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Old June 30th, 2006, 08:48 AM   #1
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Glidecam 4000 Frustration

Hi all,

If anyone would like a Glidecam 4000 with harness I will tell which dumpster you can find it in! Well, just kiding. It's not that bad.

I obtained the unit recently and have yet to balance my Canon XL2 on it. Before you ask if I have followed the instructions, I have. The thing is so tempermental and for me very difficult to balance. If I can ever get it right I don't think I am going to remove the camera from it for fear that I would have to start from scratch....lol.

I searched the boards and haven't found any information or tips on getting the setup right. I thought I would put it out there to see if anyone has had as much difficulty as me.

Thanks guys.....
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Old June 30th, 2006, 09:41 AM   #2
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Success

After messing with it on and off for a few days I am happy to say that i have it pretty well balanced! Now all I have to do is practice with it. I think I am going to have to purchase a quick release head.
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Old June 30th, 2006, 09:56 PM   #3
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it must have taken a hell of an effort to balance it.They should provide a balancing plate in the package or something. I can balance the varizoom flowpod in 1 min.However, I really think the glidecam would perform a bit better than the flowpod after owning the flowpod.
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Old June 30th, 2006, 11:07 PM   #4
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I would say that YES it is NOT easy to balance. And the instructional video is helpful, but really just a teaser. In fact, I think it's poorly produced in terms of content. Overall, it will always take you 15-30 min to balance it.

I wish I could post it, but Terry's Indicam PILOT demo video is great. It's made for his own product, but it REALLY helped me balance my Glidecam 4000. Specifically, (I bought his vest and arm), he sent me a small tube of aluminum that fits on a mic stand. It is SOOOO easy to balance while it rests on a mic stand, compared to doing it by hand.

So maybe you can find (or have made) a piece of aluminum pipe that both fits your Glidecam AND a mic stand. That piece alone was worth the $1500 I paid for his vest/arm. It saves a ton of time.

Google Indicam. You'll find it.
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Old July 3rd, 2006, 08:21 AM   #5
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Thank you for the input. Yes, the video is a teaser. I too have the harness and though it absorbes some of the weight, I find it to be a little bit tricky. It's just a matter of practice. I will google the indicam. Thanks.....
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Old July 3rd, 2006, 02:54 PM   #6
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Gary,

Glad you got it balanced, it is a bi-ch! Now, just don't go outside in the nice Florida breezes. It does require a fairly long learning curve to get proficient, so be patient. I was OK in the house with my 2000, but it was fairly useless out of doors. One last note, be prepared to make fine adjustments each time you remount it. A few thousands of an inch makes a real difference in the balance. make sure that when you set it up, all the parts of the camera are in the location you will be shooting. I.E., if the viewfinder is going to be open, set the balance that way, and have it tilted to where you want it. Every little thing causes a change in the balance.

Good luck and keep practicing.

Mike
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Old April 27th, 2007, 11:56 PM   #7
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No Joy

I've been trying to balance my XL2 on the Glidecam 4000 and still haven't managed to do so. Is there some sort of trick to all of this? For those of you who HAVE correctly balanced the rig, how many weights did you use?
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Old April 29th, 2007, 12:53 AM   #8
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I suppose I'll jump in as our sled is similar in many ways to the Glidecam 4000 Pro.

When we balanced the XL2 on our sled we had to use one of the rear mounting holes because the XL2 is very front heavy.

In our case we keep the weights at the ends of their slots equal distance apart so if the camera stage was unscrewed and the 4000 was spun it wouldn't wobble.

Start with a drop time of about 1 second (about six weights on each side with the extension post lowered maybe 6 or eight inches-whatever it takes) and get a ruff balance front and back and then side to side.
Remember, everything moves to the "uphill" direction meaning that if the front of the camera is higher than the back, move the camera uphill or forward until the post is nice and vertical. The same goes for side-to-side.

Now lengthen your drop time by moving the extension post up just a bit until you have about a 2 second drop time. This is a fairly typical value. Be careful to keep the bottom weight plate in the same plane as you move it up or down.

Now you have to do a fine balance by making much smaller adjustments. Sometimes if you feel the camera sled move a bit, it might actually be too much. It can be tricky!

It took us about ten minutes to dynamically balance the XL2 using our sled. You might look at the video of the XL2 on our web site to see where the weights and camera were positioned.

If you are still having problems email me through our website.

Most of this is covered in our "Stabilizer Basics" DVD that we just finished.

Smooth Shooting,

Tery
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