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Worklights

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by TupeloTechie, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. TupeloTechie

    TupeloTechie Active Member

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    Our PAC which is also used as a classroom/rehearsal hall does not have any work lights except for a few 60watt bulbs hanging from the grid that blew out years ago and nobody can change, or even if they were changed would not provide enough light. This causes the people using the space to turn on all the stage lights to full and run them everyday for about 7 hours and sometimes they forget to turn them off so they run for another 24 hours at full. This goes through lamps really fast. Unfortunately the school district says they don't have enough money to install work lights, yet they spend more money each year on replacing bulbs. I think it is about time to install a makeshift system, I was thinking about hanging regular worklights (like from lowes or walmart) on each electric (we have plenty of unused dimmers) and reprogramming the architectural controls to only turn on house and worklights. Will this work? or is it illegal trough fire code or something? If so, what work lights do I need to get, or try to recommend the district to install(which they won't)?
     
  2. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Project Manager, Stagecraft Industries, Inc.
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    We augmented our house lights with a bunch of halogen worklights years ago and did the exact same thing you are talking about.

    Buy a cheapo halogen flood light, mount it on a handy dandy "J" box. On the other end of the box mount your c-clamp. Use one of the punch-outs on the side to mount a cable clamp or Heyco, if you have a heyco tool, and run a pigtail of cable through there. Do all your wiring in the j-box, put the solid cover on, and viola a code compliant worklight. < in most states>
    Not a bad idea to add or purchase a metal screen for the front of the worklight as well. Many states require fixutres such as this to have a "safety screen".
     
  3. gafftapegreenia

    gafftapegreenia CBMod CB Mods

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    The home depot solution is effective. There are also the "outdoor flood" type where instead of having a stand of yellow or orange tubing, its just the lamp head and reflector. You need to buy the mouting plate as well as the flood head and wiring box. A little more expensive, but would probablhy be more permanent. A note of concern I have heard is that the wiring of these fixtures is not that great in the high heat enviorment of the stage and will not last as long as purpose-built worklights, but if its temporary that might not be an issue.

    I know a few manufacturers (L&E and Times Square) make theatre specific worklights, but the cost is high.

    On the other hand, might you have any 16" scoops laying around? These often get used for worklights, and if they have the double-ended halogen lamps, the cost of replacement lamps is no different than that of the worklights. If you look around you might be able to find some for a reasonable price. Depending on the size of your stage, 4-6 scoops might work nicely.

    Or, if your space is really old school, and happens to have striplights , and they are of the four channel variety, and one of those four channels is white, the white channel could be programmed as worklights.
     
  4. JD

    JD Well-Known Member

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    Several "How many _____'s does it take to change a light bulb?" come to mind....

    Anyway, maybe you can get them to pop for an electrician to change the Edison bases on your current work lights to duplex receptacles. At that point, your options are endless. Plenty of halogen based work lights designed for construction are available at home depot, or even strands of lamps with those yellow cages.
     
  5. gafftapegreenia

    gafftapegreenia CBMod CB Mods

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    On these old 60-watt lights, would they still be functional if the lamps were replaced? Then again, being as they are so old, do you know if they are connected to the architectural system?
     
  6. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    I did this for my old theater and it worked great. If you get the kind that are on the yellow or orange tubing stand that Greenia mentioned they come with a safety cage around them. Buy some high temperature spray paint, tape them up and paint them black. You can actually even gel them and use them as wash lights. Just cut a large piece of gel wrap the safety basket. Carefully tape the gel to ONLY the safety cage and leave a gap of about a half inch between the gel and where the light is. Buy muffler tape from a autoparts store to secure the gel and bridge the gap between the gel and the light. Punch a bunch of little tiny holes in the top side and you've got a cyc light for about $15. Don't count on them for dark high color saturated gels with low transmission rates, the color burns out pretty quick. But light higher transmission rate gels will last no problem.
     
  7. ScaredOfHeightsLD

    ScaredOfHeightsLD Active Member

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    One of the theatres I work in has 4 source Four Pars with the XWFL lenses on them spread out on the LX's 2 on the 1st 2 on the 3rd. It covers the stage very well and, if you have Source Fours in your inventory, it doesn't require stocking a different type of lamp.
     
  8. jmabray

    jmabray Active Member

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    Either way you go - your best bet is to reprogram the architectural system to only bring up a few lights. Get a P-touch label maker and label that button (or if you have a Unison LCD station, label it in the config) as Rehearsal, or something to that effect.

    That way when the band teacher or whoever comes in, they are likely to just hit that button and viola - they have lights.
     

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