Tuesday, November 27, 2007
A Firsthand Review of GI Track from Azurgrip
GI track is the brain child of a couple of inventive guys in Vancouver - Dillard Brinson and Gil Forrester - a Key and Dolly grip team and veterans in the B.C. area (www.gitrack.com).Taking the I Beam profile of Precision rail and marrying it with the low profile of FilmAir's track and adding PVC capping they've created a incredibly stable platform for any dolly or crane. The extruded design allows for cribbing to placed on the inside of the rails avoiding unwanted wedge kick out by assistants who can't pick up their feet. This allows the user to use less cribbing - at the joints and at the middle points. The only downside to the whole system is weight. If you've been spoiled on FilmAir for years, you'll cringe at the weight of each piece and have to listen to all the complaining from your grip brothers and sisters. I feel that it's the price to pay for such ease of use. Less you worry about the bumps on the rail and being able to concentrate on the shot the better.The PVC capping allows you to offset the track joints. However, with use, the caps will tend to separate (depending on how much weight and how fast the move is) so using Cardellinni clamps at both ends to hold the cap in place works wonders. I must say that even without the clamps I've be able to get away with a gap up to 3/8" (all of course depending on the lens size been used).Another beauty of this track is that everything is replaceable. A cap gets scratched in the truck - pop a new one on. A latch is bent out of shape and can't be used - one bolt and it's replaced (provided you have replacement parts). Even the end cones are replaceable. The dolly grip can tighten any parts that need to be (unlike for example FilmAir, where the piece of track had to be sent back to the rental house / manufacturer just to replace a latch).I've just had the pleasure of being the first grip to use this wonderful track system in my home town. Now, if I can only convince my local rental house to carry it!