Benefits of Steadicam?

9 replies [Last post]
Billwill
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Joined: Sep 17 2000

I'm attracted to the idea of showing my films at the video club (Newcastle ACA) without any unsmooth camera panning.

Pro movies use cams moving all over the place often with zooming and do have a professional look. My Canon XM1 isn't going to do that. Or can it?

Is it worth aquiring a steadicam and can it be produced as a DIY accessory by a chap with access to a lathe and welder?

Billy Ellwood is on Vimeo http://www.newcastleaca.co.uk at the film club

tom hardwick
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Joined: Apr 8 1999

It sounds as if you mean tracking rather than panning Bill, as the latter can be very "professional" using a fluid headded tripod.

And it's yes to your questions. Your XM-1 will fit any number of the staedycams on sale and of course one could be produced from raw stock. Bet you don't save any money though, and bet you won't be up and running with it (literally) within a month.

tom.

Alan Roberts at work
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Joined: May 6 1999

The smaller steady-mounts are quite good, albeit limited in scope. They are gravity-based, using the undamped-pendulum effect to keep the camera upright. That, said, they work well at the price. I use a Hague unit and am happy with it after a couple of home-brew mods (add a spirit level, and replace the top plate with a Manfrotto slide). Make sure you get one (or make one) with full x-y positioning of the camera relative to the pivot, because that's how you'll get fine control of the balance once the weights are critical (i.e. you're pivoting the whole unit only a mm or so above the centre of gravity).

The bigger, professional beasts cost a lot and perform magnificently with cameras up to 15kg, using balanced springs and a full torso Kevlar vest to support it. Costs a lot and does the job immaculately, but you have to be strong.

JamesE
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Joined: Oct 23 2000

Hi,

Depends on what you want. If you fancy getting up and running with some action then use Steadicam, if you want fast traking shots then go with Steadicam.

The Steadicam can produce some excellent results.

James

JamesE
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Joined: Oct 23 2000

And by the way...

It is possible to make your own Steadicam,
Check out: http://w1.226.telia.com/~u22604215/homebuiltstabilizers.html

but for the best results use the real thing.

James

Dave Currie
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Joined: Mar 4 2001

JamesE,

And there's me thinking I was the only Forum reader who knew of this site! Still with two of us posting the address it won't be long before everyone knows!

Dave C

ps Are you going to have a go at making one?

king
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Joined: Aug 27 2001

Charles King
If it can be done, do it!

JamesE
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Joined: Oct 23 2000

Dave,

I know it's a bit late but no I am not going to make one! I already own the Steadicam JR.
Are You?

James
PS - If u do send in some pics to the website, for all to see! There must be clever people to make them, I know i Couldn't!

Des
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Joined: Apr 7 1999

Take a look at the Camsling at: http://www.camsling.co.uk/

It won't compare against the Hague on certain short shots but as a general workhorse I'd back it in a shoot out comparison.

Des

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Peter Wedlake
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Joined: Apr 19 1999

Or have a look here www.peterwedlake.co.uk
Nothing like blowing your own trumpet..

Cheers
Pete

Cheers
Pete