Mounting blimp on tripod at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 8th, 2012, 07:17 AM   #1
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Antrim, Northern Ireland
Posts: 1,569
Mounting blimp on tripod

Hi gang,

I'm not sure if this is an audio question or a tripod/mounts question. I'm opting for tripods, it's mainly about brackets and things.

Here's the concept. I want to mount a blimp (I'll be getting a Rycote S-series probably) to my tripod, along with the camera. I'm a one man band, so I can't have a sound man. I want it to be fixed somewhere adjacent to the camera (say on the right hand side), and obviously it needs to be out of shot.

(I know the usual answer is to spend $20,000 on sound gear and employ a sound man. This isn't going to happen. There's also no need to have the mic 2 feet from the sound source, it's fine on or adjacent to the camera.)

I'm getting great audio for my purposes from an on-camera mic. The stock Sony mic with my NX70 compact camcorder is pretty good for this purpose, but the Rycote mini windscreen can be thwarted by the stronger winds I often face. It has to be off-camera, because I might need to quickly go handheld, or throw a raincover on - not practical if I have a massive blimp bolted to the top of the camera.

One typical circumstance is this; on a beach/hillside, videoing a steam train passing. I will have a shotgun mic, and it needs to follow the train as I pan.

I was thinking about some sort of magic arm contraption mounted to the tripod head, but don't have a clue where to start with that. I've tried searching on DVinfo, but not found anything helpful.

Oh, and I'm not very handy, so I can't build things out of metal!

Any thoughts?
Mike Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 08:36 AM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,121
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

I'd tend to mount it on the camera than the tripod, using the Rycote's windshield/shockmount's handle and perhaps an off set bracket should allow you to mount it on the camera. I'd look at their site for a possible accessory or look at mic stand manufacturers' site.

BTW A blimp is a soundproof housing for a camera. Although, some of these larger windshields are called Zeppelins.
Brian Drysdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 08:46 AM   #3
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Posts: 1,521
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

Quote:
BTW A blimp is a soundproof housing for a camera.
Can't seem to fit any of my cameras inside mine :-)


And no, you can't have it back Mike!

More usefully, I used a Beyerdynamic boom mic stand for one outside shoot where I needed to pan the camera and the blimp at the same time. It did need me to pan the camera with one hand but it worked OK as they was no need to follow focus.
Attached Thumbnails
Mounting blimp on tripod-rode_blimp.jpg  
Colin McDonald is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 01:26 PM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

Hi, Mike...........

Maybe something like this?: Hague Twin Camera Mount

Cheap enough to try, anyway.

Just remember that if there is any strong wind, to park the unit with the greatest sail area as close to the head centre line as possible, else the whole thing will be wobbling all over the place with the lever effect of the bar.

Check out the rest of the B.Hague site, got some great big boys toys.


CS
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 01:50 PM   #5
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,121
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McDonald View Post
Can't seem to fit any of my cameras inside mine :-)
LOL I guess those guys love their airships, although that particular one is perhaps more a brand name. Zeppelin windshield is probably a more common term Windshield (Zeppelin) :: Microphones :: Audio :: Rental Equipment :: AbelCine
Reinhardt Zeppelin Systems ? Reinhardt Microphone Windshields

The camera housing is the common industry term, being used on the old film cameras and even possibly today on the stills cameras used by the production stills photographer. Designed to keep the sound guys happy.

OwyheeSound
owyheesound
http://thedigitalvisual.com/wp-conte...6.04.59-PM.png
Brian Drysdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 02:53 PM   #6
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Posts: 1,521
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

Thanks for that, Brian. I've seen these on location but didn't know what they were called.
I couldn't resist coming in on this thread because Mike sold me his Rode Blimp.

I was going to suggest that maybe Rode called it that to distinguish their product from the well established Rycote one, but it appears from a quick google that it is actually K-Tec who have the "Zepplin" name registered.

A bit like "hoover" used to be for vacuum cleaners (until Dyson came along at least) - I was in the habit of referring to all these sausage shaped wind protectors as zepplins until the Blimp appeared.
Colin McDonald is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 03:21 PM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,121
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

These things tend to get a lot of names by crews, the whole rig used to be called a Dougal, after the dog in the Magic Roundabout. Because when fitted with a high wind cover (as it usually is) it looked like him. One or two sound recordists even attached a couple of eyes.

http://www.80scartoons.co.uk/magic/magic2.jpg
Brian Drysdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 03:34 PM   #8
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Antrim, Northern Ireland
Posts: 1,569
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

I remember some especially long-haired windshields reminding me of the 1980s Michael Heseltine, for some reason!

Back to the matter in hand... Chris, yes, that sort of device might be an option. I'd rather keep the camera centered over the top of the head, but then it might get a bit off-balance. Not sure. I had a vision of some sort of magic arm, with the windshield mounted below the camera and off to the side. It's a bit expensive to get it wrong though.

You're right about the danger of overbalance, I think. I had one day last year in the shadow of Cave Hill in Belfast where the wind was in danger of tipping the whole camera over, I suppose a blimp being attached to it might just act as more of a sail and help my unrealised desire to be the first unpowered tripod flight! This could actually make the whole thing impractical, especially with a small, <2kg camera on top of an 8kg tripod.

Lots of goodies on the Hague website, I had a look through that earlier.
Mike Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 8th, 2012, 04:12 PM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Mounting blimp on tripod

OK, here's a thought.

That bracket is 63mm front to back and 6mm, presumably, steel.

You can map the top mount countersunk holes in the 577 adapter onto that 63mm with about 5mm to spare front and back.

If you take the bracket and the 577 adapter to any half efficient machine shop, they can drill and tap the four mount holes to take 3/16" CS machine screws slap bang in the middle of the bar so it sits centred on the slide plate.

Problem 1. solved.

Mount your blimp to one side and something with a roughly comparable sail area on the other, equally spaced from the camera.

Now, any wind is working on both sides at once, so a twisting force is now a push force.

Those sticks do "push force" real good!

Problem 2. solved.

Contrive some sort of weight arrangement you can hang from the hook under the tripod receiver. Make the drop length adjustable so you can JUST get the weight grounded, so it can't swing in a gust.

Any tendency for you and the gear to do a modern day Mary Poppins should be pretty well kyboshed.

Problem 3. solved.

How's that for an elegant solution?


CS

PS: If you want to see some scenery, drop in and see me in Fairfield, bring the bar and I'll do the drilling and tapping for you. Probably a tad more expensive than the local machine shop, but then, they won't throw the scenery in for nothing!

Last edited by Chris Soucy; March 8th, 2012 at 04:22 PM. Reason: +
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:48 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network