Glidecam Forearm Brace at DVinfo.net

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Old February 13th, 2004, 07:18 AM   #1
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Glidecam Forearm Brace

Hi, I was thinking of getting the Glidecam forearm support brace for my 2000 pro.

I was wondering, apart form the obvious benefits (relief of stress on the writs and longer usage), does the use of the brace effect the overall stability of the picture?

Elaborate answers would be interesting.



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Old February 13th, 2004, 09:15 AM   #2
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I've used the Glidecam with the arm brace for a short while a few years ago, and I found it to be helpful. However, you still have to support all the weight from the arm, it just eliminates the sideways stress on the wrist. I liked it, though. A well-made unit.

The other question I'd add, and one I was about to start a thread for, is whether the arm brace or body pod is better to get. I understand the bodypod will introduce some inavoidable movement, but will probably be extremely useful for long tracking shots, etc. I'd like to hear from someone who has used both.
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Old February 13th, 2004, 09:30 AM   #3
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I'm not an expert on the Glidecam bodybrace, Evan, but knowing that it essentially eliminates the isolation from movement that one gains by handholding the rig, meaning that it will move up and down with footsteps, it seems like a significant step backwards to me. Somewhere in between handheld and stabilized footage. At that point I think a good operator might be able to compete with solid handheld work and not have to deal with all the hardware.
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Old February 13th, 2004, 09:39 AM   #4
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I've heard the body brace is only good for "resting" in between moving shots. Charles is right it *is* a step backwards and defeats the whole purpose of having a floating gimbal. I own the Glidcam 2000 myself but operate it (w/ DVX100) minus the forearm brace without issues. Despite the fact I'm a strong person (w/ background in powerlifting) I wouldn't want to lug it ALL day. I used it for only short periods of time- usually for controlled shoots, though I've been able to get away with using it at a few weddings. Just too time consuming to balance during event videography (ie fast paced, non scripted) gigs.

All in all I think, for the price, the forearm brace isn't worth it. Granted it takes the stress off the wrist but that isn't the stress that seems to affect the user. It's more bicep and shoulder straign. If they could design a forearm brace to shift the weight to the UPPER forearm that would help tremendously due to the advantage you'd then have with leverage. If you have the money have you checked out their V8 rig?
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Old February 13th, 2004, 10:17 AM   #5
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I have definitely looked at the V8 rig, and if someone wants to donate one to me, then I think it would b a good progression for me :)

I have gathered that the forearm brace dosen't actually help to improve the stability of the picture.

Thanks for your posts.
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Old February 15th, 2004, 10:23 PM   #6
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My $0.02

I have the Glidecam 2000 and its "Body Pod" and the forearm brace.

Charles is spot-on in that the Body Pod is a "step backwards" from a motion stabilization perspective. You're not going to be able to get good shots using it. Remember that with the handheld GC2K your arm serves the same function that the arm on a vest-style rig serves; it compensates for vertical vibration. The pod defeats this function by mounting the stabilizer onto your hips.

Pass on the pod.

The forearm brace is, in my opinion, indispensible if you're going to use this handheld stabilizer. The weight of this rig can quickly become fatiguing. This is especially true with the GC2K's offset gimbal design (in contrast to the Steadicam JR's gimbal which is directly over your hand). The brace transfers the stress from the tendons and small muscles in your wrist to the larger muscle groups in your upper arm and shoulder. You're still going to become fatigued holding the thing. But you're likely to have more lasting power with the forearm brace.
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Old February 15th, 2004, 11:20 PM   #7
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I just made my own Steadicam JR copy using aluminum channel and a tripod ball head. It works quite well, and I haven't even done final balancing. Since the weight is directly over my arm, I don't really think a brace is necessary.
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