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To Superpost Or Not To Superpost?


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#1 Dan Coplan

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Posted 20 August 2006 - 09:59 AM

Seems to me the ability to scrape the ground is a basic part of what we should be able to provide, yet most people I've spoken to don't have the equipment necessary or if they do have it, apparently it's not used that often.

How do you all deal with situations in which you're asked to fly ground level?

Dan
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#2 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 20 August 2006 - 12:50 PM

How do you all deal with situations in which you're asked to fly ground level?



I've only had to do that type of shot 4 times. But I do have the gear for it. There are a few ways to cheat it, like Hardmount, or long post in the arm. Each has advantages and disadvantages.

Long post Advantage: range, some of the long post's available are close to 5 feet
Disadvantage:Lack of rigidity, it's 5 feet long! and then you have to remember IT's FIVE FEET LONG. Unless you have a tilting stage it's a huge PITA to tilt, they become arcs.

Hardmount Advantage: You are working with a rig that's the size that you are used to.
disadvantge: You loose flexibility since you are limited by the hard mount.

Long arm post advantages: it's simple and cheap.
disadvantage: makes the arm very unwieldily, has flex issues
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#3 Andrey Yazydzhi

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Posted 22 October 2008 - 08:04 AM

Seems to me the ability to scrape the ground is a basic part of what we should be able to provide, yet most people I've spoken to don't have the equipment necessary or if they do have it, apparently it's not used that often.

How do you all deal with situations in which you're asked to fly ground level?

Dan

Thise year I used my super post 4 times "to scrape" with Arri235. And 8 times for super high mode .
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#4 Lawrence Karman

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Posted 22 October 2008 - 10:24 AM

Seems to me the ability to scrape the ground is a basic part of what we should be able to provide, yet most people I've spoken to don't have the equipment necessary or if they do have it, apparently it's not used that often.

How do you all deal with situations in which you're asked to fly ground level?

Dan



I've always said the super post is like the atom bomb. Good to have, but let's hope you never have to use it. Think I have used mine a total of 3 times and it's a pain in the arse. Hard to set up and like Eric says hard to tilt. That being said, I'm glad I have it. Even though PRO will rent you one sometimes you can't predict when you might need it. It's not always practical to hard mount to a dolly to get down to the ground, but that will work. As I have said in this forum before when people ask if they need this particular cable or that bracket, if you think you might need it someday and can afford it, and this is your chosen profession, then get it.
I used it on one job where the 435 mag was literally touching the ground and the DP still wanted it lower. He suggested mounting the low angle prism to the rig. I declined.
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#5 JobScholtze

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Posted 22 October 2008 - 01:10 PM

I used it with the AR adventures and a few times for normal low mode and i use it a lot for high mode shots. My rig is 4 stage, so its there all the time. Makes the rig a bit heavyer but i am used to it. Cant live with or without it i guess. The only thing i really love about it is no more lowmode cages, as i truley hate them.
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#6 Mike McGowan SOC

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Posted 22 October 2008 - 06:09 PM

I had a super post with my first PRO. I used it a few times (mostly because I suggested it just because I wanted to play with it). You can generally get by using other tecniques (like those mentioned above). I havn't got around to getting one for the new PRO but I probably will next time a have a few grand to blow. I've used a 4 stage post before and It is a cool option but it does add a bit of weight. I also can't imagine you use it much more than you would use a super post but I could be wrong.

On a feature there is usually a special shot they want that's super low but you have time and resources to figure out how to do it correctly. For the quick and easy super low shot (like the kind you might do on a music video) I built a stupid post. It's basically a metal cane that replaces the arm post. It goes in, curvs down and pins into the gimbal. I can actually go about 12" below my feet (so for example I can scrape the ground even when my feet are up on a step or the curb). It is a bit more 'wankey' because you loose some control when the rig is that low and your arm is so far down. You also can not sholder the sled when your wearing it. It's quick and easy and puts a smile on the hip hop video director's face but you would never use it for anything long format.

How low can you get with an AR? It seems like the cage would prevent you from getting all the way to the ground but you could still probably get crazy low. If were talking center of the lense with a 435, how many inches from the ground?
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#7 Andrey Yazydzhi

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 05:39 AM

I had a super post with my first PRO. I used it a few times (mostly because I suggested it just because I wanted to play with it). You can generally get by using other tecniques (like those mentioned above). I havn't got around to getting one for the new PRO but I probably will next time a have a few grand to blow. I've used a 4 stage post before and It is a cool option but it does add a bit of weight. I also can't imagine you use it much more than you would use a super post but I could be wrong.

On a feature there is usually a special shot they want that's super low but you have time and resources to figure out how to do it correctly. For the quick and easy super low shot (like the kind you might do on a music video) I built a stupid post. It's basically a metal cane that replaces the arm post. It goes in, curvs down and pins into the gimbal. I can actually go about 12" below my feet (so for example I can scrape the ground even when my feet are up on a step or the curb). It is a bit more 'wankey' because you loose some control when the rig is that low and your arm is so far down. You also can not sholder the sled when your wearing it. It's quick and easy and puts a smile on the hip hop video director's face but you would never use it for anything long format.

How low can you get with an AR? It seems like the cage would prevent you from getting all the way to the ground but you could still probably get crazy low. If were talking center of the lense with a 435, how many inches from the ground?

Look at this photos for low mode variants with my telescopic superpost . Arri435 in low mode cage and Arri235 . Both are tilting up about 20deg.

Attached Files


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#8 Andrey Yazydzhi

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 05:56 AM

I had a super post with my first PRO. I used it a few times (mostly because I suggested it just because I wanted to play with it). You can generally get by using other tecniques (like those mentioned above). I havn't got around to getting one for the new PRO but I probably will next time a have a few grand to blow. I've used a 4 stage post before and It is a cool option but it does add a bit of weight. I also can't imagine you use it much more than you would use a super post but I could be wrong.

On a feature there is usually a special shot they want that's super low but you have time and resources to figure out how to do it correctly. For the quick and easy super low shot (like the kind you might do on a music video) I built a stupid post. It's basically a metal cane that replaces the arm post. It goes in, curvs down and pins into the gimbal. I can actually go about 12" below my feet (so for example I can scrape the ground even when my feet are up on a step or the curb). It is a bit more 'wankey' because you loose some control when the rig is that low and your arm is so far down. You also can not sholder the sled when your wearing it. It's quick and easy and puts a smile on the hip hop video director's face but you would never use it for anything long format.

How low can you get with an AR? It seems like the cage would prevent you from getting all the way to the ground but you could still probably get crazy low. If were talking center of the lense with a 435, how many inches from the ground?

Look at this photos for low mode variants with my telescopic superpost . Arri435 in low mode cage and Arri235 . Both are tilting up about 20deg.

Sorry , the second photo is here :

Attached Files


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#9 RonBaldwin

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 09:18 AM

I stopped using a super-post years ago...now I bring Charles with me for those uber-low shots.

flame suit on

rb
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#10 Jerry Holway

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 09:58 AM

One of the reasons I made an "integral superpost franken rig" out of my Master Series was to get high or low if desired quickly and easily vs. the switch out the post mode. I was really thrilled with the idea until on my very first outing discovered what, as Eric pointed out, was a total PITA without a tilt head, so that got added immediately, and then after ayear or so, Garrett convinced CP to make the Ultra based on the "full" idea...

Regardless, having the ability to get to the ground or high overhead quickly means that one is more likely to - and happier to - go there and suggest the shots... and then the director might think of such shots, just as they now think of Steadicam shots in general. Both the "You can do that?" and the "It only takes 2 minutes?" are important questions to be able to say "yes" to.

Having the ability to use the feature under the real pressures of production is also just good peace of mind, just like having a reliable focus motor system, plenty of batteries, etc. It's there if I want it, so I don't worry going on a job... at least about the gear.

As for the extra weight... it's almost nothing (carbon fiber and a clamp) and more than offset by lighter batteries - the U2 is lighter than the MS and actually has accessory weights for the rods...

Admittedly, I tend to use the extending posts more for balancing heavy cameras (3-4 ft) without adding even more weight to the rig, and keeping my monitor fairly high in high mode, rather than in the 5-6 foot superpost length.

Jerry
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#11 Charles Papert

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 10:41 AM

I stopped using a super-post years ago...now I bring Charles with me for those uber-low shots.

flame suit on

rb


I'm actually small enough to crawl through the membrane of a flame suit Ron. I'm going "Innerspace" on your ass--literally and figuratively. Gonna bottle up chunks of your liver and sell 'em on eBay, just in time for Halloween.
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#12 Brad Grimmett

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 03:19 PM

Gonna bottle up chunks of your liver and sell 'em on eBay, just in time for Halloween.

Don't be silly....there's nothing left of Ron's liver!
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#13 Bruce Alan Greene

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 10:37 AM

Eight years after I built my super-post I've used it on a shoot for the first time a couple weeks ago. I've always used another simpler way to get that low, or the ceiling was too low to use a long post, more often than not.

I'm so thrilled that after the effort and expense (about $500) to build this thing that I've actually used it. Woo Hoo!
My post is a simple 5' long carbon fiber pole that replaces the main pole. It also required building a long main power/video cable and an extra long monitor cable as well. The long cables double as emergency back ups for the regular length cables though. I was also pleased to see that the whole rig did not vibrate too much using the extra long pole. I think this is where not using telescoping posts is very helpful.

And it worked well for chasing a small dog around a pet store, though we also did shots with a dolly, the Steadicam was better at making tight turns with the unpredictable animal.

Installing the post took about 20 minutes and 2 people and a ladder. With practice, I think we could get that down to 10 minutes--but I don't think I'll be training for this...
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#14 Gustavo Penna

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 01:15 PM

i use it on a regular basis. mostly for low.
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#15 Jerry Holway

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 02:56 PM

I was also pleased to see that the whole rig did not vibrate too much using the extra long pole. I think this is where not using telescoping posts is very helpful.


Bruce, I'm glad you got you post to work, but I totally disagree with the idea that all telescoping posts inherently vibrate too much: it depends on the clamps, materials, diameters, etc.

All of this was all worked out just fine about ten years ago, and is of course, a core feature of the Ultras, Clippers and various clones. Perhaps model III's and the like with thinner aluminum posts couldn't do it well enough, but not the modern carbon fiber ones.

Telescoping posts also give you a full range of post lengths, from minimum length to six feet, and they extend or retract in seconds, require no extra parts, cases, etc.

Jerry
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