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Old October 29th, 2004, 03:35 PM   #1
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Balancing Magiqcam with heavy battery

I've got my Magiqcam set up with an XL1s a monitor and a 7 hour battery that weighs about 4lbs. The sled is very bottom heavy and there's not really anything I can do to change it. I've raised the camera a little to shift the center of gravity.

Now, I don't think that this should really be a problem because I'd think that the weight on the bottom would help keep it level, but the instruction manual says that you want the top and bottom to be balanced... why is that by the way?

Thanks.
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Old October 31st, 2004, 10:10 AM   #2
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I was under the impression that the instructions/this forum recommends a drop time of 2 -3 secs , and not balanced top to bottom ?


I'm using a frezzi battery for my camera top light and a monitor battery from the Marshall monitor on mine and I still find it pretty difficult to balance my magiqcam.

If I were to add spirit levels to help, where's a good place on the rig ?


Hope I can get pointers from the 2 Charles here ...
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Old October 31st, 2004, 09:34 PM   #3
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Tony:

The problems with a significantly bottom-heavy rig are several. Tilting becomes an issue of force, which is never a good thing. Also, the rig will tend to pendulum, i.e. swing out during acceleration/deceleration or stops and starts.

A 4 lb 7 hr. battery for an XL1s is, honestly, overkill. You would be better off with a 1.5-2lb battery for that set of masses (you're probably into a back-heavy situation with that heavy battery also).

Wesley:

The most critical axis is side-to-side balance. The best place for a level is on the monitor, either above or below the screen so you can keep an eye on it while operating. You should also have another one at the camera plate as a master level that you can true the monitor level to (mount it on velcro etc so that you can adjust it). Fore-and-aft levels are not really useful in my opinion, you can set it up to eye and it will be close enough. Generally one should be trimming the tilt (fore-and-aft) to the specific needs of the shot.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 03:25 AM   #4
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<<<-- The best place for a level is on the monitor, either above or below the screen so you can keep an eye on it while operating. You should also have another one at the camera plate as a master level that you can true the monitor level to (mount it on velcro etc so that you can adjust it). -->>>

I second that.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 03:56 AM   #5
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hmmm. any pics that I can have a better idea of ? that will really nail it for me.

Thanks for all the pointers !!
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Old November 1st, 2004, 08:20 AM   #6
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Charles K., take it away--I'm on a job & can't take the time to wrangle photos.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 01:10 PM   #7
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Ok, thanks for the info... I think I'm pretty much stuck with this heavy battery for the time being. I'll probably just try to add weight to my camera to level it out.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 01:17 PM   #8
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By the way, email notification hasn't been working for me lately. Is anyone else having that problem.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 04:10 PM   #9
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I'll post some pics when I get home.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 11:41 PM   #10
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by the way I just ordered a battery about half the size that will work with my monitor. I'll take some pictures of my setup and post them when it comes. I'll also try to post some Magiqcam footage when I get a chance... although I'm not very good yet :)
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Old November 29th, 2004, 08:21 AM   #11
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hmmm... busy busy month for me. worked on a stage to tv adaptation as a grip...

Gonna try to find some spirit levels and start experimenting...
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Old November 29th, 2004, 11:13 AM   #12
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By the way, I just ordered the Nebtek lithium to 12v battery adapter and I think it's going to be the magiq solution to the problem of heavy batteries.

That's one design fault I see with the Magiqcam. You really have to have a HEAVY camera to have a monitor and battery on the bottom of the sled and have it balanced properly.
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Old November 30th, 2004, 07:49 AM   #13
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yeah. I'm getting a 2nd np-1 to try to balance my DVX on it , its leaning 'left' with the Marshall monitor and batt on the 'left side'.

what I don't get is how sticking a spirit level on the top on the monitor is going to help my balancing, seeing that I don't have my monitor horizontally flat out in front of my knees, but at an angle up directed to my eyeline, a bit further out in front.
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Old November 30th, 2004, 08:15 AM   #14
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Leaning Left?!!!

Wong, It seems to me that your rig is not balanced sids-to-side if it's leaning left, if I understand you right.

Any pic to see your setup, so I can get a better understanding?

By sticking on a spirit level makes it t's simply a guide to help balancing your rig a little easier.
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Old November 30th, 2004, 10:57 AM   #15
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<<<-- Originally posted by Charles King : Leaning Left?!!!

Wong, It seems to me that your rig is not balanced sids-to-side if it's leaning left, if I understand you right.

Any pic to see your setup, so I can get a better understanding?
-->>>
Hehe. was waiting for your pics on where to stick the spirit levels...

Is it possible to post pics here on the forum or has it to be outside link? I'll get around to taking a shot...
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