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Constantin

Cologne Cart

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As an homage to Matthias Richter's long running thread, Berlin cart, I have called this one Cologne cart. This is to show my cart, but I would also like to encourage other Cologne based mixers, to show off their carts here, too.

So my cart is based on two ABS cases. I am in no way a skilled handy worker, so this is not exactly beautiful craftsmanship and everything is improvised as I go along. I do try to think things through before building them, but more often than not that meant solving one problem while creating two new ones.

All the parts are readily available at home depot or such like, except for the motors which I found on Ebay. I was so impressed by Simon and Stewart's rise-able cart that I decided to build something similar. Just a few days earlier I had found myself wanting to work stading up and then they just released their video, and I also came across Chindha's new cart, which can be positioned at two levels, but I just cannot bring myself to spend more than $6000 for something I can more or less build myself. Not as pretty, though, but as I prefer a fully enclosed cart, anyway, the open structure carts are not for me.

So in my case, the entire upper case rises up by about 40cm, allowing me to work comfortably in a standing position, which is not only healthier, I also feel more active and it's easier to talk to others between takes - only about work related issues, of course. Or, if I feel like it, I can keep it in the lower position and sit down for work. The three motors (officially called "Linear actuators", I believe - at least on the box) I used were actually designed to move solar panels, but they can also move windows, doors and whatever. They are very sturdy and weather proof. I just couldn't come up with a way to use just one, which would then move some lift mechanism, so now there are three for better balance. I also stepped up the power for these to 24V from my 12V Cart power, which means they are a bit faster now, but they are very very noisy while moving up or down. It takes about 42 seconds to fully extend them, which feels like a lifetime when the entire crew is watching and listening. Although, just yesterday a grip said to me "Twice a day, even sound is allowed to make some noise". In the video below I replaced the sound by ever so subtle music, which came as part of iMovie. I just don't want most of the comments to be about the noise.

I will add more pictures later, if and when there is some interest.

CologneCart1.mov

 

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thanks for the homage ;-)

Looks funky on the video! How much weight does the whole setup add? I sometimes would like to work in a standing position too. But my cart is pretty heavy already. Every idea adds up on weight rather than reduce some. At least with my ideas. Can you roll around in the lifted position or is it too tipsy?

Have you got some pix from the back / side?

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Constantin - you have done an exxcellent upgrade to Matthias's very nice Berlin cart, congratulations.

This uppy/downy business is very interesting (not just to me) and I note you have referred to Simon & Stuarts 2 position cart, which is also very clever.

I think they may have used a ball screw type assembly, which would probably be sturdier, quitter and faster than your linear drives.

Here are a couple of links.

http://www.boschrexroth.com/en/xc/products/product-groups/linear-motion-technology/screw-assemblies/index

http://www.boschrexroth.com/en/xc/products/product-groups/linear-motion-technology/index

However they are probably more expensive. Also in the event your top rack case is heavier than Simon & Stuarts setup, you may still need

a minimum of 2 to keep it stable.

Otherwise a strong aluminium frame that the case sits on might work, with a single ball screw assembly attached at the rear

(as in Simon & Stewarts).

Anyway nicely done, very imaginative solution.

Best,

Rob

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Cool Cart Constantin. How absolutely brilliant that we share these innovations and experiences here.

I am just about to rebuild the top pod of my Johnny 5 cart to house a Nomad/Oasis/Tablet rig, and then to start a new top pod to take whatever my next recorder and radio mic rig might be. Happy days indeed.

 

Kindest, Simon B

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On 3. März 2016 at 9:06 PM, Matthias Richter said:

How much weight does the whole setup add? I sometimes would like to work in a standing position too. But my cart is pretty heavy already. Every idea adds up on weight rather than reduce some. At least with my ideas. Can you roll around in the lifted position or is it too tipsy?

Have you got some pix from the back / side?

I don't know really, about the weight. But it's not that much. I am concerned about my cart's weight, too, but I replaced a 2U steel drawer for a much lighter 3U aluminum drawer, which has already pretty much negated the increased weight from the motors. I can roll around with the extended cart fairly easily, actually, but I try to avoid it. I don't know yet how stable my construction is, although it does feel solid. And each motor can lift 150kg, so I'm pretty well covered there. But I only ever roll it when I can keep it on all four wheels, I don't dare tilting it. I tried posting some pictures below. 

 

17 hours ago, Rob Stalder said:

Constantin - you have done an exxcellent upgrade to Matthias's very nice Berlin cart, congratulations.

This uppy/downy business is very interesting (not just to me) and I note you have referred to Simon & Stuarts 2 position cart, which is also very clever.

Wow, thank you Rob, coming from you this is like a badge of honor! I was trying to build something like that, but I couldn't find the right gear. Thanks for those links, maybe for the next version, I'll try that. I had also thought about using something like this: 

http://www.grauer.ch/en/index.php?page=laborhebebuehnen&layout=produkte

They exist in an electrical version, too, but they are very expensive. I would've just mounted one between the two cases. So that would have been very easy. 

11 hours ago, Bash said:

Cool Cart Constantin. How absolutely brilliant that we share these innovations and experiences here.

Thank you, Simon. Yours was the inspiration for my cart. Although the idea was sort of growing before, I only started thinking about it seriously, when I saw you wonderful cart. 

 

This is how I mounted the side motors. The alu pipe on the bottom is not related to the lift mechanism. 

56db5b2ab8572_2016-03-0414.21.13.thumb.j

 

This is how the side motor is attached inside on the upper case

56db5fb39304c_2016-03-0416.37.32.thumb.j

 

The attachment of the rear motor on the upper case. I haven't got a picture of the lower case, atm. I took those pictures at work, and it was too dark. 

56db5fe582112_2016-03-0414.44.57.thumb.j

 

And here it is at work.

56db6040dba8c_2016-03-0416.44.59.thumb.j

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Thanks Constantin.

One of the main points of difference I have from the average DIY cart builders on this forum is; the average cart builder here builds an average of about 3 prototypes, (this excludes Jeff). I have built between 50 and 100 prototypes...

So I still take my hat of to Simon & Stewart for their vertical solution, it really fits their overall cart construction design.

With your type of cart you really need to re-enforce (considerably) the point(s) at which you attach your risers. Maybe by a metal frame

on top of the bottom case and under the bottom of the top case.

 

However may I make a suggestion for you to consider.

The Lab jacks url has been added to my manufacturing file. And it got me thinking.

2 of those between your cases - in tandem - could work very well. I would use the mechanical ones first, to see if they worked.

You would need to choose the right physical size & weight lifting capacity.

I think if you approached the company they could supply you with a long threaded rod that you could cut to size, with a winding handle on one end. This you could thread into the jacks after you had set them up on the top surface of the bottom case. They might even be able to pre-set them up for you.  This would give you the ability to wind them up/down in unison with one handle.

I think a sheet of plastic honeycomb (much lighter than aluminium) one glued to the top of the bottom case and another glued underneath the top case would give you enough support. You could then bolt the lab jacks on, through the plastic sheet and the case exteriors. Use single component Urethane - e.g. Sikaflex auto.     http://www.sika.com/en/solutions_products/solutions-for-projects/sikasmart-solution-transportation/sikasmart-truck-solutions.html.html

Plastic sheet   http://www.normanton.co.uk/honeycombs/images/Clear%20Coloured%201.JPG

Plastic sheet   http://yamaneyacht.en.alibaba.com/product/60283296543-221086162/PC_honeycomb_door.html

The other thing is I question, (considering where you are) why you do not use Euromodule rack cases. I have had a bit to do with them

and in my opinion they are among the best in the world. Because the are modular you can increase/decrease their size as your equipment

setups change. This is no small thing.

Because they are modular, their joining points are re-enforced. This along with their generally thicker wall construction gives you

a more solid case to build on.

Add to that they ship flat packed - awesome.

http://www.euromodule.fi/

Bit long winded this reply, but I hope it helps.

Best,

Rob

 

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Thanks Rob, yes that does help. Although not my wife who is a bit fed up with me working on my cart all the time, in addition to having a stupid job to begin with (in terms of predictable working hours). 

I didn't know about those Euromodules, they look very interesting. I chose those cases, because they are light (even lighter than the Euromodules), cheap and sturdy. 

I don't think I need a metal frame at the moment. That had been my original idea, a metal frame bolted to the cases, but now I have some aluminium tubes (squared) which are bolted to the existing metal frame (the rack slides and edges) of the case. This feels very very sturdy at the moment. Nothing is actually attached to the ABS, even though it may look like it. 

The Lab Jacks are still something I am considering, possibly even just one. I have bought a manual one on Ebay to try it out, and I now use it to support the cart or raise it, when I need to take the wheels off. It's quite strong, fairly light, but even when fully contracted, it's maybe 15cm high, which adds too much height to the cart (for transporting upright in my car). Also the wheel to extend it, is hard to turn. I would need to modify it, and don't know if I could. 

Anyway, for the moment I am quite happy with the way things are, but will consider various options for a future update. Which, to my wife's annoyance, will probably come sooner rather than later. 

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On 2.3.2016 at 11:03 PM, Constantin said:

As an homage to Matthias Richter's long running thread, Berlin cart, I have called this one Cologne cart. This is to show my cart, but I would also like to encourage other Cologne based mixers, to show off their carts here, too.

Hi everyone!

As a a cologne based mixer with a heavily Matthias Richter inspired cart I guess this is my call to finally kick in. I'm a regular reader but never actually posted something.

At first I have to give a big thank you to Matthias for the inspiration and also for answering my questions when I was in the process of building!

I'm very happy with this cart. At first there were some stability issues with the skb cases but I did some small reinforcements and now for my needs it's near perfect. The only downside I've found so far is the width which is just enough to get me in trouble in small appartments or the odd tiny elevator.

DSC_0108.JPG

DSC_0109.JPG

DSC_0111.JPG

DSC_0114.JPG

DSC_0115.JPG

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Hi Astro, welcome! That's a very nice cart you've got there! I can see the Richter heritage. I particularly like your rear tires and how you mounted them. The mechanism to lock both cases together, is that all to keep them locked? Or is there anything else? The way it's done now, it looks a bit like the case would move in various directions when rolling the cart on the rear wheels only. Anyway, very nice and clean! Don't you ever shoot outdoors? How can you keep you cart so clean? 

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At first I just used only one turnbuckle on each side. This wasn't stable at all and the top case always moved around especially when going up or down stairs. When stacking the skb cases they don't lock very well. Also the PE plastic is very slick. When tightening the locks the cases would deform. Especially the area where the aluminium frame has its seam was problematic.

I added a second buckle on each side and put strips of thick cellular rubber between the aluminium frames. Also I reinforced the joints of the frame with aluminium strips. This has greatly stabilised the construction. See the attached pics for details.

I love my gear so keeping it clean with a brush a vacuum cleaner and a damp cloth isn't that hard... 👍😉

55da25a022bcfe2a374334b3ec3c91fa.jpg

f425d1bb1716a83691530ed166d10022.jpg

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I love it!! ;-)

Very nice to see a younger twin of my cart!! And since my cart is rolling since 2007 now (had to replace the bottom case once) you know it´s been a tested and trusted cart design for quite a while now. My cart is packed with gear up to the point that some of it is actually hidden deep inside.

My BoomOp 2ch-TX (EW300) and PL-TB-RX  from the BoomOp are located behind the one monitor. Additional Comtek headphones are behind the other one. Every inch is used.

The good thing with the quick-lok axles is that you can use beach-wheelez with the same axles and swap in seconds! Have a beach location? Click, clack and you are ready to roll the sand with no probs.

 

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Hi Matthias,

where did you get the beach wheels. I already had the pleasure of dragging the cart through the sand while the crew kept yelling at me because they wanted to shoot the nice sunset. Not funny...

Did you have to change the axle assembly or did they fit plug n play?

You are not using original skb cases, are you? How do they lock together when stacking? Is the construction with the tension belt stable? For me it wasn't possible to get a sturdy connection with just the belt. I'm pretty happy with the profile rails though. They are perfect to attach accessories. I.e. I have thread eyes attached to securely fix the cart in the car in seconds.

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the Beachwheels got the same axles as your croozer-wheels. Just plug n play. Quite expensive though (500-600€ a pair). Since we are not shooting on a beach every movie - maybe get em together with a Cologne collegue ... That´s what we did in Berlin.

http://strickerbike.de/roleez-rader.html

My cases (SKB lookalikes from Thomann) are locked just with the ratchet snap. Works for me perfectly since day 1. Maybe because I have more 19" hardware installed, making the whole case more rigid?

One additional idea: use the front door as a potential laptop tray. I have installed a folding board inside the front door. The door itself can be attached to one side of the case and swings open. You´ve got the door anyway - why not use it for more than one purpose only ...

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I love my gear so keeping it clean with a brush a vacuum cleaner and a damp cloth isn't that hard...

Gear - yes of course. But the cart's outside, especially the wheels I never much bothered about, cleaning it only after a production wrap.

Anyway, very nice

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Hi Rob,

big balloon type wheels are easily  found on the net. The problem is the 12mm quick release axle. Due to the big dimension of the wheels these need to be significant longer than the standard wheelchair axle. I haven't been able to find a supplier yet. Though I guess for the few times I need beach wheels I could do without the quick release and just build a simple axel from a steel rod and some bushings and R clips.

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Hi Astro. You could, particularly if you could run it through the bushes that the quick release axles run through.

You could also use threaded rod so you could put nuts on each end. But the thread might damage the inside of the bush, so it might be you would need spare bushes just for that axle.

Again through the  bushes you might use a bolt and nut each side, preferably one not completely threaded.

You could email wheeleez and ask them.

Quick release axles/bushes are sold by wheelchair places.

Also to remember there are 2 standards - 12mm and 12.7mm (half inch).

Best,

Rob

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I´ve got my ones with the axles from strickerbike.de. So they got the matching quicklok-axles for sure. Both 12mm and 12.7mm. If you go for these balloons go with the quicklok-axles. If only for the wow-effect from the other crew-members ;-) We are in the show-business after all ...

 

Speaking of wheels - I am looking for tubeless 16" tires to replace my ones. The pressure of 90kg deflates them if I don´t watch out which in the end damages the ventile. So far no luck. Anyone particular in Germany with a source?

 

edit: there is a new source:

https://www.trendwizzard.de/onlineshop/tannus-fahrrad-reifen-nymph/

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The tires which Rob posted are considerably cheaper than the €500 you quoted, Matthias. Do you know the possible reason for this? I don't need them anytime soon, but it'd be interesting to know should I ever need them

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