Hi, this is Edward C-Stand Hands. Today on The Slanted Lens you’ll learn how to easily use a C-Stand, a great heavy duty stand for lights and so much more. Norms Studio Equipment is my choice of C-Stand. I’ve been using their products since the beginning of my career. Norms C-Stands feature a unique spring loaded feature that helps control the grip head when loosening it. This makes attaching and removing objects hassle-free. Check out each of the stands I highlighted in this lesson. Use “theslantedlens” for 30% off C-Stands at Norms!
40″ C-Stand; Break-down 40″ C-Stand; 40″ Super C-Stand; 20″ C-Stand
Let’s get started and see what we can do.
A C-Stand is probably the most important piece of equipment that you’ll have on set when it comes to stands and grip. You’ll put up your flags, you’ll put up your lights, you’ll use the C-Stand all the time. This is a great stand by Norms. I’ve got stands back there holding the seamless up that are 25 years old. These are fabulous stands. They work forever. My favorite is their standard C-Stand. It has two risers and a head on the top. The legs nest with each other with a little lock on each one. If you unlock the stand then it will naturally want to start to roll. As you roll it, each leg will drop and lock into place. Tighten the knob again and it’s ready to go. Now it’s a regular stand. All the principles we taught in our light stand quick tip apply here. When I set the C-Stand down, I’m going to choose my angle of view on the camera. I’ll set it with the large leg away from the angle of view and the two smaller legs split so that the angle of view passes right past them. That way the legs won’t be in my shot. Now I have the large leg on the back. I’ll put my sandbag on that large leg. Why do we choose the large leg? Because all the weight of the sandbag falls around the leg, and all that weight is right there holding the stand down. If you put it on one of the short legs most of the weight of that sandbag is laying on the ground and it’s not holding the stand down.
The standard stand is a two riser, as I mentioned. The third knob on the very top, loosens and takes off the gobo head, or the grip head. It reveals a baby pin if you want to put lighting equipment straight onto the C-Stand, which we do a lot. It’s very useful that way. Now when we loosen the stand we can raise it up. Always start with the top riser. If I raise it from the bottom up then I can’t reach the top one when it’s time when I need to go higher. But don’t twist this knob ten times to raise and lower the stand. I hate that. Just half a turn is all you need. Otherwise you get it up there, it’s heavy, and you’re trying to twist twist, twist. Just a half a turn, tighten. Half turn, tighten. Half turn, tighten. Very simple to do.
What makes a C-Stand so absolutely valuable? It’s the extension arm. It’s the ability to take this, get it out onto the set, and be able to get a flag out there, get a light out there onto set. To cut some light to work on set. That’s what makes it so valuable. Now there’s an important way to set this up. If you put your weight on the right side so you’re tightening to the right, tight to the right- righty tighty lefty loosey- then you put weight on this and it just, it’s not gonna go anywhere. It’s gonna get tighter and tighter. But if you put your weight on the other side and you tighten it, now I’m going, tightening to the left. And if I put weight on this it will just make it loose. I can’t tighten it strong enough to make it stay in place. So righty tighty lefty loosey. Always tighten towards the weight that’s out on the arm. That’s the rule. If some Neanderthal grip gets hold of this and really wrenches it tight and your weights out there and you’re going, “I can’t get this unloose,” then just put your weight on the end back here and that’s going lefty loosey. And it loosens your stand up, makes it so you can undo it. Drop it right into place. It’s very easy.
Another feature about these stands you really need to understand is called the Rocky Mountain Leg. When you loosen the bottom knob, this leg slides up. What does that do for you? Well if you’re on set and you’ve got to slide this stand in somewhere there’s no room to work, you just simply raise that leg up, lock it down, put a sandbag on it and you’re ready to go. That Rocky Mountain Leg will work on hillsides, a curb. There are so many ways you’ll use that.
Another important thing to understand about C-Stands is an important principle called nesting. You know the legs are different levels. That’s so they can sit in the same footprint. It’s not only a convenient way to store them on set, but it’s a great way to work when you’re on set. If I’ve got my flag here I need to set another flag in next to it, I simply grab a stand and slide it right in there. The two stand will take up almost the same footprint. It makes it very tight on set and easy to work with. It’s a principle called nesting. It’s also a great way to store them.
Let’s talk about the proper way to put our C-Stand away now. Most people try to wrestle the legs back into place, but it’s actually a very simple process. Just take the large leg, turn it away from you, loosen, pull it up, turn, pull the other leg up, turn, and tighten the screw. And it’s ready to go on the truck.
So let’s take a look at some of the other C-Stands that Norms makes.
They have 20-inch C-Stands. In the industry people call these “Gary Colemans.” They’re short C-Stands for when you want to get things down low. They also have breakdown C-Stands. Those have what’s called a turtle base. When I loosen the knob the stand comes out. The advantage is ease of storage, the disadvantage is that you don’t get a Rocky Mountain Leg. But they’re great for storing and packing. Norms also has super C-Stands. These are heavy duty. They’ve got heavier pipes, so heavier risers. They’re made for heavier lights like Kino Flos. They’re basically a beefy C-Stand. If you’re interested in any of these stands go to NormsStudios.Equipment. I have a lot of the basic stands, I love them. We use them all the time. I have short 20-inch stands. We use those frequently as well. I think I even have one turtle stand. I don’t have one of the supers. I need one. Don’t forget to use code “theslantedlens” for 30% off any C-Stands at Norms!
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So there’s a look at C-Stands. How to set them up, how to use them. Keep those cameras rollin’, keep on clickin’.
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