Portable Motion Control
idea of the KT rig is that it's totally modular. This means that each axis will work separately or together – for instance, should you require just a repeated zoom then all that is needed is the suitcase computer and either a Preston interface box or a stepper drive and motor – the various modules are described below and, as said, will work separately or together. The full rig including the dolly and
slider (but without track) will fit into the back of an estate car.
I regularly drive the rig to locations in Europe and the
rig can also be easily air-freighted. Although based in
London the rig has travelled as far as New Zealand.
Kuper rigs have been 19in racks of equipment with pc's and driver's in
them (see the pictures of the TV licensing commercial with the Cygnet
rig). For mobile use this is very impractical as it
requires a 240v AC power supply and a large amount of
space. I have built a Kuper card into a Pelican case
and it will run from a 12V power supply.
will detect a sync pulse from most Xtal controlled cameras and standard
definition video cameras as standard. I have also built an HD
sync box that will decode an HD signal and "fool" Kuper into believing
that the HD camera is in fact a film camera.
also control stepper motor driven cameras (I assume stepper to mean any
camera driven by pulse and direction even if the motor is in fact
driven by a servo motor) like the GP cam and the Arri 435 with the MOCO
adapter. There is also an interface that drives a Nikon
digital stills camera as if it were a stepper motor driven camera.
The Kuper Software is
extremely powerful and versatile. Because it has been used on all
sorts of rigs in varying sizes it has all sorts of features including
but not limited too:
Record and Playback at
all speeds of individual axes separately or together.
Playback as animation
(stop or go motion).
With a Stepper motor
driven camera the move can be ramped up and down with iris
Tabled Axis to link two axis together to provide,
for instance focus on a tracked move or an arc when
using the slider and dolly.
The rig can be triggered by both time-code and by a switch closure (the switch is out of the box, time-code is via XLR).
controller has programmable outputs of cue lights and buzzers (all
included and out of the box) and custom controls can be built at very
short notice ..
The controller can remember 1000's of
moves and will record moves 20 minutes in length .. Moves can be
exported on a CF card .. Save and recall no more than a second or so.
Data can be imported and exported to CGI programs.
KT head is a modified Vinten broadcast head. It's "bomb proof"
and can easily hold a 435 with an Optimo Zoom lens and can be mounted
either the correct way up or upside down (with an offset plate to
get the camera as low as possible). The head comes
with a standard Arri Wedge plate, but pretty much anything can be
mounted on it .. (you need an Element technica baseplate for the RED
base - top (B) =
base - lens centre =
add 20mm for Moy fitting
front - back (A) =
Does not include plugs ..
Width (C) =
not include plugs (however if the width is critical the head can be run
with the sync plugs and the marker light plugs plugged into a separate
The head will do a full rotation in 5 seconds and
-40 to +40 degrees Tilt in 4 seconds (this will be affected by the weight of
The head can be mounted in any position you can fit
a regular moy fitting head and the standard rig comes with tall and
short Moy legs and a number of different plates and scaff fittings ..
hole fitting": Because this head is a broadcast head it has the standard
4 hole fitting, normally a Moy/Mitchell adapter is screwed onto it ..
However there are places where a four hole fitting can be useful and
all the plates I have are drilled for both four bolt and Moy fittings ..Dolly
KT rig dolly will run on standard dolly track with a timing belt
running down the middle. The maximum speed is 2 m/s and the maximum length is 30M (100 Feet). Either I can supply some steel
track or (more often) the track comes from the regular rental house for
the grip equipment. I supply the timing belt. Slider
slider is 1200 mm long and has movement of 750mm. It can be used
horizontally or vertically or as a stand along item. In
combination with the dolly it can lift or do a "Side to side" so that
you can shoot from one wall in a room to another .. or it can go "In
and out" and make an arc.
© Justin Pentecost, 2013.