Monday, March 23, 2009

That's Not a Light Stand. This is a Light Stand.

UPDATE: As usual, alternate suggestions for humongous light stands coming in via the comments. Check 'em out if you are so inclined.
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Do you ever find yourself in need of more height and stability than your, say, 5-section compact speedlight stand can offer?

Do you sometimes need area-flooding back/separation lighting?

Are you strong enough to carry something around that is ominously described as "man portable?"

Then you, my friend, may be interested in a Luksa HI-VIEW 40-foot light stand.

Full extension pic (no jokes, please) and video link, inside.
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Make Mine a Tallboy, Please

After reading about the truck-mounted, 70-foot tall remote camera mast that Luksa makes, I clicked around in the site a little to find the "normal" light stands. They call them tripods, but they are designed just like light stands.

Only way bigger.

Here are some of the specs. The two models hit 30 and 40 feet tall, respectively. The 30-foot stand collapses to 6 feet.

There are two 40-foot models -- a normal one that collapses to 8.5 feet, and a "compact" version that closes down to 6.5 feet.

These bad boys extend with a winch (or 12v motor) so all of the sections extend at an equal rate, for maximum stability. And they will hold a 30- or 35-lb payload, respectively.

Price? Oh, yeah, that.

The bad news is that they will set you back $9,200.00 or $9,450.00, respectively.


Wait -- come back!


They are working on an upcoming lighter duty model that will go up to 48 feet, which will go in the $2,000.00 range. It is planned to have a 10-pound capability, which would make is perfect for a studio-sized head.

You may laugh, but just think what you could do with a 48-foot (as in 5-fricken'-story) light stand, as far as flooding a large scene with back/top light. Seriously, you could create a whole look with a stand like this.

Why just light a basketball court when you could light a night high school football game? Two AB1600's with sport reflectors feathered up back in the opposite corners would do it. (But only in Texas...)

I'm probably gonna be sticking to my Bogen/Manfrotto super compacts for the time being. But I figure this post has now gone on long enough to where Chase Jarvis is probably on Luksa.com ordering his right now. Especially after he sees this video.

As I always say, it is better to have a friend with a pool than to have a pool...


(Via the PW Blog)


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70 Comments:

Blogger Keith Emmerich said...

I always felt at that at my height I was and am a perfect assistant for getting lights higher up..I'm 6'8 but this makes me feel like I can be replaced!!

Great find this is awesome.

KE

March 23, 2009 12:21 AM  
Anonymous Nate said...

I can see it now
'Shit, we forgot to turn the strobe on...'

March 23, 2009 12:34 AM  
Blogger Jon H said...

Hey there,
Have been lurking here for a bit but these tripods are too much, I had a good chuckle. I watched the video and that thing looks like a Scud missile when it is packed up. Enjoy the blog, look forward to learning lots here. Does man portable = bring an extra assistant or two?

March 23, 2009 12:44 AM  
Anonymous Kevin Wrenn said...

I feel bad for the poor guy who has to lug the 100lb sand bags to hold this thing down. :-)

March 23, 2009 12:45 AM  
Anonymous ryan dearth said...

thats one of the coolest things i've ever seen! i hope there's a socket on top and bottom though, i'd hate to run an extension cord to the lights up there!

March 23, 2009 12:52 AM  
Blogger dan said...

That seems a bit ridiculously priced. For less than that out football program bought a similar system for video cameras, that included a remote-controlled head, LCD monitors, and they threw in the MiniDV cameras!

(I'm sure at some height you don't want to be lowering your lights just to adjust the position... for me that's around 8')

March 23, 2009 12:53 AM  
Blogger akwoo said...

damn thats one tall tripod.

March 23, 2009 1:07 AM  
Blogger George K said...

Heh, isn't this a little early? Finally, a use for my overclocked Speedlights! hehe

March 23, 2009 1:34 AM  
Anonymous Dave Kee said...

Can I be the first with the obligatory: "Is that a light stand or are you just glad to see me?" joke

March 23, 2009 1:41 AM  
Blogger Yang Gao said...

For 9 grands, I'd get a couple of remote helicopters to lift the strobe.

March 23, 2009 1:57 AM  
Blogger Alex Minkin Photography said...

unnecessarily delicious. i'll take 2

March 23, 2009 2:02 AM  
Blogger Michael Ignatov said...

Compensating for something? Exposure maybe?

March 23, 2009 2:13 AM  
Blogger David Brown said...

That's some serious gear. Not sure how I would answer, if anyone asks if that lightstand is trying to compensate for something.

Been asked that one already, and didn't have a ready answer. The perils of taking photos of a psychologist, I guess.

March 23, 2009 2:56 AM  
Blogger sitbonzo said...

I just bought myself a 18 foot light stand to have a go at property stuff. Used it yesterday for a try out and its pretty good. tends to swing about a bit.

the footage is here

http://www.sitbonzo.com/2009/03/22/property-test-hillcrest/

March 23, 2009 3:02 AM  
Blogger sitbonzo said...

oh sorry, It cost £100 from Mr Cad in Croydon (UK)

March 23, 2009 3:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just don't forget the sandbags!

March 23, 2009 4:08 AM  
Blogger Kristian Solli said...

Haha, awesome! But I think you need a lot of sandbags.

March 23, 2009 4:10 AM  
Blogger Keith said...

you would need a very small assistant to climb up there as you dial the strobes in :)

March 23, 2009 5:32 AM  
Anonymous Craig Murphy said...

@Dan. What was the system your football team purchased?

March 23, 2009 9:04 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Pretty cool...Has McNally tried them yet? Maybe they'll be in his next book, LOL.

March 23, 2009 9:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

better not be using poverty wizards with this thing...I think they would be out of range. :)

March 23, 2009 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"don't forget the sand bags" but more importently
don't forget to "Look Up And Live"
(see nppa.org)

March 23, 2009 10:33 AM  
Anonymous lewis w said...

Aircraft beacon included. Lightning rod with ground fault extra.

March 23, 2009 10:57 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

If 24' will do you, check out the Bogen Camera Stand Mfg part# 269HDB-3U - cost about $650. I have one I use for low-earth aerials and it's super. Weighs about 20lb. Pretty stable - can be guy wired if desired. There is also a cheaper version called a Super High Aluminum stand Mfr # 269HDBU for about $325. I was loving the idea of that 40 footer till I saw the price.

March 23, 2009 11:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Uhm, if that one is a Tallboy, I'm not really sure I want to know the size of a Grand Slam or T12 model...

March 23, 2009 11:29 AM  
Blogger Nicolas Henri said...

I strongly suggest checking out the video! It has some surreal/absurd and very dry humor to it. I couldn't help but giggle...

LUKSA Industries: Makers of fine industrial videos since 1985.

AWESOME!!!

March 23, 2009 12:06 PM  
Anonymous Cameron Davidson said...

I own a Quadpod - a variation of this unit. It goes to sixty feet, is heavy as all get out and a pain to set-up. On the plus side, it is a fantastic viewpoint for many clients and if you have a strong assistant with you, easily to move around.

It will go to sixty-feet but never use it above 40 because it tends to sway a bit with a 1Ds on top of the ball head.

The giraffe cam is another possibility. Hitch or trailer mounted.

http://www.giraffecam.com/

March 23, 2009 12:11 PM  
Blogger Curtis Copeland said...

WOW! A bit much for a 580 EXII...

March 23, 2009 1:01 PM  
Blogger Jan Fredrik Leversund said...

I bet the Elinchrom guys are going "See? This is why we designed our Skyports to also let you control the flash power remotely. Who's laughing now, huh? Huh?!"

March 23, 2009 1:06 PM  
Anonymous Manuel Ribeiro said...

As an architecture and heritage photographer I dream about one of this every time I wonder to light that detail in a manner that makes the difference ...
Great piece of gear.

March 23, 2009 2:54 PM  
Blogger MitchVidler said...

40ft ehh.....I have 2 50ft light stands and one 100ft, both made by Clark. They will withstand about 25m winds and can be put up in about 15 minutes.

March 23, 2009 3:29 PM  
Anonymous greg said...

One more thing to crank-up into the power lines! I hope the user looks up.

March 23, 2009 3:50 PM  
Blogger MasterOfGoingFaster said...

Watching the video, the first thing I saw was the high voltage line overhead. A sudden wind gust could have put that thing right into the lines.

Seriously, anyone who is putting metal poles up needs to be watching for power lines. I knew a guy who was in the burn unit for almost 2 years with about 70% of his body burned from the arc from a power line.

March 23, 2009 4:09 PM  
Blogger Alex said...

Hi David,
Thought you might want to see this, it's from a recent strobist style shoot I did involving Orcs... Yes I know it was all done while stealing extras off the set of the Born of Hope, Lord of the Rings inspired film. Anyway check it out here:
http://www.alexbeckett.co.uk/blog/2009/03/23/portraits-of-an-orc/

Alex

March 23, 2009 4:33 PM  
Blogger Fuzzy Fauchon said...

...need some liability insurance to go with that.

March 23, 2009 4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Power Line? I'd watch for lightning! Now if it only had an automatic power button!

March 23, 2009 5:02 PM  
Blogger David said...

Alex-

Very cool! THat must have been lotsa fun to shoot. Video would have been fun, I am thinking...

-D

March 23, 2009 5:50 PM  
Blogger Heipel said...

Reach for the Viagra!

March 23, 2009 9:44 PM  
Blogger Cesar S said...

Sure, we can all own one, we timeshare.

March 23, 2009 11:19 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Best part of $10K for something that just supports something else. Wow - I'd love to be in that league.

March 24, 2009 12:05 AM  
Anonymous Bruce Philpott said...

WOW! I'm picturing the effects of just a slight breeze on a huge reflector like that elevated to that height... not to mention lightning!

March 24, 2009 12:29 AM  
Blogger Darien Chin said...

Crikey!!!!

March 24, 2009 1:59 AM  
Blogger I2carts said...

That seems a bit ridiculously priced. For less than that out football program bought a similar system for video cameras, that included a remote-controlled head, LCD monitors, and they threw in the MiniDV cameras!

(I'm sure at some height you don't want to be lowering your lights just to adjust the position... for me that's around 8')
Sell Digital Products

March 24, 2009 3:05 AM  
Anonymous Jason said...

Matthews Mombo Combo Stand.

They don't go up as high, but they aren't as pricey either.

They can hold 88 lbs up to 24'.

http://www.msegrip.com/mse.php?show=product&cat=412&products_ID=25047

One leg of the three can extend out for placing them on uneven surfaces.

I've used two of them plus pipe for holding backdrops, lighting, etc for years. Indestructible.

March 24, 2009 3:45 AM  
Blogger mthurman said...

Wow, is this the first time a new lightstand means a new trigger as well?

At that height they are out of the range of my poverty wizards! ;-)

MyDefinition

March 24, 2009 2:15 PM  
Anonymous Daryl Marquardt said...

We have a couple of the Mombo Combos and they are much beefier than they look in the picture. You need to stand on the cross bars of the legs to raise and lower them. Are you 250lbs? go ahead and jump on them. They can take it. It also takes the place of a day at the gym. They require some effort to move, but wonderful pieces of gear when you need to get up high.

March 24, 2009 3:41 PM  
Blogger Nicholas Fodor said...

48' is ridiculous.

Speedlights are useless because of the inverse square rule (light fall off).

A full-sized strobe at 1/1 power would work great.......to earn a full stop of light over ambient.

I suppose you don't have to use it for lights though.

Using this with a camera on a long-exposure would be cool, but camera shake would be challenging to completely eliminate due to bowing in the wind within its segments.

March 24, 2009 4:59 PM  
Anonymous Carl said...

Five storeys, eh? Not bad, not bad.

But maybe it's time to consider a miniature zeppelin. Why limit yourself to five storeys?

March 24, 2009 5:00 PM  
Blogger photog said...

Cool, but the cost is out of this world! Why not just buy a pole at a hardware store, dig a hole and do it yourself and save the nine grand?

March 24, 2009 5:42 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Am I the first to know that that's a Crocodile Dundee reference?

March 24, 2009 9:20 PM  
Blogger Team_PhArt said...

G'day David, I have posted this here because I can't work out how else to get in touch with you...if you don't want to approve it for all to view that's cool, I'm really not trying to spam-just get your advice. I'm setting up a blog/rss reader for a gallery I do some work for...www.photoartgallery.com...AKA PhArt...I know, I know how it sounds...what can I say we're Australian ;) Anyway I have embedded an RSS feed from your wonderful blog and I just wanted to know if you were cool with that. I'm kind of old school with courtesy and all. It's here if you want to check it out. http://phaculty.blogspot.com/ I think I've covered all correct bases but I'd feel better if you could check. On another note I hold you solely responsible for my dismal bank account due to me buying too many Nikon CLS flashes...Cheers Melinda.

March 25, 2009 12:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

$9k US is insane. In Australia they sell kits for $1700 Aus = $2600 US. I have been looking into these units because I see the potential for profit and it is cheaper than a pilot and plane rentals over time. I am so astounded by the cost that I have an engineer friend of mind trying to design a better, CHEAPER version.

Cost too High?
DIY

Michael

March 25, 2009 9:17 AM  
Blogger David said...

Hi, Melinda-

What you are doing is fine, and well within the TOS of the site. It's the people that cut and paste the entire article and photos for their site that make me want to spend an evening cleaning the guns...

:)

-D

March 25, 2009 10:47 AM  
Blogger brett said...

seems like a kite or rc helicopter would work as well and be more fun. cool though.

March 25, 2009 3:30 PM  
Blogger Steven W. Hopkins said...

Are you going to have anything on the new cactus triggers?

March 25, 2009 4:54 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

I'm waiting for the 40' DIY light stand for $5! Hell yeah :)

March 25, 2009 6:57 PM  
Anonymous Melinda said...

Man I wanna keep clear of those guns! Cheers David, all good :) Hey when are you coming to Australia to do some workshops?

March 25, 2009 8:24 PM  
Anonymous Chicago photographer said...

Can't wait to try to get that in airline baggage!

March 26, 2009 1:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's not a light stand it's a spoon.

March 26, 2009 5:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, that guy on the pics is so Daniel Greg lookalike.

March 26, 2009 7:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, but are they any good for background support?

March 26, 2009 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Alex Smith said...

I think an RC helicopter would work better.....and be a lot cheaper.
You could just attach a helium balloon to your strobe to keep it from falling if the helicopter crashed.
On the other hand, if the balloon overpowers the helicopter, then you need a BB gun or something.....and you better have a good net to catch your flash. lol.

March 26, 2009 9:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

9 Grand? and only 40ft huhh
Check what my buddy does with his camera. He actually attaches it (D200) to the skids of an RC Helocopter and shoots Real Estate pictures.
www.steamboataerials.com

March 27, 2009 8:31 PM  
Anonymous Marc Photography said...

That is beyond ridiculous. I think it should be required to have a blinking light for airplanes. I want one.

March 29, 2009 12:17 PM  
Anonymous Jeff Ball said...

That is quite the light stand. Thanks for the info.

March 31, 2009 1:48 AM  
Anonymous Cameron Carothers said...

And I was hoping the link would be to Crocodile Dundee after your 3 stooges link on the strobes.

March 31, 2009 3:09 AM  
Anonymous Terry said...

Thanks for that!! That made me laugh out loud when I saw how frikin' huge that pole is!!

March 31, 2009 7:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All fun aside, they don’t call them tripods for nothing (instead of light stands). They are a decent substitute for low altitude aerial photography . Another company in the UK makes larger ones (I believe you can get a 120’ with an electric winch for about 20K)
They are meant to e used with a motorized tripod head and a camera with a motorized zoom tethered to a lap top
I believe they also will modify a Nikon or Canon Zoom and add a focusing and zooming motor and make the wiring to go with it

April 16, 2009 9:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They also come with a warning system for electrical lines and will disable the winch when power lines closer to the mast are detected

April 16, 2009 9:30 PM  
Blogger Benjamin Ziegler said...

These very high "tripods" are used for aerials VR photography !
Here is on test i did at home : http://blog.bziegler.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/pano_maison/nuit/krpano.html

And another more professional for an Airbus A380 virtual visit : http://www.bziegler.com/posts/2008/09/qtvr_quantas/tour/

I whish i could have my own ;)

May 20, 2009 11:06 AM  

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