Wieldy Dual ISO Arm Vest Video Stabilizer

Let me start by saying I do own a Steadicam Merlin Vest and the Glidecam HD4000 stabilizer. These are two high quality pieces of gear that will give excellent results, but total over $2100+ US dollars. If you can afford this combination, you won't be disappointed with the results.

For those who can't afford such equipment, I have had the opportunity to try several different more affordable vest systems and posted a video about this (below) along with an Arm/Vest I recommend for budget shooters.

So If you are a budget filmmaker, this more affordable Vest/Arm with Stabilizer Combination that can work just as well as some of the more expensive kits out there. The dual ISO arm vest is easy to get in and out of, easy to adjust to fit, and the arm has a quick release system and can be found bundled with the Wieldy Carbon Fiber Stabilizer (Wieldy review found here). Below is a sample video of the Dual ISO Arm and Vest with Wieldy Stabilizer flying a BlackMagic Cinema Camera.

Even with the additional weight of the BMCC, the stabilizer works great. This has been one of the best alternative Vest/Stabilizer bundles i've used that can deliver results similar to my $2100+ US dollar setup, and the kit is often found for around $800. You can find this Dual Arm Vest + Stabilizer via eBay (click here)

Wieldy Vest Dual Arm Stabilizer Steadicam Vest
find-price-button Video Camera Steadycam Dual Arm Stabilizer Load Vest

The vest is very helpful for longer video shots, but is not required. You can always purchase the vest at a later time and just start with the Wieldy Carbon Fiber hand held stabilizer. I have additional information and sample video footage shot with a Wieldy (found here). So if you are just looking for the Hand Held stabilizer, that can be found via eBay (Click Here).

Wieldy Iron Triangle DV Pro StabilizerWieldy Stabilizer Cheesycam
find-price-button Wieldy DV Pro Iron Triangle Stabilizer



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142 thoughts on “Wieldy Dual ISO Arm Vest Video Stabilizer

  1. Emm

    Post author

    @JP - I use a jellyfish tablet clip that has a tripod mount. You can use something like that with a mini ball head on the sled. Just replace some of the weights with your monitor.

  2. jp

    @Emm,

    I just ordered this (v. I), nice price on ebay since the version II is out. I am using a canon camera and plan to use an Android phone as the field monitor (DSLR Controller). Do you have thoughts on how to mount the android to the sled? I think I will like the lower position (on antlers?) so that I can see the ground and the frame as I walk. Thoughts?

  3. Alex

    Ok so I actually figured out I can easily add weight by adding a battery grip, and camera weight plates. That can easily add an extra 2.5 pounds.

  4. Alex

    @Emm - Sry last question, which I've tried searching for, is what would be the easiest way to add enough weight to work well with the vest/arm? Thanks!

  5. Alex

    @Emm - I think I am leaning towards arm and vest solution and adding weight. I feel like it will be easier to get consistently smooth and cinematic looking shots.

  6. Emm

    Post author

    @Alex - The T3i may be too light for the full on Wieldy vest system. Stick to just the hand held Stabilizer like the Blackbird or plan on making your camera setup heavier to work with a vest.

  7. Alex

    I am looking for a stabilizer for my canon t3i mainly to do music videos. I am considering this full wieldy rig or just getting a handheld blackbird or getting the blackbird and mount it on the wieldy vest and arm. Emm or anyone can you help me make a decision? My main concern is I am not sure if T3i is too light for the wieldy arm and vest all together. Thanks!

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  9. gnarg

    Good tip. Thank Emm. if anyone else has experience with this new vest and its behavior with light camera rigs please let me know. I am using a GH3 with few accessories.

  10. Emm

    Post author

    @gnarg - I haven't tried this vest, but they have updated the springs to include 4 instead of just 2. I don't know if that's a good or bad thing. The problem with most vests are they can't fly lightweight cameras. More springs might make the vest incompatible with light cameras, I don't really know until I try.

  11. gnarg

    Emm,

    thanks for your quick response to my previous question.
    I noticed the wieldy product you reviewed now links to has what they describe as a updated vest and stabilizer. (New!! Wieldy 1-9KG Carbon Fiber Stabilizer Steadicam Camera Video DSLR Steadycam) Any issues or significant advantages/disadvantages with this setup that you feel are noteworthy to consider or would change your opinion of this product?

    nice site by the way. I'm learning a lot from your efforts.

  12. Emm

    Post author

    @gnarg - The handheld stabilizers work best, the vest is optional. The vest is used to carry the weight for heavy setups or long operation times.

  13. gnarg

    what works best for steady footage when walking? A vest based system or a shoulder system?. I will be filming walking virtual tours of historical sites in my area with a dslr and would love to get some advice from the experienced folks who follow this blog.

  14. I purchased the Wieldy stabilizer linked in this post, and recently tried to run an HDMI cable through the sled's carbon fiber post. Specifically, I tried running a Monoprice "6ft Ultra Slim Series High Performance Mini-HDMI® to HDMI® (A-C) Cable w/ RedMere® Technology" cable, as it had the smallest connector I could find.

    It turns out the sled post has a very strong steel tube embedded in its top that's maybe 7 inches in length or so. The top and bottom of this tube constrict to a smaller opening than the carbon-fiber tube. This becomes a bottleneck that won't let the mini-hdmi plug pass. I even ground off the plastic and some of the metal on the mini-hdmi plug's housing to make it smaller, and it just can't pass through this opening that unfortunately keeps the cable from running far enough towards the top of the sled to be sure it's above the gimbal.

  15. Emm

    Post author

    @Morgan - the Merlin is designed to fly with by holding the handle slightly at an angle. As you walk the handle can then move up and down. It also moves the small stabilizer further from the arm so it has room to work.

  16. @ Jay and Emm

    I also want to fit my merlin on the wieldy arm, so that seems like a nice solution...

    But can you guys tell me something about why the merlin requires an angled post?

    And why would I need to change the back screw for a longer one?

    Thanks A LOT!

    Morgan

  17. BT

    I still have had massive issues with broken units and broken down communication with the suppliers of this unit. Just wished I bucked up the extra cash and got a Glidecam.

  18. Jon

    Emm,

    Important note on the Opteka vest & arm I recently bought. The vest is reasonable quality and fits ok, BUT the arm post DOES NOT fit a Steadicam Merlin handle as described on the Opteka site and Ebay site.

    They inform me they need to build a custom adaptor for the vest to work with the Merlin which should take 1-2 months to manufacture.

  19. Emm

    Post author

    @Tim - It is one spring per segment, and 7 pounds may be pushing it. You might have to look at the more robust vest systems.

  20. Tim

    Emm,

    I have the Flycam 6000 and it sucks. Want to take the plunge on this setup. I have both a DSLR as well as the C300. Will it fly both? The c300 with cage, lens, and monitor is around 7 lbs. Do you think it can handle that load. Also, does the dual arm have a total of 4 springs? Two in each segment? In my experience, two springs in each segment helps stabilization. Thanks for the help.

  21. I got a deal on a 2nd merlin arm and vest to go along with my first Merlin arm and vest and a modified Glidecam HD4000. I would love to buy the Wieldly sled and use that on my 2nd steadicam arm and vest with the adapter that I bought from Berkley systems. However, since the Wieldly post is smaller than the Glidecam, I'm wondering if it will mount onto the berkley adapter.

    Anyone know about this or have other advice> I guess I could get some screws and adapters, cause really it's like 300 bucks cheaper than the HD4000 so I'm game for that... and I might even consider the whole vest and amr since that is in the ballpark...

    Any advice? cheers and thanks for this article.. it's great.

  22. Emm

    Post author

    @RBStudios717 - You would simply attach a mini ball bead where the weights normally are. The monitor will be used as one side of the counterweight. The trick is running an hdmi cable to send the video output. Some guys have drilled holes in the stabilizer post and ran it through.

  23. RBStudios717

    Hey Emm. Great info and insight on this comparison! My question is, how(if possible) could I attach my 7inch(Lillput) LCD monitor to the Wiedly Steadicam/Vest? I see some videos where they have a monitor connected towards the bottom of their stabilizer. Thanks in advance!

  24. Emm

    Post author

    @Mick - Wow that's a tough one. The GH2 is so light weight on it's own, it won't work on a vest. If you happen to 'rig it up' to a heavier setup that weighs about the same as a Canon DSLR, then I might say this Wieldy with vest is pretty good. If you don't need a vest, there are many small hand held stabilizers like Glidecam or Skyler Mini.

  25. Ramin

    I just got a used BlackBird Stabilizer and the diameter of the hole in the handle where the post of the arm is inserted is about 12mm which fits a Merlin vest/arm. I checked on Ebay and some of the Chinese vest/arm combos mention the diameter of the post is 16mm. So they are obviously incompatible. Do you know of one of the Chinese vest/arm combos (Merlin is expensive) that is compatible with Blackbird? Thanks

  26. Emm

    Post author

    @John - Does not look like the same vest I have, but similar stabilizer. An hdmi run would be convenient to have for those who want to run and external LCD.

  27. Emm

    Post author

    @John - Yes the monitor could work on the wieldy. I have recently seen the Laing M02 and it's massive. You would have to add a heavy plate just to use it with a small camera. That system has a great build but is only recommended for heavy camera setups.

  28. John

    Hi Emm.
    Thanks for all of this.
    I'd like to put a 7.7" oled monitor on the bottom, and fly my 5Dmkiii with various lenses on top.

    Hoping to run an hdmi cable (large on both ends) from the monitor, throught the carbon post, to the camera.

    Do you think all this will work?
    Also, have you seen the Laing system?

    Thank you.
    John

  29. Emm

    Post author

    @Sam - The Vest will hold a heavier camera like the FS100 but I have not used that particular stabilizer to say if it's any good.

  30. Emm. Im looking to purchase a Video Stabilizer asap! Do you think the Wieldy Dual ISO Arm Vest Video Stabilizer is a good choice to fly a RED SCARLET! Also what may be another affordable Steadicam you may know!
    Thanks

  31. Emm

    Post author

    @David K - The Merlin requires an angled post (not straight up). You would have to find a small rod to bend and place into the arm. If you have the tools to take a small rod and bend at an angle and drill for the vest mount, it can be done.

  32. David K

    I have a Merlin and love it, but I'm looking to add an arm and vest. Do you think that it would be easy to adapt a Merlin do this 1-7kg arm and vest?

  33. TR

    It's a very good arm+vest
    I tested it and it's very useful
    Now I sell it using ebay , if you are interested , check it as "Wieldy Dual ISO Arm Vest Video Stabilizer" from Italy

    Thanks

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