Glidecam Docking Bracket at DVinfo.net

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Old April 22nd, 2008, 03:22 PM   #1
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Glidecam Docking Bracket

In another thread, Charles Papert said:

Quote:
I don't know if GC offers a standard docking bracket for this size rig that allows it to be hung above the gimbal/under the stage but that is the appropriate way for it to be left unattended, not from the gimbal.

I asked Glidecam about the availablity of a docking bracket for the 4000 Pro. I was told that they don't make one specifically for the 2000/4000 Pro units, but have one designed to support the Smooth Shooter which also works with the 2000/4000 Pro. The docking bracket costs $85.

Looking at the photo of the bracket, I saw that the bracket supports the 4000 Pro by resting the gimbal directly on the bracket. I asked if storing the 4000 Pro by the gimbal would cause stress and/or gimbal alignment issues. The reply was, "No, it does not create enough stress to be relevant."

Any thoughts on this? Anyone else use the Docking Bracket with their (loaded) Glidecam 4000 Pro? Anyone notice any problems with the gimbal after storing it on the bracket for an extended amount of time?
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Old April 22nd, 2008, 10:41 PM   #2
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Julian,

We hang our Indicam PILOT from the handle and have for years. It's similar to the Glidecam in many ways. Haven't had any problems. The gimbal is just as smooth and solid as when we first used it.

Charles,

If there is a reason we shouldn't be doing this we'd like to know because we can't think of any with our rig. The attached picture has our new gimbal assembly that we wanted to show you at NAB.

Tery
Indicam
Attached Thumbnails
Glidecam Docking Bracket-indicam-sled-hanging.jpg  
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 04:00 AM   #3
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The picture I saw on the glidecam website that you referred to appeared to hold up the glidecam from under the bearing, as Charles said he preferred.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 10:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Plowman View Post
The picture I saw on the glidecam website that you referred to appeared to hold up the glidecam from under the bearing, as Charles said he preferred.
Actually, he said:

Quote:
I don't know if GC offers a standard docking bracket for this size rig that allows it to be hung above the gimbal/under the stage but that is the appropriate way for it to be left unattended, not from the gimbal.
That is, "above the gimbal."

According to Glidecam, this is the only docking bracket they sell... and it supports the Glidecam from the gimbal, that is, the entire weight of the system hangs off the gimbal. They say it's not a problem, an opinion echoed by Terry of Indicam.
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Glidecam Docking Bracket-gold_docking.jpg  
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 11:09 AM   #5
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My remembery isn't what it used to be. I am very glad for all the questions you are asking Julian, you are getting all the answers I need for my new (to me) setup.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 11:13 AM   #6
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The absolute best way to dock a rig is from a ring above the gimbal, just under the stage. The Gold sled has one of these (see pic here, you can see it above the gimbal and this is what mates into the dock that Julian has linked a picture. It eliminates stress on the gimbal and allows the operator to move the gimbal freely when docking and undocking. This type of dock has a safety feature to keep the rig from falling out, here an aircraft pin, or the best mount out there, the Gorelock: http://www.steadimoves.com/parts.html, scroll down to find it. This system has a spring-loaded mechanism that captures the docking ring and holds the rig rigidly so that it won't tip when removing a component, and is what I have used for years.

Next best is a gimbal-supported dock like the Smooth Shooter. The disadvantage again is that when docked, the gimbal will be somewhat restricted so you have to guide yourself in and out of it just so. Also there is not much of a safety here, those little ears will keep it from falling out but maybe not if the stand is bumped into--ouch! Due to the limited weight of a rig like this, I agree that it likely won't hurt the gimbal to have the weight of the system resting on it. With a full-size rig I wouldn't recommend it.

Then there is hanging the gimbal off the stand, as Terry shows. This is a bit more secure than the above dock (it would be harder to knock it off) but my concern with this is that anyone walking past could easily brush the rig and cause it to spin and bang into the stand. The less bottom-heavy you have the rig, the more likely it is to blow in the breeze and start floating around by itself. Plus the baby pin on the end of the stand may not be precision machined and it could start to chew into the inside of your gimbal handle over time. Finally, docking and undocking requires one to take the entire weight of the sled in one hand while feeding the gimbal onto the pin, which is not required with the other docks and is a bit cumbersome, especially if you are winded after a long take.

None of these are deal-killers but docking and undocking is something that one does dozens of times a day, so to me safety and convenience become important factors.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 02:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Plowman View Post
My remembery isn't what it used to be. I am very glad for all the questions you are asking Julian, you are getting all the answers I need for my new (to me) setup.
Ha! Ok... I don't feel like such a newbie then! :-)

I really want to thank everybody for putting up with my incessant "Who, what, when, where, how"-questions, and for all the great answers that have been put forward. You guys are much appreciated.

BTW, I just got a call from the Canon Service Center (Irvine). They fixed my XH-A1's internal speaker, cleaned the tape path, and updated the firmware. All the work was covered under warranty (I bought it 13 months ago!), and took a grand total of 25 hours from door to door! In fact, the most expensive part of all this, was paying for the gas for the 12 mile, round trip, drive!
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 02:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julian Frost View Post
Ha! Ok... I don't feel like such a newbie then! :-)

I really want to thank everybody for putting up with my incessant "Who, what, when, where, how"-questions, and for all the great answers that have been put forward. You guys are much appreciated.

BTW, I just got a call from the Canon Service Center (Irvine). They fixed my XH-A1's internal speaker, cleaned the tape path, and updated the firmware. All the work was covered under warranty (I bought it 13 months ago!), and took a grand total of 25 hours from door to door! In fact, the most expensive part of all this, was paying for the gas for the 12 mile, round trip, drive!
I didn't know enough to know what to ask. Now I have a glidecam 2000 all set up, dynamically balanced, and sitting on the floor until I make a dock for it. I picked up a pair of three pound wrist weights yesterday, I figure after a couple of weeks of wearing them I can carry the camera for ten minutes without my arm feeling like it is going to fall off.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 07:13 PM   #9
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Allen,

My back hurt for days after spending an hour setting up the Glidecam, and several hours after that, tweaking it, all hand-held... Then I realized I had a old mic stand which would support it during these operations. Still, by then, my back was suffering! And, I hadn't shot anything except a quick run up the house stairs! After getting it perfectly balanced, my camera broke. Now I have my camera back, I'll be playing with it during the day tomorrow, and shooting some fun video footage and stills at a charity event in the evening.

I read a suggestion to take up bowling -- to build up the right muscles for Glidecam use. I thought they were joking..! :-)
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 08:19 PM   #10
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Julian,

Bowling huh...No wonder why I am such a great bowler...well OK just a decent bowler.

You might have something there.

Tery
Indicam

By the way Charles, I did start typing about the "brushing up against the rig" that you mentioned but my post was getting to long that I left it out.
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