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Old February 9th, 2005, 07:20 AM   #1
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Steadicam Flyer review

Here is a review I did of the Steadicam flyer if anyone is interested. I also did a 20 min video( I think it was 20 min) of me shooting the rig as well as flying the rig but I will post that when my partner gets back from England, next week. I know some of you would rather see Charles P. reviewing it but I thought you would also like to see it from a normal person's point of view.

So I hope you enjoy this review:

Steadicam Flyer Review

Please right click and save the link to your desk top.

Can someone tell me how to make a link active in post. For some stupid reason I forgot.
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Old February 9th, 2005, 07:23 AM   #2
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I wish the mods would make the syntax for links available on the posting page....

[ url = (link) ] text goes here [/ url ]

remove all the blanks.
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Old February 9th, 2005, 07:31 AM   #3
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Thanks John.
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Old February 9th, 2005, 07:37 AM   #4
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thanks for the review, can't wait to see the video :) whilst you wish you had a heavier cam on you, i'm glad you stuck with the 170, as i own the 150 and its always nice to see comparable equipment used in reviews :)

now to go off and scare myself silly with the RRP :)

*gulp* yep that is a lot of money! :D
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Old February 9th, 2005, 08:29 AM   #5
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<<<-- Originally posted by James Connors : thanks for the review, can't wait to see the video :) whilst you wish you had a heavier cam on you, i'm glad you stuck with the 170, as i own the 150 and its always nice to see comparable equipment used in reviews :)

now to go off and scare myself silly with the RRP :)

*gulp* yep that is a lot of money! :D -->>>

No problem. Though I had minimum weight, it still flew pretty well.
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Old February 9th, 2005, 09:35 AM   #6
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Nice article Charles! You made good points.

I didn't realize the bottom battery mount was a dummy, I thought it was wired in parallel. That's a shame. I guess you can consider it a carry-along spare battery, though. The slick thing to do would be to wire it up and install a switch so that when the first battery threatens to go down, you just switch to the second.

Perhaps it might be worth mentioning to our gentle readers that the main reason the 2-axis socket block is so wonderful an addition is that for the first time, users of smaller stabilizers are able to perfectly trim out the angle of the arm, which allows the operator to stand comfortably and have the rig simply float in front of them. Nearly all rigs without this have a tendency to want to fly away from the operator, requiring force to rein them in which can lead to fatigue, bad form etc. If you look at most pictures of folks wearing lightweight stabilizers, check out the last vertical upright of the arm before the gimbal. It should be straight up and down; chances are it will actually be leaning at a significant angle towards the rig. That means the operator in question is having to hold it in place or it would shoot out away from them. The Flyer allows you to manage this tendency (generally caused by torque within the components of the arm and vest) by offsetting the angle in the other direction. It may be worth mentioning that the six screws that attach the socket block assembly to the vest are compatible with all full-size front-mounted vests, meaning that the rig has also been designed with pros in mind (an incredible running rig with a superlightweight [http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.steadicam.ch/data/thumbnails/11/235_1.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.steadicam.ch/details.php%3Fimage_id%3D1360&h=82&w=119&sz=3&tbnid=Jll6hrACPTQJ:&tbnh=57&tbnw=83&start=1&prev=/images%3Fq%3Darri%2B235%2Bsteadicam%26hl%3Den%26lr%3D%26sa%3DN]35mm system or HD system .


p.s., Charles, do you really wear gloves that heavy for exterior operating? I know it gets cold in Sweden but...! It's been a few years since I had to deal with serious cold weather work (thankfully), but I used to use a lightweight, close-fitting glove coupled with a convertible mitten whose top hinges on and off, so I could warm up between takes.
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Old February 9th, 2005, 12:15 PM   #7
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Thanks CP. Not really. It just happens it was the only pair of gloves I had at the time. I had travelled long to test out that rig and had forgotten my other ones at home. It was really cold that day so I wasn't going to be without one, regardless of the thickness.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 11:32 AM   #8
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Nice review Charles. I wa wondering how thick the springs are? They look pretty thick.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 12:20 PM   #9
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Thanks Lars. The spring has a 5mm thick thread. A coincident considering I have the exact same spring specs. Not to get of the subject here, but if the spring within the flyer was at a greater diagonal, which will make the triangle steep, then it would carry more load than the specified max camera weight for the flyer.

Now I'm getting a little technical here but as I explained to the guys on HBS I will be writing up a more detail article on the specs for those HBS members. It will have much more up close detail pics and I will explain why.

Now the reason why they used a heavier spring instead of a lighter one, which would have sufice, is because of how the sharp angle of the triangle of the design is configured within the arm. Confused?! Well, lets just say, the flyer design is closer to that of the pro GPI arm than anything else.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 07:30 PM   #10
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<<<-- Originally posted by Charles King : lets just say, the flyer design is closer to that of the pro GPI arm than anything else. -->>>

Huh, that's interesting Charles. I would have thought that it more resembles the Master/Ultra arm with the iso-elastic adjustment for weight than the compressed-spring canister design of the PRO? As I've said before, I'm not a big expert on the mechanics of the different arms, although I've owned a few differerent ones; just never bothered to take 'em apart!
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:04 PM   #11
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Never took it apart it's just understanding the geomery of the design. EVerything is based on triangles in all steadicam and non steadicam arms. When I said it resemble the pro arm I meant in it's pure technical design form. Like the example I gave about the spring.
The spring system is almost horizontal to the arm in it's initial position but what the eye does not see is the triangle that the spring system form when calculating the corrolations between the lower arm, where the spring is attached to the lower axel and finally to the spring adjuster.

See here Notice the red lines.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:08 PM   #12
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Interesting stuff. I'll have to check out your detail article when you are done. Thanks for the info. Again, great review.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:16 PM   #13
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wow--after all this time, I'm finally learning how the isoelastic arm works! Thanks CK.
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Old February 11th, 2005, 01:33 AM   #14
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No problem Charles. One thing to add. When the spring is adjusted it the steepness of the triangle changes especially if being pulled back, like in the case of the flyer.

But it has lot more to do with everything else; arm specs and spring specs.

Thanks Lars.
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Old February 13th, 2005, 12:38 PM   #15
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Great review charles!

A couple of notes that i picked up...

First off you mentioned the "Manfrotto" mounts on the bottom of the sled.. is that a typo? (shoudl be Anton Bauer Mounts...?)

The flyer arm is iso elastic.. and no arm will ever stay where it is put unless it has friction to hold it there (which you said is bad ;-) ) A heavier rig woudl really help.. Why it's only 1/3rd up is all part of the trick.
the bigger arms use 3 springs, because of the spring to lifting ration shoudl be one 3rd.. but instead of using 3 springs to go across the whole diaganol, just use one spring and only go up a 3rd of the way! Aha!
(The Provid arm that uses only one spring has a cam in the connection to the cable to reduce the effiency by one 3rd to get the iso elasticy - which also adds oodles of friction. Ugh.

And yeah, the side ot side adjustment is difficult in flight.. but that's becuase with the rig in flight it is purtting preasure on the threads which makes it nearly impossible to adjust (unless you get the rig perpendicular to the adjustment plane) - which is why you could do it when you took the wight of the rig. Even on big rigs you normally need to dock to change the side to side trim. - But luckily that adjustment is 99% the same for most people (because we all stand straight in the side to side direction).

Great review though! thanks!

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