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3-Strip at the Dome - and 70mm too!

The 70mm Newsletter
Written and photographed by:  Tom March, Canada. Date: 18.09.2009
More in 70mm reading:

The current state of Cinerama presentation in the U.S.

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"Can I use this lens as a door stop?" The Cinerama Barn
I was invited up to the projection booth for the Cinerama pre-screening setup and spent most of my time there during the 3-panel shows. I met up with Dave Strohmaier just outside the Dome about 3 hours before the scheduled start time to begin aligning the projectors. For the Cinerama screenings, the Baker projector was wheeled into position after the digital projector was wheeled to the side. The film paths were meticulously cleaned and any remaining dust was blown out with compressed air.  
John Sittig getting an alignment loop from storage.
Dave running a test loop on Able.  
Dave told me that some problem will usually crop up because that is just the nature of the Cinerama process. Sure enough, a problem with the gigolo alignment was encountered on Able projector.  
John Sittig making gigolo adjustments  
Spare gigolos  
Everyone got involved to work through it. Another problem with coolant leakage was found and temporarily corrected with a work-around until some new rubber hose could be installed in the coolant path later that day. Kitchen-type fan (centre) used for temporary cooling.
Tom March on Able. Unlike what you might expect, Dave will put his visitors to work during maintenance and film screenings. From helping with the gigolo repairs and cleaning the film path to making fine projector adjustments during the actual exhibition , Dave saw to it that I had a rare first hand experience working behind the scenes.
Cinerama audience getting seated. The first show started on time and early into it everyone had completed fine adjustments to optimally align the three panels. During the break between screenings, there was more cleaning and final repairs to the cooling system were completed. Then there was still more cleaning of the film path. When the dirt buildup is significant, the preferred cleaning solvent is saliva (spit).
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Updated 21-01-24