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Tom Visser

An unorthodox sound cart

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I accidentally posted this in the Equipment forum before noticing that there was one dedicated for images, deleted and moved here...

I do really small jobs and needed a setup that lends itself nicely to transition from cart to shoulder.  I could not afford a really nice cart, and because I have limited room in my vehicle, needed something compact and storable in small sections.  I can fit this in my Volvo with the baby seats still strapped in and half of the seventh row folded down.

It is from a company called Schneller Manufacturing and are based out of Florida.  They make shooting stools for competitive high power rifle shooters.  I used to shoot M14 and got the idea to borrow another industries' cart for sound work.  It works really well.  Understand it is light duty, not designed to hold racks of gear, but I get by with a pouch for wireless, a couple of booms, recorder, mixer, (My Nagra and mixer are usually in the field bag and strapped in securely, just using the shoulder strap around the cart's handle) a built in bag for cables (on the bottom "stool" section), and a Pelican case for everything else, no follow cart necessary for me and I can wheel it pretty quickly where I need it to go over some pretty rough terrain.  A camping style fold-up stool completes my workspace.  The only thing I really need is to add a couple of antennas and distribution systems, which will utilize those silver rods as masts (actually for rifle barrel maintenance work).  Contact Bob at Scheller if you interested in knowing more.

http://www.schnellermanufacturing.com/

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It is the Nagra MX, sort of an odd ball unit that never made it to mainstream production.  I'm hoping that it becomes a collector's item some day and can make a bundle selling it to an enthusiast.  It's a cool little mixer but with limited utility, obviously, only being 4 channels and having 2 mic preamps.

I'd love to trade it for a Cooper 208v2 ;)

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It is the Nagra MX, sort of an odd ball unit that never made it to mainstream production.

I was also wondering what that was. Thanks for posting the video tour. Like all classic Nagra gear, it's a lovely piece of work.

David Waelder

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Here are 3 pictures...

1) with my gear mostly stripped off

2) couple of turns of the quick release allows you to remove the handle portion from the bottom stool and fold the shelf down flat to the rails.

3) remove 2 cotter pins to allow removal of the wheels.

The picture shows the 2 masts still in place, I didn't bother taking an allen wrench to it to slide those down so they don't extend out.  If you did not need an antenna mast, there is really no reason to install these in the first place.

I took some rough dimensions and it looks like you would need a case of about 48" x 28" x 12" to fit it like you see it (minus the masts which I was too lazy to retract).  If you were to remove some of the accessories and break it down further, probably a 2 minute operation with the right tools on hand, you could probably fit it into a 48" x 20" x 8" space.

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I would love to see what Chindha could do within similar dimensional tolerances.

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Thanks Whit.  I figure some day when I can afford a Chindha, I'll keep this for my boom op, as a little video assist monitor stand / battery cart and a place to store the booms and some cables.  I'm going to try to figure out if there is some way to intelligently integrate a step stool where the load is not born on the all terrain wheels as an assist for the boom.  The Nagra MX is one of the most high quality pieces with shockingly limited functionality that I own.  It is great for small direct to disc music recordings, but its limitations make it sort of an odd duck looking for a job.  As a straight up preamp, it is of course super flexible, as a mixer, very "unique".  I'm thinking of trying it as an ORTF pre using the line inputs to mix in some low end with a low-passed LDC to help fill in the bass fed from a separate preamp, a traditional weakness of the ORTF method.

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Tom, this is an excellent example of cross-purposing from another discipline. I'm always on the lookout for another discipline's solutions to see if they could fill a niche in our profession. I've been looking closely at baby carriage products for months, looking  to see how engineering has been applied to the targeted outcomes of strength, collapsibility, functionality over difficult terrain, etc. I've found that many of the coolest models are still priced upwards of $1K, though! So much for the mass market. And of course, none of those products put the intended cargo (the infant) in a position to manipulate it from a seated or standing position. So there was always the modifications that would have to take place. Not so with your device.

Thanks for posting your imaginative solution and the resources behind it. I've explored a few hunting products before, but have usually only found devices to transport your kill back to your pickup truck.

Keep us posted!

  Greg

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