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Graflex Flash 250 350 500

 
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Curtindale



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2007 3:20 pm    Post subject: Graflex Flash 250 350 500 Reply with quote

Can someone provide information regarding possible compatibility of the 250 and 350 flash heads with the 500 RG or AC power base?

The cords for all three (250, 350 and 500) heads will plug into the 500 base but will it work or cause damage to the 250 and 350 flash heads?

I note that the 500 flash head has a switch for PC sync or slave built in and the 250 and 350 do not.

I note the 500 and 350 use the same power cord but the 250 cord is unique in connecting to the head while all three have the same connector to plug into the base.

I am guessing the 250 and 350 may work with the 500 base but may need to operate at 1/4 or 1/2 power (really don't know)?? I will not try mix the equipment until some provides info. Thanks
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tsgrimm



Joined: 04 Apr 2004
Posts: 158
Location: SE Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 6:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Read the post from Al at trans micro and ask him for more help.

http://graflex.org/helpboard/viewtopic.php?t=4082

http://www.stroboflash.com/
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Stroboflash-Al



Joined: 05 Dec 2005
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Answer to your email question to me follows the copy of your email:

"If you know answers to my questions, I would appreciate any help. THANKS

I have acquired the following:

(5) graflex 500 top power units
(3) graflex 500 a/c power base
(3) graflex 500 RG power base (I have assembled new batteries for these -
I used 5000mAh batteries and have subsequently read that I should have
used 1600mah is there a problem in using the 5000mAh)
(7) graflex flash heads
(2) graflex 350 flash heads
(2) graflex 250 flash heads

The graflex 500 units all seem to be fully functional at all settings. I
read about reconforming the capacitors and have had the units power on at
all settings for several hours.

The questions is can I plug the 350 and 250 and strobe heads into the the
500 power units (or will this cause damage)?"

ANSWER IS HERE:

First let me say I am not an expert on these units. I own a 500RG and a couple of heads. That said I can tell you that using 5000mAH batteries is a good thing and will not cause problems. The higher the mAH on the batteries the more flashes you get. It will also take much longer to come to full charge. I use a modern solid state microprocessor controlled charger (batteryspace.com) to charge the batteries and not the built in one. The built in one has no regulation and no cutoff at full charge. You did use NiMh batteries didn't you??

The 250 and 350 heads may use a smaller flashtube -- but probably don't since there would be little cost savings to do so. Unless you are going to use these guys everyday don't worry about it. Flash away with your heads. Heck, if you burn one up they are dirt cheap on ebay -- buy another! If you are really anal about it just run the 500 pack at 1/2 power and they will probably flash after you are long gone.

Stroboflash Al
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Curtindale



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 2:05 pm    Post subject: Graflex Flash 250 350 500 (compatibility)? Reply with quote

Al, thanks for info.

I used NiCd batteries.

Can you expain the didderence of using NiMn vs NiCd?

I am having a ball with all these units as a studio set up with KM 7d and Sony R1.

Again, Thanks
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Curtindale



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I found the answer about NiMh vs NiCd (I will use NiMh next time):

Today, more and more high drain devices are in the home that consume battery power quickly. Consumers will greatly benefit from the value proposition delivered by NiMH. Not only do they deliver more power, lasting longer in high drain devices, but they also can be charged up to 1000 times.

• PERFORMANCE: NiMH batteries will greatly out-perform standard NiCd batteries in high-drain applications.

• VOLTAGE: The power produced by the battery. Both NiMH and NiCd have virtually the same voltage.

• CAPACITY: The amount of energy stored by the battery. NiMH has more than twice the capacity of standard NiCd. This results in much longer runs times (hours, # of pictures).

• MEMORY EFFECT: NiMH batteries can be charged or “topped-off” at any time without affecting battery life. In order to achieve optimum performance from NiCd batteries, they must be fully discharged before recharging. Unlike NiCd batteries, NiMH has No Memory Effect.
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3231
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NiMh batteries will not be properly charged with a NiCd charger. NiCd batteries will be properly charged with a NiMh charger.
NiCd memory problems were overcome, continuing stroies of memory problems are either wives tales or batteries at the end of their life. NiCd are good for 600~800 charge cycles depending on usage and charger. (based on batteries used in power tools for the last 20 years from manifacturer technical information)

The part number for the Strobe 250 and Strobe 500 reflector and lamp assembly are the same.

The Strobe 250 and Strobe 350 heads may not work well on the fractional power settings, test for consistency before critical use.

A Strobe 500 on either the Strobe 350 or Strobe 250 power pak might overload the power pak or the Strobe 350 on a Strobe 250 power pak might overload the Strobe 250 power pak as the higher watt second head may require more current to operate and the higher watt second head will not fire as many times on the smaller power pak if there is no over current problem to contend with. In other words, Higher power head on lower power pak = no; lower power head on a higher capicaty power pak = yes.
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Stroboflash-Al



Joined: 05 Dec 2005
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry but I disagree with you regarding the 500 heads on a smaller power pack. A head is simply a flash tube and a trigger circuit. A flash tube firing CANNOT overload a power pack! The capacitors will simply discharge whatever current they happen to have stored and then the arc will quench. There is no way to "overload" a 250 pack with a 500 head. If you know how the half power settings work on a 500 pack -- it simply reduces the number of capacitors that discharge in to the head. 1/2 power is simply the equivalent capacitance of a 250 pack. Look at the schematic if you don't believe me.

The only problem you can have is to use a head with a flash tube that is rated much lower then the power output of the pack. Like don't use a 1000 watt second power pack on a 200 ws tube -- unless you are like me and like to see globs of fused quartz!

Stroboflash Al
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Curtindale



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Al, I did purchase a set of NiMh batteries for a third 500 RG base. I also purchased a smart charger that is certified to charge both the NiCd and NiMh ( http://www.batteryspace.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=3005 ).

I have another question about my 250 head:
- My 500 and 350 heads simply attach from the bottom to a 1/2" stud.
- My 250 flash head has a large handle attached to the bottom of the flash (not removable). The handle contains a large capacitor. The power cord has the same plug on the end to attach to a source.

I attached my 250 head to the 500 power base. The power base was turned off and discharged by flashing. When attaching the 250 there was a slight click (maybe arc) when the plug was inserted. When powered on the 250 ready light would not blink (I waited 20 seconds and then turned off for fear of damaging the power base). Maybe the 250 head is defective.

I have tested and the 350 flash head seems to work fine with the 500 power base on all settings (full, 1/2 and 1/4).

I have also determined that one of my six 500 power heads has a problem as follows:
- The 500 power unit works fine at Full and 1/2 power but has a problem with 1/4 power.
- When initially powered on to 1/4, I hear clicking (maybe defective capacitor) and the flash head ready light starts blinking (so far so good I think - after being on for several minutes the clicking stops). After firing the flash the ready light will not come back on (no more clicking). If I power off the unit and then power on again, the ready light will start blinking (but same as before will not charge up after the initial firing with out powering off and on again).

Can anybody identify what is wrong with the 500 power base and is there a place I can have it repaired? I am usually pretty handy in repairing things myself but I have a lot of respect for those large capacitors (don't want to do more damage or worst yet send myself to never never land - I have burned too many tips off of screw drivers).
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Stroboflash-Al



Joined: 05 Dec 2005
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The capacitor in the handle just adds more capacitance for more power. The click is probably internal arcing of the capacitor. The caps are full of aluminum foil and liquid. They eventually break down and arc. That is what kills these old soldiers. Just replace the caps with modern snap in electrolytics. Get em on ebay. Look for 450v rating. uf capacitance should be close but exact is not important. Make a discharge tool by cutting a ohm meter test lead in half and soldering in a 25 watt , 500- 1000 ohm power resistor. Tape off the connections with several layers of Scotch 33 electrical tape. Use the tool to short the caps SLOWLY. You will feel the resistor get hot if the caps are fully charged. Check the voltage with a meter set on 700-1000v. Volts should fall to 0-12v to be safe to handle. Check ALL the caps before sticing your fingers in there. Nothing like a 400v zap from a fully charged cap to jump start your heart. Try working with one hand only so if you do get zapped it won't kill you!

I can fix these things but I charge $75 per hour plus parts and that is probably more than you are willing to pay or more than they are worth.

Oh yeah -- never plug a flash head with internal cap in it to a fully charged pack. The pop you heard was the arc at the plug itself. The fully charged pack tried to charge the empty cap in the handle and it drew a bunch of power.

Finally -- trigger issues are usually resolved by replacing the little trigger cap in the head. They are the first to go bad. Use a 400v orange drop type from places like tubesandmore.com or the big electronic houses - Mouser, digikey, mcminone.com

Stroboflash Al
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45PSS



Joined: 28 Sep 2001
Posts: 3231
Location: Mid Peninsula, Ca.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 5:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote







These are downsized jpeg of 48mb tiffs. contact via PM for the full size.

Stroboflash-Al,
I was playing it safe when I stated not to use the 500 on a 250 pak. Hate to give anyone wrong info that damages persons or equipement.
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