Merlin Arm/Vest with FlyCam sled? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Old February 12th, 2008, 05:46 PM   #16
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Thanks Charles, great to have you in our corner! Hi Graham once you find your sweet spot with it the combination works beauitiful.
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Old February 12th, 2008, 05:53 PM   #17
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I was going to order the arm and vest for the Merlin on Friday, with the intention of upgrading to the Pilot. However, I will hold off now. I thought there was a plan to offer the Pilot sled alone beginning about the Spring. Since apparently not, I'll have to wait and get the Pilot as a unit later... which then I guess means getting the metal gimble separately.

My opinion is that the Merlin/Pilot should be considered as a single system. With that in mind, the pieces should be available separately, as they actually are now, except for the Pilot sled.

For travel for documentary, the Merlin with the best would be preferable. At home the Pilot would be preferable. Any one using the Pilot and small cameras would find a use from time to time for the Merlin handheld. All the pieces make a nice system. Since the Merlin and Pilot use the identical vest and arm, they are closely related.

Owners of the Pilot and vest can buy the Merlin separately. It makes sense that owners of the Merlin and vest should be able to buy the Pilot sled separately.

Or at the very least, perhaps owners of the original Merlin who bought the complete pilot could receive the Merlin metal gimble for free......?

So there's my vote.
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Old February 13th, 2008, 03:06 AM   #18
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Thanks Nick

Think I'm going to take the plunge and get some prices today! I thought about getting a demo first but I think that will just depress me because I'm sure it won't be easy right out of the box...
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Old February 13th, 2008, 03:35 AM   #19
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Graham, don't expect great shots straight away. It takes a while and constant practice to get used to it, but the smooth shots do come eventually. Have fun...
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Old February 13th, 2008, 03:00 PM   #20
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Nick
Thanks for the encouragement - I followed your journey into steadicam on the forum so hopefully will report back on progress! Any tips using the arm/vest, things to practice or should I just walk up and down a line like they do on the SC courses?!!!
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Old February 13th, 2008, 06:34 PM   #21
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The best advice I can give you is to do a workshop. I did a five day workshop a few weeks ago at Melbourne Uni with Luis Puli & Phil Balsdon and it was excellent - pics on my website. A two day Flyer workshop will get you up to speed with the Merlin or Pilot.
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Old February 19th, 2008, 08:47 AM   #22
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Wow Nick, those photos of the workshop sure looked fun. Was it very tiring for you to handle the large cams on the flyer?
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Old February 19th, 2008, 09:07 AM   #23
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them's ain't no flyer! Looks like a Master Series and a PRO knockoff/modded system ("semi-pro"...?!) About 60 lbs all in.

Looks like you guys got off fairly easy there Nick, with the Aaton and the DVCAM (?) bodies. Did they have any rigs with a full-on 35mm setup there? It's actually a smart plan to use cameras like the ones you had for most of the exercises, so students aren't dying halfway through the shots, but getting a taste of the full monty is worthwhile also, nice to explore the inertia and challenges of a 75lb rig.

good form by the way!
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Old February 19th, 2008, 12:51 PM   #24
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Hi All
Well I got the arm and vest for the merlin today and am now going to try to understand the instruictions - guess I won't be around for a while.... wish me luck!!!
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Old February 19th, 2008, 04:20 PM   #25
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We got of fairly easy? Man those things were frigging heavy! Funny thing is we also had Phil's Flyer set up with his JVC cam to play with and strapping it on after the Master series & Pro rig it felt like a tinker toy! Short clip from the workshop: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38Pj7pWVjtc
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Last edited by Nick Tsamandanis; February 19th, 2008 at 06:21 PM.
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Old February 19th, 2008, 08:53 PM   #26
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stairs in low-mode, always a delight.

Wait until you get stuck with some bruiser like a BL4, F900 with Pro35 and short zoom, or (yup) IMAX--feel the burn!
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Old February 20th, 2008, 06:19 AM   #27
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I just got an inch shorter thinking about it.
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