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Mounting Kinos


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#1 Mike Sorel

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 12:30 AM

Hey everyone,

l'm looking for some advice on mounting Kino Flo 4' banks. I'm shooting a reality/game show in December and I'd like to use Kino 4' banks to lights the living areas and the locations. I've seen a couple of similar shows use Kinos mounted where the wall meets the ceiling but I can't see how they are mounted. I'd also like to leave the rooms in good condition after we leave, the living area and locations have all been generously donated. So screwing the lights to the walls is out of the question. Any advice would help.

Thanks

Mike Sorel
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#2 Thomas Burns

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 01:29 AM

If you're on location, a wall spreader would work well here. Cut the wood to fit the room and mount baby plates and gobo heads where you need to rig. For power you can either run head feeders down one side together to the ballasts (for easy access) or house the ballasts up top with the heads (if it's just a few heads you could cube tap off one stinger run). If you need a lot of power up top, consider running a stick of 100A or 60a to a lunch box rigged to the spreader.

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#3 Alex Wuijts

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 08:34 AM

You can use a polecat, no drilling required with them. Make sure you get some beermats to put on both ends, because the black rubber ends of the polecat can leave stains on wall.

I've also taken kino tubes out the housing and placed them with blu tack, a putty like adhesive, but that probably isn't the way to go here. It's an option though.
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#4 Tshaka

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 09:40 AM

Hello Mike Sorel.

I agree with Thomas. Wall Spreaders are the tried and true option. I try not to use them on spans greater than 14 feet without screwing them in but that's a personal and general rule of thumb. Wall Spreader sets are available for 2X4 and 2X6 stick lumber and also for Speedrail (1.25 inch Speedrail is most common). There are also Telescoping Speedrail Wall Spreaders available that work similarly to Polecats (aka Auto Poles).

While I am a fan of Polecats I use them sparingly because they are not as reliable as Wall Spreaders. Many of us don't realize that Polecats were designed primarily for vertical, floor to ceiling, installation rather than horizontal, wall to wall, installation. Alex's suggestion of the Polecat is also a good one but only in certain applications.

Both Wall Spreaders and Polecats are easy to use but require knowledgable hands to install. When installed correctly the possibilities are liberating but when installed incorrectly the results can be calamitous.

It's a good thing you have a competent Grip on the job with you to process the details of the installation, survey the location and consider some of the physical requirements of the lighting plot like the number of lights and their weight.

There may even be more options available to you beyond the Wall Spreaders and Polecats that may include joint effort between the Art Department and Grip Department. I know your Grip will have some insight.

I hope this is helpful.

Tshaka
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#5 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 03:49 AM

You could use trellasses and light stands. Just hide them with plants, flats, set pieces or simply frame so as to keep them out of the shot. Remember, if it's not in the frame, it doesn't exist. B)
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#6 Mark Sasahara

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Posted 26 November 2006 - 03:44 PM

I spent the summer Gaffing for the TV show, Don't Sweat It, on HGTV. We went to people's houses and did renovations. I used bare Kino tubes and harnesses, taped to the ceiling. The light was flat and poopy, but that's what they wanted. I could have hung teasers, but there was just no time. I used a lot of the 2 inch Permacel black photo tape. It's a paper tape, so it won't rip the paint off the ceiling, but it clings very well. If you are paranoid, you can use a small staple gun to help hold them down, but this requires filling and painting after. Don't staple down over paper tape, it's hard to remove without peeling the paint off. I found out the hard way.

You can hang duvetyne, or use Blackwrap to create teasers.

Also be sure that you use enough tape. It's not good if poop starts falling down on people's heads, esp during a take. When you tape a Kino tube down, run a piece of tape across the tube and then another piece of tape on each side. This makes an "H" and holds everything down. Do that on each end. If you are paranoid, you can do another in the middle. Same proceedure for the harnesses and head cables.

White Artist's tape can cover over head cables and it tends to look like wall trim, or something when you run it next to a doorframe, or window frame. Just be sure that your tape job is neat.

If you do use wall spreaders, but can't screw them into the wall, you can sometimes use wooden vertical beams to support the span at each end. This requires painting them, or staining them to blend in with the decor. When using wall spreaders, it's best if you can screw, or nail them into the wall and prevent them from "popping out" and falling down. Get permission first and be sure that you can fill and paint the holes so that they are invisible, after the shoot.
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#7 Wilkin Chau

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Posted 01 December 2006 - 09:18 PM

You can also use jacks (mainly used for scaffolding) drilled onto pads on the walls, much in the same way wall spreaders are used. Instead of 2X4's, you would use pipe.

Since they are only kinos, using polecats are fine as long as they aren't in full extension. I find at full extension, they are very strong.
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#8 Hal Smith

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Posted 01 December 2006 - 10:15 PM

No one's mentioned using a stud finder to make certain your spreader is not only pushing on the wall's top plate (the horizontal 2x4's at the top of the wall) but also at a junction between a stud and the top plate. If you don't know how houses are built, buying a Sunset or Ortho book on framing and renovation will be educational.

(Obviously Mark Sasahara was cheating - he was working with a professional renovation crew. :) )
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