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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 24 Jun 2008 (Tuesday) 17:37
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DIY external battery pack for flash

 
btmlinedan
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Jun 17, 2009 16:00 |  #76

My only problem im running into is that i'm using these on older canon 420EZ flashes...and I think the circruity is f'd in two of them. You swap wooden batteries into one, and they don't work. swap normal batteries in and they work. So for now, i've got two on Battery packs, and the other two on NiMh...I'd like to have everything on battery packs, but for car shoots (as of now) NiMh is perfectly fine. Shooting a few hundred on NiMh at full power i've never run out, just sucks waiting around for them to charge.

NOW, when i have two shoots in a row and don't have time to go charge batteries that's where NiMh suck.

I built the boxes cuz...well hell...it's fun. I could probably swap the fake batteries into my 430ex and use the SLA as an on camera force, but i guess i'm afraid of using it with a $200 flash opposed to a $60 flash...catch my drift?

I'm running into problems now that my flash power isn't enough to light up the cars on a sunny day. I get screwed by the 1/200 sync, shooting iso 100, then shooting aperture around 6.3 or 7.1 to get the light down, then the flashes aren't 'strong' enough to light the car. The way i've been getting around it, is setting the camera into "hdr" mode (whatever it's called) and having the first shot fire the flashes at normal exposure, then the second shot (flashes wont fire) will be darker to catch the sky, then just merge them later in PS. cheezy, but hell it works...I can't overpower the sun yet (need more $ for bees!!)
example A.

IMAGE: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3408/3623147620_dc36cd801d_b.jpg

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M_ark
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Jun 17, 2009 17:30 |  #77

Ok guys - to everyone who's having trouble getting thier batteries to work in the 430 ex and other canon flashes, i think i have an answer to this.
I thought my 430EX was the same till i figured this part out.
when you insert the battery, it sits on a little 'sprung' pad. This pad is pushed down when the door is closed, making contact with the little 'sub pad' and its that process that completes the circuit. If that Door isn't closed, then it's not 'pushing down' hard enough.
I found that by putting an elastic band around the unit and battery compartment door, that it would hold enough pressure to force those contacts together.
__
||
||
|| (dummy battery)
\/
_______ (sprung pad pushes down onto lower contact)
\/
-------- (lower contact)

without enough pressure, you won't complete the circuit. (but don't be too rough with the little guys, just think about the pressure on the door when you close the compartment with normal batteries, about that much should be fine.)


just my experience.


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wizeguy4
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Jun 22, 2009 12:41 |  #78

on a 550EX and a 540EZ which of the 4 slots should be where the dummy batteries are placed?


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jtikompressor
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Jun 23, 2009 23:38 as a reply to  @ wizeguy4's post |  #79

I thought id try and make a battery pack. Sorry i didnt take any build pics.

battery 6v 4.5ah, toggle switch, fast acting fuse and the connector is for a mic

IMAGE: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3353/3656320714_fa814b88ff.jpg

The other mic end and 2 dummy batteries. I used some fuel hose and some bolts i had around
IMAGE: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2434/3655524403_146ae75fd3.jpg

Dummy batteries installed (positive is the one closest to the mount, negative closest to the head. Hope this helps wizeguy4)
IMAGE: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3329/3655524653_f33a872b3b.jpg

Door closed
IMAGE: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2449/3656321430_eddf503511.jpg

IMAGE: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2479/3655525113_28c4b8887b.jpg

IMAGE: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3399/3656321996_4c05437b40.jpg

IMAGE: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3417/3656322288_e744b687db.jpg



  
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NVcameraman
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Jun 24, 2009 16:57 |  #80

What are you using for the cable? The 4 pin din plug for CB mics I use but I need to find better cable that stretches like yours does.


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Johnny ­ V
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Jun 24, 2009 17:27 |  #81

Nice jtikompressor! What box are you using?

I've noticed no one is using the High-Voltage port. I know one reason not to use it - AA batteries need to be installed in the flash for it to work. But what other reasons not to use the HV port?


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M_ark
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Jun 24, 2009 17:58 |  #82

Johnny V wrote in post #8168463 (external link)
Nice jtikompressor! What box are you using?

I've noticed no one is using the High-Voltage port. I know one reason not to use it - AA batteries need to be installed in the flash for it to work. But what other reasons not to use the HV port?

If you want to have a go at making a high current 350volt inverter, feel free - let us all know how it goes.


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wizeguy4
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Jun 25, 2009 07:37 |  #83

jtikompressor - thanks I am glad you showed the polarity on your pics.
did you cut the ends off the charger and connect a mic cable on that also so you can charge through the same port?


and now a general question to those building one or have built one - Does a switch really make sense? particularly one with a status light. The way I see it, a battery is not going to hold its standing charge with or without a switch smaking it not needed, and power switch to me means if I bump the battery in my bag and accidentally hit the switch on, the LED is going to draw juice from my battery, draining it. or the opposite, I could be usign the battery and bump the switch off and miss a shot cause my flash did not fire. To me, it seems more practical to just remove the fuse when not in use and store it with my AA's if i really need a switch. I just see it as an idea that is there to just make teh battery pack look less DIY and more like something you would really buy and appear professional, but seems more of a headache??


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jtikompressor
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Jun 25, 2009 09:20 |  #84

Thanks guys

NVcameraman wrote in post #8168292 (external link)
What are you using for the cable?

Its actually from an old phone car charger i had laying around haha.

Johnny V wrote in post #8168463 (external link)
Nice jtikompressor! What box are you using?

It is a little small for the battery i used, but i used the 6x3x2 box from Radio Shack

wizeguy4 wrote in post #8171730 (external link)
jtikompressor - thanks I am glad you showed the polarity on your pics.
did you cut the ends off the charger and connect a mic cable on that also so you can charge through the same port?

Yes thats exactly what i did. Pin 1 and 2 are for the flash and pins 3 and 4 are for charging. The switch I just thought it was kind of a nice feature. I like the ability to put everything together and not have to worry about arcing or touching where im not supposed to. I know this is pretty low power but that is just the paranoid part of me lol.




  
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samsen
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Jun 26, 2009 10:16 |  #85

After paying so much for flagship flash, don't you wish manufacturer made a provision for AC use and dedicated socket on the top of the line item?


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DDCSD
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Jun 26, 2009 21:50 |  #86

samsen wrote in post #8178898 (external link)
After paying so much for flagship flash, don't you wish manufacturer made a provision for AC use and dedicated socket on the top of the line item?

:rolleyes::rolleyes:

Alternating Current? Like your wall socket? These are speedlights, not studio strobes...


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Photo-by-Leal
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Jul 01, 2009 22:24 |  #87

btmlinedan wrote in post #8010673 (external link)
and now we're ready to rock...

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE


just beautiful, do you have a link on step by step?


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JDubya
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Jul 22, 2009 18:19 |  #88

Here's my version (made two)

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DanteCaspian
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Aug 10, 2009 13:39 |  #89

If anyone is interested, https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=732943




  
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MPCman
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Aug 16, 2009 02:47 |  #90

Nice DIY thread, as dummy batteries, something like this could be used as well:
http://www.greenbatter​ies.com/battery-adapter.html (external link)


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DIY external battery pack for flash
FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
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