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Dolly Propulsion


Alex Flowers
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Hello everyone, I don't have much technical expertise in this field but I need to build a dolly system with some form of propulsion. I need to move 100m as fast as possible. What suggestions or systems does anyone know of that are already available or something I could build?

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I've seen these guys mentioned quite a bit before.

 

http://www.doggicam.com

 

Terrible website design, but the Super Slide and Power Slide are the products you might be looking for, not fully understanding your purpose. But, I can imagine that 25 feet per second is sufficiently fast.

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Hello everyone, I don't have much technical expertise in this field but I need to build a dolly system with some form of propulsion. I need to move 100m as fast as possible. What suggestions or systems does anyone know of that are already available or something I could build?

What does the shot require?

 

I think most people here will say a grip truck with a camera mount, or a fast moving car with a camera mounted on it.

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I'd call Tim Drnec at Spydercam (fxwest.com).

 

I've done a few shots like this over the years with them.

 

They have a couple of large, servo-driven winches set up, essentially, as large motion control systems.

 

They can easily drive a 100m "clothesline" style cable that can pull both ways on the track.

 

You program a start point, end point, and move profile. On cue, someon hits the button and the 10hp servo winch does it's thing, pulling the dolly along the move profile.

 

Light dollys at very high speed have to use captured track, but a normal dolly at reasonable speeds is heavy enough to stay on the track by itself.

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This could be exactly what I was involved in building last year ...

 

We need to define a swag of things first:

 

100m does that include ramp up time or is it 100m at 'as fast as possible'

what is 'as fast as possible' ?

Are you ok with letting it run down on its own steam?

How much ramp-up and slow down space do you have?

Does it need to be motion controlled repeatable or can it run relatively wild ?

Do you need an operator on the dolly?

Do you need data and/or control to the camera?

What weight and form factor is the camera? (biiiiiig difference between a go pro and a 35mm camera)

What sort of stabilisation issues will need to be thought about ? (e.g. centre of gravity offsets from rotational axes - long lens shooting perpendicular to the motion...)

 

 

One solution that immediately comes to mind is dropping a camera off a building :lol:

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