Jordan received a replacement Varavon slider and it shows off a few added changes. First, the legs now have it's own dedicated bag instead of being thrown in with the entire slider. That's one thing I mentioned when I first received mine. If they all sit in the same bag together you could easily have parts getting scratched up. Nice to see a new bag.
Another addition is an added mounting plate under the slider. For those who have the original version, the carrier brake can sometimes get caught up in the middle mounting hole if it wasn't raised completely. They have solved this issue by relocating the mounting threads to a mounting plate rather than on the track itself. [Thanks Jordan].
I don't know exactly when it happened, but it happened. Although i'm a big fan of the Konova slider, I always wished they had a smaller version than 31". At 31" inches, that was just a little bit too long to pack in some of my bags when traveling. So recently they just started listing a smaller 60cm / 23.6" version which still has the new leg / feet design. Having a shorter run slider also makes it easier to balance on a single tripod.
In fact I even went as far as cutting down one of my IGUS rails because I really wanted something down to the 24" length. At just over 23" inches, this slider can be worn with the tripod carrier of your backpack. You can start to find the shorter Konova sliders popping up online (click here).
Earlier in the week Vimeo member Bagelman showed us his version of a DIY Motorized JuicedLink video slider. I was curious to see if his setup could actually handle a straight up vertical shot, so he's put together another demo. Yup, sure does go nice and smooth on a straight up vertical climb. [Thanks Gary]
It looks similar to the Konova and Varavon, but hardly up to the same standards. The bearings are adjustable. I've seen these Smallism sliders before, but they were always expecting way too much. Seems like they know where they stand and have finally brought prices down below Konova. Although the feet/legs aren't anything to brag about, it is an actual roller bearing slider if you want to stray from the IGUS rails.
You can find Konova's roller bearing track slider (click here).
You can find the Smallism slider at auction (click here).
Future mods on the J.G. Pasterjak's DIY ladder type dolly make it much more functional than before. The new materials used to assemble the dolly allows for it to be used on flat surfaces (when flipped upside down), or on a variety of track widths. The ladder dolly design allows you to use almost anything for tracks such as two conduit pipes, two square tubes, or even one solid wooden plank (as seen in the video). Personally I really like this design, as it's still a DIY, but has a much more professional look to the build. The extra heavy bars probably add more stability to the rig too. J.G. Pasterjak mentioned that these units might soon be available on the big auction website, so stay tuned for that. [Thanks J.G. Keep us posted on those units]
Submitted by YouTube member detomaso4ag, here's a simple method to create your DIY Mini Video camera track dolly. For those who don't mind the skate wheels on a pipe track it's a cheap solution to getting smooth gliding camera movements. The trick is getting the wheels drilled in perfectly to the angle iron. If you're slightly off, then the dolly will wobble down the track. For those who aren't ready to tackle the DIY, these mini dollies already exist, found below.
Roller bearing sliders have a love/hate relationship. Some people love the smooth no friction action, and some people hate the inconsistencies they might get without friction. Thanks for Martin for tipping me off on this review. YouTube member AYFilms gives us a review of the Camtree Micro Dolly. We've all seen IGUS Drylin based sliders, but with this Camtree Micro Dolly version they provide an optional pulley system. They are also using one of the widest rails available from IGUS which handles much better than the smaller and narrower versions.
The IGUS rails work on dry (plastic-like) bearings that actually slide (not roll) across the rail. One thing to keep in mind with these friction sliders is you want to center the weight as best as possible. Too much over the side and you'll have unequal tension. The pulley system not only offers additional tension to make sliding more consistent, but pulls the carrier from the lowest point to provide less binding. As mentioned in the video, with the pulley crank removed, you're pretty much 80% the way to making a motorized slider or motion controlled timelapse rig. The Camtree Micro Dolly comes with Pulley system, Quick Release Adapter, and Foam padded Travel Case.