Jump to content

Frazer Toppin

First investments

Recommended Posts

Hi guys


I'm quite new to Steadicam and currently any Steadicam gigs I would do I would be renting a rig for as I am currently not in a position to buy my own rig.


Just wanted to ask what would be good first investments for someone in this position? i.e buying my own batteries, spare screws/dovetail plate etc


I understand things like spare camera screws, various sized camera plates are quite crucial but what would you invest in first/what order?


I am yet to get my first Steadicam gig but I would feel more confident If I invested in the right things to be prepared for any shoots.


Also to anyone who's rented a rig from a rental house, could you tell me what is in the kit? I understand this might vary between places but it would give me more of an understanding as what would be a good idea to purchase


Apologies if there's any key information you need to know in order answer this.


Many thanks.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd like to follow up on this!


I have the rig now, carrying cases, 4x batteries, 2x dual chargers (which has been enough to power my monitor and sled), various cables as needed.


What should be next?


Lightweight matte box? I'd love an option to bring to cut weight if needed.


Or should my own FIZ, wireless video/1st AC monitor? Many gigs I am currently going out for are such low budget that they don't always have FIZ, wireless video/1st AC monitor are available to us. And then more batteries for power



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a bare bones kind of guy.. I don't bring anything to the set besides my sled, vest, arm, stand and 2 batteries for my sled (one charges while the other works) I have all the tools needed to take my sled apart from top to bottom, but I don't bring anything to service the camera. It's not my job as an operator to. It is not our job to focus, transmit, or power the camera either, if powering the camera makes for a more optimal weight then that's on you, but productions should never expect you to power their camera. (There are certain exceptions like F65 or film cameras)


I think saving money now and upgrading your gear later is the better move.. assuming you don't have a PRO or G70x arm? Or perhaps you have upgrades to add to your sled?

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that makes alot of sense! I think I see what you mean. Oh I could most def do upgrades for my rig, I'm on the Aero30 system now. A lightweight matte box would be nice, and maybe a new monitor that also records would be great too. Those are "little" items that would make a difference now. And then start saving for a PRO rig or big Tiffen rig!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Chris. Various jobs require various equipment. There’s litterally loads of stuff you can get for your arsenal of equipment. If you are serious about steadicam and want to make it in the long run, I would save money and get your first rig when you can afford it. Doesn’t have to be new. Buying stuff because you think you need it, can get costly. I made this mistake myself several times.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Betz Tools for Stabilizers

    Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

    Ritter Battery

    Omnishot Systems

    GPI Pro Systems

    Paralinx LLC