Saturday, 12 February 2011

Fibre optic sync cord from audio cable

Fibre optic sync cords are a great option for underwater strobes but they are expensive and delicate. A 0.5m coiled sync cord costs around A$70. Digital audio cable, which is basically the same thing, costs maybe A$2.00 a meter.

Here's how I adapted a 10m toslink audio cable ($20 on ebay) to work with my Inon strobes. I'm intending to use the long sync cord to setup some remote strobe lighting in sites like wrecks, under ledges and behind pier piles.

First to make the slave strobe end I cut through one of the Toslink plugs leaving a lip which would sit inside an Inon sensor cover.

I carefully shaped the lip diameter and depth to hold the cable in the sensor cover and allow the sensor cover to be screwed over the sensor.

To make sure the cable didn't pull out of the lip I used plumber's PVC pipe glue.

That seemed to work very well but I also used heat shrink tube and cable ties to secure it even more.

The sensor cover can still rotate freely.

Finally to fit the master strobe end of the sync cord.
I cut the plug off leaving a raw end and made a PVC bracket to hold it in front of the master strobe.

The bracket fits around the sensor and the PVC material is thin enough, about 1mm, to allow the sensor cover to screw down securely, holding the bracket in place.

Here's the whole setup, now all I need is some decent vis!

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