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Old June 11th, 2010, 10:14 PM   #1
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How solid is PVC as a dolly track?

New to video. Should I be concerned about using PVC as a dolly track, especially with longer lenses on 5D? I'm considering this dolly on PVC track:

CT3A Track dolly

Or I am considering the Indie Singleman Dolly on PVC track but plan to get the Indie track at a later date. Thanks!

Indie-Dolly Systems | IND.SPR.D Singleman Dolly | IND.SPR.D
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Old June 11th, 2010, 11:37 PM   #2
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PVC is fine. Keep in mind that not all pipe is made the same but you will be putting so little weight on it that even lousy pipe will be good. The one good thing about even inferior pipe is that it must be made to uniform dimensions so you don't have to worry about bumps. Of course, you can also buy metal pipe but it won't be as light. If you need long pieces of metal, metal shops sell 21-ft. aluminum pipe and you can get long fence top rail sections at the hardware store. If you ever have trouble with pipe cracking, buy different kinds and take them out and hit them against a solid object. Of course, wear eye protection because inferior pipe shatters. In my area, the gray plastic electrical conduit at home depot is quite durable.
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Old June 12th, 2010, 03:43 AM   #3
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I did a couple of commercial jobs with one and the only concern was squeaking when the polyurethane wheels rubbed against the PVC.

A strip of masking tape along the contact area helped prevent that.
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Old June 12th, 2010, 03:49 AM   #4
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I have a custom small dolly with 4m of PVC track and it is very portable and light.

The PVC pipe has some custom made spreaders and some wooden support wedges and I find that this gives it a more stable and level structure.
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Old June 12th, 2010, 09:11 AM   #5
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It sounds like from your responses that I should not be concerned at all about using PVC for track. I thought a few sandbags on each end would help, as connecting the ends with PVC/couplings would add more stability too.
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Old June 12th, 2010, 12:27 PM   #6
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Mine is connected at both ends as you say with plastic pipe holders on some alloy L shaped bar, the spreaders are cut down pipe clips and I have also drilled holes in the angle L bar so that I can use tent pegs if I am setting up outside on grass or earth.
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