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Can the Glidecam 4000 handle a bare bones F900?


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#1 Daniel Maggi

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Posted 03 April 2011 - 11:59 PM

Hey guys I am a newbie here (hence posting in the newbie forum). I am dp'ing a student thesis project on the F900 in about a month. My question is pretty straight forward. Can the Glidecam 4000 steadicam handle this camera? (stripped down of course) No DoF adapter or special attachments. Shooting on a prime lens.

I asked Panavision (where we are getting the camera) how much it weighed stripped down and they said 15-20. This seems a little high for the glidecam (maybe 15 would work). Anyone have any experience with this? Or know if this steadicam will work? Should I track down a different steadicam? (I have access to the Glidecam for free with a vest/arm)

Thanks!
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#2 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:07 AM

Hey guys I am a newbie here (hence posting in the newbie forum). I am dp'ing a student thesis project on the F900 in about a month. My question is pretty straight forward. Can the Glidecam 4000 steadicam handle this camera? (stripped down of course) No DoF adapter or special attachments. Shooting on a prime lens.

I asked Panavision (where we are getting the camera) how much it weighed stripped down and they said 15-20. This seems a little high for the glidecam (maybe 15 would work). Anyone have any experience with this? Or know if this steadicam will work? Should I track down a different steadicam? (I have access to the Glidecam for free with a vest/arm)

Thanks!


A F900r3 (Better hope its a R3) is 18+ lbs for the body alone, then you'll need a lens, more battery than you have on the glidecam a follow focus etc etc. When I last flew one it was in the 45lbs range for the built camera
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#3 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:10 AM

Hey guys I am a newbie here (hence posting in the newbie forum). I am dp'ing a student thesis project on the F900 in about a month. My question is pretty straight forward. Can the Glidecam 4000 steadicam handle this camera?



Wait wait wait. you mean THIS glidecam???? Glidecam 4000

if so, the answer is no way in hell
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#4 Tom Wills

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:10 AM

Daniel,

The F900 is a pretty heavy beast, and even when stripped down (which it very well might not be, if it's coming from Panavision) is still a full-sized ENG camera. This is not the kind of camera that you want to attempt to fly on the Glidecam. Even if you could get it to balance on the sled (which would probably require mods to the rig, if it could be accomplished at all), you would run the risk of severe damage to the Glidecam, and the arm would most likely not support it.

Plus, if your arm (or gimbal, or vest, or topstage, or a million other things) would fail, you're not only out the Glidecam, but you're also out the F900, which is not an inexpensive camera.

Now, in terms of tracking down a different rig - do you have any experience operating? Steadicam is not something you can pick up in a day, and requires years of practice and good training to become skilled at. Sure, anybody can pick up a rig and produce "better" footage than handheld, but to get the kind of shots you are probably expecting, you need some experience operating the rig. Since you're in LA, you've got a pick of operators, and if you've got the money to rent an F900, you can probably afford an operator. You might have to cut the Steadicam down to things you can do all in one day, but if you can get better shots, it would most likely be worth it.

Hope this helps!

EDIT: Eric beat me to the punch... twice. Serves me right for typing out a long post!
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#5 Daniel Maggi

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:21 AM

Thanks guys.

I kind of assumed this wasn't going to work, but I was hoping since I have access to this steadicam for free.

While we are getting a decent Panavision package, we got a student grant for it, so just because we have this nice camera does not necessarily mean we have enough money for an operator.

I have a friend (who owns the Glidecam) who knows how to operate it. I am not sure what his experience is with other rigs though and how easy it would be for him to translate to a new rig with a heavier camera than he is used to.

All of our steadicam shots are planned for 2 days and all of the steadicam shots are back to back so each day only requires a couple hours of operating.

What do you think my best options are? Hire and operator for the 2 days? Rent a rig and have my friend operate?

Thanks

EDIT: Do you know a ballpark price range for renting or hiring an operator too? For 2 days maybe 3 hours a day

Edited by Daniel Maggi, 04 April 2011 - 12:26 AM.

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#6 Daniel Maggi

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:23 AM

A F900r3 (Better hope its a R3) is 18+ lbs for the body alone...


Actually I am pretty sure it is just a regular F900 (not the R)

Are you sure of those weights? Panavision said with a very basic stripped F900 it would be 15-20 lbs. For the shots I need the steadicam for it could be stripped down no problem to just the basics.
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#7 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 12:24 AM

A F900r3 (Better hope its a R3) is 18+ lbs for the body alone...


Actually I am pretty sure it is just a regular F900 (not the R)

Are you sure of those weights? Panavision said with a very basic stripped F900 it would be 15-20 lbs. For the shots I need the steadicam for it could be stripped down no problem to just the basics.



Panavision is giving you the stripped body weight and yes I'm VERY sure of the weights, I've done three TV series and a movie with the F900
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#8 Janice Arthur

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 07:41 AM

Daniel;

Clearly you can't do this with the Glidecam XXX and your current camera.

1) Change the creative so you don't need Steadicam. Lots of movies get made without Steadicam and are just fine.

2) Get a 5D (someone you know has one) or some similar lighter camera and shoot it with that and your Glidecam. (Then you can match them all up in a way no one else ever has and be famous and write/talk about it, rather than talk about the Steadicam shots.) Latch-on to something else!

By giving up on finding a "full-sized rig and operator for no money" will then remove all this from your brain and you can get back to the important work of the rest of your film.

Its a pet peeve of mine that hours and hours and hours of work go into trying to make something work that either you can't afford and/or accomplish in the time and money you have. Know when to stop trying to make it work and try something else.

Just a thought not trying to kill your creative energy but its true for a lot, a lot of filmmakers.

Its the 'I want an Armani suit and you walk into the store and its $xxx. but you say I only have $xxx. and the clerk says here is what I can get you for that.' You could endlessly try to bargain with him or go get the money or buy another suit or try another store with the same result, either way--not productive use of your time.

My motto, "Just because you can kill the crew or youself doesn't mean you should."
JA
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#9 Fabrizio Sciarra SOC ACO

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Posted 04 April 2011 - 09:56 AM

Well said Janice!
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#10 Brodie butler

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Posted 07 April 2011 - 08:11 PM

I work with the DSLR cameras (5D,7D) and I use a glidecam HD-4000 with a steadicam merlin vest.

I get nervous enough about the weight using those cameras with a few attachments. What I have below is almost borderline at the maximum weight I would put on it. Im not willing to push my luck.

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