Tag Archives: light modifier

How to tilt the Westcott Apollo Softbox downward when using a lightstand

This post will show you how to tilt the Westcott Apollo Softbox downward when using a lightstand.

The Westcott Apollo Softbox is an awesome light modifier, it can be quickly set up and attached to a strobe/flash when using an umbrella mount, and can be taken down in seconds because of its umbrella-like design. However, there is one drawback to this type of mount considering the softbox’s orientation when used with a remote flash and typical lightstand combination…it cannot be aimed downward unless you choke the flash as far up as it can go on the umbrella-mount post and really close to the rear of the softbox.

I searched the strobist flikr discussions and other associated forums for a cheap solution, but didnt find a good DIY write-up…hence this post.

Westcott downward tilt

The Westcott Apollo light modifier tilted down after using the simple setup

So if you want to allow the westcott apollo softbox to be used with a light stand and STILL be able to tilt it downward without any funky choking up on the post, and have the softbox be used the way it was meant to be, then continue reading!

I. Parts Needed (3 total, all less than $10…no need for a hollywood arm or anything like that.)
LOWES (I got everything at Lowes since its just 5 minutes from my house):
– PN#136135 SS Wing Nuts 1/4-20 (QTY 2) – $1.21
– PN#64767 Mending Plate 8″ – $1.88 (this mending plate is very solid and will not bend or flex…HINT: if you want to increase the downard tilt even more, get a longer mending plate.) You can also get the longer 12″ version here if you don’t want to drive to lowes.

-5/8″ Spigot stud Adapter with 1/4″ & 3/8″ Male screw – $5.40 (the seller has since dropped the price to $4.90) For those of you who don’t want to wait for it to ship from china, you can get it here.

Heres what the spigot stud adapter looks like. The ebay seller is also noted.

II. Assembly
To assemble, just stick one end of the lightstand in the hole at one end of the mending plate, then put the spigot adapter in the hole at the opposite end and secure both with wingnuts. EASY as pie!

Other end of the mending plate secured to the lightstand with a wingnut

What it looks like fully assembled.

III. Misc.
Here are more pictures of the softbox with hardware installed and working together.

Dont need to choke up on the post to tilt it down now.

Heres a shot taken a bit farther back. You can see how the hardware allows the flash to be mounted farther forward which in turn allows the softbox to tilt downward.

The hardware mod still allows the Apollo Modifier to tilt upwards.

 The Hardware really holds together solidly and is very easy to set up. Im very happy with it, just be sure to use sandbags on the lightstand since the center of gravity is now slightly off!

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