Booms on larger lighting stands such as C-stands allow for accurate and convenient positioning of lights. It's not always convenient to carry heavy studio gear on location so here's a simple solution which uses kit many will already own or is easily available from a DIY or hardware store.
The boom arm is a 1m length of 16mm ⅝" steel tube - I decided not to use aluminium as it has too much flex to be useful.
By attaching the Speedlite by means of a PIXAPRO® SMART Speedlite Adapter Bracket - this allows me to use pop-up soft boxes such as Lastolite Ezybox or similar, umbrellas and Bowens S-Type modifiers.
This is fixed to a Kupo Grip Umbrella Swivel, in my experience this is the best umbrella swivel available by means of my SPIG aka the 1420 VAL Spigot inverted.
By using The SPIG in conjunction with the Kupo Umbrella swivel I've effectively created a lightweight grip head!
The boom is counterbalanced by means of two lengths of 550lb paracord attached to one end of the tube, in which I've filed a shallow rounded recess.
Stability for the stand & boom is provided by my camera back pack attached to the lower locking screw back a locking paracord tie.
Remember when rigging any light stand that one leg should extend under the light to reduce the risk of the light falling forward.
The boom is adjusted and tensioned by means of a Prusik Knot which slides freely when not under a load and locks tight when a load is applied.
Using the Kupo Umbrella Swivel allows for 180º of adjustment if required.
Using the boom also allows sturdy extension without needing to extend the flexible inner extensions.
Kit laid out on a 60cm generic pop-up soft box - clockwise from top left:
- 16mm ⅝" mild steel tube
- Godox V850II Speedlite which will trigger with my Pixapro ST III C transmitter
- Kupo Grip Umbrella Swivel
- The SPIG aka 1420 VAL Spigot minipin adaptor - available to buy with GB Pounds, Euros & US Dollars - ships worldwide
- Kupo 055 Handy Stand with sliding leg modification for use on uneven ground
- Pixapro SMART Speedlite Adapter Bracket
This rig is only recommended for Speedlites with modifiers up to about 80cm - I do not recommend using bigger lights or modifiers as the 055 Handy stand is intended for use with lightweight, let's say less than 1kg (2.2lb) lights and modifiers. Base stability in the form of sand bags or a well laden camera bag is essential.
I highly recommend the Pixapro brand products available from https://www.essentialphoto.co.uk - Yang Wu and the team offer a superb level of customer service (yes, I have experienced it) both on the telephone and by the website Live Chat!
That's it for now and don't forget if you really enjoy lighting to visit and join The LIGHT Side - a place to learn, be mentored, nurtured and learn about lighting, lighting and photography, whatever your level or experience.