Jump to content


Photo

Car Rig/ Mount Questions


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 Marc Shap

Marc Shap
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 76 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 15 September 2009 - 12:21 PM

Hi, Im shooting a film coming up where their is a fair amount of car scenes. To maintain the Hand held feel to the film wed like to shoot from a process trailer and not hard mount it to a hostess tray. However there is limited budget. Is there a kind of Rig that allows a platform to go out from the bottom of the car to operate from, kind of like a one sided process trailer plat form. It only has to be about 4 feet wide 3 feet deep is this something that could be built out of speedrail, off the frame of the car? Does this make sense? So basically to be on a platform operating out side of the car as it is moving. Is this safe/doable? are there any pictures/examples?

Any help is appreciated.

best,
Marc

www.marcshap.com
  • 0

#2 Saul Rodgar

Saul Rodgar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1682 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 15 September 2009 - 04:28 PM

I am assuming you don't have a huge budget.

Yes, it can be done. Is it smart? Not very much. Driving alongside any street or highway with such a device attached to a car, particularly if production cannot afford complete street / highway closures, could spell disaster for dumb enough to be on it at the time. I wouldn't do it, for any amount.

The only way I would do it is if it was like a cage with padding inside. At that point the contraption would be so heavy it would probably make a car hard to handle at speed, or tip a small car over, unless it had its own wheels, like a side car. But that wouldn't be cheap. And I have never seen or heard of anything like that, though it may exist, of course.

I am filming a low budget feature that involves heavy driving, and though about what you are talking about and decided against it.

You would be better off trying to figure out some sort of bungee rig mounted off the side window or something.

In sea movies, outriggers with cameras and crews on them are fairly common when filming small boat scenes. The benefit is that: One, you are not going so fast. Two, short of a shark jumping out of the water, you can see potential hazards with ample time to react. Three, the water will soften the impact.

Edited by Saul Rodgar, 15 September 2009 - 04:32 PM.

  • 0

#3 Daniel Wallens

Daniel Wallens
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 214 posts
  • Grip
  • New York City

Posted 16 September 2009 - 12:39 AM

Sure it is doable. Sure it can be safe. Get yourself a damn good rigging key. Or, depending on where you are, hire a company that will modify the car for you (I think there are several of these in the LA area).


>>"Is there a kind of Rig that allows a platform to go out from the bottom of the car to operate from"

Not really, unless you want to use an actual camera car (probably not the hero car you want to shoot).

Don't build a "cage." Doing so only creates extra weight, and doesn't provide any extra real safety. Not even real camera cars, such as Chapman's, Shotmaker's, Filmotechnic's etc., have cages. (a cage would also just limit your ability to get a clean shot out of it in different directions).


>>"are there any pictures/examples?"
I sure hope not. For the same reason that I hope there aren't any pictures of tie-ins.


-DW
  • 0

#4 Saul Rodgar

Saul Rodgar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1682 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 16 September 2009 - 11:04 AM

Sure it can be done and safely. I have seen it done in multi-million dollar productions where I have assisted. But I have seen some of those big budget rigging boys mess up too, where Panaflex cameras burn to a crisp because someone wasn't paying attention.

But understand, the key / rigging grip and rigging crew to safely build this is not going to be cheap, not to mention the liability insurance, etc. In my low budget professional experience, I have witnessed too many near misses to safely endorse someone with a lower budget try something like this, unless one can afford to hire the best key (rigging) grip and rigging crew money can buy.

No offense, but I assumed the original poster has a low budget because someone with a big budget would probably be working with an experienced (read top-dollar) key grip who would be advising him already as to how to safely go at it.

If I am mistaken and there is enough money to do this safely, please, disregard my advice.
  • 0

#5 Onno Perdijk

Onno Perdijk
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 87 posts
  • Grip
  • www.solidgripsystems.eu

Posted 16 September 2009 - 03:09 PM

Hello Marc,

Don't go there, even a slight turning of an overloaded car wills surely make your rig hit the streets! Simply dont!!!

Maybe an hostess-tray with an airballoon (from an air-suspended-truck-trailer) in between the camera and the rig can give you the handheld feeling? Test before shoot.

An other option could be to have a kind of bunghy-mount: get an O and rig the camera inside the O using bunghy all the way around, from top till down, from left till right, from front to back and rig it to the hostess tray. Also worth a test.

Most of all: try to get a skilled grip!!!

Good luck,

Onno
  • 0

#6 Jamie Metzger

Jamie Metzger
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 773 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco

Posted 16 September 2009 - 05:40 PM

get a convertible lead car and shoot the picture car from the convertible.
  • 0

#7 Brian Dzyak

Brian Dzyak
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1517 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Encino, California USA

Posted 16 September 2009 - 09:07 PM

Hi, Im shooting a film coming up where their is a fair amount of car scenes. To maintain the Hand held feel to the film wed like to shoot from a process trailer and not hard mount it to a hostess tray. However there is limited budget. Is there a kind of Rig that allows a platform to go out from the bottom of the car to operate from, kind of like a one sided process trailer plat form. It only has to be about 4 feet wide 3 feet deep is this something that could be built out of speedrail, off the frame of the car? Does this make sense? So basically to be on a platform operating out side of the car as it is moving. Is this safe/doable? are there any pictures/examples?

Any help is appreciated.

best,
Marc

www.marcshap.com



As mentioned, the number one thing to ensure is safety. Any doubts, don't do it.

That said, I've seen a regular passenger car rigged with speedrail before. I suppose, theoretically, if the Mechanics and Grip Department put it together correctly, you could have two platforms on opposite sides of the vehicle. One with your Operator and Focus Puller who are both safety-strapped to the railings...the other platform with counter-weights.

But if you're going to go to that effort, it would likely be much easier and cheaper (and safer) to put the hero vehicle on a process trailer so you have the option of handheld all around the vehicle and not just from the sides.

If you REALLY want some dynamic shots and can afford it, think about using a Ultimate Arm http://www.ultimatearm.com :)
  • 0

#8 Jon Rosenbloom

Jon Rosenbloom
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 713 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 19 September 2009 - 07:41 PM

The producer should do a spreadsheet comparing the cost of the operator's funeral versus the cost of a process trailer.
  • 0

#9 Sanjay Sami

Sanjay Sami
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 258 posts
  • Grip
  • Anywhere they pay me to go

Posted 30 September 2009 - 12:39 PM

Hi Marc,
This is doable. I have done it , rigged on a taxi being driven on a really busy road with a platform rigged on the taxi for a steadicam operator to ride on and do a 360 degree pan. The DoP was Russell Boyd. I cut holes into the bottom of the doors of the taxi, because you need to have the support for the platform riding above the chassis of the car. You also have to counterbalance the platform. I would not advise trying this on roads that you do not have a lock off on.
Get someone who knows what they are doing. A good grip is the best way to save money.

Sanjay Sami
www.thegripworks.com
  • 0


Willys Widgets

CineLab

Technodolly

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Ritter Battery

Paralinx LLC

CineTape

Abel Cine

Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

Tai Audio

Glidecam

FJS International, LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Wooden Camera

rebotnix Technologies

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Visual Products

Opal

Ritter Battery

Glidecam

Opal

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

Paralinx LLC

Technodolly

FJS International, LLC

CineLab

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineTape

Abel Cine

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Willys Widgets

Tai Audio

rebotnix Technologies

Rig Wheels Passport

Visual Products

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Broadcast Solutions Inc