Portable Sports Field Lighting

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Joined: 06/09/2013 - 12:18
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Portable Sports Field Lighting

I’m looking for portable lights to light up an ultimate frisbee field (90 yards long x 40 yards wide) at night. My friends and I play at local public fields. And I’m looking for a way for us to play later into the night. At the moment, this is just a fun little project.

I figure I will probably need 4-6 light stands. Each light stand will probably need to be 10-12 feet high to avoid looking directly into it when running around on the field. I’d like to keep the cost to less than $100 per stand, although I’m flexible. I’d like the run time to be 1-2 hours. Here are a couple of approaches that I think might work.

1. Buy a bright, floody flashlight, like a BLF Q8. And then buy a tall tripod to hold it. For tripod options, there are the following: Ravelli ALS – 10 foot tall light stand for $30 Ravelli ABSL – Two 13 foot tall stands for $100 Make a homemade stand out of PVC pipe or tent poles MegaMast – 28 foot tall tripod for $700 (not really an option, but interesting anyway)

2. Buy an off-the-shelf light stand like a Milwaukee light stand.

There is no AC power at the field. And I don’t own a generator. So any suggestions that include AC powered lights would need to include a suggestion on a small, inexpensive generator.

I think I’d highly prefer the flashlight route. That way it can be dual purpose: awesome flashlight and light stand. I also like that the batteries are standard and can be replaced. So they can be dual purpose as well. It also gives us the option to bring tons of spares if we want to extend our playing time.

Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks in advance!


sac02's picture
Last seen: 1 week 6 days ago
Joined: 09/26/2016 - 15:18
Posts: 735
Location: TX

My first question would be, do you really want to do flashlights, or do you want the best way to light the field? The flashlight route is nice because you wind up owning a bunch of cool flashlights, but if you want to light the field for the least amount of $ possible, there may be better options.

If you like DIY, I might do something like this:

Goodwill or other thrift stores are good sources for 12V SLA batteries from uninteruptable power supplies. Combine those with a few large COBs (make sure to get 12V varieties) and you will have lots of Lumens/$, and they will run all night. (although you will need to throw in a heatsink or current limiting resistor so you don’t fry the COBs).

These are less than $10 each, the ratings say 12V 4A (48W) and >100lm/W, so that would be a claimed ~5000lumens each. I have some of the smaller COBs from this store that I bought for a different project and they were fairly accurate with their lumen claims.

Last seen: 7 hours 25 min ago
Joined: 01/27/2016 - 16:42
Posts: 280
Location: Europe

Have you seen this Fishing Lamp Car Rod Light ?
Maybe not the nicest tint but a new idea how to install one of sac02’s COBs.

Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 06/09/2013 - 12:18
Posts: 22
Location: USA

Thanks for the suggestions. I ordered the Ravelli ABSL 13’ stands. They are really tall. I attached a CPF Italia Cometa to each to test it out. They were pretty good and lit up nearly a 30 yard space between the two lights. I just ordered a couple of different COB flood lights from Amazon to try (e.g. Link) . I’ll try to get pictures when I try them out.

djozz's picture
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 09/07/2012 - 17:04
Posts: 13855
Location: Amsterdam

The Q8 certainly will not be floody enough for your application, so I agree on the COB light solution. Perhaps there is a way to get wide beam flood light that spills less light upwards.

If it is going to be flashlights after all, what would be floody enough is the Olight X9 Marauder, which then again is too expensive.

Last seen: 11 months 1 week ago
Joined: 12/18/2016 - 21:16
Posts: 6
Location: US

Your choice is quite reasonable, but what did you mean by portable? You need a LED flood light that is compatible to external battery?

And how long would you intend to use in the frisbee field?