Cold spark and dry ice machine

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rickryan.com

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Just be careful with a white ceiling .. it might blacken a bit over time from the chemicals.
Yeah, I thought about that. On the little remote they have 3 heights and the middle one seems to be best for my ceiling. Where I had that setup is a bit shorter but in front of the head table is about 12 feet, which should be perfect. One thing, and this may sound silly, but this thing is spitting fire out, although it's really very little. If you stick your hand over the top of it you can occasionally feel a hot spark. I'm probably going to end up installing some kind of fireproof sheeting over the top of the fountain area.
 

djtaso

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Yeah, I thought about that. On the little remote they have 3 heights and the middle one seems to be best for my ceiling. Where I had that setup is a bit shorter but in front of the head table is about 12 feet, which should be perfect. One thing, and this may sound silly, but this thing is spitting fire out, although it's really very little. If you stick your hand over the top of it you can occasionally feel a hot spark. I'm probably going to end up installing some kind of fireproof sheeting over the top of the fountain area.
That's the difference with the knockoff versions... that would never fly w/ the high end brands.
 
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rickryan.com

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Test #2. Got power run over behind the table and connected all four units, then fired them off with the remote. I'm very pleased with the remote. Very easy to use and at 40 feet it fires off all units at the same time. Taso, how far away from the head table do you put your units? I'm about 18 inches here and it put a bunch of dust on the table. It does make for an impressive display however.

 
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djtaso

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Test #2. Got power run over behind the table and connected all four units, then fired them off with the remote. I'm very pleased with the remote. Very easy to use and at 40 feet it fires off all units at the same time. Taso, how far away from the head table do you put your units? I'm about 18 inches here and it put a bunch of dust on the table. It does make for an impressive display however.

I never set them by the head table... always by dj booth, for that reason with all the dust (even if you put em 3ft away you'll get dust if you're shooting that high. Now I once in a blue moon set them up in front of a head table for a staged photo during cocktail hour, but move em back to the dj side for the reception. Your dj booth is in the corner at your venue, so I don't really have a solution.
 
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anzyxx

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If you want them in 4 different corners I suggest battery. White paint is avaliable.
I never set them by the head table... always by dj booth, for that reason with all the dust (even if you put em 3ft away you'll get dust if you're shooting that high. Now I once in a blue moon set them up in front of a head table for a staged photo during cocktail hour, but move em back to the dj side for the reception. Your dj booth is in the corner at your venue, so I don't really have a solution.
You can get batteries if you want them in 4 corners

 

rickryan.com

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How is that loud shop-vac like sound going to go over during the first dance?
We shall see. I think I'll leave the units where they are during dinner, then just before the 1st dance, pull them farther out and into a slight "U". May take a few times to get it down. I have a school dance tomorrow night (125 kids) and think I may go get some dry ice and try both out. On the fog machine, I'm thinking to just take the basket out, crush the ice into a pitcher and just dump it and slam the lid closed. Again, a bit of practice is likely needed.
 

djtaso

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Those battery units are not supported by the company that I’m working with, and are even more unreliable from my understanding. Maybe that will change with time, but have a hard time seeing how a unit that typically draws A constant 400watts will last long on battery.

As far as the shop vacuum sound, with music at typical event volumes, the sound is not heard.
 

Proformance

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What is this supposed to add to (or distract from) the first dance?

I'm thinking of my own daughters upcoming wedding and how much none of us would want this kind of intrusion on the moment or the memories of it. It seems cheesy to upstage what already BY ITSELF matters more than contrived fanfare.

I'd expect this at a Bar or Bat mitzvah, Quinceanera, Prom, etc. but not a wedding. I think even if it's included in a package you may hear "No thank you" most often for adult formal events.
 

djtaso

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What is this supposed to add to (or distract from) the first dance?

I'm thinking of my own daughters upcoming wedding and how much none of us would want this kind of intrusion on the moment or the memories of it. It seems cheesy to upstage what already BY ITSELF matters more than contrived fanfare.

I'd expect this at a Bar or Bat mitzvah, Quinceanera, Prom, etc. but not a wedding. I think even if it's included in a package you may hear "No thank you" most often for adult formal events.
Guess it really depends on your clientele and what they seek. In 2019 (my first year of offering this), I brought in about $15k in revenue for this effect... from weddings. 2021 is even more already, with nearly half of my weddings having added 2 or 4 units to their package. I suppose it is because couples are looking for moments like the one in the beginning 10 seconds and also the last 20 seconds of the video below (a future couple of mine was in attendance and called the monday after to add 4 sparklers to their wedding bc they loved how "special" it made the first dance):


or to have photos like this... but again to each their own. Not everything is right for everyone.

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rickryan.com

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Bob, while I'm just now adding this effect, I can already see a huge amount of interest in it. Even without having video to show, just describing the effect gets lots of wide eyes and big smiles. Just yesterday evening I was speaking with a MOB who told me they were deciding between mine and another venue. I sent over the test video of the 4 units and her reaction was fantastic and I give it a good shot at winning the event for me. It's not cheesy, it's giving these girls the ultimate First Dance picture (if their photographer does their job) that every girl wants hanging on her wall. Poo poo it if you want but I think Taso has nailed it and I'm out to copy his success.
 

Proformance

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There's always going to be a "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" .. crowd that jumps at every opportunity to showcase conspicuous spending. In business I've found them to be far less reliable than truly upscale buyers and even modest buyers who's motivations are rooted in hospitality rather than vanity.

Don't get me wrong - I have a warehouse full of whimsical shit like this I can access, but I just don't use much of it anymore at truly upscale events. I've been there and done that and all those pictures and videos look really tacky and cheesy compared to what I experience at work now. I also FEEL much better doing the work and feel far more appreciated by my customers than I ever did when working with people who put so much weight on over-the-top whimsy.

... and I give it a good shot at winning the event for me.
You're probably good at what you do and yet, you seem to be admitting that in the end it's the sparklers that get the credit. The #1 complaint of DJs is that customer's don't value or appreciate them. I think it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy when we emphasize effects and retail goods over our talents. We can do very well financially as DJs, but we'll never get truly rich in this field save for our emotional health - IF we pay attention to it.
 

rickryan.com

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You're probably good at what you do and yet, you seem to be admitting that in the end it's the sparklers that get the credit.
No. I fight to compete, just like everyone else here does and if/when I can find something that differentiates me from the next guy/venue, then I'm willing to recognize that fact. This spark/fog thing will likely not be a long term thing but for now, it seems to be giving me some traction. It's much like uplighting several years ago or photobooths (more recently).
 

Proformance

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Just keep in mind the RECIPE... the reason why that stuff gets used at all.

It's stage presence - a way to compensate for the difference in physical presence of a band versus a DJ. The dance risers, facades, light trusses, emcees, and dancers, etc. - they are all there to fill the void that would exist when it's just us and a pair of turntables, or worse - a PC. It is there to enhance us - not hide us.

Like a recipe for great apple pie - adding more sugar doesn't help and in fact might ruin the desert. Find the optimal SET for your venue and then STOP when the pie is just right. All of this can be copied and imitated by anyone at anytime - the only unique thing about it is YOU. Don't bury yourself in the glam.
 

steve149

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You can NEVER have too much pie ...
 
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djtaso

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To be fair, there is something true to be said about djs pushing things to make more money, and in the end people don’t actually see much value in it. I NEVER talk about options with my clients, unless they ask for it. If an option is not brought up, it is never mentioned. I don’t sell... I just send them pricing, photos, and videos. They do the silent selling for me, and they decide themselves if they want it or not... not me mentioning it or pushing it... and that’s why I think my clients do find value in it.
 
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rickryan.com

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I'm not going to do the dry ice at tomorrow's wedding. Need to work on this some more. I used the sparklers for a school event last night. High school homecoming pep rally. Brought in the football team then fired off the sparklers behind them. The response was huuuuuggee. ;)
 
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rickryan.com

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I have some pics and vids to post later but wanted to give a quick report. Last night's wedding was off the chain and boys, those spark units are THE bomb. I didn't do the fog but fired off the sparks, just as the song went into the chorus and the crowd (125) gasped. I'd also coached the B&G and told him to dip her, just after the spark machines went off. If the photographer missed the shot of the year it wasn't my fault.
 
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djtaso

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I have some pics and vids to post later but wanted to give a quick report. Last night's wedding was off the chain and boys, those spark units are THE bomb. I didn't do the fog but fired off the sparks, just as the song went into the chorus and the crowd (125) gasped. I'd also coached the B&G and told him to dip her, just after the spark machines went off. If the photographer missed the shot of the year it wasn't my fault.
That’s exactly what I do, but along w the chorus I also do it one last time at the very end of the first dance to give photogs one extra chsnce
 

Proformance

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I don't think the photographer's priorities align with those of the DJ. We can't say a photographer missed a shot because we are not the arbiters of the shot list they are employed to assemble. More often I hear references to getting a great shot in spite of the DJ's fanfare. What we do for show is not always consistent with what other people want or need to do. They are much like the photos taken of place settings or tablescapes - wanted in the proof book but, not a money maker on prints or enlargements.

For example, each of the photos Taso shared do a good job of advertising his setup and effects, but they would be very poor wedding photos because even in the closest of shots or enlargements - you don't see their faces. They are unlikely to go any further than the proof book because people would probably not pay to have them reproduced or included in an album.

If they are shard on Facebook that's great for the DJ - not so much for the photographer.
 
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