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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 31 Jul 2017 (Monday) 17:45
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Portable Flag and scrim solution: Road Rags, Fast Flags or...

 
bobbyz
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Sep 23, 2017 14:58 |  #31

I would check grip section of B&H. Select Mathews and be happy. Or better yet ask for catalog. I got even without asking, maybe B&H saw me spending quite a bit of time on their section.:)


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Sep 23, 2017 15:42 as a reply to  @ post 18458753 |  #32

Close. That one is for mounting a boom arm. the hole diameters are probably too large.

This is the type you'll need:

Kupo Grip Head (external link)

There are several manufacturers to chose from.

Thinking a little more about it, you may need to get one of these too, the stud on your light stand may need a baby pin screwed onto it for the grip head to get a grip on...

Avenger E300 5/8" stud (external link)


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F2Bthere
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Sep 23, 2017 23:32 |  #33

mdvaden wrote in post #18458737 (external link)
I've never used flags or scrims before, but thought maybe you or other could answer a question. Say, at Amazon, etc., the product photos are small and I can't tell if the scrim frames like Matthews or Wescott will mount each to a stand like I would use for an umbrella. I don't have C-stands. Just black ones that go up or down. Could these slip into an umbrella mount hole?

Welcome to the world of grip gear :).

Grip equipment is intended to hold things in a specific place safely. The equipment options are flexible and capable, so there are generally a few ways to solve any given problem.

With scrims and flags, the basic goal is usually to place them in the path of the light. Sometimes, putting them on a stand will solve the problem. Sometimes, the stand will be in the way (e.g. line of sight of the camera or casting a shadow) in which case you may want to suspend the item.

C-stands are frequently equipped with grip heads and grip arms to make this easy, but these are all pretty heavy:

https://www.bhphotovid​eo.com …BwE&is=REG&m=Y&​sku=853472 (external link)

Another option is a lighter weight boom arm, such as those provided to hold reflectors:

https://www.bhphotovid​eo.com …BwE&is=REG&m=Y&​sku=357125 (external link)

Or this kit which, although not cheap, is quite light weight and was put together for the purpose:

https://www.bhphotovid​eo.com …inigrip_Mountin​g_Kit.html (external link)

The latter has the advantage that it is easy to connect with the stand holding the light if the place you need to hold the flag or scrim is near the light source, saving you the need for an extra stand.

There are many other clamps and arms which can be pressed into service to solve this problem. And opportunities for DIY solutions abound.


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fotopaul
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Post edited over 1 year ago by fotopaul.
     
Sep 28, 2017 18:06 |  #34

A note on CSB products, for the price the quality of the fabric is terrible. They are lightweight and portable but having owned several of their reflectors/scrims over the years it's evident that their fabrics is not that good in terms of durability.

Lastolite which i'v also used for well over 10 years (skylite range) has hold up extremely well without any issues. Sure weighs a little more, but i'd take that over cheaper fabric that flakes or loose seems.


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F2Bthere
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Sep 28, 2017 19:34 as a reply to  @ fotopaul's post |  #35

"CBS products"?


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fotopaul
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Sep 28, 2017 23:35 |  #36

F2Bthere wrote in post #18462455 (external link)
"CBS products"?

Lol sorry to late for me to type..:-)

CSB California sun bounce


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Oct 06, 2017 08:52 |  #37

F2Bthere wrote in post #18459081 (external link)
Welcome to the world of grip gear :).

Grip equipment is intended to hold things in a specific place safely. The equipment options are flexible and capable, so there are generally a few ways to solve any given problem.

With scrims and flags, the basic goal is usually to place them in the path of the light. Sometimes, putting them on a stand will solve the problem. Sometimes, the stand will be in the way (e.g. line of sight of the camera or casting a shadow) in which case you may want to suspend the item.

C-stands are frequently equipped with grip heads and grip arms to make this easy, but these are all pretty heavy:

https://www.bhphotovid​eo.com …BwE&is=REG&m=Y&​sku=853472 (external link)

Ended up getting a stand much like the first link you posted.

And I may order a second one too, seeing how useful it's design and build can be.


vadenphotography.com (external link) . . . and . . . Coast Redwoods Main Page (external link)

  
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F2Bthere
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Apr 12, 2018 02:59 |  #38

So, half a year later....

I do like the Road Rags frame better. I have been satisfied enough with the Westcott "fabrics." For having a versatile and easily portable kit, I think they both work. The advantages have been well enough enumerated above, so I won't repeat them.

In the studio, I am more likely to reach for boards or foam core (the stuff you can get at art or craft stores) that I have cut to various sizes because it is quick to place where I want it and works well. The Road Rags or Fast Flags are better in the field or for when I need a silk or net in the studio.

More than any of these in usefulness are the humble v-flats, which I use most times one way or the other in the studio. Probably the best photographic value per dollar in the studio. Not convenient to transport....

And while we are on V-flat digressions: I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I have a 6x7 lastolite highlight which I frequently take on location to use as a v-flat even though it is less capable (can't be used as two surfaces) and ridiculously priced for that purpose. So I can't recommend it as a reasonable solution unless, like me, you already have one. I was also fortunate to get a great price on it from a fellow photographer. But it is reasonably portable, free standing and provides a fill (white side) and negative fill (black side) and can serve as a huge "window light" source as well as in its traditional role as a background.

Which leads to the latest addition to the passive light modifiers collection: I just picked up a Big Sunbounce frame with a diffuser from another fellow photographer. My reason for getting it is to allow placement as a large diffuser overhead or off the ground in places my Highlight will not go. I will probably experiment with some other reflective and light absorbing materials to see what other services this can perform.

My initial impressions are that it provides an impressive combination of sturdiness with minimal weight and compacts well for transport. The design of this device is elegant and well thought through. As mentioned above, the diffusion fabric is nothing special but it is serviceable. It is surprisingly easy to hold up for something which is 6'x8'. I believe 1 c-stand will be enough.


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sincity
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Apr 12, 2018 04:52 as a reply to  @ F2Bthere's post |  #39

Damn... I found another user that have the Lastolite Highlite. I don't use it on set as much, but I do have the 'bottle cap' which allows it to be a backdrop/seamless on location to make a expensive set-look on location. Would've gotten a MegaLite and the stand to have a 4x6 reflector or scrim, but it probably better to get a ScrimJim or a Sunbounce and add a strobe when necessary.

But I like both RoadRags and FastFlags.. RoadRags is a bit cheaper, and either would work as long as the wind doesn't carry them away.




  
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fotopaul
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Apr 12, 2018 05:07 |  #40

The new Lastolite 3x3m Skylite panel is impressively small, actually smaller in it's the bag than the older 2x2m skylight frames. (new frames all have a steeper curve at the joints) The 3x3m is easily held up with two d200 grip heads and c-stands. (this with very little flex)


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F2Bthere
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Apr 12, 2018 10:03 |  #41

sincity wrote in post #18605156 (external link)
Damn... I found another user that have the Lastolite Highlite. I don't use it on set as much, but I do have the 'bottle cap' which allows it to be a backdrop/seamless on location to make a expensive set-look on location. Would've gotten a MegaLite and the stand to have a 4x6 reflector or scrim, but it probably better to get a ScrimJim or a Sunbounce and add a strobe when necessary.

But I like both RoadRags and FastFlags.. RoadRags is a bit cheaper, and either would work as long as the wind doesn't carry them away.

The Lastolite Megalite is a cool option for having a smaller sized highLite on a stand. Not cheap, but might be useful for some. I agree that, at least for me, using the sunbounce or other diffuser/scrim on a stand and shooting light through it will serve my purposes better. I find myself doing things like varying the modifier on the light behind the scrim/diffuser, the distance of the light from the diffuser (and the diffuser from the subject), or allowing some of the light to hit the diffuser and some to escape past the diffuser for a combination of light which has and has not been diffused (such as to get more fill light from a reflector) etc. But for some users who want a quick to position and adjust giant softbox of sorts, with some flexibility, it could work well.

As for the bottle cap, I worked in a retail portrait studio and did a lot of photos on a seamless (or canvas or muslin) background which swept onto the floor (and occasionally still do when drop out white is required). These days the look just seems too...cliche?, dated?...maybe I just suffer from having done too much of it. Or maybe the Vanity Fair look has eclipsed it for me. I suppose it does provide an escape from a horrible location with horrible floors :).

I've started bringing something I can put on the floor which looks like a carpet but is actually a curtain. Not perfect, because it is easily messed up and you have to watch how the background meets it, but more pleasing to my eye.

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F2Bthere
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Apr 12, 2018 10:18 |  #42

fotopaul wrote in post #18605160 (external link)
The new Lastolite 3x3m Skylite panel is impressively small, actually smaller in it's the bag than the older 2x2m skylight frames. (new frames all have a steeper curve at the joints) The 3x3m is easily held up with two d200 grip heads and c-stands. (this with very little flex)

This was on my short list.

I have a 10 foot (3m ish) length of PVC pipe. I took it into the studio where the ceiling is just over 9 feet and found that it was unwieldy. If you want to make it as close to vertical as possible, it requires a surprisingly steep angle and takes up a lot of floor space. This is even worse if you are in a location with 8 foot ceilings. So I was tempted by the sheet size but realized the applications would be more limited.

Once I realized that the 6x8 sunbounce might work on a single stand (not to mention the opportunity of an attractive price), it seemed like a better compromise for my use. But I did spend some time tempted by that very 3m Lastolite Skylite and if my studio had slightly more generous ceiling height I might well have given in even though the location limitations would have persisted.

As with any of these tool choices, it all comes down to many issues of personal bias and circumstances. As I grow, I try to get to a limited set of more versatile tools which make it easier for me to realize my goals. In most cases I want leighter weight and easily portable solutions (except when it comes to light stands where steel is preferred). :)


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Apr 12, 2018 10:51 |  #43

I'm a big fan of the Road Rags kit and have owned the larger set for a few years. I also have an old Lightform 6x6 frame that I've used with Matthews fabrics as an overhead, fill and to block light.


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Portable Flag and scrim solution: Road Rags, Fast Flags or...
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