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Arm Upgrade

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#1 Kenny Brown SOC

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Posted 19 January 2004 - 12:05 AM

Hi all

Any ideas on which route I should go to upgrade/replace my EFP blue spring arm. It's been "upgraded" to use thick rubber bands down the sides of the bones to give me more capacity and have been able to fly most things but they make the rig bouncy. Great for the "Oh you want to use the 10:1 zoom and a 1000ft mag on this one" but not ideal for everyday use.

Should I/could I just get some gold springs in there? Silver spings upgrade from Australia or replace the arm with something beefier?

And yes I know I'll have to upgrade my gimbal so any suggestions on that.


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#2 RonBaldwin


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Posted 19 January 2004 - 09:46 PM

Hi Kenny,
someone else may have to chime in here to correct my numbers, but I seem to remember a replacement set of gold or similar springs + labor to be around $3500 to $4000 USD. I think Rig's total overhaul/re-anodize/new spring deal was in the $5000 ballpark.

I don't work for Rig Engineering (those kind fellas down unda') but I do know Hugo and have seen his work, very nice. If I had an EFP/2/3/3A arm and was ready for a complete overhaul/new springs, I'd go with his system with a set of light AND heavy springs.

For the record, I currently own a Pro arm and have had zero issues with it in nearly 4 years of everyday use -- very expensive...very sexy.

ron b
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#3 Erwin Landau

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Posted 21 January 2004 - 04:50 AM

Hi Kenny,

The EFP Arm is exactlly the same arm as the 3A, the only difference are the Springs. There are a couple of companies that will upgrade the springs:

- Robert Luna in LA.
- Daniel Sauve in Canada.
- Howard Smith/MK-V in Britain.

And there were a couple more...

As for the Gimbal... any 1.5" Gimbal will do... depending on your budget.

FYI: Always change the cables at the same time you change the Springs...
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#4 Brett Manyluk

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 11:09 PM


My 2 cents...

I own a modified EFP modified by David Hable in Vancouver (604.254.8619 - 2 battery 12/24 volt system and moved the junction box onto the post; vest re-enforced with thicker central spar plate (watch that the original vest spar doesn't fail with heavy cameras!!) and back straps). I decided to go the route of a new arm and went down to Cine Gear last year to try out everything (except the steadyrig upgrade, they weren't there unfortunately...maybe this year?) and found IN MY OPINION that the Baer-Bel arm was the right one for my money. The workmanship is incredible and the x-joint design gets rid of additional vibration from your central joint bonking together when you run. The arm is longer than a 3a which I really appreciate (I'm 6'6"), and is considerably smoother. I've had it in +43 degree days (over 100 F) and in -25 degree celcius days. Shortly I'll have it on another heavy-exterior show in -40 degree celcius weather (also -40 F) and imagine it'll perform very well.

It has compression springs that, like the industry standard Pro, can be swapped out very quickly. It is also considerably less expensive than the Pro, but the performance (at least at Cine Gear) was seemingly identical (MY OPINION...I would be happy to test the two side by side in the extreme cold of the Canadian North if anyone wants to send me up a Pro demo arm ;) ). Look into it if the Steadyrig option does not meet your needs.

However, with time and much more money, I would likely upgrade my (now) backup EFP/3a arm to a steadyrig arm and have capacity to fly both big and small on it as well.

Hope that helps.

Brett Manyluk

Snowville, -40 Land
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#5 Brett Manyluk

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 11:12 PM

Sorry, forgot to add that I really wanted to look at Howards Mk-5 arm, but it was not ready for Cine Gear last year and I couldn't wait. If it's available, make sure to look at that one too as I'm sure it's craftsmanship will be excellent like his other products.

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