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HONDA minivan for prod vehicle

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Daniel Gold
HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 29, 2009 at 12:53:33 am

anybody using a HONDA ODYSSEY as a production vehicle? im interested in how it holds up with lighting, grip, and camera gear loaded in the back. thanks -



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Steve Wargo
Re: HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 29, 2009 at 6:20:19 am

I just helped someone load a large amount of gear into one last Sunday and she said it was "Fantastic". But, if you're thinking of buying one, go rent one first and put it through the paces. if you search the web, you can probably get a car for $ 9.95 a day on a Tuesday.

Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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Daniel Gold
Re: HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 29, 2009 at 1:14:09 pm

thanks Steve

i tried to find a honda odyssey to rent but havent been able to

any chance you could forward my email address to the person who owns the minivan so i could ask her some questions directly? (or send me her email address?)

thanks again
Dan Gold
danielbeegold@earthlink.net
917-864-0554

Hidden Rhythm Pictures
http://www.hiddenrhythmpictures.com



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todd mcmullen
Re: HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 30, 2009 at 1:56:08 am

as a minivan fan for production, more for shooting than for loading, I can offer a few suggestions.
Make sure rear passenger windows will roll down, so you can shoot out of if you need to.
Removable or cargo seats. These are great so you can have access to seats if you need to.
Solid air conditioning.

here is what we did to one




Todd McMullen
Flip Flop Films
Austin
http://www.toddmcmullen.com


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Dan Brockett
Re: HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 30, 2009 at 6:59:07 pm

Wow Todd, that is pretty cool, a ShotMaker Mini Van. Someone had some talent in engineering that. Nice.

Daniel:

I used my wife's Dodge Caravan as a production vehicle a few years ago. Not really very different than the Honda. If you are using it for transport, just take out the seats the liberally coat the interior with furniture pads so you don't gouge up the plastic side panels and interior with light stands and cases. Double doors are a must. Light duty car-based vans like these aren't really going to do very well with serious production gear. I used to load up the Caravan to the brim with gear, which would have ended up weighing at least 1,000 and possibly close to 2,000 lbs total. At that weight, the bottom of the van would scrape on speed bumps and steep driveways.

More importantly, loading up a regular car based minivan like the Honda with serious amounts of gear (its tempting because minivans can hold a LOT of gear) can result in your transmission taking a dump on you. Keep in mind, that mini vans are based upon car chassis, suspension and transmissions, they are cars with more room is all. If you want a serious production van to carry more than a few hundred pounds, you will be much better off with a domestic truck-based chassis van, not a minivan. Vehicles like a GM Astro, etc. or even a full sized van. These full sized vans are based upon the divisions truck chassis, designed to take some weight and abuse much better.

Adam Cultraro, a director who I wrote a three page series on for his film Corrado for HD Video Pro Magazine, bought a used production truck for almost nothing, painted it and customized/fixed up the box. If you are the least bit handy, this would be my recommendation for a serious production vehicle. I think he ended up with just maybe $2,000.00 to $3,000.00 into his Ford production van, it was something like a 21' truck with the box, diesel engine. You go to U-Haul and they will sell their older, yet well maintained rental box trucks.

MUCH better than a minivan and much cheaper. Tons of room, you can fit a dolly, generators, overheads, a few dozen C-stands, etc. That's the other thing that sucks about a van, you will inevitably need whatever item is buried at the bottom of the mountain of gear in the minivan. With a real production truck, you have immediate access to anything on the truck, not just what is sitting on top of the mountain of gear in the back.

Good luck,

Dan

Providing value added material to all of your favorite DVDs


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Steve Wargo
Re: HONDA minivan for prod vehicle
on Jan 30, 2009 at 6:31:01 am

Daniel

Check your email.



Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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