Old "Davis Dimmer" Lighting System

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prfaulk
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Old "Davis Dimmer" Lighting System

Postby prfaulk » Mon Jun 04, 2007 11:45 pm

On the off chance that other IT types might also be involved in sound and lighting issues...

Our Stake Center has a pretty good raised stage in the Cultural Hall - full curtains, several theatrical light bars, and even some theatrical lights suspended in front of the stage. The dimmer unit for the lights is mounted on a wall in the wings; it is labeled "Davis Dimmer, Salt Lake City, UT." I have learned that Ariel Davis invented the "Davis Dimmer." His company was eventually acquired by another company, and after a series of acquisitions it all ended up belonging to Strand Lighting. However, Strand no longer has any information about the old Davis dimmer units.

With a little information I think we could make good use of the equipment. Is anyone familiar with the Davis dimmer? I'm guessing it dates back to the 60's, and assume that it was once "standard equipment" for Church buildings.

russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Tue Jun 05, 2007 3:07 am

If you ignore the over-sized household dimmers, there's only one dimmer in my whole stake. And it was installed in the late 80s (and replaced a system probably installed in the 40s! :eek: )

If your unit really does date from the 60s, I'd guess it has massive levers that control an autotransformer dimmer. I've done some theater stuff, both with the old auto-transformers (isn't community theater wonderful?) to some of the early electronic stuff. As long as it doesn't have a computer control it should be easy to figure out. Post or email a photo, preferably with legible labels.

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:03 pm

Is it the panel with about 12 slide switches that controls the theater lighting on the stage?
- David

prfaulk
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Postby prfaulk » Tue Jun 05, 2007 6:41 pm

It'll take a day or so, but I'll take a picture of the unit and post it. Thanks.

robartsd
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Re: Old "Davis Dimmer" Lighting System

Postby robartsd » Wed May 13, 2015 11:32 am

I know that this is an ancient post (not much activity on this particular board as I found this on the first page). My stake also has a building with some theatrical lighting equipment. We have a EDI dimmer pack with 12 x 20 amp dimmers that patches into the theatrical lighting circuits using a stage pin patch panel. I find controlbooth.com to be a great resource for tech theater.

roblad
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Re: Old "Davis Dimmer" Lighting System

Postby roblad » Tue Oct 25, 2016 3:46 pm

We also have an old 12 channel 20 amp EDI dimmer power pack in our stake center. It has worked perfectly over 30 years. We have done two things to it. We replaced a bad capacitor in the analog control panel. Several years later we built an interface to connect the EDI dimmer's analog control lines up to a DMX interface. For the last 10 years the power pack has been controlled by a DMX control panel.

roblad
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Re: Old "Davis Dimmer" Lighting System

Postby roblad » Tue Oct 25, 2016 3:49 pm

I've use the old Davis Dimmer setup that the church was using back in the 60s as well. These days, I'd remove all of the hardware from the cabinet. This would include the two 6 channel dimmers as well as the quick connect panel. A rack mounted DMX power pack can be put in the cabinet and then the whole setup can be run via a relatively inexpensive DMX control board.


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