DSLR Video Sliders are great, but you're limited to a short run and narrow rails. When you need something that can track for longer movements, then you're getting into track dolly territory. Track dollies are especially handy if you're working on uneven ground (cement, light gravel, short grass). Lay down a 1" PVC pipe or sturdy (yet cheap) Conduit tubing, throw your tripod on a portable folding track dolly and you can get some very effective push / pulls.
The image (above) is from the more expensive Proaim folding track dolly (seen here). For something cheaper, here are two companies (below) that take inexpensive existing folding tripod dollies and modify the casters into track wheels. Both dollies below have swiveling wheel assemblies that can be used on straight or flex (curved) tracks.
The same company making the SteadyDragon stabilizers offers a modded folding tripod dolly with three wheels on each end. The wheels are aligned to roll on the track without derailing.
I just bought the steady dragon dolly, now looking for a cheap curved track option.
Here's a 25' section of flexible track for $99 by CamOnWheels. Has anyone tried/tested this?
@Dan - If the hose collapses under weight the wheels wont roll. Real flex tracks are hard solid rubber. Heavy stuff.
Can we use 1inch rubber hose as a flex track?
Has anyone used the GlideGear Slider that is listed on ebay above the Dolly? Pretty cheap price...wonder if it's very smooth.
Also where would be some nice cheap flex dolly track :\ or a DIY flex track, I remember someone had the idea of filling a hose up with sand for diy flex track, but that would be extremely heavy.
Well currently i don't own any flex/curve track, but it should easily work. The tires do rotate 360..It shares the same concept as the Losmandy Spider Dolly. Its not as "Pro", but it does work. I have only tried it with pvc pipes and it does give you nice smooth shots. I think its great for dslr shooting. As for price, i wouldn't just "buy it now". I got my glidegear for $140 including shipping. i know there is other sellers who sell the glidegear dolly.. you just need to search for them..and bid last minute..lol.
I'd love to hear of some more reviews of the GlideGear Dolly and how well (or not) it works on set. I'd also like to read some testimonials about the curved track options. Anyone?
Wait so does the GlideGear Dolly actually work well on curves dolly tracks? If so it might be worth saving up for one since the price doesn't seem half bad.
I own a GlideGear Dolly, great product. Nice and smooth.
Thanks yeah it could be either of those two. I like that it's really easy to toss on a sandbag or two if you want more sturdiness to the setup. Don't think these folding ones could stand up to that much weight on the cross pieces.
@Jesse - That's a pretty common design like this one from CobraCrane: CobraCrane Video Track Dolly
Jesse, sounds like you may be talking about a Wally Dolly made in Australia.
I've been on several sets where they used this very solid non-folding tripod dolly that was T-shaped. Any body know what I'm talking about or what brand that is?