ASCOR Sunlight Strobes
Matt: I worked extensively with the ASCOR (American Speedlight Corp) system at a fashion and advertising studio in NYC in the mid to late 60's.
Originally Posted by Matt6886
We had both the standard charger and the rapid charger. I recall that when we installed the rapid charger it required a dedicated 50 AMP circuit.
The typical system would consist of a charger, the Sunlight Head which was a very heavy duty socket for the single sunlight flashtube (3 inches in diameter and about 18 inches long. The only light modifier that I recall was an 8" diameter concave mirror which could be mounted on the flashtube housing. There was no modeling light. Power was regulated in modular increments by adding or subtracting capacitor boxes. Each 800 Watt-second box was about 8 inches square by about 24 inches long. These were oil-filled capacitors that as you pointed out weighed at least 50 lbs each. Each system had a 16 x 24" steel dolly that could support about 8 boxes. You regulated power by literally plugging or unplugging jumpers (Cables 18" long by perhaps 1 1/4 " in diameter)
It was possible to connect up to 48 boxes in series -38,400 Watt seconds.
I have never seen that done. Now I can't tell you how bright a single 800 WS flash was but it was far more powerful than any modern equivalent.
Now the ASCOR's claim to fame was Quality of light AND by using One or two boxes the flash duration was VERY short . So these things were in high demand in studios that did "pour shots" & "Splash shots" because they could stop any motion. They were useful for fashion and dance as well.
We had 8 boxes -4800 WS and the only times we had to resort to multi-pops would have been Tabletop, 8 x10 Deardorf f/32 or f/45 long bellows extension. The most I ever recall was 8 pops.
I hope this helps.