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#1 thomas-english

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 11:18 AM

For an up coming job I am thinking of suggesting the use of a forklift. Enabling me to do high tracking shots followed by "crane style" put downs and steadicam walk arounds. Some of the shots involve flying through a nightclub high (above the crowds heads) to land on the stage and film the bands actions then back into the crowd.

I am aware from a previous post (courtesy of TJ Williams) that there is a jump down in the middle of the drop were the forklift risers become undoubled, and that noise is an obvious issue .I was wondering if anyone else may have some tips in shooting with forklifts?


recommended forklifts? suspension? Anyone worked with the ones that can go sideways. Theres a forklift truck trade show at the exel center london next week so i shall peruse all the models theres

Top speeds possible at height? Anyone experienced the precariousness of traveling at speed at higher reaches of the truck.

Can anyone recommend a forklift truck driver based in england/europe that has access to kit he/she s very used to and is very ?soft? on the brakes.

Are there any other health and safety issues i should think about?

I am guessing that there must be some pretty strong G forces when turning due to the fact that they are rear wheel stear?

I plan on doing your standard health/safety things, one heavy grip on the pallet to hold on to me and clip me in and out. To have a tall scaffolding pole mounted in the middle/front of the pallet to pass my arm around.

Thank you very much.
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#2 Stephen Murphy

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 01:15 PM

Thomas,

Using a forklift on an interior scene sounds like it might present more problems then it solves. They are big, unwieldy, noisy and emit nasty fumes for a start. As you mentioned they also have a problem with smooth booms.
Why couldnt you achieve the same shot on a dolly? Have your grip build a platform and make sure you use a big solid dolly like a Hybrid or a Hustler. Standing on the top of a chapman hybrid arm at full extension will get you a great hight without any of the above drawbacks. Its also a hell of a lot safer for you and far more accurate. If you use a forklift you might find yourself spending all of your energy compensating for its inadequacies instead of pulling off a cool (and safe) shot.
Hope this helps.
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#3 thomas-english

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 03:40 PM

point very much taken. The club shot is an old train station so theres plenty of access and big doors.

Chapman hybrid arm? much safer and completely quite.

or even a built up cargo trolley (used for carting about big speakers)

I see these forklifts in warehouses working so quitely, quickly and with such cool movement i want to explore them as avenue s ... but i suspect your right, all these shots can be achieved by traditional means
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#4 WillArnot

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 04:17 PM

Or you could try the old Jerry / Garrett throne.

A simple 4 x 4 ft wood platform with 2 x 4 handles coming off the corners and middles with a grip on each handle. You stand on it, they walk you around.

No fumes, much sweat.
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#5 thomas-english

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 08:14 PM

genius!
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#6 thomas-english

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Posted 06 March 2005 - 08:17 PM

just like in asterix!
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#7 benedictspence

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 07:54 PM

Hey Thomas-
Watch out for forklift trucks. I did a supid BBC health and Safety day a couple of months ago; but the guy running it had some nasty story about a camera guy atop of forklift getting his head knocked in. Pretty gruesome tales they had to tell- and some pretty hairy rushes of when things go wrong on shoots!

Just watch out dude!
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#8 mattmarek

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Posted 17 March 2005 - 05:34 AM

please watch this safety video on forklift operations :

http://home.astrakan...ahrer_klaus.wmv

cheers and good luck thomas. hope klaus isn't your driver :)
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#9 RobinThwaites

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Posted 17 March 2005 - 08:43 AM

Hi Thomas

I would definitely keep away from fork-lifts, I know a UK operator who fell off one and was lucky enough to walk away with a broken arm and trashed rig - and the fork lift was only being used to lift and not even moving.

Robin Thwaites
OpTex
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#10 jay kilroy

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 10:28 AM

Or you could try the old Jerry / Garrett throne.

A simple 4 x 4 ft wood platform with 2 x 4 handles coming off the corners and middles with a grip on each handle.  You stand on it, they walk you around. 

No fumes, much sweat.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Good Ole' "Slave Cam"
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#11 DavidWest

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 02:34 PM

forklifts are fine IF:

you are inside a "man basket" which is attached to the forks via channels and chained to the mast,

and


IF:

you dont mind getting a hand chopped off now and then....


the biggest danger when putting a man on a forklift is the way that the mast raises or lowers creates pinch points that will cut off your hand or arm or whatever you happen to let rest in the wrong spot....


the other hazard is since the rig is NOT designed to carry people- most riggs will come crashing down if you loose a hydralic line... this could result in a very serious injury....

is it done in industry, yes fairly often... is it unsafe, ... yes...

if you HAVE to do it, keep your hands away from the mast (the part that goes up and down) ..... (also keep an eye out for power lines)..

Or. OSHA says... "Vertical mast forklifts can be used to lift workers as long as a safety platform (?basket?) with a standard
railing is used and secured to the carriage. Shear point guarding must also be provided between the
worker(s) and the mast. The forklift must be attended while workers are in it and always consider the
weight in relation to the trucks capacity and stability."

and BC regs- "Never elevate workers on forks, pallets, or
loads."

http://smallbusiness...?ReportID=32813

or calif http://www.montereyc...lift_safety.htm
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#12 TJ Williams

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 01:11 AM

Certainly there are more problems with a fork lift than the bump.
Like any machinery there are a lot of areas where care and caution are needed.

This discussion raised a couple of questions for me. Stephen Murphys idea about a, plat form on top of a mitchell mount on the camera position of a dolly hydraulic arm is certainly interesting. I'm not clear how it will be more safe. For instance what prevents the operators falling off? Designs? pictures?

If despite all the above you do decide to use a fork lift here are
A couple of fork lift considerations:

1. Use electric or compressed gas powered and it should be used only in a high ceiling or well ventilated area. be sure you have clearance above!
2. drop brake or dual hydraulics so that a failure cannot lead to a fall. Although most hydraulic failures will only slowly lower you to the ground.
3. Rig a harness and strap hanger from under your vest, to the upright portion of the lift. so that if you loose your balance you are still hanging from the clamped on bar. When stepping off or on have a grip riding with you to aid balance, and to throw your harness loop over the extending bar to safety you.
4. strapping a piece of ply board or core material to the upright will prevent any fingers into the machinery.
5. Block the pallet to the tongs so that there is no wiggle and deck over the pallet for good footing. One nice advantage over crane step on and off is that there is no effect of unloading as in a crane stepoff.
6. Just like a crane don't go up there without an operator you trust and work out a set of communications methods.

The end result of all this is a dolly that moves in any direction with an extraordinary varied camera height and opportunities to step off and on at various heights. I think you will be able to design shots that would be difficult to pull off any other way.

TJ
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#13 Stephen Murphy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 06:06 AM

This discussion raised a couple of questions for me. Stephen Murphys idea about a, plat form on top of a mitchell mount on the camera position of a dolly hydraulic arm is certainly interesting. I'm not clear how it will be more safe. For instance what prevents the operators falling off?


hi TJ,

Im sorry but i dont have any pictures of this setup. In the past ive mounted a bazooka to the top of the arm giving me something to be carabined/strapped to.
If you wanted to mount the platform onto the mitchell mount then im sure it wouldnt be a problem for the grips to add a saftey railing for you as well.
Heres a photo of mike o shea doing something similar, which i found in the steadicam-ops photo gallery.

Attached Files


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#14 TJ Williams

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:21 AM

Velly interesting.... Stephen.

NIce Pic. HOw did you clip the bazooka on?

What was it like to step on and off? It looks like a pretty small platform, we Irish with big feet are concerned!! Wouldn't the bottom be quite a ways off the floor?

Why can't they just be satisfied with my height.... Willliams...
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#15 thomas-english

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:34 AM

Thankyou very very much for all your help. I will let you know of my conclusions once ive hung out at various warehouses for a little. Really appreciate all your advice s.

Maybe ill make a forklift alien revolution... i suppose ill have to call it something different.

MATT! how are ya! good to hear from you again. ive still got a bottle of sang tip aside... but it doesn t quite taste the same away from the land of lunarcy and smiles. I love the safety video. ill show that to the producer and hopefuly get an extra hundred on my rate.

Cheers for all the very very good advice.
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