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Old January 25th, 2011, 03:34 PM   #1
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Poor Mans Dolly???

Has anyone every tried combining the following to create a poor man's dolly?

A flat wagon dolly (with pull handle) + fold out chair + "fig rig":

1.
Clipper #930 Camargo Wagon Folding Transportation Cart CLP930

2. chair (fold out type), can purchase anywhere
3. Manfrotto 595B Fig Rig Camera Stabilizer 595B B&H Photo Video

It should allow for quick setup and use. The stability of the "fig wig" plus the lens stabilization should make for a "decent" shot. And I can also use the dolly for transporting equipment, the chair will come in handy for just sitting around, and I can obviously use the "fig wig" for other movement shots (like walking, running, etc).

Ideas? Concerned? Noise from wheels? Flat surfaces? Will I kill myself?

Your input is greatly appreciated!
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Old January 26th, 2011, 07:51 PM   #2
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Theoretically your set up could work but it would only be of use on perfectly flat and smooth surfaces. And yeah the chair would be nice for sitting on, and the cart would carry your equipment, but for it's primary purpose- smooth dolly shots- the set up would pretty much be a failure.

Why not just get something like a Dana Dolly (Dana dolly Portable Camera Dolly System) for the same price as the components you outlined? It's small and portable enough that you wouldn't need a cart to carry your stuff, and sitting is highly overrated so skip the chair, and the fig rig, well meh, you can live without it ;-)

Scott
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Old January 27th, 2011, 06:17 PM   #3
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Awesome! Thank you for the feedback. I'll check your recommendation. Have you used it before?

(btw. I'll probably still get the "fig rig". I'm gonna need a bunch of hand held stuff, and from what I read, this is the way to go)
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Old January 28th, 2011, 10:14 AM   #4
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I've never had a chance to use the Dana Dolly but I've heard a lot of good reports about it. You could also consider a DIY camera slider for shorter dolly type moves. Good luck!
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Old September 2nd, 2011, 12:27 PM   #5
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Re: Poor Mans Dolly???

Sean, I think you can still make a camera dolly system to meet your needs less then a DANA Dolly system costs. But like Scott mentioned, what ever your wheel selection turns out to be you must provide the smoothest possible surface for it to roll on. If you're using wagon wheels or wheelchair dollys they need to roll on ultra smooth surfaces, even tight pile carpet is too bumpy. This is why most all dolly systems use a track, You'll need to provid a smooth surface and in most locations like outside scenes you need a track concept to bridge uneven ground. You want your track system to easly work inside and out.

I made a typical DIY camera dolly out of two 10' sections of 2.250" PVC (schedule 40) pipe, 16 good quality roller blade wheels, 6' of alum "L" channel, and 3/4" plywood for the base. All materials came from Home Depot other then the roller blade wheels. I don't stand on my dolly, just walk with it but it glids like glass. I set my camera trypod on it with some sand bags for a little weight. I made end caps for the track to hold the ends at the correct spacing but the "V" profile of the wheel set up is self aligning - to some degree.

I have also made special joint splices to add additional 10' sections of PVC pipe to length the track.

This system works for most situations where you can make room for the set up. All in all it cost me about $100, the wheels were the most expensive item.
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Old September 2nd, 2011, 01:19 PM   #6
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Re: Poor Mans Dolly???

If you are going the moving chair route - wheel chairs are a indie staple. They have HUGE diameter wheels that roll easily on most surfaces. Your fig-rig would have no problem making up for any bumps in the chair from the surface. Also they fold up into a reasonable space and can be used to haul some gear around when there aren't being sat in.
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