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Special effects ideas

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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:01 am

Special effects ideas

For the Scouts Jamboree in Maryborough Qld, coming up in a months time, I need to buid a campfire for a swagman scene. Unfortunately, no real fires are allowed on site, so that rules that out. The scene will be viewed from approx 20 metres away, across the billabong we have onsite. The fire needs to "burn" for about 2 weeks, day and night, but will only be going from about 6am to 11pm each day.

So far, I have thought of using a set of white twinkling LED christmas lights, left bunched up as a ball, wrapped in red and yellow cellophane as the fire itself. Some strips of cellophane, blown upwards by a small computer fan, to imitate the flames. Now I want some smoke.

I own a fogging machine, however, they are really only good for intermittant use, and need continual refilling of fogging fluid. They also let out a huge amount of fog, too much for the effect I want. I am considering one or 2 of those water feature misters, with the LEDs blacked out, to create the smoke. Refilling the water container they would be in on a daily basis would not be a drama.

Budget isnt really an issue, however costs in the thousands would not be considered. Anyone got any ideas? I have looked on the net, and most ideas seem to be the misters, dry ice, burning incence sticks also gets a mention, but would require continual attention, so they are out.
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longlux

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:15 am

Re: Special effects ideas

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chimpboy

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:38 am

Re: Special effects ideas

I've actually seen something suitable for sale, I think in one of those two dollar shop type joints.

It used a fan to blow some slightly rubbery material from underneath so that it flickered like flames, and also had a light built in so it glowed. It was not a complete illusion but it was enough to make you look twice.

It was something like this: http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/FLAME-LAMP-B ... 519c23f5c8

Sorry that doesn't help with the smoke though. I've seen things in gift shops that make a reasonable amount of steam, I think they are designed to go in hippies' houses, next to statues of dragons and shit.
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DarkHorse Vitara

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:07 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Silk or other light fabric will work better than celophane for flames - to get a decent look from 20m away you'll need some decent sized strips, so might need a 10" thermo or even a household fan set on low speed rather than a computer fan. Light source can be pretty much anything, MR16 'birdies' are good and pretty cheap.

Smoke is tricky - dry ice will disperse downwards instead of upwards, so won't look right, and is also bright white. Could you build a diffusion box for the smoke machine, make it the size of the fireplace and actually sit the 'fire' on top. Drill a couple of hundred 3mm or so pinholes in the top board, and seal an intake around the nozzle of the smoke machine. Run the machine on intermittent bursting as low and slow as it'll go (you can tweak it up if you need more effect) and leave it to it. Depending on the machine you'd hopefully just have to top it up at the start of the day when you turn everything on.
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r0ck_m0nkey

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:48 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Pretty much what Darkhorse was saying

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyHAdaA6zFo

From 20m would turn out looking pretty good.

Won't help with the smoke though, but maybe water mist might be the way, with the fan blowing the mist into the air. Do you have 240v in the area for a normal fan? If not, set up a generator with a smoky exhaust, run a pipe of the genny exhaust and into the fire.
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udlman

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:04 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

What, going on a scout jamboree and no campfires. What are they teaching the kids these days, how to cook from maccas?

The best thing about the jamborees, well the ones that I went to in the 90's was to see which group/camp could make the biggest fire each night.
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mkpatrol

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:14 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

longlux wrote:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbfazY399U0




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toaddog

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:22 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

udlman wrote:What, going on a scout jamboree and no campfires. What are they teaching the kids these days, how to cook from maccas?

The best thing about the jamborees, well the ones that I went to in the 90's was to see which group/camp could make the biggest fire each night.


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Frankeh

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:20 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Kids these days, just put an Iphone or tablet with the video of a fire playing, you'll get lol points from the kids for knowing the things they like.
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alien

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:45 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

toaddog wrote:
udlman wrote:What, going on a scout jamboree and no campfires. What are they teaching the kids these days, how to cook from maccas?

The best thing about the jamborees, well the ones that I went to in the 90's was to see which group/camp could make the biggest fire each night.


This. That is all.


a third that... i suppose theyre doing it in the fire-ban season though so that's the reason...

if that's the case though, why not think of some other "eternal flame" concept that replaces the flame though??? a dry ice bucket would be perfect - just keep topping it up as needed (like you'd top up a fire with wood) - the fog over the ground would look fantastic on a still night too (although a few kids may suffocate if its too close to camp) haha.
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BlueSuzy

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:43 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

A scout camp with no fire is girl guides.

I went to the Springfield QLD one as i was a scout.


My bet is insurance and sue happy parents with kids in bubble wrap. What a joke. :agrue:
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longlux

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Post Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:36 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Should be teaching them how to make fire with a bow drill or a fire steel.
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DarkHorse Vitara

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Post Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:51 am

Re: Special effects ideas

alien wrote:... a dry ice bucket would be perfect - just keep topping it up as needed (like you'd top up a fire with wood) - the fog over the ground would look fantastic on a still night too (although a few kids may suffocate if its too close to camp) haha.


Dry Ice is a cool effect, and great for atmosphere, but will never look like real smoke. As I said, it's bright white, and flows downward because it's colder than the surrounding air, instead of rising like real smoke.
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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:32 am

Re: Special effects ideas

Thanks for all the replys, I like the silk instead of the cellophane. Will look into it. Looks like we might go for 4 misters, and a fan to blow the mist upwards. Yes, both 12 and 240V will be available at the site of the swaggies scene.

Yep, its a shame about the no fires, but not my call. All cooking to be done on gas.

This project is one of the last I am working on for the jamboree. I have spent the last 8 months or so working on various props and things for the sub camp. Most of the time has been spent making multiple bird mobiles to hang around the campsites. Billabong is the sub camp name, and the billabong is a 19m x 19m horse water jump. Green is the theme colour, and a Crocodile is the mascot.

Sulphur crested cockatoo
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A line up of Kookaburras
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A matching pair of crocs for the gateway
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alien

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Post Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:09 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

DarkHorse Vitara wrote:
alien wrote:... a dry ice bucket would be perfect - just keep topping it up as needed (like you'd top up a fire with wood) - the fog over the ground would look fantastic on a still night too (although a few kids may suffocate if its too close to camp) haha.


Dry Ice is a cool effect, and great for atmosphere, but will never look like real smoke. As I said, it's bright white, and flows downward because it's colder than the surrounding air, instead of rising like real smoke.


my idea was if theres no fire but the thought is to have something perpetual for the event, then make something different like a bucket of dry ice with blue lights in it etc - so for the length of the event there's fog on the ground rather than a flame and smoke in the air... that's all... plus, with dry ice comes dry ice bombs - and theyre great fun! =) hahaha

BundyRumandCoke - those cutouts look awesome man!! Soooo much effort!!! Well done!
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Chucky

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Post Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:33 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Nothing to add to this thread, other than as a kid I went to the '88 jamboree in Adelaide.

Still got the belt buckel for it somewhere.
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-Scott-

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Post Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:46 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Chucky wrote:Nothing to add to this thread, other than as a kid I went to the '88 jamboree in Adelaide.

Still got the belt buckel for it somewhere.


I was there too - sort of...

Worked on a canoeing activity on Kataraptko Creek that was run by my Rover crew.

We had a ball. :armsup:
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dudley

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Post Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:13 am

Re: Special effects ideas

I was at the Adelaide Jamboree too - Great Mates '88! Did mountain bike riding as the off site activity.

As for the smoke thing, I got nothing. Sorry.
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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:55 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Well, I am pretty much done. I am impressed by some of the linked videos, especially the elevated fake fire from the US. Almost tempted to buy one, except it might not arrive in time.

I have tried out the lights, white christmas LEDs, but they are too blue, so they turn purple when viewed through red cellophane. I have bought what is called Liner material, think of the silky material that lines some jackets. I have bought it in red, yellow and orange. I have grabbed 4 12v fans out of an old computer. I will use 3 to blow up through a perforated sheet of ply, to flutter the liner material, and will look for some red and yellow 12V 10 or 20w halogen to light up the material. Smoke will come from 4 water misters, drawn by the 4th fan, up through some tubing in front of the fake fire. Hopefully it will work.
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MrsForby

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Post Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:35 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

I don't know about anyone else, but I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product.
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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:42 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Well, first and second goes at the fire were a dud, not even worth taking pics of. But one thing I have found, the 12v computer fans work much better straight off a 12v car battery, rather than a 12v output garden light transformer, which is what I was wanting to run this off. Its 150 watt capacity, so should run the 7 x 20 watt lights and 3 fans easily.

Tomorrow, I will try another idea, funneling the fans upward through a large coffee can, with the lights below the fans, and the fabric above them. The combination of 2 yellow, one red, and one blue light work well.

So till then, some shots of some of the work I have been doing over the last few months.

First fire attempt, 3 large holes for fans, 4 small ones for lights.

Image

Second attempt,

Image

Sub camp letterbox, made out of ply, mesh, and 4kg of plasterboard filler.

Image

With home made hatband made out of 3 lengths of natural fibre rope

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Almost finished Kookaburra wings.

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And more birds, yet to be assembled.

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Then next up, a Crocodile - No Swimming sign.

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Chucky

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Post Thu Dec 06, 2012 5:05 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

-Scott- wrote:
Chucky wrote:Nothing to add to this thread, other than as a kid I went to the '88 jamboree in Adelaide.

Still got the belt buckel for it somewhere.


I was there too - sort of...

Worked on a canoeing activity on Kataraptko Creek that was run by my Rover crew.

We had a ball. :armsup:



I did a canoeing activity while there as well.
Was windy as all hell in the arvo/evening and bloody cold at night.
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It runs on recycled Dinosaurs.
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Chucky

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Post Thu Dec 06, 2012 5:05 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

-Scott- wrote:
Chucky wrote:Nothing to add to this thread, other than as a kid I went to the '88 jamboree in Adelaide.

Still got the belt buckel for it somewhere.


I was there too - sort of...

Worked on a canoeing activity on Kataraptko Creek that was run by my Rover crew.

We had a ball. :armsup:



I did a canoeing activity while there as well.
Was windy as all hell in the arvo/evening and bloody cold at night.
My Cruiser is Environmentally Friendly.

It runs on recycled Dinosaurs.
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MrsForby

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Post Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:22 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

Found out today my Nephew is heading up.

He's about excited as a 13 year old can be. :lol:
WICKED wrote:I flogged mine for a good hour this arvo!


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VooDoo

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Post Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:22 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

I have 15 of my Scouts heading up plus some rovers.

Awesome work on the props bundy, We have been working hard on a range of things for the camp too. The "after Jambo" party the rovers have organized is going to be interesting.....
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stilivn

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Post Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:46 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

BBQ fuel in a basket, technically its a BBQ so can't get fined or told to put it out.
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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Wed Dec 26, 2012 7:56 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

On site at the Jamboree as of this arvo. Pissed down rain today, for the first time in a few months :roll: :roll: :roll:

Some immediate emergency drainage works to be done tomorrow.

I will post some pics once its all set up.
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V8Patrol

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Post Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:18 am

Re: Special effects ideas

BundyRumandCoke wrote:.... Anyone got any ideas? .....


did one for my sisters drama group many years ago that had to 'burn" for 2 hours but it worked for about 4 without attention
:armsup:

small 12volt 10" thermo fan with a voltage controler
(cant remember what car it was from but I have 2 'spares' left here if you need a pic etc... steel framed housing holds the motor and blades)
(voltage controller is used to get a desired speed for the fan)

4 down lights with a voltage controller with colored glass 'filters' that covered the down lights
(allowed the fire to be turned down gradually, a log added by the actors and the fire would increase gradually again)

used prodominately red / orange / white silk scarfs as the flame effect
(printed scarfs with black and other "firey" colors work well)

logs...... used a combination of exhaust pipe sizes, some with slight bends, and rio bar also with bends
(the rio bar was welded into a frame that "held" the "logs" but allowed the logs to be moved as the fire was stoked without falling out)

coals.....really simple...... red scoria gravel :finger:

the 'box' it sat on was ~400mm high and ~1200mm diameter
(had a green/brown carpet laid over it so it appeared to be on a slight mound)



smoke...... the easy one :finger:
at the rear of the fire I used a household LPG cylinder cut down so I had only the bottom ~300mm remaining (still have it here :shock: ) stage hands simply placed burning incense in the 'bowl' and a hand full of dry horse shit ...... instant smoke
Now the trick bit.....
place the smoke bowl so the thermo fan draws ~30% of the smoke (trial and error here), some smoke needs to rise naturally and a small part needs to be accelerated from the heat of the fire.
;)
the incense sticks were added by actors as part of their role, some "stoked the fire" and others placed small sticks into it, those doing the small sticks were actually adding fresh incense to the bowl



The play was an open air play and done late evening...... prime mozzy time
the strange thing is no-one was bitten the entire show due largely to the incense / poop combination smoke
:rofl:





these would work really well......
http://www.surfmountain.com/Models.aspx ... pQodRS8AOQ

Image

Mosquito Smoke Coils

:armsup:
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BundyRumandCoke

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Post Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:19 pm

Re: Special effects ideas

V8, you have pretty much nailed what I have built for the fire, except I am using a 30cm 240v fan facing upwards. No fire in the rain, like right now how its pissing down. If we get no smoke, ahh well.
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V8Patrol

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Post Sat Dec 29, 2012 6:58 am

Re: Special effects ideas

BundyRumandCoke wrote:....... I am using a 30cm 240v fan ..........



I tried a 16" DavisCraig initally but it was way too big..... need a 'breeze' not a tornado

:shock:
And your cry-baby, whinyassed opinion would be.....?
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