Big wiggle lights!

  Executive summary: I'm looking to sell my four Martin 918 scanners, for a very reasonable price.  They need a good home where they will live out their remaining days being far more active than they presently are with me.  Possibly well-suited for a long-term installation, rather than gigging, but they do come with nice robust individual roadcases.

[Images are linked to larger copies.]
Four Martin Roboscan 918 scanners with roadcases This is the stock.  Click to view the bigger picture.  What's included is roughly outlined in yellow dots, as there's some irrelevant stuff in the picture behind the units.  Since there's no clear scale except perhaps the front of the dryer behind everything, the lights themselves are 31 inches long, and the roadcases' long dimension is 39 inches. 

Each case also includes a custom-built wooden brace that prevents the unit from rolling inside, which I made out of necessity.  Also included are Mega-clamps, safeties, heavy-duty IEC power cords, and a couple of helpful bibs and bobs for particular orientations of setup.

The units weigh about 80 pounds apiece, and as much as 140 pounds all packed up -- they're heavy primarily because of all the iron and copper in the big lump of power ballast on the backside.  They are also just really solidly built; this is not your knockoff AMDJ gear.  The roadcases are seriously heavy-duty, with reinforcing plywood top and bottom.  The yoke mounting point can slide to anywhere along the *entire length* of the unit and lock down, giving a lot of mounting versatility.

  A bit of history

  Back in the early oughties I was diving more enthusiastically into the field of lighting, mostly as a hobby to assist local conventions and gigs.  In the process of bringing our collective capabilities to a new level, I invested in four largish "wiggle lights", aka moving-mirror intelligent fixtures called Roboscan 918s.  These were sort of the big brother to the 518 which I was also familiar with, but the 918 had far more output and capability.

I loved using them, and even though they weren't out on gigs every week I think I got a good amount of bang for the buck out of them.  And nothing can match a mirror scanner for *speed*, which was exactly what I wanted for club-style dancefloors.  They most commonly ran at the Arisia conventions, for which I was the main lighting designer for a decade, and for a short time they helped enhance the shows by Pink Voyd, a talented Floyd tribute band that included some of my close friends.  But while they performed very well when they got the chance, they spent a lot of time just sitting in various storage in between.  And now that life has moved on and various needs have changed, they face even less prospect of coming out to shine going forward.

Here are a few links that reference them being used and worked on...

I'm sure that various documentary media emerged from some of the Pink Voyd shows too, but I'd have no idea where to find it.

Martin 918 running, 'alien flower' gobo Here's one running, with the "alien flower" gobo or whatever that's called selected.  It's a very 3-dimensional looking glass gobo, and possibly one of the more unique features of the stock set for these units.

The discharge lamps are MSD575 or MSR575, at 575 watts; the whole unit draws up to 800 watts while actively running.  Output at the mirror is on the order of 8000-9000 lumens open white, in a 17 degree or so beam.  A huge variety of effects can be obtained by playing focus-plane games between the two gobo wheels, color wheels, and the iris.  In the most sensible usage mode they occupy 16 DMX slots, with 16-bit pan and tilt.  DMX in and out is 3-pin XLR.


  Full disclosure

  These are located in the Boston metro area.  I can deliver to a radius of about 100 miles around that, which would require two trips without vehicle rentals.

There are a few minor downsides, other than the simple fact of units like this having simply fallen out of favor.  This whole page is sort of a follow-on to a post I made on the "Stagecraft" mailing list a few months before, in fact.  It was effectively a "for sale" message, but nobody piped up.  I fully understand declining interest in anything that isn't new shiny LED these days, but these units still work just fine and would likely continue to do so for a long time if given the chance.  That said...

They're heavy.

The foam in the cases is old, and is starting to go just a little gummy in spots.  Not quite bad enough to really need replacement yet, but at some point...

I don't have an exact list of present lamp hours, but would handwave and say they're around a third through their expected life on average.  The counters for hours and strikes did get properly reset at the 2015 relamping.

The fans are a little noisy, but do return to a much lower idling speed when the lamps are doused and the units cool down.  Not what you'd call "studio" units...

Did I mention that they're heavy?  The rear-side placement of the big ballast actually allows for some interesting setup configurations, like the forward lean shown here.  That's actually a nicely balanced position.

One or two of the yoke slide locking bolts is missing one of the four plastic wingnut arms, which doesn't decrease usability at all.  But the fact that they had been broken off under previous ownership is what prompted me to make the shipping braces.

They *must not* sit flat on their butt ends, even temporarily, because that would actually bend in the lamp mounting plate.  Plus it would block the hot air outlet.

Everything is arted up with my logo, which would likely need to be removed or painted over.  Or leave it on as a historical curiosity; I wouldn't care either way.  There are also quite a few bits of Arisia logistics stickers still on them.


Oh, right, you've been yelling "so how much??" this whole time.  This is rough to balance ... given that they were well north of $2k each [with the cases] back then, used, I'd think that around $400 per is a pennies-on-the-dollar level that doesn't hurt too much.  If viewed as 200 for a fully functional unit and 200 for a high-quality case that could easily serve as a professional-grade gear coffin on its own, that seems quite reasonable.  Discuss!

_H*   191029