- I see that quite often -- 120k w/ about 8 S4s on the DS and 4-6 ACL racks on the US, making it really closer to 130K or maybe we should call it 120k+
     

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