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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 17 Sep 2005 (Saturday) 01:40
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DIY Canon Speedlite Mods

 
Lotto
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Sep 17, 2005 01:40 |  #1

Getting bored during my resent vacation, started to make more lighting mods for my speedlites. A little back ground: I have no room at all for studio lighting in my house, and all walls have dark wood paneling. Just try to get the best out of my Canon Flashes.

Home made beauty dish attemp: Made out of stainless steel Oriental wok cover, 16" dia, painted flat white inside/black outside, a 5" plastic bowl is used inside to diffuse the focused light, the dark circle in the middle is a 3" spot mirror facing the flash head, eliminate the super hot spot and further spread the light.

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DIY soft box: 36"L x 24"W x 18"D, box frame made out of welding rods, bolted to a 1/2 inch plywood, the whole box can be turned horizontally by loose/tighten of the black lever. $20 worth of fabric from JoAnn's for the cover and diffuse screens. The wife and I spend 10 hours hand sewed to the frame ( A whooping $600 combine labor fee if counting our day job rate :cry: ). Still need some black paint to finish the project.
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This pic shows the inner parts.
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5D, 24-105L, 70-200L IS, 85mm Art, Godox

  
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Lotto
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Sep 17, 2005 01:48 |  #2

Test shots and my 4 year-old daughter: most of my gadgets are geared to take better photos of the princess. Please excuse the bad compositions and backgrounds, my forcus was on the lighting.

The dish with 580 only: This shot was taken before I added the spot mirror, which creates softer shadows, but still a good one to illustrated the charactorof a dish diffuser, focused light with punch.

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Softbox with 580 only: Was almost dark outside, shot from a high angle to test the catch lights in the eyes.
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580 in the SB as main, 420 in the dish as hair/BG: I put the 420 in group C and -1 output, shot in the dark in my backyard. Look, I know how to grow flowers out of her head :0
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Hey, I am just a noob, please give your suggestions.

5D, 24-105L, 70-200L IS, 85mm Art, Godox

  
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bikerider
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Sep 17, 2005 02:08 as a reply to  @ Lotto's post |  #3

Excellent homemade lights, they look okay too particularly for family and friends shoots. The effects look pretty good too with the catchlights spot on......I've got an old wok sitting out in my rubbish, I might have to have a go at this!
Roger.


Eos 30D, 300D modified for IR,Sigma 50mm f1.4, 15mm f2.8, 17-40 f4L, 70-200 f4L, 550EX, Slik Pro 700DX tripod. G12.
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KevC
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Sep 18, 2005 15:50 |  #4

AWesome! If you can give schematics... I'd greatly appreciate it. Or just details =)


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take nothing but pictures .... kill nothing but time .... leave nothing but footprints

  
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DocFrankenstein
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Sep 18, 2005 16:04 |  #5

WOW

Good effort, but with your salary I'd be temted to just order a studio with all the softboxes and lightmodifiers you need. They don't take more space than home made ones, and work probably better...


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Lotto
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Sep 19, 2005 02:37 as a reply to  @ DocFrankenstein's post |  #6

Doc, I agree with you about the pro made equipments would work 10 times better, and instead of add a studio room, I am looking for a bigger house to upgrade to. But being in Southern California, where a decent house in a good school district would cost $700K, I better stick with home make ones for leaning for now.


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Lotto
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Sep 19, 2005 02:46 as a reply to  @ Lotto's post |  #7

Kevin, I don't have any drawing or schematics. I made different parts and pieces, modified and fit them together. Couple close up pictures to show the basic ideas.

I start with a 1/2" plywood, cut a precise hole to stick the flash head through. Make a steel 'L/hook' bracket with the right angle and bolt down to the wood, the off-shoe cord/flash are secured with a wing nut. After cutting a same size hole on the back of the dish, 4 long machine screws are used to tie down to the wood.

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After that, it's matter of experiments with different diffusers in front of flashhead. This is my current set up.

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To make the set up tilt, I add a little L bracket. The small pic shows one way to mount on the tripod head.

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The softbox is made pretty much the same way, I could post more shots if needed

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garbidz
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Sep 21, 2005 11:27 |  #8

beautiful results, really and the most important thing: You've made it and it works
congrats!

thanks, a refreshing posting, it is NOT all about buying, after all..


bag

  
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kenwood33
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Sep 21, 2005 12:20 |  #9

Can you take some pictures using just the flash, so to compare the difference between your home made dish/box VS just the flash?


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cosworth
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Sep 21, 2005 12:36 |  #10

I'm trying to figure out the wingnut and mount.


people will always try to stop you doing the right thing if it is unconventional
Full frame and some primes.

  
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Jon
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Sep 21, 2005 15:13 as a reply to  @ cosworth's post |  #11

cosworth wrote:
I'm trying to figure out the wingnut and mount.

A standard 1/4 x 20 thread screw used to attach to a tripod-mount accessory shoe. The wing nut and washer let you adjust the screw's length to snug it down.


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Lotto
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Sep 22, 2005 01:02 |  #12

Flash tests

It's hard to keep my daughter still to do any fair comparing test, so I did some on stationary objects. Maim focuse area: shadow and reflection.

All test shots with following conditions: 20D vertical on tripod/manuel mode, 50mm1.8 manual focus, camera 4 ft from subjects, flash head at left about 30-40 degree, +/- few inches as I change modifiers. ISO 200, 1/125, F5.6.

Post process setting: default PSCS2 RAW convertion, resize, small USM.

1. 20D built-in flash/ 580 in the dish

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2. Bare 580 with off shoe cord hand held (pointed a bit too low)/ 580 in softbox

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3. 580 in the softbox, left as master/ 420 in dish, right as slave, ratio 2:1, cropped.

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I wanted to do a bounce off ceiling test, unfortunatly nothing to bounce off in my garage.

Thanks for looking and your comments.

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martendavies
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Sep 21, 2006 11:29 |  #13

Lotto

I am really excited by the thought of emulating your softbox efforts but was wondering if you could post a shot of what you mean by "welding rods"
Best
M




  
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glowell
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Sep 21, 2006 11:56 |  #14

This is absolutely awesome. You've done a great job with the craftsmanship as well as creativity.

If you're a flickr member, I'd love it if you would post this in the Innovative Photography Equipment group.

http://www.flickr.com/​groups/funkyinnovation​s/ (external link)

Thanks,
Gary




  
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Lotto
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Sep 22, 2006 03:06 as a reply to  @ glowell's post |  #15

Wow, I guess the 'Search' works :) The welding rods are small steel rods used in gas welding, or acetylene welding. I don't have a picture of the softbox frame at the moment, but I finished another small softbox/hairlight...we​ll, the pictures speak for themselves.


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DIY Canon Speedlite Mods
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