In our Product Review section I've written about the Lightning Trigger, an extremely light-sensitive camera tripping device that was designed, as its name implies, to photograph lightning. Most excitedly, the Trigger is designed to be used in daylight for most lightning shots must be done at night with the camera on bulb so that the shutter is open at the instant lightning strikes. In daylight, of course, that would be impossible because a shutter can't be open for a prolonged period -- although you might get a couple of seconds late in the day if you piled on multiple neutral density filters. But, I wonder how sharp the resulting image would be.
Here's another great use for the Lightning Trigger.
It can be used as a camera firing remote trigger similar in ways to a radio slave. I was trying to photograph a very elusive kingfisher and had a camera aimed on a perch I hoped the bird would perch upon. Unfortunately, the bird never landed on the perch when the camera was set up. In fact, the bird ALWAYS perched on the camera whenever it was in place!
Cameras can be tripped multiple ways, including hard-wiring and using an electronic release. But if your camera is 80 or so yards away, that's not practical. Quantum and other companies make radio slaves that will fire one or more cameras, and I do have an older Quantum Radio Slave that accomplishes the same thing. However, if you don't have a radio slave and do have a LIGHTNING TRIGGER, or you were thinking about getting a Lightning Trigger but didn't know how much use you'd get out of it, well, here's another use.
Here's how it works as a remote camera tripping device. Set up your camera, attach the Lightning Trigger, and aim the sensor-end of the LT in the direction that you will be. To trip the camera, aim a flash unit at the sensor. I used a Visual Echoes tele-flash to concentrate my flash's beam and had no problem, in bright sunlight, tripping my camera from at least 60 yards away. That's pretty far -- ask yourself, how often are you going to be 100 yards away from your camera to trip it? How would you see your subject at that distance? Perhaps the LT would fire the camera at 70 or more yards -- I didn't try because I didn't need to. But the system works, and it gives the Lightning Trigger a whole new application!