Home › Forums › Imagination Forum – Theme Park Attraction Design & Imagineering › Smoke machines…
I note that there are ‘stage’ products that can be use, but not all of these are suited to ‘attraction’ use where the auidence may be merely feet away..
Some foggers are water based. The only thing you need to worry about is the maintenance and the fact that everything near it is going to have alge growing! But other, more powerful theatrical foggers are also available. You can check http://www.rosco.com or any theatrical equipment rental company for recommendations.
You can also try hazers. These produce a more lingering fog that can fill up a space rather than the water-based fog machines that Nate mentioned, just all depends on what effect you need. There are also water misting systems that create a more humid environment perhaps for a swamp scene… Or just do it like Disney and use fireworks, they will create enough smoke to enhance any lighting effect 😀
Dry ice puts off a nice smoke/fog effect, albeit a very dense one.
It’s really a matter of what you want to achieve. Not all theater is proscenium-style, so often people in shows get as much fog as people on a ride would.
The differences in fog depend on what you want it to do. Huge systems which use inert gas to cool the fog are the ones which create that lovely low-level fog. It quickly dissipates as it heats up though. Vehicles can travel through it and it makes nearly no contact with guests. Also, it pretty palletable if it does.
The hazers and chemical fogs tend to be the problem. They actually create a “smoke” of sorts. Those are the ones that smell and tend to bother people.
I personally believe if you need “haze” for light porjection then you’re better off with scrim, high powered beams, and other solid forms of interference then the hazers. They’re hard to control and they bother people the most. The water based ones that use the gas to cool are the best route. You can create a smoke wall with them if needed.
Also, be aware that dust works as well as haze to show light beams. Old dusty theaters have the best lighting effects 🙂 Brand new hepa-filtered air will not show beams.
on the subject of creating a projection surface from fog etc. While at IAAPA i came across the company that manufactures the fog screens used to project images and video onto…They claimed to have manufactured the same one used on POTC for the Davy Jones gag, it looked very similar. Looking at the unit, it was about 6 feet wide with a thin slot running the length of it (this is where the fog is exhausted)…and there were 2 banks of fans running the length of this slot aimed downward and slightly angled towards the slot so that it directs the fog straight down. I dont know exactly how this works, but the best i can figure is that it uses some type of ultrasonic vibration to turn the water into vapor, kinda like those ones you buy around halloween as a decoration…but it definitely uses water because they had a hose connected to it for a continuous supply of water. But then that vapor is forced out the bottom to create the screen. Very clever idea, and also very expensive. Just thought id throw that out there.