Sunday, November 25, 2007

A New Post From Azurgrip

Dollygrip - Tips & Tricks # 41
Have you laid your track, but don't have enough space the roll on at either end? Couple of options: - Announce a "dolly party!" and get some of your friends to help schlep (watch out for the cribbing!!! Lift your feet!!).- Do the old "lift one end and crab into position (once again - don't trip on the rail!)- Remove a piece of your leveled rail and replace it once your on (admit looks of ' leveling again?'). Here a quick method that was shown to me by a D.P. with much experience (ie - he'd been around) years ago and I love pulling it out of the bag of tricks as it impresses grips (less work but much done) and camera folk (oh, so I don't have to pull the camera! yay!) alike. Lay a piece of 4x4 3/4ply across the rails. Offset to the side with the most room for your dolly. On the opposite side give yourself a couple of inches. Now teeter the board and roll up on it sideways. This should be done slowly and keep a foot on the board touching the ground. Once all the wheels are on the board you can teeter on to the rail and roll off on to the track.A couple of things to watch for: The weight of the dolly will want to push the board away from you and ruin your track leveling job. Also, by keeping your foot on the board while the dolly rolls on to the board will stop the board from popping up and impeding the second side of the dolly from getting on. Watch out for the board sliding out at high speed when you roll the last set of wheels on. This will work with PeeWees, Fishers and Hybrids (it doesn't look like it at first - but remember - you have eight wheels to work with, not just four). Credit where credit is due, the gentleman who showed this to me was DP extraordinare Neil Roach, asc. The trick has since been known as "the Roach Approach". Also ask him about the New York Times!

4 comments:

D said...

Thanks for the post, Azurgrip. Rolling up on the 4x4 is one of my favorites.

Gil said...

Great idea Azurgrip! I Love it! Never thought of this system when side loading on a set of track. I will give it a try and say I came up with it. Just kidding. I will give credit where credit is due.
I have used a similar teeter totter trick when you need to get the dolly up a set of 2-3 stairs. You need a 3/4"- 4'x8' sheet of plywood. All you have to do is put the plywood at the half way point on the top steps edge. Get someone to support the plywood on the upside so it does not slide on you. Then drive the dolly onto the bottom half of the plywood. Best to get a couple of guys to push the dolly on the outsides keeping your weight off the plywood allowing it to teeter when it reaches the upper half. When you feel the balance point, back off a little and let the plywood and dolly gently set on the top step. Then have someone support the starting end of the plywood so when the dolly rolls off it does not come crashing down thus taking the awe effect from your great idea. Works the same in reverse when you want to go back.
We have to think about our backs. No one likes lifting the dolly. Seems harder and harder to find grips that can still help out when it's required to up those staircases from hell.

chris said...

hey fellow dolly grips
nice to see a forum for us to exchange ideas and experiences.
oh the the teetor totter its the best back saver in the business especially for us dolly grips on the wrong side of forty.
i like to one that is 5x4 it takes a bit of the chance of shifting your track out of the equation.less of an angle of approach and don't forget the bevelled edges.in fact that is what i ask for when it is needed "the bevel board"

i used it the other day getting on
tight radius track. it ended up being a not so graceful maneovre.
in the end the shot looked great.

put the dolly on chinios the levelling head on the outside diameter slung to the centre with a slider in line with the dolly .they where messing around with different focal lenghts so i didn't wnat to get caught.it gave me the option of a quick fix and i needed it at the last minute the d.p decided to switch to a tighter lens and we used every inch of the slider.

let's talk

chris

Dan said...

Just wait with the last piece of track till the dolly is on!

That's at least how I do it most of the time. The very rare times I forget it, I like to be punished by the Fish (as my recent D.P. called the big metal thing) as a reminder.

Greetz Dan