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Flash woes

IanHM is off-line
02 May 2014 07:37
IanHM
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
County Durham
Durham

Hi,

I'm hoping to call upon the vast accumulated experience here for advice to help triage a flash problem.

My workhorse portable flash kit includes a pair of Elinchrom DLite-2 heads; eight years old but by no means thrashed. One of them is failing to "ignite" at lower power settings despite the presence of the audible trigger click.

There is no visible discolouration of the tube or sign of sputtering of the electrodes. Is this more likely to be a failing tube or an electronic fault?

I can replace the tube myself but I have insufficient information to delve into the electronics.

Thanks in advance,
Ian.


Steven Jardine is off-linePlatinum Member
02 May 2014 07:59
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
Location
United Kingdom
Buckinghamshire
Stoke Mandeville

Could you not carefully swap the tubes around, and thus see whether it's a tube issue? (it may simply be a seating issue with the contacts)
When you are dead, you do not know that you are dead. All of your pain is felt by others. The same thing happens when you are stupid.


Frank Sinnott is off-line
02 May 2014 09:52
frankpht
Photographer
frankpht
Location
United Kingdom
London


One of my very old Elinchrom 66s has a similar fault but the tube is decidedly going black. It will work at 3/4s to full power but not any lower. As RedChecker has said if you can swap around the tubes you'll at least eliminate one of the possible faults.


IanHM is off-line
02 May 2014 10:23
IanHM
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
County Durham
Durham

Thanks guys,

many years in the electronics biz taught me that this sometimes leads to two faulty units where you previously had one
but I'll give it a try anyway.

I'll report the results.

Thanks again,
Ian.


Spike is off-line
02 May 2014 11:15
Spike
Photographer
Spike
Location
United Kingdom
Hertfordshire
St Albans

Contact Dennis at EHFFS does elinchrom repairs & considerably better value than the flash centre

http://www.ehffs.co.uk/
"Photoshop is there to cut diamonds, not polish turds"


Bill_M is off-line
02 May 2014 15:17
Bill_M
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
Lanarkshire


It sounds like a gassy tube to me. In the days when I used to design and build my own units this was occasionally a problem.


HowardJ is off-line
02 May 2014 15:25
HowardJ
Photographer
HowardJ
Location
United Kingdom
Surrey
West Midlands

I had a similar problem a few weeks ago when an Elinchrom head wasn't flashing. It turned out to be the tube was about to and then did expire. I replaced the tube and all is now well.

Swap the tubes to confirm this fixes the problem. If it does order a new tube they're about £100.


IanHM is off-line
04 May 2014 09:18
IanHM
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
County Durham
Durham

Thank you again your thoughts and suggestions.

I have just swapped the tubes and found that the fault does not move with the tube.

I have also extracted the electronics from the casing of the faulty unit and examined it for obvious signs of stress, overheating, discolouration etc. but it looks and smells brand new. So, off to the menders. I'm pleased that I checked before splashing out on a new tube.

I've had 8yrs of reliable service from them so I can hardly complain.

Thanks and kind regards to all,
Ian.


Frank Sinnott is off-line
05 May 2014 05:57
frankpht
Photographer
frankpht
Location
United Kingdom
London


Quote from IanHM
Thank you again your thoughts and suggestions. I have just swapped the tubes and found that the fault does not move with the tube. I have also extracted the electronics from the casing of the faulty unit and examined it for obvious signs of stress, overheating, discolouration etc. but it looks and smells brand new. So, off to the menders. I'm pleased that I checked before splashing out on a new tube. I've had 8yrs of reliable service from them so I can hardly complain. Thanks and kind regards to all, Ian.




Sorry to hear it wasn't the tube as that would have been possibly the cheapest option to fix.   Just adding a word of caution to any not knowing what they are doing when tinkering with the inside of any flash unit.   You can get a severe shock whether it's an electric or battery operated flash.

Anyway hope the costs aren't too high or at least not so much as to shock you.



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