A Ride-Along

After years of shooting video for news and for corporate projects, my opinion is that a combine is one of the hardest places to shoot clean video.  Why?  Not because all farmers are “interesting” drivers, but because the field are so not paved interstates. And than makes them very shaky and even harder to shoot stable video from.


At one point I owned a steadicam. I even tried to shoot with the rig inside a combine but there wasn’t enough room for the arm to flex properly to absorb the shock that comes with bumpy fields. Gimbles have changes that for the better.  But a new project came up and we had to mount it OUTSIDE the cab. An interesting and terrifying challenge.

Well, after a tech scout to find grab points and get measurements, I came up with a way to rig it. There is a step under the windshield, but it wasn’t in a good spot to grab. So, using short arms and tennis balls mounted to a C arm with gobos and cardilinis, we got enough support to keep the entire rig isolated from the combine without the risk of scratching the glass. (Hence the pool noodle).  A scratch from that would not keep me in good company in an AG state.

Turns out all worked for the best. The shots were great with the crop being harvested and transferred to a grain cart. More on that later