I’m still gearing up for the 48hr film project and I was doing some adjustments to my homemade dolly.

“A dolly? What’s a dolly Beto?” you ask?

Well, a dolly is basically a platform with wheels that you can mount a camera onto and get some great forward or backward pan movements – without using the optical zoom from the camera. It enhances the dramatic effect. I’ve seen some made out of PVC but I wanted something a bit more sturdy since my new camera is bigger AND heavier.

So, I had this great idea to get some pneumatic wheels (you know – tires) and mount them to my platform. Since these are “air filled” I figured they could go over anything, carpet, tile, asphalt etc. If I let some of the air out of the tires – then it would help with the bumps.

I went and found some relatively inexpensive pneumatic tires (about $8 each) and bought some bolts. I found out that a good 5/8″ inch bolt works great as an axle. I also found some metal braces (in the deck building department) and the bolts fit in there just right as well. I came home and began my build.

My first step was to pretend I was Hercules by manually start the bending process and then finish it off as Hephaestus (the blacksmith of the gods) to hammer out one section of the braces on my vise.

I then inserted the bolts and a couple of washers into the tires then mounted the braces on to the platform. Then it was just a matter of placing the wheels on the braces and tightening them.

I needed a guide for this platform so I then found my “big ‘ol sissy bar” or rather The Balance Buddy that someone invented to help train your kid to ride their bike. I found mine at Academy Sports.

Why didn’t I think of that? It saved my back when I was training both Joaquin and Emmy on riding their bikes.

When it was all assembled, I stood back and was quite pleased with my effort.

I then mounted my tripod on it and when I pushed it – it wiggled. Grrh….

Since these were air tires – there was not enough stability – this transferred to the tripod head which result in shaky video – that won’t work.

NUTS…I don’t always get it right.

…but it looked so cool. I’ve taken it apart and will return some of the parts. I have another idea though. I hope I can make it before we start our filming this weekend. It really makes our shoot look professional.

I took pictures (gallery below, click on pictures to view) so that later on I can make it work but for now – I have to think of something else.

*Update – I think I fixed it! – follow this link*

The pressure is on. Wish me luck.


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