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79 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Little Surprise
Having read previous reviews, I knew what I was buying. This product does not replace a true dolly unless your shot is on a gymnasium floor. That had been iterated more than once in the reviews. My comments will concentrate on the product, not its applications.

DISCLAIMER: The following comments take into account the price of the item (~40 USD.) This is not a...
Published on April 13, 2011 by Randy A. Hnatkowicz

versus
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars effective dolly for my tripod.
This sets up rapidly, breaks down quickly, folds up small, supports my heavy 3221 Manfrotto tripod, rolls smoothly and the casters lock securely. I have used it twice. During the second use, on several occasions, the locking mechanism that prevents the dolly from folding disengaged on one arm. As a result one of my tripod legs swung back and the tripod collapsed. This...
Published 13 months ago by KB1JKI


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79 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Little Surprise, April 13, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
Having read previous reviews, I knew what I was buying. This product does not replace a true dolly unless your shot is on a gymnasium floor. That had been iterated more than once in the reviews. My comments will concentrate on the product, not its applications.

DISCLAIMER: The following comments take into account the price of the item (~40 USD.) This is not a high-dollar item.

The tripod-"foot" locking hardware is plastic with threaded metal inserts. While not a machined piece of engineered aluminum, they work well and seem moderately durable. When locked onto my Manfrotto 3401, the dolly became one with my sticks and remained as stable as legs alone.

The wheel locks function at the touch of a toe and unlock just as easily. Very snug when engaged.

The base is metal yet lightweight. I wouldn't stand on it, but it seems durable. There is no slop when locked in the "open" position. Again, very snug/stable. The pins that lock the two moveable base "legs" snap into place and are pulled to release. The spread is adjustable. For my particular set of sticks, it doesn't quite extend to allow full separation of my tripod legs, but this does not affect the stability.

The dolly folds nicely and carries well with the integrated handle. The bag is what you would expect: minimal, but clean and well-fitting.

OVERALL: I recommend buying this dolly immediately after you get a good tripod. (Repeat: GOOD TRIPOD) A good tripod is a necessity. A good means to move that tripod efficiently and safely comes next in my opinion. This item certainly fits the bill.

BONUS!!! I also got (unanticipated) a free mini-tripod in the box. It has little telescoping legs, 1/4" thread, and supports my mini cams. Totally cool. Almost surpasses my affection for the new dolly.

EDIT EDIT EDIT:::
I just finished a shoot this evening with the dolly. This was my first "gig" with it. Here's the scoop.

GYM FLOOR! Yes, bumps and shakes are evident on all but the SMOOTHEST of surfaces. I had a flat marble lobby with VERY tiny joints (the cracks between the pieces)to use for some venue shots, and it was pretty good. If you weren't aware that I had some roughness in the shot, you might not notice... but, now that you know, you would see the very slight bumps in the footage. So, unless you are running on a gym floor for dolly shots, there will be slight bumps (almost unnoticeable.)

HOWEVER, the dance floor shots with the dolly were magnificent. I'll try to post a link to a clip or two. But for now, take my word for it: this dolly will get you some VERY professional shots under the right conditions.

Lastly, simply for moving the cam from shot to shot, this was a time saver and total breeze. The carpet I was on was a tightly knit, Persian-style surface. The dolly moved freely and without much overall rattle. Still, not for filming, but great for getting around.

I recommend that you buy this. Period. (And I do not work for or have any affiliation with the maker.)

FINAL EDIT (this is getting long-winded....)
Here is a link to some test shots from the aforementioned shoot:
youtube(watch?v=fDIxOr2HSW8) Dolly begins at 0:11 and continues for about 20 seconds.

In the first scene, I was on the marble floor. Next you will see dance floor dolly shots.
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116 of 120 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No-budget filmmakers take note..., March 14, 2008
By 
family dogg (athens, GA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
This thing is easy to use, sturdy, complies with even the cheapest tripod, folds up nice and comes with its own little carrying case. Rarely do you see dolly shots in no-budget films, so this item is your chance to cheaply achieve a professional camera effect. It's got thick rubber on the wheels and rolls smoothly on carpet and bare floors. If you're using it on asphalt or uneven surfaces you'll want to put down cardboard as a "track" to even out the bumps. Coolest of all, I was able to pull off a Hitchcock-style dolly out/zoom in shot. Get this and have fun.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars effective dolly for my tripod., November 11, 2013
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This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
This sets up rapidly, breaks down quickly, folds up small, supports my heavy 3221 Manfrotto tripod, rolls smoothly and the casters lock securely. I have used it twice. During the second use, on several occasions, the locking mechanism that prevents the dolly from folding disengaged on one arm. As a result one of my tripod legs swung back and the tripod collapsed. This caused my camera at the end of a 4' jib crane drop about 10'. The pan tilt head protected the camera and the lens was fortunately undamaged. Initially, I thought I hadn't locked the arm correctly, but the third time I knew the thing was locked and the lock failed. There is a plastic tip at the end of the locking pin mechanism that is prone to shear if you bump something while rolling and the slop in the hinge allows the leg to become free of the locking pin. if you intend to use this product to support anything of value, unbolt the hinging arms at each hinge and insert a fender washer (large diameter washer)between the arm and frame and replace the bolt for both arms. This removes the slop in the arms, allows the arms to articulate smoothly, and even with the plastic tips of the locking pins gone, allows them to lock the arms into position with the metal portion. even with the plastic tips intact, the washers do not interfere with the locking pins. This modification is simple, requiring a 3mm allen wrench and 30 cents worth of hardware from the hardware store. I also recommend adding blue breakable thread lock to the screw threads when reinstalling them.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WORKS PERFECTLY FOR MY USE & THE MONEY, November 9, 2011
By 
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This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
Why spend $300 plus for a Manfrotto tripod dolly when your intentions are just moving your 20 pound gear from one location to another or doing a short 3-5 feet dolly shot? For a measly $39, this guy does the job well. In fact, it went OVER my expectations when I unpacked it and placed my Manfrotto 475B tripod on it. The built is solid and the wheels roll down smoothly (of course on wood or concrete and not on carpet). To do a smooth lateral shot, I simply pre-position my three wheels towards the direction I intend to move to and it gives me a smooth shot.

Since some of us here are sold on its built and performance, let's compare values. I just spent $36 on a set of Manfrotto casters for my light stands. Though they serve a different purpose, that's $36 of casters vs $39 for a fully assembled tripod dolly.

Now that I can get a smooth lateral shot with this $39 tripod dolly (assuming I'm always on smooth hardwood or concrete floors), what the heck am I going to do with my $700+ Pocket Dolly which can only give me 30 inches of lateral movement? And to think that I just ordered a $50 BRAKE for this guy! Bottomline, if you're on a tight budget and want to get those nice silky dolly shots, try this Ravelli dolly....HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ravelli AVT tripod dolly--Perfect-o!, December 24, 2007
This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
Wow! The Ravelli AVT Professional Tripod Dolly for film and video is perfect for any project requiring truly smooth dollying and tracking. Furthermore, the dolly adjusts to receive absolutely any floor tripod, from the most economical aluminum to the most elaborate fluid head model.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars it rolls, December 4, 2008
This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
It rolls, it has wheels, it folds up nice. It's a good product. Don't try to build one yourself, it won't be as nice, it won't fit in your hatchback and you'll still spend 45 dollars and two trips to Home Depot. This is well worth the money. Do it. Of course, you better be dollying around on a really smooth floor because there's no optical or digital stableizer that is going to help when you go over those wood floor joints.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Affordable ^ Sturdy, January 26, 2009
By 
This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
I bought this and was very pleased with it. The dolly is a great affordable addition for any DIY video enthusiast. I use my Silk 9000 tripod with it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ravelli tripod dolly, December 9, 2008
This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
This dolly, is pretty cool. Well worth the purchase. It's pretty much the best you can get for a cheap purchase. It's fairly smooth and quiet when rolling slowly and steadily. However it is pretty loud when rolling fast. But no cheap dolly will be completely quiet anyaway. It wasn't as smooth as I thought, but like I said for the money I paid it's amazing.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Used primarily to roll around equipment - NOT camera motion, October 27, 2012
By 
hiscifi (CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, US) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
This is my second spreader. I tried using the first one as a dolly track substitute that shaved off the production time of lugging and setting up PVC dolly track.
It just doesn't work. We were shooting a yoga video on a smooth studio floor (a best case scenario for bump-free motion) and came up with this production reality of the situation:

Assuming you're doing a single direction linear track along your subject (a car or something big, or along a wall) where focal distance is constant, then you only need 2 people to operate the spreader/camera combination. 1 to control speed/direction and 1 to help stabilize while checking monitor.
IF you are doing any complex curves or forward/backward pushes with any tilt up/down/sideways movement within the move, then you'll need a MINIMUM of 3 people: 1 to push the dolly and keep it stable, 1 to pull focus of the subject, 1 one to pan/tilt while checking monitor. ALL of this means several takes involving tripping on each other while bumping camera and botching takes until one happens to come out right.

...AND that's IF you're working on a flawlessly polished floor. Anything less that perfect will riddle your take with bumps and speed insability.

The wheels of the spreader don't lock in a fixed direction, so even a straight line of movement means constant alignment during a take. When you consider that dolly track will solve all of this and give you a better take regardless of setup time, it becomes pretty clear pretty quickly that if a very polished, pro production is what you're going for, the spreader dolly will fail far ofter than will succeed. This is not to say that if all you need is a second or two of smooth glide, a spreader dolly isn't the worst idea... Keep in mind that when looking at takes on your camera's lcd or a small screen, movements look very cool. It's only when you (like us) look at the footage on a 24" monitor to cut it that you see EVERY LITTLE BUMP AND INSTABILITY.

HOWEVER, if you want to shave off production time and keep all lights and tripod on wheels during a shoot for extremely easy movement, this spreader, among all the other ones similarly priced on Amazon (I think they are all made by the same production company because the collapsable designs are identical), is a top notch product, as it will take any sticks that support an iPhone to a RED to a jib crane.

Just purchased my second for this very reason.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ravelli Tripod Dolly, November 30, 2013
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This review is from: Ravelli ATD Professional Tripod Dolly for Camera Photo Video (Accessory)
I love my Tripod Dolly, don't know how I did without it. Make sure you have sandbags to keep it in place when in use.
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