Sticky Pod

A good portion of the movie takes place in vehicles, and because of our limited budget we had to find a vehicle mounting system that wouldn’t take up precious shooting time to set up, and wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg in hiring costs.

Your typical vehicle mount takes hours to set up, and requires an experienced grip to set up. We searched the internet and came across the Sticky Pod (www.stickypod.com) made by Tom Heibel. Tom is extremely passionate about his product, as we found out in his demo footage of the Sticky Pod.

We downloaded almost every clip on the internet that demonstrated the Sticky Pod, from Tom's Hardware to indie movie makers, just to see what the limitations were with the product. The reviews all seemed to praise the ease of use and the demo clips looked impressive, so we took the R4 500 leap and purchased the “Director” package.


The Sticky Pod "Director" package

R4 500 is lot of money when you haven’t even tried out the product and, as far as we know, no one in South Africa had one that we could try out. I remember telling our local Panasonic dealer about this “suction cup” vehicle mount that we had purchased, and him saying, “those things don’t work”… Great!

So the thing arrived, and we unpacked it. I remember thinking that the suction bases looked a little smaller than I imagined. I started to think that we had just lost R4 500 to something that would never work.

With no expectations that the Sticky Pod would work, we stuck it to a Fiat Uno, put a small Sony mini DV camcorder on the end, and did a quick test drive. The resulting footage was not bad at all, quite acceptable actually. Well, Mark liked it, I was still not convinced. The road we had tested on was one of the bumpiest in the area and there was some noticeable vibration and bounce. But how would the whole thing hold up to a larger, heavier camera?

We were lucky to get a Panasonic HVX200 camera for evaluation from our local Panasonic dealer, and decided to slap it on the Sticky Pod and take them both for a spin on the Uno. Same roads as before, and still the vibration and bounce, but at least the Sticky Pod held on. Mark was happy with the results, I still was not.

     

Sticky Pod with HVX200 attached. Yes, those are socks protecting the HVX!
With the HVX200 attached, the Fiat's resale value just trebled... no pressure!


     

Some time past, and Mark wanted to test a location he wanted to use for most of the driving shots. We wanted to test various angles, which we would cut together to see if we could fool people into believing that it wasn’t just a circuit that we were driving. This time we would be using a Hyundai.

     
The test location.

We did 4 set-ups, which took about 15minutes to rig each one: 2 bonnet and 2 door set-ups. This is amazing, as most vehicle mounts take a lot longer to set up. We shot about 40 minutes of footage in total and then headed back to review our handiwork.

Wow! Was I wrong! I was finally happy with the purchase! The footage was rock solid, I mean ROCK SOLID! It turns out that the Uno's panels, as most people joke about, are made from apparently thinner metal sheets, and these were causing the vibrations. The only problem now was that Mark found the footage too steady. Well, just as long as I'm happy… VERY HAPPY!

 What we like about the Sticky Pod

   Initial assembly only takes 8min
   Subsequent set-ups take 15min (including tweaks)
   Very light and compact to transport
   Rock solid  on most cars
   Works with swivel heads
   It does what they say it should do!

Click here to see a portion of the first tests with the Uno. (976kb)

Click here to see a portion of the final tests with Hyundai. (690kb)

The Sticky Pod "Director" is available for hire... Hey, we have to recoup some of the money spent on it!

 
     Behind the Scenes - Technical
Pre-Production Production Post Production Marketing
Celtx HPX500
OpenOffice Sticky Pod
Poser 7 Fig Rig
Wikipedia