the flash was a simple setup – – – which was also a pain in the ass to make quickly.
using an extra long hot shoe extension i used a ttl (through the lens metering) flash which was crudely hacked to work off mains (i was surprised that the internet offered little solution to this other than buying n expensive studio flash – – ) i just soldered onto the battery terminals and used a mains adapter to give it the 6v or whatever it wanted … the only issue was startup and auto shutdown … solved thusly :):
i basically just drilled a hole in the back of the enclosure (an old outdoor light housing) and stuck a plastic rod in there as a pushrod extension to the on button … so you just had to remember to press (and hold for a second or two) the button any time you fully reset the power .. theres a bunch of other ways that could have been done – but this was quick and easy.
i have found a VERY versatile little relay/timer module available on amazon (other retailers are available 🙂 which can operate in several modes .. they are cheap and easy to setup .. which i like
usually i use them for debouncing input signals as they will take a signal (a positive voltage) and then latch open for a set amount of time – so if you have something like a break beam or radar sensor and you are getting too many ‘bounces’ from the signal line this just allows you to iron those out by treating one or more inputs as just one for a set amount of time – hope that makes sense 🙂
anyway .. one of the other ‘modes’ is just a simple countdown loop timer .. so i just worked out that the flash would auto-off after 6 minutes .. so i put the relay timer inline and had it fire the flash every 5 minutes … so it never got to ‘go to sleep’ . it was a bit of a pain as the flash would just randomly fire .. but at the time i was trying to sort this problem out i had about 2 days before i was due to get married – – so frankly i lived with it .. and i dont think anybody even noticed – – they just assumed somebody somewhere was taking a picture 🙂