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Alex_Mustard

Slave strobes, off camera

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Hi All,

 

I thought I post a few shots of my barstadiezed gorilapod.

(Sorry Alex just seen your questions.)

It uses a small gorilapod which is glued into a section of arm, which then has a plastic clamp bolted through the joint and a length of bungey and dog snap clip attached.

This size gorilapod is a bit small on land but underwater gravity is offset by bouyancy so seems okay, but if I was going it again I'd get bigger gorilapod.

 

1- Strobe facing right, slave facing left.

2- Strobe facing left, slave facing right.

3- Clipped on, normally use on wrecks (but this time dining room chair).

4- Tied on, using the attached lenght of bungey for bigger items.

4- Just the pod without strobe,

 

Any questions please shout.

 

Cheers,

Richard B.

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post-5552-1258341654.jpg

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It uses a small gorilapod which is glued into a section of arm, which then has a plastic clamp bolted through the joint and a length of bungey and dog snap clip attached.

This size gorilapod is a bit small on land but underwater gravity is offset by bouyancy so seems okay, but if I was going it again I'd get bigger gorilapod.

 

Thanks Richard.

 

I'll report back on how my larger gorillapods work with my (quite heavy) Subtronics on them.

 

Alex

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Although Harald designs and builds all the Seacam products, Kurt provides the photographic input to their whole range. The Seacam Seaflash 150 was really his baby, his perfect strobe. There is an edition of the strobe called the Kurt Amsler edition (which is the fully manual version - and has Kurt's signature on the side). I chatted with Kurt recently for my "A Conversation With" series and one thing we spoke about his work with Seacam and the detailed input his photographic experience has into their products. That interview will be out at the end of the year, it is a great read/listen.

 

Alex

His input into Seaflash150 really shows. I hope that by foregoing automation the fully manual edition will be a bit less expensive! However, I do hope they retain the digital display - this really sets this strobe apart from other makes. The warning that the battery is towards the end is quite useful as well. I have used as many as three battery packs on a single shoot (200 - 300 shots/pack) so having this warning helps with 'battery management.'

 

Here is another slave example. The SF150 was used in iTTL mode on this day. The S&S250 was there to provide fill flash for the shadow cast by the submerged branch. The spawning pocket is directly under this branch - next to the flat rock that is lying horizontally.

 

You might the A-frame use of the strobe arms amusing. This was to balance the strobe as well as hold the weight. Using only one arm makes the load on the end of the polecam unbalanced and tippy. As well, I was using the 10.5mm lens and wanted the main strobe in the center.

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Tom,

 

I've just "found" your galleries on Flickr. What amazing images. It is fascinating to see the lengths you have gone to to get them in this thread as well.

 

I assume you have identified the spawning sites prior to setting up! Is the remote/polecam set up to minimize interference, or does your presence stop them from spawning?

 

As you have probably seen from my images, we have a lot of very tame trout. Although they come from a farmed source, I witnessed one spawning a couple of years ago-unfortunately without a camera. The fish seemed completely unworried about my presence-this may be because they are so habituated?

 

All the best

 

Adam

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Alex and Co...

 

 

Given your set up with the remotes how much light/flash do they need to fire? In the photos back lighting the glass fish or in the wreck with the steering wheel could you have the strobe even more out of view and get them to fire? I am thinking if you still wanted to use your on camera strobes to softly light something in foreground but have something lit farther back in the shot.

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Tom,

 

I've just "found" your galleries on Flickr. What amazing images. It is fascinating to see the lengths you have gone to to get them in this thread as well.

 

I assume you have identified the spawning sites prior to setting up! Is the remote/polecam set up to minimize interference, or does your presence stop them from spawning?

 

As you have probably seen from my images, we have a lot of very tame trout. Although they come from a farmed source, I witnessed one spawning a couple of years ago-unfortunately without a camera. The fish seemed completely unworried about my presence-this may be because they are so habituated?

 

All the best

 

Adam

 

Thanks Adam! You have some great salmonid shots as well! :)

 

Actually, I got a few shots in with my second camera first. I was scoping out the stream for coho salmon (at this time they were just entering the spawning stream) after having done an available light shoot polecaming nearby with the D2H and 20/1.8 Sigma and all but stepped on the Dollies. I quickly changed my plans from shooting spawning sockeye salmon a few 100m upstream to spending the rest of the daylight hours (it was just about mid-day when I started!) shooting this pair with this set up.

 

My polecam set up did not interfere with spawning; I got in over 1200 shots with just the D2X set up! From redd construction to spawning to redd cover up. I even got in a very weird sequence. The digging action by the female attracted a pair of male sockeye salmon to get closer. One attempted to get the female to spawn by quivering next to her several times - this was after she had already spawned so it was to no avail.

 

It is hard to stop salmonids from spawning once they are into it. It is uncommon to see the actual spawning because it takes place in just seconds. I was pretty luck with the Dollies as there was just this pair so no fighting among males. They got on with it pretty quickly. I spent three days shooting one coho salmon pair before getting a shot of them spawning in November.

Edited by Tom_Kline

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Hello All,

 

This is a great thread & I thought I'd join in because I'm the diver in the with/without strobe shots of Alex's and watching the master at work has provided me with the inspiration to try & think of how to trigger my YS-110a's off-camera.

 

I've just spent a couple of days searching the web & have come up with a really cheap supplier of fibre-optic cable similar to that which Sea & Sea use in their over-priced L-type sync cables. I've got 20m of the stuff for £35 ;)uk.farnell.com

 

I've also ordered the necessary bits n bobs to make connecting to the housing/strobe a synch. I'm awaiting delivery at the moment but hope to report back soon. There's some large rockpools near where I live & I want to do some evening-time long exposure 50/50 shots with the pool lit with a number of remote strobes.

 

Of course, this could all fall flat if there isn't enough light transmission to trigger the strobes!

 

Alex, if you're interesting in coming down to have a play just let me know.

 

Cheers all,

 

Dan

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Wow, this is a great thread! I stumbled onto it because I'm trying to figure out a way to fire my topland strobes from my u/w ikelite housing. I have a DS-51 strobe currently, but want to introduce some strobe from the surface for some u/w pool photos that I'm taking. Ideally, I would just put an expensive Y connector on the bulkhead with one cable going to the DS-51 and the other going to the surface where I could eventually get it to terminate in an 1/8" mini or 1/4" audio cable....which I would in turn connect to my studio strobes that would be securely placed on the pool deck. This would hopefully provide a little fill light in my rather dark-ish pool that I'm shooting in. This should be simple matter (in my limited electronics worldview) to fashion a connector that would adapt the ikelite cable to an audio cable right? Is the ikelite connector proprietary? That seems like the only drawback.

 

I love what Alex has done with the u/w wreck photos, most excellent! Tom, you have quite a rig there with your polecam. This seems like a reasonable approach, having my main light fire a slave that in turn fires my topland slaves....but it would be cool if I could save a few $$ on the intermediary slave by just getting a cable.

 

Anyone have any ideas on this?

 

Thanks for the inspiring photography guys!

 

 

Cheers!

 

MP

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This seems like a reasonable approach, having my main light fire a slave that in turn fires my topland slaves....but it would be cool if I could save a few $$ on the intermediary slave by just getting a cable.

 

Anyone have any ideas on this?

 

 

An important consideration is that the slave sensor is a able to see the triggering strobe, that ambient does not interfere.

 

Make sure your topside strobes do not get wet!

 

Expect to do some trial and error while adjusting strobe positions - at least we are not burning film! Rather than chimp I move around the set-up so that I can see the slaves themselves going off - so I may need to do a series of test fires to check all the strobes from various angles (depends on the set up).

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Again, I would prefer to forgo the intermediary slave strobe and directly fire the topland strobes from my housing, has anyone had any luck with an adapter cable for such things? I know of one gentleman who created his own cable by embedding an optical slave in an epoxy resin that was tethered to his studio strobes....this just seems like something that is wide open for leaks and failure and possible damage to humans and property for me. I'd rather have the simple option of a cable that will do the trick, and more reliably than a slave. The subjects I photograph are constantly on the move and I'm just concerned with the slaves firing reliably. My topside strobes would be very safely attached with safety tethers before proceeding.

 

MP

 

I guess my other simple albeit more expensive option is to just get the extension cables that will go to an u/w slave that is mounted topside. Does anyone have any experience with connecting multiple Ikelite extension cables?

 

MP

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Again, I would prefer to forgo the intermediary slave strobe and directly fire the topland strobes from my housing, has anyone had any luck with an adapter cable for such things? I know of one gentleman who created his own cable by embedding an optical slave in an epoxy resin that was tethered to his studio strobes....this just seems like something that is wide open for leaks and failure and possible damage to humans and property for me. I'd rather have the simple option of a cable that will do the trick, and more reliably than a slave. The subjects I photograph are constantly on the move and I'm just concerned with the slaves firing reliably. My topside strobes would be very safely attached with safety tethers before proceeding.

 

MP

 

I guess my other simple albeit more expensive option is to just get the extension cables that will go to an u/w slave that is mounted topside. Does anyone have any experience with connecting multiple Ikelite extension cables?

 

MP

I do not find slaves to work predictably when trying to trigger from above to below or visa versa. Especially in bright sunlight.

I use Nikonos extended cables 15-25' for my pool work. I'm sure they can be made for Ikelite. Contact Ryan at Reef Photo.

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I agree cable is the most reliable solution. But it can be very impractical in some shooting situations.

 

Alex

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I do not find slaves to work predictably when trying to trigger from above to below or visa versa. Especially in bright sunlight.

I use Nikonos extended cables 15-25' for my pool work. I'm sure they can be made for Ikelite. Contact Ryan at Reef Photo.

 

 

Not surprising to hear that the Floridian sun is problematic. I shaded the slave strobe for a few hours during the shoot shown in post #29 by draping my parka on a tree that was to the left of the set up. The sun peaked out for just a little bit that day. I had been using the parka as ground cover since I began the shoot in the prone position trying not to be visible to the fish. There was roadway behind me, no trees so I was quite visible against the sky.

 

I have some of those Ike extensions. They have Ike connectors, opposite sexed ends so they can be added together. Ike at one time and may still make a PC to Ike strobe cord. This is for using Ike strobes on topside cameras. One could make a DIY one that went the other way by sacrificing an Ike strobe to bulkhead cord (preferably one that is already no good such as one with bent NV pins). Cut off the camera end plug and solder on the appropriate cord to your topside strobes. You will also need an Ike to whatever bulkhead your housing is set up with cord for the other end.

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I agree cable is the most reliable solution. But it can be very impractical in some shooting situations.

 

Alex

 

This is an understatement. It can be quite an effort to keep cords out of the picture, especially when using a fisheye lens. Just dealing with the remote release cord is challenging enough. I try to keep tension on the cord or if possible raise it out of the water. This is why the cord is hanging from a tree in post#13 of this thread http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=33824&hl=

I recall having to find and grab the release out of the near freezing water after it had drifted downstream while I was adjusting the housing position.

 

I have used ankle weights threaded through an overhand knot in the cord to keep them in place as well.

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I have some of those Ike extensions. They have Ike connectors, opposite sexed ends so they can be added together. Ike at one time and may still make a PC to Ike strobe cord. This is for using Ike strobes on topside cameras. One could make a DIY one that went the other way by sacrificing an Ike strobe to bulkhead cord (preferably one that is already no good such as one with bent NV pins). Cut off the camera end plug and solder on the appropriate cord to your topside strobes. You will also need an Ike to whatever bulkhead your housing is set up with cord for the other end.

 

Indeed, I found an ike to PC sync cable on Ebay, but they describe the cable as a 2-pin cable.....would that be forward compatible with my modern ikelite which is a 5-pin cable? Please know that for my topland strobes, I do not expect ttl operation. Pocket Wizard sells a PC female to miniphone (1/8") connector, so if the 2-pin will connect to the 5-pin, I'm in business. Anyone know if the two are compatible?

 

here's the cable:

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...sid=p2759.l1259

 

Thanks all!!

 

MP

Edited by improv

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That is the cord I was referring to in the earlier post. One only needs two wires to trigger the flash. The other wires are for TTL etc., which will not be used as they will not be connected. Most older cameras had a PC outlet, thus this is the 'least common denominator' approach.

 

Keep in mind the 'sex' of this Ike connector, it fits the strobe. The extension cords have the same sex as this on one end and the opposite sex on the other end. This is quite different from others like S6 connectors that are the same sex on each end so can't be extended.

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That is the cord I was referring to in the earlier post. One only needs two wires to trigger the flash. The other wires are for TTL etc., which will not be used as they will not be connected. Most older cameras had a PC outlet, thus this is the 'least common denominator' approach.

 

Keep in mind the 'sex' of this Ike connector, it fits the strobe. The extension cords have the same sex as this on one end and the opposite sex on the other end. This is quite different from others like S6 connectors that are the same sex on each end so can't be extended.

 

crud.....I need the very end of my cable to terminate in the PC sync so I can then use it in my studio strobe....this will do me no good at all...unless Ikelite has a gender changer connector. Is that connector type proprietary? I'm guessing that it is.

 

MP

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crud.....I need the very end of my cable to terminate in the PC sync so I can then use it in my studio strobe....this will do me no good at all...unless Ikelite has a gender changer connector. Is that connector type proprietary? I'm guessing that it is.

 

MP

 

 

gender changer connector - there are Ike-Ike cables, or you might buy the Ike extension cable cut off the wrong end and attach your synch cable there

 

connector type proprietary - one can buy bulkheads and DIY

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crud.....I need the very end of my cable to terminate in the PC sync so I can then use it in my studio strobe....this will do me no good at all...unless Ikelite has a gender changer connector. Is that connector type proprietary? I'm guessing that it is.

 

MP

Again, contact Ryan at Reef Photo. He will make you a Ike / Nikonos/ or whatever to PC Connector

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I second what Jeff said. The "elegant" way would be to have Ryan or the folks at Reef Photo make one for you. It would have a nice water "resistant" PC connector to connect to your studio flash.

 

Otherwise, just buy a long Ike cable (they come in 30' length I believe) and cut the end off. Find out which two wires are "fire" and "ground" and connect them to a $2 PC cord.

 

James

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Hehe....elegant is nice....but on the other hand, so is $2 :D

 

Actually, Ryan said that he can make me one...whoo hoo!!

 

Thanks all!

 

MP

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A little update... I've got my 20m of fibre optic cable & there's no problem with light-transmission from my camera's flash to the YS110a's sensor :-) It's fires every time - sweet.

 

Now I just need to make up the 'plugs' for each end & I'll be off into the brown, cold stuff that we call the sea in UK during the winter.

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Finally got it all working; so I now have 2x10m fibre optic sync cables for my YS110a's.

 

There are pros and cons to having to deal with all that cable underwater, but it's only 2mm wide so should be easy to keep out of the shot. However that's probably worth the hassle to get a 100% sucessful fring rate. And because I'm not relying on an exposed flash to trigger them through the water column I don't have to worry about backscatter from the master strobe - which is nice :)

 

for info; here's what I've come up with:

 

The 'plug'end to fit in the YS110a

strobe_plug.jpg

 

The plug fitted

strobe.jpg

 

Proof that the 10m cable is working (works with my Ixus 100, DX-1G and Canon 1000D)!

strobe_fire.jpg

 

Now I just need the weather & sea to calm down a bit :)

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Woohoo!! I just test fired my new lighting setup successfully. I have an Ikelite ttl to two strobe splitter, with one going to my on-camera DS-51 and the other connected to an extension cable going to an Alien Bees strobe for topland firing. It works very nicely. My extension cable is made up of two 15' Ikelite cables....for testing, I simply inserted the ground and the trigger wire of my 1/8" mini cable into the corresponding spots on the ikelite cable. Now to make it more permanent, I have to cut into my $85 Ikelite cable <sniff> and do a continuity check to see which wire is which and come up with a nice, durable connection for the audio cable. It doesn't have to be exactly water proof on this connection, since I will anchor it off in the dry, but it should have some sort of strain relief on it. I'll keep the board posted with my results.

 

I found this, which was very helpful:

 

http://www.ikelite.com/faq/faq_syncwiring.html#howto

 

It would be nice to know what colors the wires are that are the trigger and the ground.....anyone know? Of course, the continuity check will verify which is which. Anyone have any tips for making a good, solid, durable connection of the two wires?

 

Thanks all!

 

MP

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