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INDIE Dolly


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#1 realfilm

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 08:34 PM

Anyone used an INDIE dolly yet? Their newest model, that works on curved track, actually looks like a nice low budget and highly mobile system for $1500.
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#2 Daniel J. Ashley-Smith

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 09:06 PM

No, I've used the cheaper option, get wheelchair motors, strap a plank of plywood on top. There you go, motorized, smooth dolly.
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#3 Brian Wells

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 10:20 PM

Anyone used an INDIE dolly yet? Their newest model, that works on curved track, actually looks like a nice low budget and highly mobile system for $1500.

Dollies need weight to be smooth. Non-ridable lightweight units typically haven't been very smooth in my limited experience. I'd very much prefer steel track with a converted-for-track-use doorway dolly. It's a very heavy kit.
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#4 Daniel Madsen

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 10:52 PM

As much as I like dollies and steady cams I feel like student filmmakers put camera mobility to high on their priority list - making or renting expensive dollies before even considering lighting. Does anyone feel this way?
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#5 Jamie Metzger

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 01:23 AM

I'd like a link to see this.

I'm pretty sure from the sound of it, I used an "indie" dolly today; Made from 4ft pieces of PVC, with joint screwed only on two sides (to guarantee 2 smooth sides), and the other pipe would slide into it.

I've thought about making this myself, before I'd even seen it, so atleast I know it works.

Use anything to make a dolly. Don't worry about being "pro" about it. Get the shot done.

Use the PVC method, but be warned about making it right, the kind I used had a "T" bar with wheels on it, balanced on a high hat; no DP on the skateboard trick.

Make yours a little thicker, and you should be able to sit and get pushed.
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#6 Josh Bass

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 01:54 AM

Skateboard dollies are da bomb.

I used on a short last year. I was quite impressed. Simple design (I couldn't build one, but I'm sure many of you could), takes like two seconds to set up the dolly on the track, and it works pretty well.

Probably no good on rough surfaces (unless you have a way to create a smooth "floor" on said rough surface), but for your interiors, should work pretty well.
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#7 Mark Allen

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 02:43 AM

I think if yah gotta have that dolly shot (or a few of them), know that stablization technology has gone crazy with both shake and aftereffects and as long as you can keep it within the range, you can actually stablize a lot of shots. You lose resolution though. Just a thought.

Wonder if you could stablize a wheelchair dolly or a handheld. one of my artists stablized a shot from the back of a car went over a bump - no bump. Loss of resolution though.
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#8 realfilm

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 03:55 PM

Whoa guys, I'm talking about the "INDIE Dolly" system seen here: http://www.indiedolly.com/

It is rideable and has metal tracks. Sorry if the name also seemed to mean I was talking about some home-built junk. This is certainly a step up from a wheelchair and skateboard.

This unit seems to be a nice alternative in some situations. I've come into the feature film world having to be highly mobile and lightweight. This is exactly the kind of thing I could have used before, especially for $1500 plus some extra track.

I haven't seen the need, for the lower budget project anyway, to stay with the old Hollywood system of $40k+ dollys with a truck needing to carry it, with it's 100's of lbs./ of track. I realize the advantages there, sometimes. More commercial-grade versions of systems like this (Maybe their soon-to-come cousins?) look like the future to me.




Dollies need weight to be smooth. Non-ridable lightweight units typically haven't been very smooth in my limited experience. I'd very much prefer steel track with a converted-for-track-use doorway dolly. It's a very heavy kit.


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#9 Brian Wells

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 04:52 PM

I've come into the feature film world having to be highly mobile and lightweight... More commercial-grade versions of systems like this (Maybe their soon-to-come cousins?) look like the future to me.

I was referring to a specific portable unit from Losmandy called the FlexTrack dolly. Even with four wheels and an operator on-board, it wasn't very smooth when I tried it. In fact, it was embarrassing. The Indie dolly looks like a much better solution because of the metal tracks. I'd sure like to try it before I buy it, though.

The dolly I really like is a $600 unit from Long Valley Equipment. It is quite smooth, even on plastic pipe. They also have curved tracks. Might be worth a look. www.longvalleyequipment.com
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#10 Rik Andino

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Posted 09 February 2006 - 03:26 AM

The dolly I really like is a $600 unit from Long Valley Equipment. It is quite smooth, even on plastic pipe. They also have curved tracks. Might be worth a look. www.longvalleyequipment.com


Are you talking about the Long Valley Equipment skateboard dolly that comes with PVC pipes?

It's not as smooth as you think. A friend of mines owns one
So I've used it many of times and it can be bumpy depending on the surface.

Another set back: it's very hard to level the pipes
Sometimes you have to get planks of birchwood to level
So you can place the track on them and make the dolly smooth.

And worse of all the PVC pipes squeak from time to time
And they bend and turn while the dolly is moving making noise...it always pisses off the Sound Mixers. :lol:

Lately we've just rented steel track and use the skateboard dolly on it.
And it works pretty well.
Skateboard dolly is good just get rid of those stupid PVC pipes.

Ever since I've worked with a Fisher 11 I've find it hard to go back to using those other dollies
Fishers are awesome!
Expect when you're shooting in a building with no elevator going to the fifth floor. :o
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#11 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 09 February 2006 - 10:53 PM

fyi: I use a DIY 3/4" PVC dolly (and add sand bags to the tripod spreaders for extra weight). I set my PVC into shelf channel which rides along 2x4's so I can easily shim for leveling, and the shelf channel keeps the PVC extremely stable (no flex), and it is VERY smooth.

I haven't experienced any squeaking (though that would be easy enough to treat with some silicon spray or maybe even baby powder). My next version will be larger to accommodate a seat and rider.



Posted Image

Posted Image

Edited by Shawn Murphy, 09 February 2006 - 11:00 PM.

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#12 brian hendry

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Posted 10 February 2006 - 05:45 PM

fyi: I use a DIY 3/4" PVC dolly (and add sand bags to the tripod spreaders for extra weight). I set my PVC into shelf channel which rides along 2x4's so I can easily shim for leveling, and the shelf channel keeps the PVC extremely stable (no flex), and it is VERY smooth.

I haven't experienced any squeaking (though that would be easy enough to treat with some silicon spray or maybe even baby powder). My next version will be larger to accommodate a seat and rider.
Posted Image

Posted Image


ummm pass on the steal track as much as possible, your thirds will thank you later. ha

i push dolly for a living. its no one factor. i prefer super pee-wee or fisher 10-11.
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#13 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 10 February 2006 - 06:07 PM

...i prefer super pee-wee or fisher 10-11.




I prefer an unlimited supply of cash. ;-)
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#14 Chris Keth

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Posted 13 February 2006 - 06:09 PM

I was referring to a specific portable unit from Losmandy called the FlexTrack dolly. Even with four wheels and an operator on-board, it wasn't very smooth when I tried it. In fact, it was embarrassing. The Indie dolly looks like a much better solution because of the metal tracks. I'd sure like to try it before I buy it, though.

The dolly I really like is a $600 unit from Long Valley Equipment. It is quite smooth, even on plastic pipe. They also have curved tracks. Might be worth a look. www.longvalleyequipment.com



That's pretty much what I was thinking. I've used their spider dolly a lot and this just looks like a spider dolly with a seat. The spider dolly design is alright, but far from using a good heavy real dolly and track.
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#15 Shawn Murphy

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Posted 13 February 2006 - 06:19 PM

...looks like the url for Long Valley is http://www.longvalleyequip.com/
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