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Poll: A poll on cart usage (32 member(s) have cast votes)

What kind of cart do you use?

  1. home depot (4 votes [12.50%])

    Percentage of vote: 12.50%

  2. backstage steadicam cart (20 votes [62.50%])

    Percentage of vote: 62.50%

  3. Murphy cart (1 votes [3.12%])

    Percentage of vote: 3.12%

  4. I don't use/ need a cart I only use a stand with wheels. (4 votes [12.50%])

    Percentage of vote: 12.50%

  5. homemade cart (3 votes [9.38%])

    Percentage of vote: 9.38%

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#1 David Allen Grove

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 02:57 PM

After 11 years of operating Steadicam and using a couple of different cheap junky carts,
I've come to the conculsion that I simply don't need a cart since I now have the american stand with casters.

I talked to another steadicam operator who has been doing it since almost the beginning of steadicam
and he doesn't even have a cart. It was illumination!

Now when I show up to set I put all of my equipment on the stand and throw my cases back in the van.
I use sturdy bags that hang on the stand. It works out great and it's a terrific space saver.

I know I'm missing some carts in the poll but there you have it..

So... on with the poll.
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#2 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 04:27 PM

A cart is a required piece of kit imo if only to give the AC's a place to do the conversion over to steadicam. Maybe you can do the stand and bags thing if in the video world (and I did back in the dark ages) But with the normal amount of gear needed on a series or feature a cart is no longer optional.

Besides a cart gives you a secure place for your personal items like keys etc if you have a locking drawer under your top shelf.
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#3 David Allen Grove

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 06:00 PM

Ah heck no Eric! :) ha!

I keep my keys in my pants. (safest place) well, on most shoots.. haha

All the assistants that I use have their own cart for that.

I rented my rickshaw out to a show that Randy Nolen was working on and I was
surprised to hear from him that to this day he still does NOT use a cart and he's done everything
http://imdb.com/name/nm0634418/
and has been doing it a loooong time.

I think this topic goes under "what works for one person might not work for another"

It works for me and it's refreshing!
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#4 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 09:12 PM

While that might work for you and work on the shows that you are doing doesn't mean it works for others. There is no way I could operate on set with a limited amount of accessories in bags hanging from my stand. For instance few weeks ago I need to motorized the dimmer on a lite-panel, since I have all my follow focus widgets in the cart bag on my cart it was a easy 3 min affair. It also helped to have a work surface to do it on.

All the AC's I use have the camera carts full with camera gear and don't really have real estate for my to borrow.

So while it may work for you and Randy I would hazard a guess and say you guys are in the minority here in LA.
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#5 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 10:49 PM

I gotta agree with Eric on this one. I started with no cart, then a home depot upright unit and this worked fine for corporate videos, etc. Then onto a Rock 'n Roller, which I used for years. Now a Film Tools Senior Steadicam Cart. What pushed me into the real deal was working on episodic and features in NYC where the camera truck may be blocks away so you need to have everything with you (my Rock 'n Roller did this too) because what is the point of having [insert occasionally used item here] if you can't get it fast enough to make it useful? Furthermore, moving the rig on the American Stand on exteriors for anything more than a very short distance is just too much of an adventure! As for using an AC's cart, they are usually looking to sneak snuff on my cart.
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#6 David Allen Grove

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 11:14 PM

Hmm. Maybe I don't have as much stuff as you guys to haul around then?

Sled, arm, vest,
2 channel Lens controls w/all accessories
video recorder
transmitter
shark fin w/tuner
arm posts, brackets, powercables
batteries/charger (those are usually on a cart designated for battery charging.)

When I'm done for the day I put the batteries/charger in a collapsable case and the shark fin & tuner in another. Those both go on the rickshaw seat. (So I guess I'm cheating somewhat using the rickshaw).

The small casters I currently have are a pain though, I do agree with you on that Alec.
I plan on getting really big casters in the very near future for my stand. maybe 10 or even 12 inch casters!
I hope I don't have a Rollover!

I'm just trying to minimize... it does work for me and it sure looked like it worked for Randy! :)

Anyone else with a different experience?
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#7 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 11:30 PM

David,

"I plan on getting really big casters in the very near future for my stand. maybe 10 or even 12 casters! "

Where? American Grip wants nothing to do with this. I've asked them on the phone on several occasions as well as in person at this last NAB. This last encounter was funny because I told the sales guy that there were plenty of Steadicam guys that would buy the big wheels and his response was "I know, but we have no plans on doing that."

Ugh.
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#8 David Allen Grove

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Posted 26 May 2006 - 11:37 PM

I didn't think American Grip had anything this size.. maybe they do?

I was actually thinking about Northern Tool.

I already have 2 of these casters for my rickshaw and they are great!

They are $40 each (plus shipping)
I'll have to get Tom Gleason to make stand adaptors..

http://www.northernt...d=40245&R=40245
Posted Image
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#9 Grayson Austin

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Posted 27 May 2006 - 12:23 AM

I didn't think American Grip had anything this size.. maybe they do?

I was actually thinking about Northern Tool.

I already have 2 of these casters for my rickshaw and they are great!

They are $40 each (plus shipping)
I'll have to get Tom Gleason to make stand adaptors..

http://www.northernt...d=40245&R=40245
Posted Image


BackStage already does this as a set with 8 inch pneumatic casters. Check the website under new products I believe at backstageweb.com. They slip right on the legs and clamp on. They work great, however they do raise the whole thing up a bit. 10 inch casters might be a bit too high, but I run a long sled a lot of the time and ACs might get irritable at having to use a step ladder to get to the camera. The set also adds much needed ballast to the bottom of a stand set up. I have the set for the American Steadicam Stand(two riser) as well as the front box stand adapter and the access shelf that attaches to the leg struts(both things thanks to ideas and pioneering from Erwin) and the stand holder which slips onto the side of the cart and the stand hangs on with the two pins like on the grip truck. Very groovy. Got one of their new Landau Deluxe Carts(Not the official name but it could be) on order as well. Thanks again to Irwin for the rough pioneering through untread(get it? tread! See what I did there?) territory. I should say that I don't consider this stand set up a replacement for a cart and I currently use the backstage full blown steadicam senior set up at least until my new one is ready. The stand is really for getting the rig into interiors where we are forced to leave the larger carts outside but I can usually convince anybody concerned to let my stand come in, even into a delicate interior. My two bits(inflation).

Grayson Austin
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#10 David Allen Grove

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Posted 27 May 2006 - 01:05 AM

Thanks Grayson!
here it is!
http://backstageweb....ew Products.htm

Very cool. looks like 8" would work just fine. $275. Hmm.
I think I could have these made cheaper. $16 per 8" at northerntool.com
Then it's just a matter of adapting.

I do like the Mag Steadi-Cam Stand Front Box Bracket for $85. and the utility tray.
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#11 Grayson Austin

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Posted 27 May 2006 - 03:44 AM

Hey David,

Yeah, I know, $275 seems like a lot and it is not peanuts but here is how I justified it for myself anyway:
$100+ of that is for the three wheels/casters and all three casters have brakes(I could not find 8 inch casters on the northern website that had brakes) which I think is important. I tried a stand with non-brake casters years ago and watched it very nearly outwit an AC(it was a tossup for about a minute as to who would win) on the back of a camera truck liftgate as it was going down. I very nearly soiled myself watching the stand roll to the edge of the liftgate and teeter with full rig attached(I have also seen near disasters with steadi-carts that were not locked/brakes on).

As for the remaining $175, unless you are best friends with, related to, or sleeping with a machinist or whatever combination thereof(I don't want to know) it might be difficult to have three sturdy adapters come in under that amount. I have never been able to get a machinist to make me anything that did not cost at least that much without wining and dining them(beer and burgers).

Plus I needed the stuff for a job and had no time to try another avenue when I knew someone already had it all together with no muss or fuss.

I did like that Northern had 10 inch casters both rigid and swivel with brakes for the swivel ones with the same specs and weight loads as filmtools or backstage and they were cheaper so I would use those for my cart most definitely. I even saw tires that were the puncture proof foam filled so still a very good find. Thanks David.

Grayson Austin
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#12 David Allen Grove

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Posted 27 May 2006 - 10:46 AM

Grayson,
I checked Northern tool again and didn't see any 8" w/brakes either.
I sent them an email asking if they had any.. maybe they have them hidden somewhere
or they might be able to get some. They do have a "suggest a procduct" link so you never know.

I may just go with the 10" I'll just have to request really tall camera assistants.
Hey I've been asked how tall I am for a number of steadicam jobs.. :blink:

I'll also check to see how much it would cost to have adaptors made.
Tom Gleason www.cinewidgets.com would most
likely be able to do this. He made me an intermediate plate for my 12" casters to
go with my rickshaw and it's working out great! He's reasonably priced.


Thanks for the heads up on those stand products! I'm seriously thinking about that
tray and even the front box bracket.
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#13 Sean Jensen

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Posted 27 May 2006 - 03:14 PM

Hi all!

I've been operating steadicam for 12 years and all I have ever used on set is a C-Stand and my small (6"X18") on set bag, which sits at the base of the stand. I have almost all the bells and whistles and have always felt that, when it comes to being on set, less is better. The assistants I usually work with love my minimalist approach. No one has ever waited for me to run to the truck to get something. I can't imagine doing it any other way.

Cheers!

Sean Jensen
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#14 Afton Grant

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Posted 29 May 2006 - 07:44 AM

all I have ever used on set is a C-Stand and my small (6"X18") on set bag, which sits at the base of the stand.


Wow, that is minimalist, all right. How do you transport your sled, arm and vest? All are rather cumbersome things when not up and flying.

I do suppose, gun to my head, I could manage to stuff all my accessories into a small bag and work out of it for a day. However, a hard case is the peace of mind I need to know its contents are safe from whatever mishaps may arise. Organization is also just below OCD level. A lot of money went into that gear, and I just couldn't settle for anything less.

To each his own,
Afton
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#15 Sean Jensen

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Posted 29 May 2006 - 08:22 AM

Hey All!

Afton, I bring all my kit to the truck in all the appropriate road cases (Clydesdale, Pelican & Modular 51) and usually build on the truck then move the rig to set. Let me specify, I don't do many day calls so I don't need to bring everything with me every day. My full package stays on the truck and I only take to set exactly what I need on set. Also, in Toronto, we are still able to park the unit fairly close to set when we are on location. This makes a huge difference. But things are changing. Maybe, when Toronto gets a little less film friendly and we have to park far from set, I'd consider a cart.

Cheers!

Sean Jensen
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