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Arri ST I bought


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#1 Paco Sweetman

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 05:39 AM

Hello all, this is my second posting. I left film school 5 years ago and have been working as an editor since. I also make low budget films with a collective (28 shorts and 6 features, and counting) as their editor.

www.collectivevision.co.uk

I bought an Arri ST off of Ebay. It's register number is 12400. It came with 6 lenses as well. Five are Cooke lenses and one is a Zeiss. I want to shoot the start of my first feature using it. I have a friend who is going to DP it, but I want to learn to shoot on film as I've always been a bit of closet-DP.

Now the Question:

I spoke to Arri UK and they said they would service it and the lenses, or do tests on it. But I got lost in the stuff the engineer was saying to me, he was very nice about it, but my lack of experience showed. Can anyone tell me what to ask to have done to it?

Also, as a sub note, does it do crystal sync? I have a motor with it and the seller said it did 25fps, but I didn't know if that meant it was crystal sync. I know Tobin motor's are crystal sync, but I didn't want to lay out for one until I'd asked you lot.

It might seem stupid just going out and buying a camera, but I figured it was the only way I'd learn, even renting an Arri SR3 is well out of my league.
Thanks for any help advice as well.
I have found www.arri16s.com and are reading as much info as possible off of that.

Paco

Edited by Paco Sweetman, 18 June 2008 - 05:41 AM.

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#2 Tim Carroll

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 08:51 AM

Paco,

Congratulations on your new camera. There is a page on the web site that covers "Getting the most out of your Arriflex". It explains what areas need service on the camera and how to make sure everything is set up properly before you shoot.

Getting the most out of your Arriflex

To shoot crystal sync with the camera, you need a crystal sync motor, like the Tobin. But it needs to be the Tobin crystal sync motor, he makes two different ones (and I see unscrupulous sellers on eBay saying the non-crystal sync motor is crystal). Get the one below:

Clive Tobin's Crystal Sync Motor for the Arriflex 16S

Best of luck with your new purchase,
-Tim
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#3 Paco Sweetman

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 10:44 AM

Paco,

Congratulations on your new camera. There is a page on the web site that covers "Getting the most out of your Arriflex". It explains what areas need service on the camera and how to make sure everything is set up properly before you shoot.

Getting the most out of your Arriflex



Do you think it's worth me getting Arri to have a look over it before I go shoot a 100ft test? To Collamate the lenses I think the engineer said to me on the phone? And he suggested to do a test where he would shoot and image, then rewind the film and re-shoot the same image to check for steadyness?

Edited by Paco Sweetman, 18 June 2008 - 10:45 AM.

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#4 chuck colburn

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 11:18 AM

Do you think it's worth me getting Arri to have a look over it before I go shoot a 100ft test? To Collamate the lenses I think the engineer said to me on the phone? And he suggested to do a test where he would shoot and image, then rewind the film and re-shoot the same image to check for steadyness?


When doing your steady test use a cross hatch target with vertical and horizontal lines in a grid pattern. Make one pass (underexpose it one stop) and rewind the film. Then offset your target slightly on the vertical and horizontal planes for the second pass. This will let you detect weave in the gate by looking at the vertical line pairs and detect any registration problems by looking at the horizontal line pairs. Be sure not to move the camera between the two passes.
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#5 Paco Sweetman

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 11:34 AM

When doing your steady test use a cross hatch target with vertical and horizontal lines in a grid pattern. Make one pass (underexpose it one stop) and rewind the film. Then offset your target slightly on the vertical and horizontal planes for the second pass. This will let you detect weave in the gate by looking at the vertical line pairs and detect any registration problems by looking at the horizontal line pairs. Be sure not to move the camera between the two passes.


If I was to come across problems then wouldn't it be better for Arri to test for registration problems and then be able to amend them. I'm inclined to bring it to Arri because it's there camera make and I they would be able to give the camera a clean / once over.

I don't feel that comfortable doing it myself, as I have only a limited amount of time on my purchase insurance for the camera. I'd like to make sure that it is in working order and in as good a condition as the seller said it was.

What should I ask Arri to check / service for if I do bring it to them?
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#6 chuck colburn

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 12:03 PM

If I was to come across problems then wouldn't it be better for Arri to test for registration problems and then be able to amend them. I'm inclined to bring it to Arri because it's there camera make and I they would be able to give the camera a clean / once over.

I don't feel that comfortable doing it myself, as I have only a limited amount of time on my purchase insurance for the camera. I'd like to make sure that it is in working order and in as good a condition as the seller said it was.

What should I ask Arri to check / service for if I do bring it to them?


Well unless they have in house film processing it's going to take them as long to do a reg. test (if not longer) as it would you. But anyhow what you want to know is if the camera is steady and the film plane is seeing the same as the ground glass and that the lenses are properally collimated to infinity focus. And that your zoom is set up right for front and back focus so that it holds focus as you zoom. They know what to do. It won't be cheap at Arri for this type service. Mayby there is an independent service tech or rental house in your area that offers this service for less.
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#7 andy oliver

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 07:19 PM

Hi, arri-gb do a great service on the st camera, luckily they have at least 3 persons who know the camera. Along time ago ( well early early 90s) i purchased an st, to replace my scoopic and r16. What i failed to do was have the lenses and back focus checked ( lack of knowledge, no ineternet back then either ). Well after soft images, a few rolls of k25 later and after returning the camera a couple of times to the original seller, i then sent the camera to arri-gb. Fixed straight away, my back focus was miles out. What i am saying, take it to arri-gb, get them to check the focal depth of the camera and ask them to look at your lenses. They will tell you if the camera is in need of a service, if you have the 8v vary speed motor, the motor tends to fluctuate when running, also worth asking them to change the rubber drive shaft. Approx full service was £550.00 ( not including lenses ) to my st around 6 years ago, your camera may not require a full service, focal depth and collimation are a must along with lens inspection and motor condition. Aww rubber eyecups are still pretty cheap, worth getting a couple while you can.
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