ArmyTek
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 74

Thread: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

  1. #1
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Finally got enough batteries and all cables made so I can run the VSS-1 and VSS-3 together. They tangled tonight. Who won?? (Again, my cam allows a max of 1 second exposure so use the pics for a relative comparison because the beams are much brighter and impressive in-person.

    Hey Billness, your cable works!! I'll ship it out next week. Now I gotta make 46 more solder joints for myself!

    Which one is which? Guess before you scroll.


    Shot from underneath the beams looking out.


    Shot from underneath the beams looking back.

    The rest you can tell which one is which. Did you guess right?


    Lights are 7 feet apart, shot centered between them.


    I thought I was running 3 lights for a moment.


    Proof that two beams combined are brighter than one.


    The soldiers before battle.


    Their profile shot.


    Last minute refueling.


    Power connection setup for the -3. Need a cart. The shrink tubing I used, is
    actually cloth, not plastic. It shrinks just like the plastic does but it remains
    the same cloth texture and flexibility when shrunk. Thanks Larry for the
    quick-disconnect welding cable connectors idea. They work great.


    Their backside.
    Last edited by BVH; 06-15-2007 at 01:06 AM.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  2. #2

    Smile Re: Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    WOW!

    Nice shots BVH, if I had known you were going to do this I may have done a night ride to the top of the Verdugo's and got some shots from there.

    Maybe we can coordinate that some time .

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Sway's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    1,663

    Default Re: Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Nice beam shots, I'm sure your neighbors are just as thrilled!

    “Honey I think a tank, make that two of them just parked next door”



    Later
    Kelly
    Lucas Jackson, "Here, Captain"
    Maliciously destroying municipal property while under the influence, What was that?
    "Cutting the heads off parking meters, Captain."

  4. #4
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    That sounds like fun MTbkndad. You can be my police helicopter lookout from up there. I need to get those pilots over to the house to see the lights and talk with me so they are not alarmed or think I am trying to light them up. Let me know when you're gonna be up there next. Surprisingly, there is practically no side-spill. You probably wouldn't know they're on unless you look up. I'm amazed. They are SUPER collimated.

    Did you guys guess which was which? The camera tells the story but in-person, its very difficult to tell the difference by looking at the beams.
    Last edited by BVH; 06-15-2007 at 12:55 AM.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  5. #5

    Smile Re: Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    The next time I am at your house I will see which towers I can see from there and that will tell me where to ride to get to the top of the mountain with the best view.

    I almost called you this week about getting together for some spotlight lightbox readings and lux at 37.5 feet measurements. I think you had more fun with these tank lights .

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  6. #6
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Yes, those 48 soldering operations we sooo much fun! In fact, soo much fun, I'm gonna do it again!
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  7. #7

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    I was just reading some interesting information about the AN/VSS-3. Apparently it was a military helicoptor light. So this was a tank light vs helicoptor light duel .

    If anybody had more info I would love to read it.

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  8. #8
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    That is so coincidental! I was reading the same thing about a couple of hours ago after doing a general WEB search on "VSS-3". But it actually started out on the M60 tank, I believe or maybe another tank. In the mid 60's, they were using something called the Helicopter Illumination System (Lightning Bug-Firefly) which consisted of 7, C-123 landing lights kind of "wired/held" together. Then they went to the VSS-3.
    Last edited by BVH; 06-15-2007 at 01:50 AM.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  9. #9

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Quote Originally Posted by BVH View Post
    That is so coincidental! I was reading the same thing about a couple of hours ago after doing a general WEB search on "VSS-3". But it actually started out on the M60 tank, I believe or maybe another tank. In the mid 60's, they were using something called the Helicopter Illumination System (Lightning Bug-Firefly) which consisted of 7, C-123 landing lights kind of "wired/held" together. Then they went to the VSS-3.
    I think we read the same article. I thought the (Lightning Bug-Firefly) looked really interesting.

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  10. #10
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    10,285

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    LOL! OK, that display of lumen power takes the cake. You need to call National Geographic back and have them do a PROPER show just on those lights. You have to get some longer exposure images...those just don't do it justice.

    To top this, someone is gonna have to buy one of those commercial spotlights. I wonder how that compares to this 110V AC line at this site...or their 220V SC1-4000

  11. #11
    Administrator Norm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    9,134

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    I love the different mounting techniques.
    Norm

  12. #12
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Do I get an "A" in "improvisation" for the VSS-3 mounting system?

    I'll have something much more refined in the not-to-distant future.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  13. #13

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    The pictures do not tell all of the story. Please tell us about it. which one shines farther? which one is brighter? close up and far away. how much brighter, 25% 50%. which one get hotter, runs smoother? tell us what you think.

  14. #14
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    I walked about 300 feet to the side of the beams and to me, both beams ended at the exact same point in the sky. This really surprised me. I thought there would at least be a little difference in the throw. To my eye, I could not see any difference in brightness between the two beams. The VSS -1 beam was a little fatter around than the -3 (I'm refering to after the two VSS-1 beams converge and beyond) The VSS-1 is the right beam in pic one and the left beam in pic 2 so it is definitely the brighter of the two but again, I could not see it. I ran the lights for about 7 minutes total. Touching the outside of the cases, the -3 was just a bit warmer. Both fans stopped when I turned the lights off but the -3's fan came back on about a minute later. The -1's fan did not. It was probably 60 - 65 degrees ambient. The -3's fan is a little quieter than the -1's fan. I'm really amazed at how similar their lighting performance is given 1.2 KW difference in power consumption - 2.2 KW VSS-1 and 1.0 KW VSS-3. It just does not seem right to have similar performance with that huge difference in power consumption. I expected at least a visible difference and actually more. I really like the spread beam of the -3. There's something memorizing about it. I love the -3 for it's performance in a very "small" package but I also like the -1 because it's a MONSTER and looks the part. So I love them both equally. My recommendation??? I'm sticking to the official CPF motto: GET THEM BOTH!
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  15. #15
    Flashaholic* modamag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    2,101

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Bob,

    Luv the setup. Amazing beamshot.
    So the old school is right! VSS-1 rule!

    Twice the power ~= 70% intensity increase ~= 23% brightness increase

  16. #16
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Jonathan, technically correct but not much, if any difference to the eye.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  17. #17
    Flashaholic ShortArc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    443

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Bob,
    Excellent job!!!
    It would be interesting to see the two beams aimed at something a given distance away.
    Willem.

  18. #18

    Smile Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Quote Originally Posted by ShortArc View Post
    Bob,
    Excellent job!!!
    It would be interesting to see the two beams aimed at something a given distance away.
    Willem.
    That could be arranged and would look even better if I was at the top of the mountain shooting the shot toward BVH's house.
    WOW an excuse to go on a night mtb ride and play with lights all at once,
    oh yeah .

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  19. #19
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    There are no local laws that prohibit me from using the lights. Only typical nuisance codes apply. As long as I'm not shining it at someone, a house, a car etc. I'm OK. But the FAA is another thing. That's why I want to get the Police pilots over here to get them on board that I'm responsible and am not going to be lighting them up. I have a pilots license and work for the same company as they do and have someone that knows us both so it's just a matter of getting it done. It is somewhat difficult to shoot straight at a target without lighting up a car or part of a house or something. I'd feel better driving about a half mile to a point low in the hills that will allow me to shoot up to the top of the hills and some relay buildings/towers. I need to get the VSS-1 secured with struts on the trailer before I tow it and I'd like to have my -3 mount. So in the somewhat near future, I hope to do a much better shootout and have a better camera and photographer along, right Mtbkndad?

    I should add that the copter is up from dark until 11:30 or so each and every night and they are always within 1-3 miles of my location. That is why I am focused on this issue so much. Two weeks ago, I had it on and saw them coming my direction at about 3/4 mile. I blacked out the light and they ended up making a B-line for me. Once overhead, they lit up my back yard for about 10 seconds but only as they were turning 90 degrees to fly somewhere else. They didn't even make one circle. I said this before; I think/hope they were trying to tell me that "theirs" is better than mine, so to speak. Someone else was listening on the police frequency and they did not call in the incident. So who knows, maybe I'm concerned about nothing.
    Last edited by BVH; 06-15-2007 at 01:11 PM.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  20. #20

    Smile Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    BVH,

    I got an idea, how about if you contacted your local PD while you are at work and will be calling from another city phone and ask about meeting the helicopter pilots. Your you could go to the PD with your business card and ask to meet them and tell them you would like to show them your equipment.

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

    Added section-
    PS. When you are ready, just let me know and I will be glad to go and shoot the lights and beams. Dinner will be on me for the priveledge of being able to see these things up close. Now I am really regretting not getting in on the tank light purchase . Oh well, funds have been tight this year and MBC is coming up again soon.

    Second added section-
    I still really do want to get a shot of your lights from the top of the mountain looking down at your house.
    I will give you a call about when we could coordinate that. Maybe some time next week.
    I figure I could get to the top of the mountain and then call you. I would have my X1 so I could make my position quite visible. I may be in your area on the weekend and might drive by your house just to see what peaks are line of sight with your location.
    Last edited by mtbkndad; 06-15-2007 at 02:38 PM.

  21. #21
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Mtbkndad, if you're close by over the weekend, stop by to see them up close. We're not doing anything and will be home all weekend. The Burbank pilots are not there right now and might be on duty later on. Will try again.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  22. #22
    *Flashaholic*
    tvodrd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Hawthorne, NV
    Posts
    4,990

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Congrats on being 1st!

    I have a pic of a 'Nam long body Huey with a VSS-3 (not 3A) mounted next to a GE minigun in the door, and there are accounts of their use on line. Sorry for the lack of links. I think they were improvised, as I have never seen any info on helicopter mounts, but have part#'s for the M60 and M448(?) mount kits in the manuals I have.

    (O.T? I made and tried the drill fixture today and it needs changes. )

    Larry
    So much for not being able to find my happy a** with both hands and a flashlight! (Do not look into Tank Searchlight with remaining eye!)

  23. #23

    Smile Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    BVH,

    I google mapped your street and I believe the tower at the top of my favorite night ride will put me nearly line of sight with your house.
    I will call you when I am in the area tomorow.
    It would be great to be able to see those lights in person.

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

  24. #24
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    10,285

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    I wondered about that being an FAA restriction, since on a practical basis it would have the same effect on wiping out a pilots night vision as the laser restrictions.

    Do you think those special event/party/sales promo mega searchlights have to get an FAA variance everytime they use them?

  25. #25

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?


  26. #26
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Thank you Billness. At least I know the letter of the law now.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  27. #27
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
    Posts
    803

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Thank you billhess! I too live close to an airport. I love playing with my HIDs, but I don't want to interfere with the pilots (especially when they're landing!) So whenever I see a plane approaching, I quickly kill the light (which isn't the greatest for my HIDs, since I sometimes have to turn them off before they've fully warmed up.)

    This manual really helps. I sincerely hope I'm not violating any other laws, but at least I now know I'm safe with this one; it requires that you have shined the light with an intent to interfere with aircraft. To the contrary, I'm actively trying to insure that I *don't* interfere!

    - FITP
    Obscenely bright or unbelievably tiny are my weaknesses...

  28. #28
    BVH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    CentCalCoast
    Posts
    5,886

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    I, too, noticed the "intent". But with things the way they are after 911, I'll bet the have somewhat of a blank check when prosecuting people.

    I've always run my HID's for two or three minutes minimum so the salts fully vaporize and the glass gets hot. The instructions that came with the spare lamp I got for my Locator HID, say to always run the lamp for a minimum of 3 minutes. Otherwise, lamp life will be greatly shortened. Now I have something in writing to hang my hat on.
    WWII 60" Anti Aircraft Carbon Arc (Sold), Short Arcs: 1.6KW NightSun, 1KW VSS-3A, .8KW TrakkaBeam, 600 Watt M-134 Gun Light, 500 Watt X-500-14s, 500 Watt Starburst, 300 Watt Locators, Megaray, 150 Watt Set Beam & Communicator, Maxabeam Gen3, LarryK14@52V

  29. #29
    Flashaholic* lotsalumens's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    NYC, USA
    Posts
    418

    Default Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    BVH,

    Excellent comparison, thanks for doing it! I have always been curious about the effects of the different bulb orientation in the in the VSS-1 vs VSS-3a.

    Also that is a really nice rig you built for the VSS-1. I'll be looking forward to seeing what you come up with for your VSS-3!

    Charles
    "It is better to light one multi-kilowatt xenon arc megalight than to curse the darkness."

  30. #30

    Smile Re: AN/VSS's Duel & Tank Lights Tangle, Who Wins?

    Quote Originally Posted by lotsalumens View Post
    BVH,

    Excellent comparison, thanks for doing it! I have always been curious about the effects of the different bulb orientation in the in the VSS-1 vs VSS-3a.

    Also that is a really nice rig you built for the VSS-1. I'll be looking forward to seeing what you come up with for your VSS-3!

    Charles
    I agree, BVH's setup looks even more impressive in person.

    Take Care,
    mtbkndad

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •