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  1. #11
    Telling it like it is! Stewart_Reptiles's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    Agree it is sticky worthy
    Deborah Stewart

  2. #12
    BPnet Veteran Nordinho's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    Thank you for sharing!

    This is a perfect way to replace those expensive light tents

  3. #13
    BPnet Veteran MedusasOwl's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    Thank you so much! I'm a very visual person, so descriptions are all well and good but in the end it's really photos that I need. Thanks, this definitely helps!


    Because Snakes are Beautiful!

    4.1 snakes so far (Gomez, Falkor, Ma-tsu, Neptune, Irwin)
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    In loving memory of Cleo

  4. #14
    BPnet Veteran Jae iLL's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    good post, appreciate it folks.

  5. #15
    Registered User Tim Marek's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    Awesome post! TY for the FB Info!!!

    Tim, Rosie, Flash, and Roses

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  7. #16
    BPnet Veteran littleindiangirl's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW) Revisions

    Ok, so for any of you that have tried to make this light tent, have you found any way that works better for you with attaching the light fixtures?

    The purpose of several different lights is to cut down on shadows, and the muslin is used to diffuse the light to avoid glares. Play around with your set-up, find what you like best with test shots before you bring the animals into it.

    I don't like my original idea of using PVC tubing for the lights, the top light clamps slip too much and I opted for hanging the light instead. The ones on the side work just enough for me to not bother.

    Also, I noted that when possible to make the light tent small enough to fit a 28 qt tub cubed. Easier to handle the animals, and it made the pictures brighter and need less post touch ups.

    There are many different ways of making light boxes (large cardboard boxes wrapped in muslin, one stage with filtered lighting, and sometimes you dont even need them to take excellent shots.

    The key for me is brilliant lighting. I cheat often and use flash for many of my photos. I don't know diddly squat about photography.

    Going off of what AshleyB has posted numerous times, the settings on your camera are very important, so learn your camera and study it well.

    I like her use of natural light, and whenever possible I recommend it. There are just some great shots using sunny light through a window or even outside.

    I'm always hoping others will chime in on this thread and write what works great for them, and maybe a quick summary of how they do it. *coughAshley&Deb&Justincough**

  8. #17
    BPnet Veteran littleindiangirl's Avatar
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    Exclamation How to make a light tent. Revised!

    My sincerest apologies to anyone that took the time and effort to make the last humongous, pain in the butt, light tent. It was big enough to photo a small child with a burm. This is a new version, and improving on the faults from the last tent; most notably the non existent top lamp grip. I have used all of the same PVC tubing from my last model, so no need to spend any more money than you have to.

    There are a few new items to pick up, here's the new list if starting from scratch.

    Shopping list:

    3- ” x 5 ft of PVC pipe (or reuse the old PVC)
    4- ” PVC tees
    4- ” Street Elbows
    1- ” PVC cross piece
    PVC cement
    5 yards of muslin cloth (36" wide)
    Safety pins or clips
    1 (or 3) 11" work shop lamps w/
    3- 100 watt "daylight" fluorescent bulbs

    Carpenters Square
    Sharp saw, Permanent marker, screwdriver and a hole punch.

    Backdrop list:
    3 screws
    white poster board

    Cutting the PVC to size

    Using a saw, cut your PVC tubing to size.
    These are the measurements I am using, but by all means, cater to your size needs. If you want a shorter tent, a taller tent, wider, what ever you’d like. I’m using this size as it fits great on our table in the snake room.

    6x 21” These will be used for the legs, and for 2 sides of the frame.
    2x 12” The front length of the frame
    1x 25” The back length of the frame

    Assembling the front middle lamp grip

    With our two short 12" pieces, we are going to cement the PVC cross piece into the middle to give the lamp something to grip instead of twisting around and falling into the muslin on top.
    You’ll most likely want to cement this to stop the cross from twisting under the weight of the lamp.

    Making the frame legs

    Cement the street elbows to the 4x 21” lengths of PVC for the legs.

    Your going to cement the street elbows to the tees, but the tricky part is making them as perpendicular and as square as possible to keep the legs all sitting straight. This is where a carpenter’s square or some good eye balling comes into play.
    For example:

    Setting the street elbows on a flat hard surface, you’ll have an easier time of putting the tee on square.

    You’ll have to reverse the direction that the tee is facing to make sure you have two opposite facing sides for the frame. If you were to look into the street corner piece itself, you’ll have the tee sticking out to either the left or right. Make sure you get this step right!

    Like so!

    Assembling the frame

    The front length of PVC with the lamp grip
    The 25” PVC tube as the back length of frame
    The 2x 21” as the short sides of the frame

    You’ll want the front lamp grip piece to be angled to hold the lamp up. Mine is angled roughly at 45 degrees.


    Now like before, I didn’t measure my 5 yards of muslin. I wrap, clip it on and cut!

    That’s really it! I do have one optional idea I didn’t write out, but here it is in picture format.

    Optional backdrop holder

    Fancy backdrop holder! I used paperboard, but it will work with cloth as well.


    I hope this was easy to understand, and takes care of some space issues from the last design. You can still use 3 lamps, although I lost 2 somewhere in a move. The one lamp on top seems to work pretty good anyways.

    And now for some neat pictures just taken this evening in the new light tent. (On white poster board, make sure you set the white balance!)

    Nothing like seeing a nice ghost showing her true colors!

    Thanks for looking! (And always feel free to ask me or give me any suggestions!)

    Last edited by littleindiangirl; 06-02-2008 at 12:05 AM.

  9. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to littleindiangirl For This Useful Post:

    2kdime (04-22-2009),casper (08-29-2009),Jyson (04-22-2009),Louis Kirkland (12-20-2008),spitzu (01-03-2011),Xtina (11-27-2013)

  10. #18
    Registered User Johnny Hive X's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    I'm huge into photography and photographing my snake appeals to me also. Not only will I use this to build for snake photo-shoots, but for anything else. This would work great for someone selling anything like on eBay!

    Great tutorial!

  11. #19
    BPnet Veteran Chris Rossi's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)


  12. #20
    BPnet Veteran fattielumpkin's Avatar
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    Re: How to make a light tent (DUW)

    thank you for this. I just built and shot.
    0.1 Gopher Snake
    0.1 Bull Snake
    0.1 Bearded Dragon
    0.0.1 Crested Gecko


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