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Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-08-2006, 10:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I am in the process of building some PVC light diffusers and flags. For one of the projects I want to take one white diffuser panel and connect it to a panel wioth some black fabric on it. Basically I am wanting the panels to form a sort of V so i can shoot through the white fabric and protect the camer lens from flare. In the tinker tube PDF it looks like the dual clip will work. I am wondering if anyone has made one of these and how strong they are since they are only bonded with PVC cement. Does this work? Is there something stronger to use?

Thanks for any help.
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-08-2006, 01:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dman65
I am in the process of building some PVC light diffusers and flags. For one of the projects I want to take one white diffuser panel and connect it to a panel wioth some black fabric on it. Basically I am wanting the panels to form a sort of V so i can shoot through the white fabric and protect the camer lens from flare. In the tinker tube PDF it looks like the dual clip will work. I am wondering if anyone has made one of these and how strong they are since they are only bonded with PVC cement. Does this work? Is there something stronger to use?

Thanks for any help.
While they are strong they can come apart under stress like winds or bouncing around in a bag. What I did was put a small piece of wood between the two clips and use glue and screws. Be sure to counter sink the head of the screw. One drawback is that there is bigger gap between the panels.
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-08-2006, 05:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I have three panels, each 36" x 84" -- two are covered in white ripstop and one in black. Here's how I use them:
  • In my studio -- mostly for light diffusion. I have four powerful old Norman heads that do not have a variable adjustment, so I use the diffusion panels to help balance the light with that of my Alien Bees. The black panel is good for flagging any flares.
  • Outside -- I clip the three panels together into a "V" shape and use them as a changing tent. Then I pull them apart and clip them together top-to-bottom and stand them up a trellis. I put the model under it and it does a nice job of diffusing the harsh light.
I haven't tried to use these panels on a windy day, but I'd say -- not unless you have several guys holding them.
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-09-2006, 07:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by photoaz
While they are strong they can come apart under stress like winds or bouncing around in a bag. What I did was put a small piece of wood between the two clips and use glue and screws. Be sure to counter sink the head of the screw. One drawback is that there is bigger gap between the panels.
Thanks for the tip. I am going to try roughing up the portions of the clips that are near each other and then apply some epoxy to see if I can get them to meld. If that doesn't work I will go the screw route.

I am also wondering if the clips from the photoflex PVC system will work. I think it is like $13 for 6 of them. Considering all of the work if they will fit a standard size PVC pipe I might just purchase some of those.
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-09-2006, 10:38 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I made a bunch of these things years ago and found the clips worked just fine if you flattened the back side a bit to give it a better area to glue. By the way where did you get the PDF for these things. I lost mine in a disk crash.
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-09-2006, 11:12 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cclesue
I made a bunch of these things years ago and found the clips worked just fine if you flattened the back side a bit to give it a better area to glue. By the way where did you get the PDF for these things. I lost mine in a disk crash.
Thanks for the information. I did file the backsides flat with a coarse file and left them a little rough to give them a little tooth. I will see how they work.

This link is still active for the document: http://www.software-cinema.com/page/tinkertubes
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-09-2006, 01:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Dean Collins marketed these as Lightform Panels and they were sold by Bogen, until recently. You can occasionally find the Lightform Double Clips on eBay. Calumet still sells their light panels and sells the Panel Joiner Clips for 11.99 per pack of 6. I have a bunch of these that I have picked up over the years, mostly on eBay. The photoflex panels are similar, but I don't know whether they will work with Lightform or Calumet panels. Both Lightform and Calumet panels use 3/4" plastic pipe frames, but they appear to be ABS instead of PVC. PVC seems to be a little less rigid. I have used 3/4" aluminum electrical conduit in place of PVC pipe and it is quite a bit more rigid, but it is hard to find and expensive. I have made a couple of 78" square panels this way and adapted one to hold an 8' X 10' mesh tarp. When they get this big, they get really floppy and need quite a bit of support.
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Special PVC Connectors
Old 05-09-2006, 02:39 PM   #8 (permalink)
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As I was researching this today I ran across a site with materials for constructing greenhouses out of PVC. They have some pretty useful fittings for making things like boxes out of PVC if anyone is interested.

http://www.littlegreenhouse.com/accessory/pvc.shtml
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Re: Any Tinker Tube builders out there?
Old 05-10-2006, 01:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I first got the tinkertubes book directly from Dean Collins when he first released it. I built a number of the items. They are still in use today. I never had a failure of the clips. I did do the roughing of the surface before applying the cement.
Cheers,
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