How to Make a Jib Crane

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A jib crane can be created using either aircraft aluminum or wood, a tripod and high-quality barrings. Make a jib arm for smooth maneuvering of the camera with help from a movie producer in this free video on filmmaking.

Part of the Video Series: Filmmaking & Movie Special Effects
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Shaun O'Rourke with Eleven Bravo Productions and I'm here today on Sound Stage 2 at EUE Screen Gem Studios in Wilmington, North Carolina, the largest studio complex on the East coast. Today we're going to talk about how to build a jib arm. First thing's first, when you want to build a jib arm, you have to use light weight materials. We recommend aircraft aluminum. The two key components to a jib arm, is going to be the materials that you use and the bearings that, so that you can do smooth movements up and down. The bearings are very, very important, it's probably the most money you'll spend on putting together your own jib. You can do them at different lengths, you can do a four foot, a ten foot, an eight foot, whatever you'd like. But you have to make sure that your tripod that you purchase is going to be a heavy duty tripod, that can hold the weight of the most low end cameras like the HVX 200 and below. Anything heavier than that, you may want to go with something a little bit, a little bit more high end. This one has a lever so that you can, when you mount the camera up to the top, you can actually do movements. And so not only will your, will your jib affect with your camera, it'll be a smooth up motion, you could actually tilt the camera down and up as you go to come. So that your DP has more creative fluid motions in order to create the shots that it's going to do. This particular jib was manufactured at Stainless Steel Works in Wilmington, North Carolina. Your average independent production would spend about 2500 dollars, building and getting the parts for a jib like this. Stainless Steel Works in Wilmington, North Carolina did it for half the price. An alternative material used would be wood, you could make one out of wood as well. You just have to make sure you have good dowel rods in the center here and but the drawbacks to it is, the wood might chip. The wood would work overtime and so it would be more of a kind of a one time deal that you would toss, when you're finished. And now we're going to show you how to build this thing. First make sure you have all of your parts laid down in a nice orderly manner. Make sure you have your weights so you can counter balance the jib as you're building it. Make sure the body of the jib is laid out, so that you can see clearly, all the parts and pieces. This is important because you don't want to make sure that you lose anything or that you don't have what you need. Make sure you get yourself a basic tool kit, one that has basic hammers and screw drivers. And you're going to need a heavy duty tripod. Now this is how we're going to build it. I'm Shaun O'Rourke with Eleven Bravo Productions and I've just showed you how to build a jib arm.


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