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Preffered Docking Stand


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#1 Tom Schnaidt

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Posted 10 March 2005 - 01:41 PM

Just wondering if anybody out there has the model number for the American roller stand. I am looking to get something a bit better than what I've got, with wheels.

Is it a Junior Roller Stand? What size wheels do you use? Whats the min height (roughly). I've been to the online American Catalogue, but no Pics!. Or if anybody has a stand they love that isnt that American Stand, what can you tell me so that I may find one. Thanks a lot.

Tom
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#2 David George Ellis

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Posted 10 March 2005 - 03:13 PM

Hey Tom,

Not sure if what you got is better than what I'm posting, but when I was completing my insurance wishlist, I went to the B & H webstie and found this:

http://www.bhphotovi...ku=33090&is=REG

It's made by Matthews and looks a lot like the one I currently have. It's a Baby Junior with the 5/8" pin which fits most if not all of our docking brackets. Should do the job.....

If you need the Junior stand or just a page which gives you all of their options check this out:

http://www.bhphotovi...dren&Q=&ci=1173

You should see a section with just wheeled stands in the first column and then they give you all the necessary specs. They also give you the manufacturer's # so you can cross-reference with other sites. Hope this helps. Good luck!!

David
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#3 Tom Schnaidt

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 08:57 AM

David-

Thanks a lot. I dont know what I was thinking - - - with all the stuff I have purchased from them over the years. Good Call.

Tom
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#4 WillArnot

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 10:22 AM

Hey Tom, How are you.

The Stand from American is the best. I have the steel 2 riser. That Mathews stand's base is far too low. Especially if you are going to be pushing it around on wheels. The CG of that stand is too low and will tip easily when being pushed.

Call American and ask for their 'Steadicam stand'. That's what they call it. It is also all black which is great. I can take my wheels off easily for rough terrain and just use the rocky-mountain leg, which is also a must for a good Steadicam stand.

Best,

Will
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#5 David George Ellis

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 11:21 AM

The Stand from American is the best.  I have the steel 2 riser.  That Mathews stand's base is far too low.  Especially if you are going to be pushing it around on wheels.  The CG of that stand is too low and will tip easily when being pushed.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Hey Will,

I always wondered why it felt like I'm in an episode of Fear Factor whenever I have to roll the rig around, trying to dodge pebbles. Thanks for the even better tip!!!

David

P.S. Hey Tom, could you hook me up with the web address to American pretty please? When I Google it, I get all this patriotic mish-mosh. Thanks brah
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#6 Tom Schnaidt

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Posted 12 March 2005 - 11:49 AM

Hey Guys,

Thanks Will for the specs on the American stand. I know that its the one I want.

Dave, The web address for American is www.americangrip.com ---- I am however going to do as Will suggested and call them directly for the order, they dont list their "Steadicam Stand" in their online catalogue.

I really appreciate both your input.

Best,

Tom
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#7 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 12 March 2005 - 12:46 PM

Other nice things about the American stand:

the footprint is half way between a baby & a Jr.

Steel construction so it is heavy, combined with a higher center of gravity makes sand bags a thing of the past.

The risers are as thick as on a Jr. stand but he butt plug is welded in place.

Remvable wheels on casters.

Great stand.
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#8 Charles Papert

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Posted 12 March 2005 - 01:00 PM

If you happen to be in L.A., you can pick up the stand from American directly for 40%, a great deal.

One caveat I will make about the stand; the black powder-coating doesn't hold up nearly as well as chroming (which is why c-stands are still chromed, and every damn day you have to ask the grips to drape them with duv or tape to help with reflections...). Try to avoid putting any camera tape on the stand as it will quickly pull off the paint, and the stand will start to rust. Assistants seem to love to store focus wheel tape strips on the risers or legs when you turn your back.

If you are a bit more vertically challenged than our good pal Mr. Arnot (who I believe is something like 11'423"), you may be able to get away with the shorter single riser version. Might be a bit cheaper, but more importantly it saves considerable weight. As a point of reference, I'm 2'.0003" (OK, OK, I'm 5'7") and I find the top height of the single riser is almost always perfect for high mode.

The only feature I'd like to see improved is the casters--they lock, which is crucial, but the wheels are pretty small and tough to roll over cable. I've long meant to have a triangle base built with pneumatics but haven't gotten around to it.

I use a custom "front box" that attaches to the bottom of the stand and stores the most-needed goodies (Preston, batteries, posts, tools) so I can get to them without having to trot back to a cart.
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#9 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 12 March 2005 - 01:06 PM

One thing about the single riser version. If you use a super post, you'll need that second riser. Hating long posts, this is a very rare thing for me, but when I rented one from Greg Bubb recently (he now rents a 2" post with PRO connectors; two pieces and solid as a rock - the inner tube is still 1.75") I found I needed both risers.

I second Charles comments on the wheels. SO, Charles, IF you ever get around to it, I need a set too.
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#10 BJMcDonnell SOC

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Posted 12 March 2005 - 02:12 PM

Hey Charles,


I remember that front box you had. Did you have it custom built to fit on the stand legs? I remember you had a battery holder for the PRO 1 that attached to the stand. I need to check that out so I can build one.

BJ McDonnell
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#11 brooksrobinson

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 11:50 PM

Sorry to dredge up such an old topic, but I am finding myself looking for a new steadicam stand. The American seems to be great. I was thinking of getting one along with the bracket Backstage Carts makes to mount it on my cart when pushing from one stage to another. It would be nice to be able to push everything at once and be self-contained (the rig of course would be hard mounted to my cart...not on the stand when being pushed).

Backstage also makes some cool items for the American stand, and I was wondering if anyone had used these and what their impression was. The first thing I was looking at was the 8" pneumatic wheel kit which I was considering instead of the castors that American sells to go with the stand. Does anyone have any experience with these? They seem like they'd be great for rolling over cables on set. I have never had a stand with wheels, so I'm a little new to the idea of this.

The second thing I was looking for was some way to keep my Preston safe on the stand and possibly some batteries. Backstage has two products and I'm unsure which one would be better. The first is a bracket that attaches to the stand itself which can be used to hang a front-box (they also make one of these) from. This seems like a good idea, although I'm not sure if it would get in the way of the rig/arm/vest when they were all on the stand (i.e. between shots). The other option they offer is a small shelf that mounts to the base of the stand where the legs come together. This doesn't have the nice little dividers - it is just a shelf - but it looks like it wouldn't get in the way as much. Does one of these options look promising, or is there another vendor out there making something else that would be better?

I have included the link to their website where these items can be found. I'd be curious to hear opinions on these or other options.

http://www.backstage...ew Products.htm

Thanks for your help.

Brooks Robinson
bandmj@pacbell.net
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#12 Matt Petrosky

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 07:28 PM

Hey Brooks,

I have the Backstage 8" Pneumatic wheels for my stand and I hardly ever use them. I bought them for a job that had me flying to a different city every other day for a couple of weeks and I couldn't easily take my cart. The wheels work great and the stand is really stable because the wheels are so heavy. It rolls sidewalk cracks and cables with ease. There are a couple of drawbacks though.

First off weight. Great for stability, but they make the stand really heavy and they prevent it from folding completely so it is quite a pain to carry it upstairs and to load and unload it from a vehicle. Secondly in the wheel set I got, only one of the three locked properly and two of them wobbled terribly. To their credit Backstage stands behind their products and they have always made things right for me. When I brought my bad wheels in Sig Guzman had the guys swap them out and fix the brakes.

Thirdly, the company that makes the actual wheel assemblies stopped rounding the corners of their wheel "base plates" so I kept dinging my shins on the sharp corners. Again Sig (when I brought the wheels in) had this fixed by having the guys grind down the wheel base corners to match the curved corners of the backstage-made brackets.

In the end they work well and are a good solution for situations where you are without cart. I prefer to dock and live primarily off of my cart so I usually keep my stand free of all wheels to make it light and nimble and easy to carry into tight places where my cart can not make it. The 8" pneumatic wheels in essence make the American stand into a mini cart. They raise the base of the stand up around 9" higher then normal which leaves plenty of room to rig an accessory bag to the stand without it dragging. I was able to get backup batts., a Preston, etc. into the bag and it all just rolls along nicely.

Hope this helps,
Matt
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#13 brooksrobinson

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 10:12 PM

Thanks Matt for your insight. I really appreciate you taking the time to write such a detailed review. It will help immensely in my decision-making.

Brooks
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#14 brooksrobinson

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 11:35 PM

Matt...I forgot to ask in my last post what kind of bag you have on your stand to put your preston in? I'd love to have something other than my current set-up, which consists of the assistant hanging the hand-set up on my docking bracket or stand knuckle by the strap (with it banging into the stand half the time).

Does anyone else have any advice on (safely) hanging a Preston hand-set on a stand. Thanks in advance.

Brooks Robinson
bandmj@pacbell.net
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#15 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 09 February 2007 - 11:59 PM

Brooks,

For years I used a small bag on the stand to hold the focus unit because I hate it when it is hung from the neck strap and swings into things. Then an AC showed me a neat trick; he placed a small carabiner in the ring that holds the neck strap (they don't interfere with each other) to the hand unit. Now the hand unit can be easily hung from the docking bracket (I use a hill bracket so the balance beam slides instead of rotating) by this carabiner but there is not enough slack for it to swing into anything, making it safe. Still have the bag attached to the stand, but never use it.
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