September 10, 2014

Video: 8 Ways to Put Your Mafer Clamps to Work

99% of filmmaking is rigging stuff up. Okay, maybe not, but sometimes it can feel like it takes up the lion's share of your time and effort if you don't have the right tools/know-how at your disposal. 

Rob Grimm of RGG Photo shows you 8 ways to utilize a very ubiquitous and versatile piece of gear, clamps, namely Mafers (specifically he uses Tether Tools' Master Clamp) for rigging up everything from lights to trays. Check out his demo below:

The great thing about this video is that Grimm's 8 tips barely scratch the surface of how to use clamps to rig stuff up. With a little bit of creativity and inventiveness, the possibilities become endless, but knowing a few key ways to put them to use will help those who might've never used them before.

Like I said, Grimm uses the Master Clamp from Tether Tools, which is about $36 on B&H, but there a ton of other less expensive clamps and clips out there for mounting. A quick search on B&H for generic Mafer and Super clamps, shows that they start at around $20 for the models with ratchet handles and studs. Of course, having a bunch of $2 pony clamps lying around, as well as an assortment of other rigging tools, like those loc-lite arms or even clothes pins, can only add to your cinematic erector set. You can even go full DIY and rig things up using household items (chiefly duct tape), but some of the rigs I've seen look -- questionable -- and dangerous. So, if you're looking for something sturdy (and safe!) that can hold/mount lights, electronics, and even your camera, then getting your hands on some Mafers is well worth it.

When it comes to rigging, what would you say are some absolute must-have items?     

Your Comment

3 Comments

I kept thinking this video seemed really familiar. Then I realized that I cut a series of videos for law firms using that same music. So if you get a dui in Arizona and feel the need watch some online testimonials before lawyering up, you might just feel a bit of mafer clamp deja vu.

September 10, 2014 at 9:36PM, Edited September 10, 9:36PM

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Russell Anway
DP, editor, compositor
165

Huh.

When I first read the headline, I thought my response to the video would be, "Duh! Nothing new here!" Now, I'm glad I watched it because... damn if there wasn't some cool ideas.

September 10, 2014 at 11:29PM

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Cardellini clamps are what seems to be the bomber choice in clamps. These look sweet, but I'm a bit concerned about the plastic tightening handle, and they might be a bit narrow too. Probably perfect for lighter weight applications.

September 11, 2014 at 1:30AM

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Paul Watt
Cam Op
79

Nothing is faster than these bungee cords. We use them to mount our fluorescent fixtures.
http://visiomedia.com/films/Scrap%20Girl/stills/bts_bungee_cords_1920x10...

September 11, 2014 at 6:18AM

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Frank Luchs
Writer/Director
195

How I use superclamps:

1) Back to back clamps. One side on a monopod and one side on the shaft of an umbrella. Great for shooting in the rain. The best umbrellas come from golf stores.

2) A pair of these: http://www.traderhank.com/Polaris-Ranger-Dual-Tool-Hooks.html. Replace the rubber holders with super clamps. You can put two c stands on each side of your Polaris Ranger.

January 16, 2017 at 12:04PM

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