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#1 Louis Hanoteau

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 02:44 PM

Hi everyone. My name is Louis, I'm from France (so sorry if I make some mistakes).

I've looked around in this forum for a couple of days, and it looks great. I hope I'll stay here for a long time.

I graduated a year ago from my school where I learned how to be a camera operator and I recently decided I wanted to be a steadycam operator.

But I need help. I've met with some operators, but they're not really interrested in helping you a lot I figured. They always have some slave-intern helping them carry there stuff, and no need for more... I guess they're asked for help a lot.

I have absolulety no experience in operating a big rig (is that how you call it ? In france we say steadicam no matter what brand it is). I tried to carry one on a couple of time, but that's it.

Well actually I tried a small one, for dvs camera but that's not what I want to do.
Most of my jobs are music video production, and they do things in 35mm. So I'd need a big (and expensive :/ ) one.


What I need is how to get started. I've some money on the side and my father is willing to lend me some.

I've been looking for workshops (still not sure if thats the right word) in france and found only one that looks serious. (It's french so you can't really help me with that I guess. It's pretty expensive and short (like 1900 euro for 42 hours /6 days).
They use Steadicam? Ultra Cine et Clipper, a "cart with hard mount, Gyro-Scooter?" (translated boldly)
I don't know if it's any good but I'll try to find out by myself.



Where I reallyneed help, is on what should I buy ? I think I could lay at most 15 000 euro.

I've been looking for used steadicam online, but it's pretty hard to find in france. I don't mind getting it from anywhere else if it's a good deal. Plane tickets and shipping aren't a big part of the budget for this.

But I don't know where to look, nor what to look for exactly.


I'd really appreciate if you guys could give me some advice.

Louis.
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#2 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 08:42 PM

Louis, I am also in the market for a rig. I can pass along the link I've been reading up on that shows the new models available. I'm sure the veteran operators here will also give you some great advice soon.

Tiffen-Steadicam
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#3 Stephen Vanderspek

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 10:18 PM

Louis, I am also in the market for a rig. I can pass along the link I've been reading up on that shows the new models available. I'm sure the veteran operators here will also give you some great advice soon.

Tiffen-Steadicam

With 15,000 Euros approx equalling 30,000 USD means you'll want to be looking into used gear (at least for the rig). As I'm sure your about to learn theres more to buy then just a rig. A follow focus being the most expensive and important of these. A video transmitter is also high on the list. Not to mention power and video cables out the wazoo. I'm sure I'm forgetting some other stuff that the vets will add.
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#4 Stephen Vanderspek

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 11:01 PM

Louis, I am also in the market for a rig. I can pass along the link I've been reading up on that shows the new models available. I'm sure the veteran operators here will also give you some great advice soon.

Tiffen-Steadicam

With 15,000 Euros approx equalling 30,000 USD means you'll want to be looking into used gear (at least for the rig). As I'm sure your about to learn theres more to buy then just a rig. A follow focus being the most expensive and important of these. A video transmitter is also high on the list. Not to mention power and video cables out the wazoo. I'm sure I'm forgetting some other stuff that the vets will add.

I just checked and I was way off on the exchange, 15k Euro = 22,098.35 USD. So definitely used.
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#5 John Morrison

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Posted 27 August 2008 - 05:44 AM

Bonjour Louis,

15 grand is a lot of money to spend one year out of school, my advice would be to take a good intensive workshop, go to TSF or Bogard and ask to 'play' with there rigs and just get a feel for the job. Then if you start to get work Rent the rig for a little while (I did this for 5 years).

Another thing, have you considered working as a camera assistant for a while? 'Learning the set' is pretty important, and you also earn decent money. (anyone do this anymore!?) If you can pull focus you can still pay for your rig when your starting out.

The most important thing I think is that steadicam is CAMERA OPERATING! you have to be able to do one before the other, so experience in 'normal' camera operating is very important.

And last of all, good luck! its a great job and lots of fun, just don't rush into it.

John
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#6 Louis Hanoteau

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Posted 27 August 2008 - 08:15 AM

Bonjour Louis,

15 grand is a lot of money to spend one year out of school, my advice would be to take a good intensive workshop, go to TSF or Bogard and ask to 'play' with there rigs and just get a feel for the job. Then if you start to get work Rent the rig for a little while (I did this for 5 years).

Another thing, have you considered working as a camera assistant for a while? 'Learning the set' is pretty important, and you also earn decent money. (anyone do this anymore!?) If you can pull focus you can still pay for your rig when your starting out.

The most important thing I think is that steadicam is CAMERA OPERATING! you have to be able to do one before the other, so experience in 'normal' camera operating is very important.

And last of all, good luck! its a great job and lots of fun, just don't rush into it.

John





Sorry I said rig, i meant gear I guess... I'm not familiar with the english vocabulary yet.

Well I'm working right now as an assistant operator (2nd mostly), but you don't make that much money actually. And I think I "learned the set" a lot already. I did 4 years of.... damn I don't know this word either. is it best boy ?

I plan to do the tsf workshop first, and maybe rent for a time... But five year is a long time, and productions I work with mostly look for owner/operators... That's why I start looking for used gears.

Thank you for your answers and support :)
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#7 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 27 August 2008 - 10:20 PM

I've been seeing some used Flyers popping up on ebay. Maybe something to check out.
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#8 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 07:16 PM

I've been seeing some used Flyers popping up on ebay. Maybe something to check out.


Scratch that, just noticed the type of cameras you are looking to fly.
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#9 Louis Hanoteau

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 05:10 PM

Alright I've been louking around... I guess I don't have enough right now to buy what I want.

But I found something, and I need some advice.

This : http://www.bassonste...gorias.asp?id=1


I looked for feedbacks, there aren't so many.

Most of them are bad, but apparently, this 2007 the new products are much better. But there's not enough feedbacks to trust them.

What do you think of this ? It's pretty cheap to me... Does this seems good on paper ?



I might be able to see one, I found someone not too far from where I live who bought one. But I won't be able to see it before a little while.

And you guys might just tell me that it's a piece of crap or something, and save me the trip.


Have you ever seen one of those in real ? Are they good ? Do they look ok ?


Thanks.

Louis.
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#10 Norbert von der Heidt

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 07:45 PM

But I found something, and I need some advice.

This : http://www.bassonste...gorias.asp?id=1

What do you think of this ? It's pretty cheap to me... Does this seems good on paper ?

Have you ever seen one of those in real ? Are they good ? Do they look ok ?


Thanks.

Louis.



Hi Louis

Just want to give you my impressions of the first rig I had almost 5 years ago which was a Basson BSN800. Yes, it was cheap and nasty and very mickey mouse when you finally see it up close, which is why they never show any cu pics but I couldn't afford anything else.

I heavily modified the sled physically by cutting it down and adding a upper junction box with proper connectors and intercabling. I replaced the absolutely useless 12V gelcell battery with a dual IDX 14.4V NP-1 battery system. The arm was also heavily modifed to lighten it and remove those stupid outboard adjustment knobs which just get in the way.

When I was done after about 6 months of monkeying around with it, it was actually able to be dynamically balanced and carry a broadcast camera but always with much worry about it breaking because it is made of welded mild steel.

Here are some pics of the mods I did so that you can see what's required to make it usable. I sent these mods to Pablo at Basson so he could improve his product but he said it would raise the cost too much for his level of customers.

In my humble opinion and experience, go a few steps up even if older gear like a 3A and save yourself the greif. To me it's like buying a motorcycle, if you can, buy something bigger because if you go safe and get a 175cc, you'll soon wish you'd got the 750cc.

Best of luck.

Cheers
Norbert

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#11 Lohengrin Zapiain

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 10:34 PM

I'm sure you can do a bit of research on the forum and you will realize that should stay AWAY from Basson. You'd better look for an used 3A or masters or PRO.

Chances are that you would have to do heavy modifications before flying your first gig and as you might imagine is a very unreliable piece of equipment.


SAY NO TO BASSON
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#12 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 11:44 PM

Alright I've been louking around... I guess I don't have enough right now to buy what I want.
But I found something, and I need some advice.

This : http://www.bassonste...gorias.asp?id=1


I looked for feedbacks, there aren't so many.

Most of them are bad, but apparently, this 2007 the new products are much better. But there's not enough feedbacks to trust them.

What do you think of this ? It's pretty cheap to me... Does this seems good on paper ?



IT's CRAP. Find a 3A, Find a EFP, Find ANYTHING but stay away from that.

Find something that you can get parts for, Find something that someone near you has so you can get advice or borrow parts when in a bind, find something that the AC's you will be working with know.
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#13 luis castro

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Posted 04 October 2008 - 11:29 AM

I'm sure you can do a bit of research on the forum and you will realize that should stay AWAY from Basson. You'd better look for an used 3A or masters or PRO.

Chances are that you would have to do heavy modifications before flying your first gig and as you might imagine is a very unreliable piece of equipment.


SAY NO TO BASSON





it is truth
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#14 Julian Cheng

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Posted 20 October 2008 - 12:40 PM

Hi,
I think that 15000 euro is not enough to get a full rig with all accessories..the most important thing is the arm and the remote follow focus device and they cost a lot.
For the follow focus, I suggest Bartech with M-one motor. This is the most reliable unit and it is not very expensive. You can contact Jim Bartech to get one online. It costs about USD$4,000 something....http://www.bartechengineering.com
For the arm, I suggest the Steadyrig Silver Spring arm. Their price is not so expensive, but it can load 13-63lbs. It costs about USD$10,000 (maybe the cost will raise up soon....). You can contact Hugo to get it. http://www.steadyrig.com/
About the Vest, you can try to get a used 3A vest...(I also looking for it now) maybe about USD$1,000-1,500
For the Sled, you can try to find a used one. With good condition. You can search it in this forum, I think there are some selling here...
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#15 max volokh

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Posted 21 October 2008 - 02:00 PM

The base actioncam zero-g2 cost $27.500 http://actionproduct...cam/zero-g.html
It's good for this money
If you interested in it you can ask me any questions and see my video http://www.steadicam...?showtopic=8680
Best regards 8-)
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