You can learn every thing you need to know to operate the Satellight-X safely and efficiently in just a few minutes if it is demonstrated by an experienced user. Save yourself a lot of aggravation and possible damage to the light by arranging for a demo.

But if you are desperate, read these thorough instructions very thoroughly.
If still desperate, call Jerry - day or night (310) 849 -3023 or (866) 315-1400.
And do read the warnings!

1. At least two persons should open the case, remove the light and rest it on the edge of the case or another convenient place.

2. Pull up on "T" shaped handle (pictured here), pivot support assembly (spud) 90 degrees and let spring loaded "T" handle fall back into place

3. Place light on broad based stand (two persons!)...And sand bag immediately! A low crank-up stand is best. You will notice a bit of play, both front-to-back and side-to-side. This is normal.

4. First, unscrew the four captive wing nuts almost to the end of the rod. The last few threads are intentionally damaged. Don’t force wing nuts off!.

5.To unfold the arms you must follow these steps exactly; otherwise the mechanism will NOT open or close. Particularly critical is the order in which you slide the knobs (see below). Also, wear gloves because there are several "pinch points."

6. Look closely at the four corner elbows. Each has two long, thin knobs that slide in a slot. Only one knob will slide at a time, and they must be used in the correct order. These knobs are screwed at right angles into pins that lock and unlock the joints of the arms so that you can extend them. Study the elbow, try to understand what is happening inside and you will see that the pins must be pulled perfectly straight out of their locking holes and not pushed against the side of those holes, which can make them seize. Then you will understand the trick involved in sliding a knob. First you must un-weight the arm so that the pin can slide freely. Then you must crook your index finger around the base of the knob, as low as possible, and push as if to slide it. But it will not slide unless you use your thumb to push the top of the knob in the opposite direction. This is because the knob is at right angles to the pin and again, just a tiny bit of pressure that is not exactly straight out forces the pin against the side of the wall. (The knob is acting like a lever.) Do not use thumb and first finger to slide both pins simultaneously toward the center. This will never work! If you adjust your grip as suggested above, the knob and pin will slide easily. This is the way the mechanism in the corner elbows works.

7. Un-weight and jiggle the whole folding arm, slide the inboard knob toward the middle of the slot, as described above, and pivot the whole folded arm 90 degrees. Release knob and jiggle arm until pin slides back and locks the first joint. In the picture above, the inboard knob has been slid to the center as far as it will go and the elbow has been opened most of the way. In the picture below that inboard pin has fallen back into place. Note that when an arm is completely open or completely folded, one knob does not return to the very end of its slot. Un-weight and jiggle the rest of the arm, and slide the outboard knob toward the middle, using the same thumb and index finger technique. When this outboard knob reaches the middle of its slot, the last two joints are free to unfold.

8. Reach all the way inside the folded arm and grab the very end of the last joint, and in one movement unfold the last two joints all the way, that is, until both joints butt up against their stops. There is some resistance because of the spring-loaded reels. Jiggle a bit until the outboard pin slides back into its hole and locks the arm open. Notice that the bulb assembly will pivot into place as the middle joint opens. Remember, inboard knob first, outboard second. It’s the opposite when you break down the light.

9. Finally, still holding the last joint extended, tighten the wing nut as tight as you can by hand. Note that you are forcing the last joint of the arm against a diamond-shaped stop. If you continue to force the outermost joint against its diamond stop by hand, it will be easier to fully tighten the wing nut. This will make the rectangle of black fabric taut so that the fitted diffuser will not billow when it is stretched over the face of the unit. So tighten the wing nut as far as you can by hand, but do not use pliers.

10. Do this for each arm...doesn’t matter which arm first..

11. Plug in light using two 20 amp, 110V receptacles. Both Edison plugs should be plugged into identically wired receptacles from one correctly wired circuit. If two different circuits must be used, be sure that both are wired correctly and identically with respect to each leg and the ground. Be sure power supply is grounded. The two left side lamps are on one circuit and the second circuit controls the two on the right. If you know in advance that you will be using 220V power, let us know, because the ballasts are 110-220V auto-sensing and we can prepare the light for you simply by changing plugs

12. Now turn on each bulb as needed. The four switches, which are actually switch/circuit breakers, are arranged so that the upper two control the upper two bulbs. The bulbs will be noisy for the first 3-4 minutes. The ballasts will hot re-strike and are flicker free under normal conditions, but are not tested for frame rates over 500 frames/second. With all electronic, square-wave ballasts, there is actually a very, very small “change-over” time between one wave and the next, where flicker could be induced. Testing at exact frame rates and shutter openings is best.

13. You may stretch either one of the provided grid cloth diffusers over the face of the unit, or clip on your own diffuser or gel. When adding or removing diffusers, be careful not to burn them.

14. Tilting. This should be a two-person job. The light will only tilt forward 45 degrees, in three-15 degree steps. Try to use a broad based stand and align it so that the light tilts directly over the forward leg. Then be sure that the stand is fully bagged and the stand’s wheels are locked. Un-weight the light using the handle on top of the unit (wear gloves because this handle gets hot). Then unscrew the round black knob 2-4 turns, until the light tilts 15 degrees forward. (Actually it falls, so hold on!) Un-screw the knob two and a half turns more for each of the next two 15 degree steps. Un-weight the light at each step using the handle.

15. The light can be hung. You may tie it off from the four arms with rope or you may tilt the spud back past 90 degrees to 105 degrees for “under-slinging.”

16. To under-sling. With the light face down on the floor, unscrew the round black knob as far as it will go, swing the spud about 105 degrees back and fully screw in knob. Then use conventional hardware to hang light and tie safety lines as required. Use plenty of hands for these operations.

1. First, turn off bulbs, unplug light and let it cool.

2. Unscrew four wing nuts. If you forget this, you cannot collapse the light and you could damage it! After you do this the end joint, containing the wire reel, will want to flop over. The next step is easier if you hold it back.

3. Then, un-weighting the arm by pulling firmly against the joints (like forcing your knee joint the wrong way), jiggle a bit and slide the outboard knob until the outer two joints are free, and fold them in one motion until the pin slides back and clicks. If the end joint completely folds before the long, middle joint is moving, you may have a little difficulty making this fold.

4. Again, un-weighting the arm and jiggling, slide the inboard knob until the whole arm moves and pivot it 90 degrees to the arm’s final position. The arm is now fully collapsed. You may want to tuck in the fabric a little. Do this for all four arms.

5. Tilt light back to its normal position, remove light from stand (two persons) and lay it down on the floor or on the case...front side down.

6. Pull up the black "T" handle. Pivot support mechanism 90 degrees to its final position and let "T" handle fall back into place. Turn light over again.

7. Lifting by its four corners (two persons), lower the light into the case, front side up. The spud assembly goes to the front, the handle to the rear, as you can see by the cutouts in the foam rubber. Finally, coil the cable loosely in the center area between the four angle joints.

1. Turn off bulbs and unplug light. Allow the bulbs to completely cool.

2. Using the Allen wrench (one is stuck into the foam within the case) remove the three larger socket head screws (8-32) from the outer ring of the bulb safety cover (but not the many smaller screws). Note the orientation of the wire-covered safety glass so that you can replace it in the same position when you have completed changing the bulb.

3. Be careful not to drop glass safety cover.

4. Note that when you remove the glass cover, a safety micro-switch will trip. This micro-switch will pass current only when a bulb is fully deployed and covered by its safety glass. When the glass is removed or when a light is pivoted into its compartments, its micro-switch will not pass current. Never defeat this safety mechanism.

5. Very carefully remove bulb from its socket. Install new bulb without touching its glass and carefully re-install glass safety cover, being sure to return it to its former orientation. You will have to push the micro-switch and its flat-spring cover a little to replace the glass safety cover. Be careful not to damage the micro-switch. Re-install the three Allen screws. Check to see that the aluminum flange on the safety glass is actually causing the micro-switch to click into its current-passing position. Finally, plug in and turn on lights. If a lamp won’t light for some reason, turn off its power switch and check its micro-switch to be sure the little actuator arm has “clicked” into its fully depressed position. You can tell in an instant if it is out of adjustment, and if it is, bend the little actuator arm just a hair outward. This should not be necessary unless the arm has been mishandled.

6. Despite all of the long instructions, there are only a few absolutely necessary steps to using the light safely, easily and quickly: Unscrew wing nuts; slide in-board knob first, then outboard knob; tighten wing nuts; tilt unit safely. To wrap: Loosen wing nuts; slide outboard, then inboard knobs. Remember to un-weight and “jiggle.” Have a good shoot and remember, in an emergency call Satellight-X at: (310) 315-1400 or (310) 849-3023 (day or night).

INSTRUCTIONS:     set-up     |     breakdown     |     change bulbs
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