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Flying with Steadicam


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#1 Tony Reyes

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 08:27 PM

I have checked my Master series, I have even carried on my Hytron 100's.

However, tomorrow I'm planning on carrying on the following:
-Baby C-Stand
-Docking bracket
-Fiber jumper
-Hytron 100's and charger
-M-one motor
-Bartech Focus

This to me screams red flag and I don't want to have to go through security again. Obviously I'm trying to avoid the $50 dollar 3rd baggage fee.

Has anyone carried on those things? Any advice?

Thanks guys,
Tony
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#2 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 08:43 PM

I doubt the baby c-stand will fly.. no pun intended.'

Why so much carry-on and the hassle? Ship it or let Production pay for it.

Robert
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#3 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 09:58 PM

The bag with the batteries in it will most likely be searched so don't put them through the xray in a bag with a whole lot of stuff because it will all be pulled out. Sometimes they look at my bartech sometimes they don't. One brilliant TSA lady was convinced I was lieing to her about what it was and had a real attitude about it but couldn't come up with an actual reason to not let me through security with it and eventually let me through. Ironically this was domestic security coming back from an international trip where I had already cleared multiple layers of TSA, foreign security and customs without it even getting a second glance.

I have had TSA not let me through security because of a little bit of grease on my arm. I had to go to the bathroom and clean it up because they "couldn't let me through with a liquid or gel."

As long as something will fit through the xray TSA doesn't really seem to care how much stuff you are carrying on. The airlines might give you shit for things being too big or having too much stuff but at that point will usually just make you gate check it which doesn't cost you any money.

~Jess
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#4 Tony Reyes

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 12:50 AM

Well, I'm traveling to New Orleans as a "local" which was made possible because of super cheap Southwest flights. I know it's not ideal for us, but that's the situation.

BUT, I'm trying to save $50 measly dollars in baggage fees. Should I just check a third item so I don't have to deal with it as a carry on, OR should I half way wing it and go through TSA. I called Southwest and they said as long as it fits the stand shouldn't be problem. I love Southwest but for this amount of equipment it's up in the air.

Also, I'm checking in very early and should be going through security with plenty of time. So if everything goes to hell I could check my second carry on bag (worst case scenario).

Sounds like no issues with Bartech's??

Thanks guys, I love this message board. Basically my only form of legitimate Steadicam knowledge. Especially in Tennessee.
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#5 Evrim KAYA

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 05:29 AM

i recently took several trips with bartech + m-one as carryon. new orleans-atlanta; atlanta-jfk; jfk-istanbul. i had no problems.

ps: try not to use the words "remote" or "radio transmitter" when they ask about them. i'd put the antennas elswhere.

Edited by Evrim KAYA, 04 July 2012 - 05:31 AM.

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#6 RonBaldwin

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:35 AM

I often travel with an assortment of poles, livestock and glitter...never had an issue until (like Jess) I had Lisagav on my arm
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#7 David M. Aronson

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 11:30 PM

I often travel with an assortment of poles, livestock and glitter...never had an issue until (like Jess) I had Lisagav on my arm

When you do the 92Lb challenge on the go, do you fly in flan from Jumbo's or do you buy flan locally?
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#8 Markus Kuballa

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 11:34 AM

I know it's not exactly the topic but I have a gig coming up in Kroatia and need to get a Carnet A.T.A. for my gear to take it with me. Do any of you guys have any tips on this matter or know how much it's gonna cost me?

F.Y.I I travel from Germany.
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#9 Tony Reyes

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 10:54 PM

I chickened out and checked a 3rd bag. My carry on bags looked too funny with a baby c-stand spud sticking out the top.
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#10 Mark Schlicher

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 06:02 PM

Southwest offers discounts for checked bags for film and video companies. I can't remember whether it's just a discount on overweight or if it is a discount on the third bag. It may have changed since I flew with them. Anyway, find the page on their website, and carry a copy with you...not every ticket agent or gate agent is familiar with it. You just need some ID that shows you're a media professional. My business card worked every time but once...at LAX. I got a ticket agent who insisted that the media discount was ONLY available to those with major network press credentials. Not true, but too much hassle to argue.

EDIT: okay, found the page. http://www.southwest...uggage-pol.html

$50 charged for excess bags, but overweight and oversize charges are waived. I also now remember that one time I got hassled for packing camera gear in a bag that also contained my personal stuff. The waiver is technically only for equipment cases.
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#11 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 08:45 PM

But the clothes are just padding for the gear! I have used the southwest media rate a lot. The person at the counter hardly ever knows it exists but there boss sometimes does. I take a copy of the policy from their webpage with me and it usually solves the problem. I am stubborn so I have never not gotten it but I have had to argue a few times, although flying out of LA I have never even had to say a word, they simply knew not to charge for oversize, overweight equipment cases.

~Jess
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#12 Rob Vuona SOC

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 11:34 PM

As far as travel with gear goes, I do 24 countries a year with my gear

Knock on wood , to date , 10 times around the world with no issues or equipment loss

Mark is correct, media rates almost always apply, southwest is also great about their rates, compared to international rates, the domestic $25, $50,$100 amounts are so inexpensive it's rediculous.

Which brings me to my next point...... There should never be an issue with the amount to travel your gear especially having to try to save $50 because your trying to do a turtle stand in a carry on. Bill it to production like Robert stated.

Oh wait, your traveling yourself and working as a "local" ,now you have to absorb these costs personally. So, Tony, you think this is ok, how would you feel if someone flew in to your town and took a gig that you were up for because they decided to "be a local". If production wants you on a project , great, go, travel , shoot, do the job but you should be worth it enough for them to fly you there and pay for your gear to be flown in. Let me guess, they didn't pay you for travel, your on a flat rate, you get no per diem, and you have to put yourself up or crash on a couch or share a room. No offense, but this is not the way to make your mark and get a gig.

Sorry this particular issue rubs me the wrong way I have lots of friends that live in New Orleans and I'm sure they wouldn't be too excited about you showing up and working as a local as would many others in all the other markets.

I know there are exceptions to the rule and I may very well be off the mark with you and your situation and if so I am sorry to be pointing this at you and getting off the original topic.

My $.02
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#13 Brant S. Fagan SOC

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 09:44 AM

I second Rob's thoughts about localizing yourself and gear. Sure, we all need to work and sometimes we need to stretch to make things happen but the line must be drawn clearly.

You might have avoided all the negative press here by simply not stating your actual operational plans but merely asked about traveling gear on aircraft, but because you mentioned it, you get what comes your way.

Since you are "helping" production "finance" their job by not charging the traditionally agreed upon fees for basic logistics, you could have asked them for the Key Grip's contact data so as to introduce yourself and inquire about borrowing a stand instead of making a big deal out of traveling yours to NOLA. Hey, you could even "rent" one from the Grip by paying a "fee" in glass containers filled with a liquid of their choice!

For my own peace of mind, I prefer to ship my gear via FedEx and avoid the whole airport scene that comes with traveling with the gear. Mostly, production is expecting to ship the gear but some folks just don't realize what 8-12 cases looks like (depending on the job) in one pile. I have since taken photos of the pile waiting for a FedEx pickup and actually sent them to a couple of greener production types and instantly won them over. Making a clear statement and not whining about it can make for an understanding early on in the process!

In the past, I have shown my 600 card, my SOC card, and my business card just to show "professional" status. Each airline is different and it does help to carry their stated terms in case a local agent wants to work you over.
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