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Old November 28th, 2005, 01:06 AM   #1
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Dan's follow focus & Lens gears.

Well, I have rigged up my mini 35 with the DD special Follow Focus and lensgear - and I gotta say

THEY ROCK!

The biggest problem with still lenses [after breathing] is their short focal range - they shift across focus *really* quickly - making it hard to pull focus.

Dan's gears - a wonder of simple engineering - increase the diamater of the lens to the gear surface - making a much greater diameter for adjustng critical focus.

And his follow focus - it's great! Direct drive - zero backlash and illuminated dials so you can mark focus at night. Awesome! I am amazed at the quality and cleverness of these items. If you're looking to gear SLR lenses for use with an adapter - DO IT [Dan's way]
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Old November 28th, 2005, 07:25 AM   #2
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Shut up! I can't afford it right now. :)

I was wondering about the "gear ratio". Good to hear.

Can you still focus the lens by twisting the barrel or will this cause havoc with the FF gears? Perhaps Dan should answer this before you try and cause a problem.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 08:20 AM   #3
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Thank you John for your fb and pics. (I'll have them up on my site soon under testimonials). I can't say it any better than someone who's using them with an SLR lens on the Mini35. Marcus, I am not sure I understand your question..??
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Old November 28th, 2005, 08:53 AM   #4
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If, for some crazy reason, someone wanted to focus the lens with it's own barrel while the FF is installed, will it be safe for the FF gears? I'm guessing it would be fine, but I might be worried that it would run the gears too fast.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 09:26 AM   #5
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With the gear installed on the lens or no? Either way, the FF is not glued on the rods nor lens. You can simply twist it away 3mm (or more?..) from the lens (2 seconds job). ? Does this make sense? Even if you were to leave them engaged, the speed of the gears is subject to the same forces and the same torque in reverse and can not cause any damage. Usually, I like to think I have a wild imagination, but you just proved me wrong this morning. Thank you! (dam... how did I miss "that")? (;-)<

PS. Just did a quick test. Funny to see the FF knob turning without being touched. It actually works easier than the “normal” way. (speed ratio is reversed!)
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Old November 28th, 2005, 09:29 AM   #6
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With the gear installed on the lens or no? Either way, the FF is not glued on the rods nor lens. You can simply twist it away 3mm (or more?..) from the lens (2 seconds job). ? Does this make sense? Even if you were to leave them engaged, the speed of the gears is subject to the same forces and the same torque in reverse and can not cause any damage. Usually, I like to think I have a wild imagination, but you just proved me wrong this morning. Thank you! (dam... how did I miss "that")? (;-)<

PS. Just did a quick test. Funny to see the FF knob turning without being touched. It actually works easier than the “normal” way, (speed ratio is reversed!) but then... why mount the FF and gears? (just to see them spinning while engaged?) (hmmm.... I think I missing something again, dam...(;-)<
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Old November 28th, 2005, 04:49 PM   #7
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The follow focus as Dan says can twist away in seconds - it is without doube the easiest lightweigh FF out there - and I have looked at a few. More versatile then the Arri FF1 - which is the closest - at about the price of the JBK mini FF - which is a complete piece of c**p and not worth even a quarter of the price. [like all belt driven units - but with 100 x the backlash - you can do 1/8th of a turn before it bites. What relationship does that have to critical fucus? - none!]

Dan's unit is *really* cleverly thought out - LED backlighting/marker points/lens lighting for dark focus jobs - adjustable ANYWHERE on 15mm rods...

As for the gears - pure simplicity - and yes - you can use them to focus without a FF attached - but seriously - Dan's FF is really the bomb. The guys at a local rental house were really impressed - it flips backwards, sideways, underslings - whatever. The teeth are wide enough to use with the play on an SLR lens [which move forward and backward a little during focus].

Anyway - from an independent Australian perticipant - I give a double thumbs up [can't do a triple - too many hands]

-j

Last edited by John Colette; November 29th, 2005 at 01:05 AM.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 05:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Colette
fucus?

With that much backlash, yes, it sounds like it.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 05:21 PM   #9
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So it's really that great that you can give two thumbs up ánd follow-focus?
Well I must say, after seeing this footage, I knew it had to be as good as John describes.
Only, I'd like to call it the DD FF.
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Old November 28th, 2005, 08:41 PM   #10
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I'd say it's beautiful. It's the poetry of perfect mechanics. It's the follow focus' Id in it's most positive way.
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Old November 29th, 2005, 01:29 AM   #11
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Beauty in Motion! - . .. swoon . . ..

Grazie
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Old November 29th, 2005, 02:30 AM   #12
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Hey Dan, does your FF work with the Letus35? Will I need anything extra (i.e., cavision rod support)?

I'm looking to use this on the FX1 and the vx2100.

Thanks!
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Old November 29th, 2005, 04:42 AM   #13
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Thank you all, I am glad you like it.
Just got back from a short two days shoot, tested two more units before shipping them out. I'll post some pics and clips. A.J, if you can put a gear on your lens, the FF should work regardless the contraption holding the lens (Mini35, Micro35, Macro35, G35, Letus, and what-knot. Cavision rods support will help, but you need a Letus support like this:
http://dandiaconu.com/gallery/album30/IMGA1986
Bed time for me.
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Old November 29th, 2005, 10:43 AM   #14
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Hey Dan, I hope the one of the two units you are shipping out is mine.
Can't wait to get my hands on it!!!
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