Oh no, not another video rig… wait… what’s that?

by planetMitch1 Comment

Today we have a cool guest post by Hans Hanson about who wrote us about his innovative video rig (also known as an electric wheelchair)!

Hans Hansen filming with is new video rig – an electric wheelchair

Hans Hansen and his rig

with DSLR comes trouble when it comes down to quick handheld shooting. When shooting with minimum Budget there's no way you can get around in a documentary without some “run and shoot whatever you get”. But you better get it good. So always there's a desire for that steady shot, you want to get it from that angle that puts you right into the action, as close as posible.

On my quest for the ultimate grip I am open for new ideas, aware that there's probably no RIG that is perfect for everything in every situation. So, stop looking for the holy grail, just make the best out of what you have.

Said that, i must confess I am not satisfied never with what is achieved, if there's still a glimpse of an idea to do it better.

When I get together with my friends to make our little DIY RIGs for the 5D, Diego brings around a wheelchair that was given to him. It was about the same time I found another one in front of my apartment in Barcelona which we used for parts. You might have heard about famous filmmakers using wheelchairs when shooting handheld. We started to get excited about the idea to make movies with this wheelchair. But what, when the wheelchair is electric? That's a whole new thing.

It is possible to get that smooth traveling that's so hard to push equally from A to B. I can turn, go back and forth as needed at any given moment. At the same time I operate the Camera. This is the most flexible way I can imagine using a traveling in a documentary.

You might ask, how is that possible to operate Camera and wheelchair at the same time? The secrets are in the Gyro Stabilizers attached to the Steadicam-arm which is adapted to the wheelchair. So we get rid of the uneven surface the wheelchair is battling with, while the Gyros help keeping my framing in place. I feel like thor swinging the gimbal to get my shots. Then a little Adobe Warp Stabilizer and the result is a quite solid traveling, anywhere, anytime.

As a tests I made all these videos ONLY with shots from the street rig (see them after the ‘jump')

This Tool isn't finished. There's something going on to make the chair the perfect tool to be used as a dolly in fiction.

As Cameras are getting smaller, our options grow.

happy shooting,

Street RIG on Paseo de Gracia, Barcelona

Han's electric wheelchair movies

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)


chief astronomer at planet5D LLC
Mitch "planetMitch" Aunger is the creator and mastermind behind planet5D.com

He's incredibly happy running planet5D and sharing so much joy of photography and filmmaking with his readers.


  1. Love the smoothness of the wheelchair rig. And the best part is it opens up work opportunities for wheelchair bound cinematographers.

    In the footage I noticed a side bonus that people didn’t stare at the camera, they did their best not to look at the wheelchair. But if you walk around with the same glide cam everyone stares.

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