Thread: DIY IndieSlider...
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09-06-2008 09:29 AM
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- Feb 2008
09-06-2008 09:34 AM
Well in this case - shorter is better - doesn't need to be much more than 100mm or 4 inches for the maximum slide room - of course that's about the only time shorter is better.
09-06-2008 09:47 AM
09-06-2008 10:47 AM
Great post and cool build.
The first thing that comes to mind with mechanical friction systems is stiction (hence the development of wheels, fluid damping, etc)... the same phenomenon that screws the end of your otherwise perfect pan. I've built some stuff using teflon sheet to reasonably good effect, but I'm using mass to overcome a notchy finish and leverage to initiate smooth starts.
So how about this thing? How's the stiction... does that space-age plastic handle that well or do you have to make several attempts at overcoming stiction?
Last edited by MattinSTL; 09-06-2008 at 10:54 AM.
09-06-2008 01:22 PM
Well... I don't think I've mastered this thing yet...but I don't have any problems stopping. The tough part seems to be the start of the slide. This isn't really a problem for me, as the shots I had in mind would already be moving when I cut to them...I just get a running start!
The thing is really smooth & dead quiet. All your points are dead on, if you keep your hand low on the carriage, you can start the slide very smoothly. If you are using it for a dolly-in (or out), I find the pan handle on the head works just fine.
I don't know if I answered your questions...as 'stiction' is a new word to me (see, you DO learn something new everyday. That's why I love this forum.) and I tend to be a little thick sometimes. I seemed to have left quite a few braincells back in the 1970's!
I just ran out for some more supplies to create the 'endcaps' for the rail. This will allow me to get it just 4" off the ground for some cool low sliders. I'll post pictures a.s.a.p.
09-06-2008 04:20 PM
I know this is going to sound nuts... but try spraying some lemon pledge on the rails.
I can't believe how many people have never heard of this... I've been on several pretty big shoots where the dolly wheels were driving everybody nuts... and I broke out the lemon pledge trick to save the day... this is no exaggeration. EVERYBODY who works a dolly should know about lemon pledge by now. EVERY BODY. It is the life-saver of sound... and smooth stops and starts. Try it and report back... just spray a liberal amount on a clean rag and wipe down the rails before you shoot.
And if you're reading this about dolly track... spray it directly on the track... just a quick walking speed down each rail as you hold the spray on. You'll be the hero at the next gig.
09-06-2008 06:08 PM
09-06-2008 06:56 PM
I bought the next size up of rail / carriage than Zaza - he's got the right size - I'm not convinced though that my slider can't be a bit more quiet, slide is just fine but there is a little friction noise. I haven't completely lubed down the actual plastic bearings as they're supposed to be self lubricating but did lemon pledge the rails and no difference - I'll try the actual bearings next. It may be that I don't really have any weight on the slider yet as I'm tapping holes and putting it all together in a couple of days - pics to come then.
I'll second, third, fourth the lemon pledge / dolly lube though. Here in Utah with so many crappy low budget films being shot right now it's friggin' amazing how few tricks of the trade the local guys know. I've shared the Pledge concept at least a dozen times just here.
09-06-2008 07:19 PM
We shot on the salt flats and the dolly shots were killing us... I asked "who's got the lemon pledge?" and they thought I was joking... I convinced them to buy some and bring it the next day and viola! Problem fixed.
Yeah it's funny... somebody should teach that crap in a class. BTW... if you're a gaffer or grippin' a project using a dolly... and you got your little tie of gaff-tape... you make your pledge fit the belt by first taking a strip of gaff-tape, about 10" long... and fold it over on itself after you stick both ends to the pledge can... and then circle the pledge can where you taped the gaff to be sure it doesn't come off... now you can 'beaner that thing to your grip belt and be the man when the dolly starts acting up.
While we're on the subject of dollies... get yourself a $2 laser pointer and a magnetic bulldog clip... then when you're setting up your dolly shots you pop the laser pointer and bulldog clip on the fisher/chapman/whatever hunk of metal you have... and you can mark an "x" on 3 pieces of white gaff tape... mark one is your one (duh)... mark two is your slowing point... and mark three is the landing.
The guys will think you're the sh*t... and you ONLY have to watch your marks instead of guessing the shot each time.