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Old October 9th, 2010, 03:47 PM   #1
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Hague Mini Table Dolly

Did a quick search and I could not find anything on here. Just wondering if anyone has actually used the B. Hague MTD (Mini Table Dolly) and had any comments about it - good or bad?

It would be for a Canon 7D. Link to the product below:

http://www.cameragrip.co.uk/acatalog...ble_dolly.html
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Old October 13th, 2010, 11:44 AM   #2
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Update

I bought one today at the ProVideo 2010 event in Coventry (especially since they had a very good, "special show offer" price on their stand, 70 including the adjustable Ball Head attachment). I've got plans for it in adding some movement to some close up product demo shots I'm doing for one of my corporate clients.

When I get time I'll post some clips of this thing in action and a little mini review.
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Old October 15th, 2010, 06:25 AM   #3
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Nice one Andy! I'm ordering one at this moment.
It's good that you can fit a pan/tilt head to it as well...
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Old October 15th, 2010, 09:55 AM   #4
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Hi Robin,

Yep, was a good price and it's typical of the Hague gear - simple, well designed and over engineered - it'll supposedly support up to 18Kg in weight, and is easily modified/added too if needed! Perfect!

We have a full size Hague Dolly and a Hague K12 Jib but those things don't go out so often simply because I have to carry and set everything up myself 99% of the time.

Have n't had time to test the MTD fully yet as I'm busy with editing etc. but it rolls pretty smooth with just one slight caveat - there are a few injection moulding marks on the wheels (which look exactly like the wheels from my kids skates) which I'll need to spend a bit of time carefully smoothing with a file. It'll be a 5 minute job so no worries. Actually, I was going to make a table dolly myself but this thing was too good a price to ignore and saves me a ton of time.

Main thing is to make sure you don't leave the camera mounted on it - unattended - for fear of the thing rolling off the table!!!!

From my quick play with it so far it'll be perfect for spicing up some commercial product shots for some multi-lingual demo web videos I'm going to be working on soon.
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Old October 19th, 2010, 03:32 AM   #5
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The table-top dolly arrived this morning and at first sight it seems to be very well constructed - as one expects from Hague; they really are excellent as well as being of very good value.
I was kind of considering putting together an alloy angle rail system to allow me to run the wheels where there isn't a smooth surface anavailable, such as on the floor of a forest. Rails would be lighter to carry rather than a plank I thought...
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Old October 19th, 2010, 04:21 AM   #6
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What I was wondering about doing was using two 'L' section or 'U' section aluminium rails, fixed near each end by flat ali cross struts that would allow the assembly to fold together (i.e. the rails then being side by side for easier transporting) but simply and quickly opened out to the correct track width, maybe then with just a quick turn of a wingnut to tighten and off you go with the Hague MTD on top. No cross strut in the middle or you'll get the bump as it goes over the pivot - so the ali rails need to be reasonably sturdy. Been meaning to try this for ages but (happily) I've got so much work coming in these things keep getting put to one side.

Maybe this idea would work for you Robin?
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Old October 19th, 2010, 04:49 AM   #7
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Great minds! - that's exactly what I was thinking of doing!
I've already searched out some aluminium tube suppliers...
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Old November 6th, 2010, 07:56 PM   #8
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I'm curious about any experiences you (or anyone else) might have by now.
It looks like a simple, but interesting mini table dolly.
I might give it a try with a Manfrotto 438 Ball leveler and a EX1R, but I'd like to know whether the MTD is working properly.
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Old November 7th, 2010, 05:27 AM   #9
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Works fine.
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Old November 7th, 2010, 06:11 AM   #10
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Thanks!
That's good to know!
(More opinions are always welcome)

I'd like to know how much room there is in the middle (between the screws) and how high the wheels and screws are (measured from the plate, not from the ground). It would be nice if the Manfrotto 438 (7cm high with slide plate, 13,4cm diameter, but the handle reaches till 10cm from the center) does fit on the MTD.

BTW, how easy is it to set the wheels parallel to each other, so the path is perfectly straight?
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Old November 7th, 2010, 06:37 AM   #11
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OK,

29mm from the top of the plate to clear the apex of the wheels (30mm to be sure). The 3 tightening thumb screws are slightly less than this, about 25mm at their top.

When all 3 thumb screws have one of their trilobes pointing at the dead center there is an equalateral trianglular space, with 115mm sides to the triangle. Nearest the thumb screw trilobes get to the dead centre fixing screw is about 67mm.

I have a relatively cheap Vanguard Ball Head SBH-20P (it came free with the MTD as a show special when I purchased it at ProVideo 2010). It works just fine for a 7D but would not take the weight of my EX3 I think! I have also tried mounting a Manfrotto Quick Release slide plate attachment as well (forgot the model number) on top of the Ball Head...yeah I know....just to get a little more height and scope to angle downwards and it all works really well for the 7D. With the supplied Ball Head the platform height for camera attachment is about 60mm above the MTD's triangular plate. With the Manfrotto quick release slide plate assembly on top of the Ball Head then it's about 83mm, and in total, this gives a camera height of about 132mm from the table top. Hopefully you can now work out any dimensions you need to know but if not let me know and I'll get the tape measure out again.

Very easy to adjust the wheels to get them to track the MTD in a straight line (but I've not had time to check accuracy in ali track yet!) - or any arc you want.

Hope this helps Walter!

EDIT: The Manfrotto slide plae assembly I mentioned is the MN577
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Old November 7th, 2010, 08:08 AM   #12
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Thanks Andy!

That's all the info I needed :-)
The maximum radius of the Manfrotto 438 is approx. 64-65mm, so it's an almost precise fit. (Just enough room the screw it on.)
I just have to make sure the handle to fix the position of the ballhead ends up on the right position (not at a corner). I'll need a little ring to make sure thehandle can move freely, so I can manipulate the end position as well by choosing a higher ring or add a second one.
The ballhead can have an angle of 10 (or -10) degrees, so the camera probably can't touch the wheels (ballhead height is 71mm at 0 degrees).

Some quick math with some margin for error:
Height ballhead from surface - height wheel from surface = approx 41mm : let's say 38mm
The max angle is 10 degrees, but let's say it's 12 degrees.
A tangent calculation tells us the camera can touch the wheels when they are positioned at 174mm from dead center.
(That would mean the distance between the centers of 2 wheels would be approx 300mm, but the dimensions are approx 25cmx25cm, so that's unlikely).
And thus my 'educated guess' is that the Manfrotto 438 will fit.

(But please correct me if I'm wrong...)

EDIT:
the 577 is the slideplate I mount on the 438 Ball Leveller. I already put the 577 dimensions in my calculations. (I use the Manfrotto Vid.plate 501 Plong to mount my EX1R)
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Old November 7th, 2010, 10:00 AM   #13
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Since it's clearly a critical measurement for you I went back and rechecked the dimension from the outside surface of the 3 trilobed fixing screws (each with one of their lobes pointing to the center of the MTD) and the dead center of the fixing screw that's right in the middle of the MTD. It's as near as I can tell 66.5mm in all 3 cases, certainly not less than 66mm....so it looks like it will fit - Just!!!!
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Old November 7th, 2010, 05:44 PM   #14
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It will be a close call, but I'm certain it'll fit.
Fortunately, the maximum diameter of the Ball Leveler is a small part where the handle is located. While screwing it on the dolly, the trilobed fixing screws can be moved in a position that will give some addition space if needed. As long as I can place the handle between 2 corners everything is fine.

Thanks for the double check!
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Old November 11th, 2010, 02:38 AM   #15
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Just for further info: I had a spare Manfrotto 503 head lying around, so I've fitted this to the unit.
Works perfectly and supports Z1...
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