First thing’s first, get the heaviest lens that you want to fly. After you have balanced your stabilizer to your heaviest lens, you change lenses. With a lighter lens on the camera, it will no longer be balanced. To restore balance, you screw a Quickdraw onto the front filter threads of the lighter lens. Then you open the carbon fiber doors of the Quickdraw shell and load the Quickdraw with small stainless steel discs. Provided with your order will be an estimate of how many discs should be loaded for each of your lenses. When you’re close to this number (maybe a little shy of it, or maybe a little past it) you will notice your camera and lens have returned to perfect balance. At this point, just secure the carbon fiber doors again and that lens will now be matched to your heaviest one. Repeat these steps for each lens you want to fly on your stabilizer.
Never again will you have to avoid a lens change just to save time. After a year of development, Reflex Cinema is ready to launch its inaugural product: Quickdraw. Gimbals have become the most popular tool for camera movement. What was once a technology exclusively used on large professional drones, is now in every filmmaker's kit. Gimbals have ushered in a revolution of camera movement that may well define our current era of filmmaking. Despite all this, gimbals suffer from a few key inconveniences. First among these flaws is the need to rebalance for every lens change. This is a problem shared with Steadicams going all the way back to 1975. Quickdraw solves this by matching the center of gravity of all the lenses in a kit. With a set of Quickdraws, large telephoto zooms can be instantly exchanged for tiny nifty-fifties. The idea behind Quickdraw is simple, but the engineering process has been complex. The slippery geometry of lenses requires sophisticated design and manufacturing to accommodate. 3D-printing is uniquely suited to face this challenge. Quickdraw accepts every class of lens, from the ultra-wide-angle Sony 10-18mm f4 to the classic Canon 70-200 f2.8. Lens interchangeability equals time saved and shot taken. Quickdraw is the only product of it's kind.
How are Quickdraws calibrated?
How long does calibration take?
Not very long. If your lenses are similar in weight, each Quickdraw will only take five minutes to set up. If you have three Quickdraws, that’s just fifteen minutes. If you have a set of lenses that range from very light, to very heavy, you will have to insert more discs into your Quickdraws. But the discs go in fast, and we pre-load the Quickdraws to roughly 80% of what we expect is needed. This means that even for a kit of lenses with a huge weight range, at most it should only take around ten minutes per Quickdraw.
What happens if I use a different camera body with my lenses?
All you have to do when you switch bodies is rebalance your gimbal for your heaviest lens again. All the compensations between each of the lenses stay the same. You won’t have to mess with the discs again.
If I don't change camera bodies, how often will I have to rebalance my gimbal?
If you’re careful, you may not have to rebalance your stabilizer for months. With a quick release plate installed on your stabilizer, you can reindex your camera to the same position on your gimbal every time. This means even if you take your camera off your stabilizer, everything will still stay in the right position.
What happens if I get a new gimbal?
Nothing really! Just balance it for your heaviest lens just like before. All your Quickdraws will stay calibrated.
How do I store my Quickdraws?
If you have space in your camera bag, we recommend that you just leave the Quickdraws on your lenses like filters. If that’s not possible, then just make sure you keep the Quickdraws marked for what lens they belong to. For your next gig, you’ll just have to quickly screw them on again at the start of the day.
Instagram is a platform specially suited to filmmakers and photographers. It's a place devoted to sharing visual beauty as widely as possible. But most accounts under-utilize it. Much of the best content is diluted by an ocean of memes and selfies. We're trying to do something different with our feed. Every other day Sebastian posts a mini video essay covering different technical topics of filmmaking. We're pushing the Instagram format right to its limits, to elevate the filmmaking niche and get our perspective out to the community in a new way.
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