YouTube video

A lightstand that weighs 0.4 kg, measures 40 cm packed, and 2 m unfolded. Huh?

The limiting factor for me when setting up many lights, is often how much weight and volume I can bring. This is one of the reasons I use small flashes in large quantity, instead of few large ones. With many small flashes I get more control over the light, being able to use more channels/heads.

With cameras getting better and better in low light, loads of effect is often not that necessary anymore. If I still need lots of Ws, I’ll bring many small ones together in a large cluster instead; enough to use in bright sun to battle the ambient.┬áSince I’ve made the switch from big studio cans, I’ve minimized weight and volume quite a bit, not just by flashes, but also softboxes and lightstands.

Manfrottos smaller Stacker stands are great if you need many of them. But they’re still the bulkiest part of the kit, and now I’ve constructed some really light ones myself, that’s about one-third the weight of a normal small lighweight nightstand. They use materials from tent construction; actually the same stuff that many softboxes are built from, and similar to Tamrac’s Zipshot tripods; I’ve got a pair of those, but need something stronger.

A normal lightstand might weigh 2 kg, a small Stacker stand about 1.3 kg, and my homegrown ones offers the same height at 0.4 kg, and don’t need any additional fasteners for attaching the softbox. Quick to set up and tear down. This means I’ll be able to bring more flashes and stands to future jobs.

This video is a little special, being vertical; just like lightstands. The rattling sound comes from the cat messing with the camera :-)