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Old February 24th, 2009, 02:58 PM   #1
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Dolly solutions?

I'm planning a short film requiring smooth camera movements on all three axes: up/down, left/right and foward/back. I don't have the budget to hire both a cameraman and a steadicam operator at the same time, and a regular crane is overkill. Is there somethign thats both a dolly AND a crane at the same time tnat can be operated by one or two people? It should be relatively small, as we're shooting indoor.

Bonus points for pictures or links. :-)


J.
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Old February 24th, 2009, 07:10 PM   #2
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I Googled and found this site with several pictures of camera dollies, most of which do what I want (in varying levels of luxury).

Dollies & Jib Arms

Now all I have to do is find a rental place that won't demand that I spend almost as much as the actual purchase price...


J.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 11:59 AM   #3
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How far do the travels have to be?

What camera are you shooting with?

How much are you looking to spend?.....small budget is relative. My "small budget" is $45.99. lol
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Old February 25th, 2009, 12:18 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Michael Hutson View Post
How far do the travels have to be?
Not far. The set is a 12X15 room (approx.) but whatever isn't on a tripod has to be a smooth movement on all three axes. And I don't want to have to lay down tracks.

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What camera are you shooting with?
It'll be an HD cam. Nothing too heavy.

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Originally Posted by Michael Hutson View Post
How much are you looking to spend?.....small budget is relative. My "small budget" is $45.99. lol
Can I get it for free? ;-)

Seriously, though, this shoot has to be union (don't ask, it's too complicated) and I am seriously tired of all the crap. My previous productions relied on ingenuity and resourcefulness to produce professional-looking results on as little money as possible, but on this production no one can take a crap without a union-mandated toilet paper wrangler (and his two assistants). The budget should be less than $10,000, it's going to be 4 or 5 times that.

Don't get me started. :-)


J.

Last edited by Jacques E. Bouchard; February 25th, 2009 at 09:49 PM.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 03:58 PM   #5
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Here I am replying to my own post, since I presume that none of the 20+ people who read the thread knew the answer. ;-)

Why is it that people get irritated when, in less than 24 hours, they have not received a definitive answer to their posts? I tend to notice that when it happens, the poster either has single digit posts, or not much more. That clearly isn't the case here... and I guess I just don't get the attitude from someone who has been around on the board a while.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 06:37 PM   #6
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Don't get me started. :-)
Oh, boy. I hope you are dealing with UDA, at least, and not ACTRA. I've had nothing but misery (as an actor) dealing with ACTRA Montreal.
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Old February 25th, 2009, 09:44 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Chris Swanberg View Post
Why is it that people get irritated when, in less than 24 hours, they have not received a definitive answer to their posts? I tend to notice that when it happens, the poster either has single digit posts, or not much more. That clearly isn't the case here... and I guess I just don't get the attitude from someone who has been around on the board a while.
Whoa there Nelly. There was no "attitude". I just happened to find the answer to my question and wanted everyone else reading the thread to benefit from it.

Was there another entry you wanted to contribute? Like maybe your own findings on dollies?


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Old February 25th, 2009, 09:48 PM   #8
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Oh, boy. I hope you are dealing with UDA, at least, and not ACTRA. I've had nothing but misery (as an actor) dealing with ACTRA Montreal.
UdA is actually pretty cool compared to the other unions. They don't care whether your actors are union or not, as long as you pay them all at least the minimum and pay the union dues.

The real problem is the crew. Not only do I have to hire ALL union, but I can't just hire them as free-lancers. I have to treat them as employees and do all deductions, pay unemployment contributions, register with both federal and provincial governments as an employer, etc.

I'm seeing my budget skyrocket with all this red tape. I'm actually considering going completely non-union if this gets out of hand and paying everyone what I would have paid them otherwise - minus the red tape.


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Old February 27th, 2009, 03:04 PM   #9
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Hello Jacques,

Getting back to your original question: maybe a JixArm / scissor arm is what you are looking for? Take a look at Pallada Designs camera supporting equipment, and click on "jix". Do not know the local availabilty yet. Elseway a slider / camrail or my TwinDolly (Solid Grip Systems Amsterdam) allthough they have not the jib-facilities...

good luck

Onno Perdijk
Solid Grip Systems Amsterdam
KeyGrip Amsterdam
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Old February 27th, 2009, 03:21 PM   #10
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Hello Jacques,

Getting back to your original question: maybe a JixArm / scissor arm is what you are looking for?
Thanks, that looks like a great solution. It only requires the camera operator, no need for someone trained on a jib or crane dolly.

I'm waiting for a price list from a local equipment rental place. Only problem is they deal with large productions (they rent Panavision cameras among others), so they might not bother with equipment for small crews.


J.
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