x-Spot Lens tool?

Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
edited April 2006 in HES Automated Lighting
Hey guys,

So what ever happened to develping a tool to open the lens tube the x-Spot.:confused:

I've got a bunch 0f 2:1 Xtremes that have all kinds of residue (from F-100 HQ fog) on the inside of the supposedly sealed lens tube.:rolleyes:

I've got some lovely lens/dichroic cleaning fluid from Rosco and really nice micro-fiber lens wipes on standby just waiting to make things clear again!:sad2:


  • Woodj32177Woodj32177 Registered User
    edited March 2006
    In my experience,
    Taking apart a xspot lens tube is just asking for trouble.

    I had one that was damaged and took it apart for fun, and there are alot of tiny bearings, grease, and little pieces and parts that are pretty easy to misplace, or put back in the wrong orientation, plus the edges of some of the lenses are very thin and fragile.
    Of course, I took apart a 4:1 lens, so there was more glass, but I wouldn't attempt it on a lens I needed, especially since a replacement is more than 1000$
    That being said, I had good luck opening the lens by tapping the front ring out with a screwdriver and a small hammer just tapping the ring around gently..
    the rear lens just unscrews fromthe body, but thats where all the bearings will fall out if you are not extremely careful.
    all the center lenses are the ones that move forward and back, they are held in place by 3 or 4 screws in the races that move them forward and backwards, you would have to peel off the plastic that seals the lens to remove them.
    As I said, if you have a lens you don't need or is damaged, I would try it on one of those first, just so you see what you are getting yourself into.
    Good luck,
    Joshua Wood
    Service Manager
    Ruehling Associates Inc.
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited March 2006
    Yeah, I know its a real pain, :blackeye: but the good folks down in Austin had mentioned that they might be developing a tool to open the front of the lens tube...rather than have your screwdriver slip and skid across the front of the lens:aargh4:

    Any word from Austin?
  • joe_hallerjoe_haller Registered User, HES Staff
    edited March 2006
    Hey Guy's
    This is a project that is in the works. I will see if I can get a timeframe on it for you.
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited March 2006
    Much appreciated Joe.

  • Woodj32177Woodj32177 Registered User
    edited March 2006
    What did you do to your xspots dave,
    Why do you need lens "parts"?
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited March 2006
    Just to clarify...I haven't actually tried to open the lens tube yet...I just see the potential for tool slippage causing catastrophic damage to the lens.
    It would be nice to be able to just buy a piece of the lens tube assy in case something does go wrong.;)
  • Woodj32177Woodj32177 Registered User
    edited March 2006
    I know dave,
    I was just razzing you. :poke:
    No problem, I have needed a front lens on occaision as well..
    People not being careful storing clamps... scratched lens.. Ouch!
  • JurgenmonsterJurgenmonster Registered User
    edited March 2006
    The easiest way we have found the internal faces is as follows.

    4:1 Lens - Remove only the lamp end of the lens. Carefully remove two of the small screws and plastic bearings from the first internal lens. It should now be possible to turn the lens and remove from the barrel. I recommend using a silver pen and marking front and lamp direction on lens.. Now remove two screws from the second lens. Again turn lens and remove from the bottom. You can now get to all faces of the lens assembly. Rebuilding is reversal of above.

    2:1 Lens - Remove the lamp end of the lens. Most are only hand tight. Now securely grip two flat blade screwdrivers in a vice. Invert the lens and place the retaining ring cutouts over the screwdrivers. You can now gentle remove the ring by turn ing the barrel. This is alot safer and easier than tapping away with a single screwdriver and a hammer

    We have been using this method on our stock of x-spots ( 100 + ) for the last couple of years after the build-up of smoke oil and dirt. Our X-Spots are as opticaly perfect as when we got then.

    Hope this help


    p.s. a tool would be useful though................
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited March 2006
    Thanks Jurgen.:)

    That sounds much more reasonable, only it still involves taking the lens barrel/tube out of the fixture....a time intensive proceedure to be sure.:rolleyes:

    I agree , one of the great things about all the HES fixtures is that it really does not take a whole lot of effort to make them "good-as-new" performace-wise.

    Unfortunately, the same can not be said for many other popular products from other manufacturers:(

    Personally I feel that high-ticket items like moving lights should not have to be considered disposable/expendable items! If it is truely good...it will and should last a very long time!

    Thanks HES for keeping quality gear available to us!:beerchug:
  • JurgenmonsterJurgenmonster Registered User
    edited March 2006
    Hi Marty,

    Our prep for an X-spot is a fairly easy job, compared to other manufacturers...no names. Remove covers, remove single gobo + iris module. Clean base of zoom barrel. Clean top of zoom barrel. Blow out fixture with compressed air. Wipe oil from the gobo's. Replace module and cover. Check state of lamp. Power up and address as per job. Time spent per fixture is about 10mins. The barrel strip down ,if required, can be done in about 5mins, including removing it from the fixture.

    We normally work with about 12/14 fixtures at a time and can have then running in a couple of hours after a full clean up.

    This time scale is pretty low compared to some of our other stock, which can be half a day cleaning them before running the same amount.

    Oh, and we NEVER use any chemical cleaning product as, 1 - they all leave some kind of film on the lenses, and 2 - Soapy water ( general detergant and warm water ) and dried with kitchen/toilet roll works brilliantly and costs peanuts....
    One other thing we do is wrap a peice of pvc tape around the barrel and put the date on it.... you will find ( subject to use ) they will only need cleaning at most twice a year.... extremely worth it.

    Good Luck

  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited April 2006
    Thanks Jurgen.

    Yeah, I've cleaned the fixtures out in this manner several times myself.

    I use the ROSCO Lens & Dichroic cleaner on all the glass elements with microfiber lens cloths....this works better than anything else I've ever used before in servicing lights with the ammount of crud that gets sucked through these things.

    The venue that these fixtures live in is a very dirty nightclub, and I've found that 3-mos is the maximum I can go before cleaning them out, but yes that process is very quick!

    The time intensive issue here is with the actual removal of the lens barrel so that the front can be "unscrewed" in the manner described and to clean the inner surfaces.

    A tool that would allow us to simply take off the clam-shell covers..clamp onto the front of the lens tube and unscrew the front would be a hugely time saving tool!:)
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