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infos for beginners

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#1 ginuz


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Posted 09 July 2004 - 07:41 AM

I am new here. I'd like to have a STEADICAM rig sooner or later.
I work on video since many years. I began editing with AVID systems, then passed on post with After Effects, and finally I found my ground in directing and filming. Little things, of course, but I'ts time to improve myself and do the professional step :D
I'd really like to buy a STEADICAM or something like that (please, don't panic!).
I am documenting myself thru the internet and some books, but I need to know something that I can easily find here:

1) I'd like to know how I could interchange parts on STEADICAM models. If, for example, I will buy a sk2 for my XL1 and then I will move to a bigger camera, like a BetacamSP or something else (a s16mm), could I change only the arm and take the rest of the rig? Should I have to change everything, from the vest to the arm or could I mix parts of different models?

2) How is different the single action arm of the sk2 from the double action of the pro vid?

3) Is it good, for you, to buy an economic steadicam system to learn and then pass to the STEADICAM? or you suggest me to buy directly the sk2 and then move to pro vid or higher if it will be necessary? (hey! I am not so rich!!! ;) )

3) what can do a sk2? is it a full functioning STEADICAM with the only limit of weith? Do you think I would charge the XL1s with mini35digital adapter and lenses?

4) How different are the other non original steadicam rigs? Is there something good but chaper than the original that is worth the money? (Basson, Baer-Bel, Hollywood Lite, MK-V, Glidecam, Sachtler, Flycam, ecc...) I read bad things on most of them but, putting aside the prejudgements (exist? :rolleyes: ), is there something else good?

thank you very much!
hope to get one of those sublime-STEADI-thing soon. :D

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#2 Nikk Hearn-Sutton SOC

Nikk Hearn-Sutton SOC

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Posted 09 July 2004 - 09:46 AM

Well w the SK2 the max you can top off is 19-20LBS. Now when it comes to say a Arri SRII you would have to go yhe next model up or upgrade your arm,post and gimbal, which can be PRETTY expensive.
The XL1-1s youa can add a 35mm lens on it you just have to make sure that you ballance it properly since its going to be top heavy,and make sure that you have enough wieght on the bottom, that depends on either having the sk2 with the NP1's or the Anton Mount and when using the antons, you have to playwith it depending on size of the brick,full size or trim packs. But a majority of the part from Steadicam ARE interchangable,just depends on what model and or series your going with.
I hope any of this helps you out.

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#3 jamiep


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Posted 10 July 2004 - 08:30 AM

Hi Nik and Ginuz

I have been around Steadicam for as long as i can remember. Recently (Jan 2004) was working at the Melbourne Steadicam Workshop for the second time (as Instructors assistant) and a former student brought his Glidecam Gold system to the workshop and i must say i was suprised by how good the system actually was. The other rigs at the workshop were a Pro 2 and a couple of Master Series rigs.

But like everything it depends on what you are doing. Remember if you are using an XL1 or a lighter camera, you can always add weight to the sled to get a balance and give it a weight so the arm likes it. (On a job yesterday with a Pro 2 sled and Sony PD150, added 5kg's of weight below the camera to get the sled to the 13pound minimum of the Steadyrig upgraded arm)

My main point, which i believe would be echoed by alot of people on this forum would be to do your research. Contact various manufacturers near to you and around the world, have a look at the systems and then make your decision. Look through the forum archives, find some local operators and pick their brain (if they dont mind of course).

But i cant strongly enough recomend doing a Steadicam workshop. For the reletivley small cost (in long run) of attending, for the week you will be bombarded with information which is all useful in making your decision. And after which you may even decide that Steadicam is not for you.

Best of luck with it all

James Puli
Melbourne Australia
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#4 pbalsdon


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Posted 12 July 2004 - 04:54 PM

Many of the cheaper / lighter rigs have parts, such as the socket block, that are unique to that particular model and therefore would at least require some engineering to modify or upgrade for the purpose of carrying a heavier camera. You eventually would reach a point though where everything, the vest, the arm and sled are stressed to the max and possibly unsafe to use. If your intention is to gradually upgrade an alternative would be to purchase a used rig and gradually improve that. As Jamie said do a workshop, it's the most useful accessory for your steadicam kit and you'll be able to discuss with instructors what the best options are for a rig for yourself. They may even be able to put you in touch with a local operator who can help check out a rig you may want to buy.

Phil Balsdon
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#5 johnradzik


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Posted 13 July 2004 - 05:12 PM

well here is my 2cents : :)
if you are going to stay in the video world ,
they have some new light weight rigs for the cheep out there.
i saw one at cinegear expo.(from tiffen) for about 6,000.us
everything but batteries.it was the nicest video rig i had seen to date.
but if you plan on getting into shooting on film cameras i say go for it.
find what you like (try different rigs )Plan for your price range.
there many good rigs out there(i happen to fly an ultra )and i like alot.
i wish you luck,
john radzik
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#6 ginuz


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Posted 18 July 2004 - 07:50 AM

thanks to everybody for your precious advices.
I don't know if I will follow a workshop soon but sooner or later I'll do.
I don't whant to become a professional steadi-operator, I prefer the director's chair :D But I am sure I will collect some money to get my own steadicam.
Probably I will rent some to try and do experiments. If I will decide to buy one I will do the workshop. It's my child's dream...
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