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Old November 16th, 2004, 04:22 AM   #1
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Anyone use a Glidecam V-16?

I've owned one for the past several months and to be quite honest, I'm really dissapointed with the unit. It's just way to heavy, combersome, and just overall difficult for me to use.

After I got it, someone introduced me to the "steadycam" steadycam and man, it's like 1/3 the weight, smaller, and does the job excellently!

If anyone else out there uses one, I'd like to get some tips on how you got it to work for you. I also have the Glidecam Crane and that's been the most solid purchase I've made for my company! (had to throw that in as I do like Glidecams products and I'm not bashing the V16.)
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 04:01 PM   #2
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Hi Rob

I got mine back in April of this year and I'm using it with my XL1 (and soon to be XL2).

It takes practice, practice and practice to get used to any stabilization systems. As the XL1 tends to be a very light camera, I had to add additional weights. What camera are you using with the V16?

The only gripes I have is the sled which I still bump my knees against. I would love to get the sled from the real Streadicam.

After 7 months of using the V16, I'm still learning. I've done fashion shows, shot a short film for ACTRA here in Montreal, music videos, and weddings.

My back is now getting better and I am now able to last longer. However I notice that my right leg tends to feel numb somtime if I'm strapped on for about an hour.
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 06:18 PM   #3
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Hey Norman,
I've used the V16 with the XL1 and DVX100. Sad part, I am 6'2 and my knees get knocked by the monitor constantly! I wish I had done more research on the unit, but alas, I've had it for several months and have only used it 3-4 times.

Any buyers?!? :-)
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 09:53 PM   #4
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Rob:

In what position are your knees knocking the monitor exactly? A little confused--that sort of collision would occur with the back of the rig, not the front? Does this happen when you have the rig turned 90 degrees to your body?

In general, bumping the rig is something that can happen with any brand, you eventually get used to the exact distance required to keep the unit from the body to avoid this. As Norman says, practice makes perfect.
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 11:03 PM   #5
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It's the rear portion on the bottom. The side with the battery. If I adjust it so it doesn't hit, it's not balanced correctly.

Any suggestions?
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Old February 25th, 2005, 02:50 AM   #6
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V-16

intresting. I didnt know you were 6'2"
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Old February 25th, 2005, 02:07 PM   #7
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I own one, but I'm selling it because I just don't do enough work to justify it. I also had a back injury in the fall of 2004, so I'd rather hire-out an operator for a day.

My unit's in excellent condition, haven't actually used it out in the field but have plenty of practice in a controlled environment (my home :) ) The XL1 is indeed a light camera for the rig, but throwing extra weight on the top/bottom and cranking the spring down will help.
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Old February 25th, 2005, 09:48 PM   #8
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Rob, it may be three months late, but if you still are having knee-knocking problems...!

Are you flying the rig to the side of your body or out front? If you have the arm attached to the right side of your body, the rig should hang alongside you on the left. When turning (panning) in such a way that the sled would be likely to hit your legs, you simply need to push it further away from your body to avoid this. It is something that comes naturally with time and practice.
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Old February 26th, 2005, 06:06 PM   #9
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I was recently doing a 360 around a make up artist and fashion model. Wouldn't you know it just as I was completing the 360, the sled of the V16 bumps into a table edge.

It's almost like parallel parking a car without hitting the car in
front and back of you.

You will eventually be one with your rig, grasshopper ... (to mis-quote a famous line ...)
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Old February 27th, 2005, 12:14 AM   #10
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That's a good metaphor, Norman.

The number of times I've heard from camera assistants or grips, "you were ONE INCH from that chairback (or doorframe, or whatever)...you definitely gain a sixth sense about your "airspace" and can park the rig within a whisper of an obstacle.

When I did a brief stint on "The West Wing", it seemed like I was always flying the rig sideways through doorways, parallel tracking an actor as they went through a door further along the wall. I fondly remember one shot done at flat out running speed where I had to do just this; there was something like three inches of clearance at most between the camera and the door jamb. The camera blocked my view of the door itself as I approached, so I had to drop the blast shield and use the force. I wish I could have seen my face as I braced myself for the impact that (fortunately) never came! On that shot at least. I've had my share of knocking matteboxes off the camera!
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