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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The workshop » » REALLY bright lights that are battery powered? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

freefallillusion1
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Elite user
Cincinnati, OH
446 Posts

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Can anyone tell me how to set up a light rig that is considerably brighter than an LED, yet battery powered? I have an illusion that has a fabric side, and I want to shoot light through it to show that nothing is hidden behind it. A standard flood light works great, but the problem is that it must be attached to the prop and therefore must be mobile, so a power cord is out. I played around with a cheap landscape light from Home Depot, which contains a small 12 volt bulb, and I powered this with a 9 volt and two AA batteries. It was semi-decent, but I really need something a lot brighter. I also tried replacing that bulb with two LEDs which are rated at 28,500 mcd, but those were even worse. AND, if that weren't complicated enough, I need the batteries to be reasonably conceal-worthy (probably can't use a rechargable motorcycle battery). Any experts out there? Thanks!

Phil
AGMagic
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Special user
Cailf.
775 Posts

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Try looking for hand held or automotive spotlights. You might also consider an automotive headlamp and building some type of housing for it.
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freefallillusion1
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Elite user
Cincinnati, OH
446 Posts

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That sounds exactly like what I need, so- forgive my ignorance here- do I need something as large as a car battery to power those? I would assume, of course, that something that large would mainly be to crank the engine, and only a small portion would be necessary to run the lights, right? Thanks!

Phil
Regan
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Inner circle
U.S.A.
5696 Posts

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I was also going to suggest a hand-held, 12 volt spotlight. They are available in various sizes and candlepower ratings. Some operate directly from a 12V battery by plugging them into an outlet such as a cigarette lighter in an automobile. Others are powered by a rechargeable battery that is charged from 120v AC. That is the type you need. No cables attached after charging! Also, the one I have holds a charge for a fairly long time.....plenty long enough for an application like the magic illusion you describe!
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Ray Pierce
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Inner circle
Los Angeles, CA
2241 Posts

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Yes, the handheld halogen spotlights are self-contained and ready to go. For the size versus power issue, you can really do no better than superbright LED arrays. There is more light output with less heat and it draws less power than anything else on the market. The halogen light sources are very effective but there is more heat involved.

Ultimately, it really is a matter of just how much light you need to cut through all the other stage lights. If it is on a dark stage some small LED flashlights would be fine. For more output you can use a halogen handheld cordless Spotlight. We have used a lot of 12 V high-powered lamps on props but we have multiple motorcycle batteries buried in the base to give us the time we need. You can even put several motorcycle batteries and an inverter and run 110 Volt traditional fixtures for a short period of time.

A really good option I would look into are 12 Volt video lights that are meant to go on top of the camera. The smaller ones have self-contained batteries but the larger commercial ones usually attach to a 12 V battery belt with a series of cells that circle your waist. These will sustain a very high output for plenty of time for the show. They are easy to recharge and the belt pack can be hidden easily in most small bases. I didn't have time to look around a lot, but a quick Google search turned up this one as an example:

http://www.smithvictor.com/products/deta......V950+KIT

It has really high output with a portable battery pack.

There are many more special-purpose instruments that are available now but nothing too hard to find on Google.

Good luck and let us know how it goes!
Ray Pierce
<BR>www.HollywoodAerialArts.com
Spellbinder
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Inner circle
The Holy City of East Orange, NJ
6438 Posts

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My son bought me a REALLY bright LED flashlight. It hurts my eyes to look at it, and I use it for finding things I am always dropping on the floor. You can now buy them in brightness levels up to 4500 lumens and that is probably more than you need. http://shop.hidcountry.com/LED-and-HID-F......od706DPw
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ringmaster
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Inner circle
Memphis, Down in Dixie
1623 Posts

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Simplest way is to get a handheld spotlight from any sporting goods store and a self contained batter system from an auto parts store.
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