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 Dolly developer - make a difference! 
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Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:52 pm
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Post Dolly developer - make a difference!
Hello guys,

I am a photographer (http://www.amireltahan.com) and an engineer working on a new motorized timelapse dolly.
I am curious to hear what YOU need.
From length, weight to new features that don't exist. Try to be as specific as you can, please.
Leave your thoughts and make a difference ;)

Thanks!


Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:54 pm
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Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 2:48 pm
Posts: 1144
Post Re: Dolly developer - make a difference!
I think there are a couple of threads that already discuss that in depth - I'd use the forum's search function

tt

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Fri Feb 20, 2015 5:58 pm
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Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:52 pm
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Post Re: Dolly developer - make a difference!
Thank you for your reply. I thought about searching, just not really sure what to search.
Do you have any ideas?


Sat Feb 21, 2015 1:07 am
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Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:45 am
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Location: Merritt Island, Florida, Estates Unitas
Post Re: Dolly developer - make a difference!
Dollies are a difficult product to sell right now. A while back, Hollywood-style dollies cost thousands of dollars and independent film makers built their own dollies using aluminum ladders as track.

Then Dynamic perception sort of created the low-cost dolly and was swamped with orders, literally over the first weekend their site offered it. The problem is that everyone in the world tried to re-create that magic moment in history, so there are now a hundred low cost dollies offered.

Derek has the most affordable dollies starting about $380 on his site here,

http://www.slidetracked.com/

To succeed, you'll need something different. Check out Edelkrone dollies, which have a clever design that lets the dolly move twice its length, so a reasonably long dolly can be carried easily when travelling or climbing mountains.

Take a look at this amazing 3 axis rig by Lee Ji Hoon, which can dolly four times its packable length while acting as a crane and pan head.

viewtopic.php?f=24&t=12578

Its a tough market to break into though. I offered a roll-up dolly with a ten foot track that literally rolled up into a tube six inches in diameter and ten inches long, and you could pack the trolley, controller and your camera inside the tube. Nobody wanted one. Not one!

Expect this.

I'm not sure what the problem is, but I suspect you'll have to pay several times as much for advertising as you do to make product. The roll up dolly might still fly if I pitch it to Gopro because if it was their product, they'd offer it on their site where people buying their cameras would learn of its existence. Expecting to sell products by announcing them on forums is hopeless. A few like Dynamic perception, The Chronos Project, and Slidetracked have started this way, but a lot more had to happen after their first few sales were made.

If you think you have something different, especially if it can pack small while being very rigid and stable when deployed, please show us. The founders of the aforementioned companies are Timescapes members. If you have something unique enough to be competitive, you might try sending them a P.M. asking about how they promoted their product back when they were starting out. Might be nice if one or two of them would chip in with a comment on the public forum here. Others could obviously use some marketing advise as well. There is some clever magic involved in going from occasional sales to a sustainable company. Now that would be a useful thread to get a discussion going about. Same concept would apply to things other than dollies.


Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:27 am
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Post Re: Dolly developer - make a difference!
take a look at this thread: Designing New Time-lapse Equipment – advice greatly appreciated


timt

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Sat Feb 21, 2015 9:17 am
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Post Re: Dolly developer - make a difference!
By advice is to build something YOU would want. When I started working on the Chronos system it was in large because I did not like what was already on the market, and figured I could build a better system, and I really feel like I did. We see features and ideas that we innovated showing up in other systems and that is a fantastic feeling knowing we helped the state of affairs as far as affordable Moco equipment. By in large we ignored what everyone else was doing, and built it in a way that made sense to us. The control system was the big thing for me, I wanted super fast super easy and something that would take all the guesswork out of it. It was never intended to be a product, just an online DIY recipe. However quite a few people thought we had a better design, we have hundreds of systems all over the world now.

Our sales have slacked (which is a relief, I already have a well paying career that I enjoy and TCP would never make enough to replace my salary especially with the cost of private healthcare and with a son some specials medical needs, so it will always a side project and it started to dominate way too much of my spare time, i was always building and testing, never actually using) which is most likely due to the newer systems from Dynamic Perception, Axis 360, Nebo, Konova, eMotimo, AXSY, the list goes on and on. It was a far smaller pool when we started out, and these new systems coming out are actually pretty darn nice.

I guess the point is, i think your best bet is to build something you want to use, and something that makes sense to you. Ignore what all the others are doing, and do not waste time trying to "keep up with the Jones's" blaze your own trail and forge ahead.

Go ahead and ask people what they are wanting, but i think you will find your best design considerations come through with things that feel right to you. The fact is most people don't want to design a system, they want one they can just use. It is actually up to you to show them something new, something they have not considered. If you build something good, people WILL buy it.

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Sat Feb 21, 2015 8:51 pm
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