A few months ago, my boss told me that we are expanding my department (me) into the world of video production. I was given complete freedom in choosing the camera, computer, and lighting. Like any good photographer, I spent the entire budget on the camera and computer.
Let’s get started:
16" mixing bowl6 light sockets2 ½" PVC tees1 ½" PVC threaded tee1 ½" PVC cross5 ½" PVC 90-degree corners½" PVC pipeThe total cost for materials was less than $35. CFL bulbs were another $18.
The PVC is assembled as shown. Short pieces of PVC pipe are used to join the fittings. The threads on the PVC match the threads on the light fixtures. The wires for the fixtures will run through the PVC.
The PVC assembly is test-fitted on the back of the bowl before any cuts are made.
The bowl is primed and marked for cutting.
My trusty Dremel™ tool made short work of the bowl. I used a 1/4" drill bit to create pilot holes, then opened up the holes with the Dremel™.
Each light fixture is threaded through the hole in the reflector, into the PVC assembly. The fixtures have a lock washer at the base that allows them to be tightened in place.
The wires from the fixtures pass through the angled pipe. My original plan was to run all of them into the central tee fitting, but the pipe was too small. I drilled a 3/8" hole in the backs of the tee and cross fittings and ran them out the back of the assembly.
I used twist-on connectors to join the wires to a computer power cord that I had in my big Pile-o-Cables. Zip ties are used to secure the power cord and keep the wires from being pulled apart.
Each fixture gets a 23-watt CFL bulb. This gives me the equivalent of 600 watts of incandescent lighting for a quarter of the power and a lot less heat. I can also vary the color temperature by changing out bulbs. The light attaches to my light stand with a piece of SCH 80 pipe fitted with a thumbscrew.
Stay tuned for part 2 when the CFL light gets a big brother…