Film a Motorcycle

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Introduction: Film a Motorcycle

About: Making and sharing are my two biggest passions! In total I've published hundreds of tutorials about everything from microcontrollers to knitting. I'm a New York City motorcyclist and unrepentant dog mom. My wo…

Motorcycle riding is fun, but capturing good video of a rider on a moving bike can be difficult. What follows are the details of an attempt to film an interview aboard my motorcycle, with whatever equipment and friends Maria and I could gather. There are certainly more ways to film a moving subject than discussed here, and I'd love to hear your suggestions in the comments!

Warning! Don't hurt yourself, others, or do anything illegal! My friends and I are professionals with a lot of experience and understand the risks involved. Do not attempt to operate a camera from outside a moving vehicle. Keep speeds low and drivers undistracted. Safety should be your number one priority!

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Step 1: Communication Equipment

The two motorcycle riders' helmets have intercom systems, both Sena brand (SMH10R and SMH10) .

To communicate directions and blocking, a passenger in the car used long range wireless radios to feed directions and blocking to the motorcycle driver. This was a one-way communication as the driver could not easily activate the microphone. However later on in the Audio Capture section you'll see how the car could hear both riders.

Step 2: Video Equipment

The star of the video show when it comes to stabile action shots is the DJI Osmo, which is a 4K camera stabilized by a motorized gimbal. I just got this new fun toy and this video shoot was the perfect excuse to get to know it a bit better.

We also used a GoPro Hero Session on the hood of our follow vehicle using a Panavise suction mount. When riding alone, I put this camera on my helmet, chest harness, or suctioned to my gas tank. But for being filmed, we wanted to keep the subjects camera-free.

Inside the car we had a two Panasonic GH4s, one side-mounted upside down with a Joby gorillapod and the other handheld.

The Osmo and GH4s both capture in 4K, and since we're editing in 1080, we can use that extra space to stabilize the shots in the editing software, plus crop out the occasional time when the car mirror or antenna entered the shot.

Step 3: Audio Capture Equipment

Our audio setup was expertly operated by a generous friend who records sound professionally. Both riders wore wireless lavalier microphones: Lectrosonics SMV transmitters on block 21 snd 22 (with DPA discreet lavs covered with rycote overcovers) whose receivers (411s) connected to a battery operated 788 recorder/mixer. An old xlr -> 3.5mm cable I made came in handy for monitoring the audio mix over the car stereo's aux input.

Both GH4s were topped with Sennheiser AVX EKP wireless receivers on the same channel receiving a mix out of the 788's mic channels.

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    10 Discussions

    0
    MichiganDave
    MichiganDave

    4 years ago

    Thumbs up: I subscribed 8/15/16, # 46 or 47, I forget which. BIG thanks for sharing this with all of us.

    0
    DutchNeb58
    DutchNeb58

    4 years ago

    Could you please ask your friend to ellaborate on the audio setup? The video was a great start, but I was really hoping for more instuctions on the audio setup, and to hear some of the recorded communications.

    0
    bekathwia
    bekathwia

    Reply 4 years ago

    It took a minute but I followed up with him!: Both riders wore wireless lavalier microphones: Lectrosonics SMV transmitters on block 21 snd 22 (with DPA discreet lavs covered with rycote overcovers) talking to 411 receivers. You can hear our recorded audio in my friend Maria's interview: https://youtu.be/qx0JKeFVIkU?t=10m43s

    0
    burzurk
    burzurk

    4 years ago

    Yes I want audio setup details too...I it is not even close to straight forward or easy to get audio because of wind noise. you usually have to use a very very good 'dead cat' muff , you put over the mic.

    0
    bekathwia
    bekathwia

    Reply 4 years ago

    Got more info on the mics we used! Both riders wore wireless lavalier microphones: Lectrosonics SMV transmitters on block 21 snd 22 (with DPA discreet lavs covered with rycote overcovers) talking to 411 receivers.

    0
    burzurk
    burzurk

    4 years ago

    lol...and I forgot to say...great Instructable!

    0
    johng419
    johng419

    4 years ago

    That was cool! Thank you for sharing. Johnny

    0
    Barnbaby
    Barnbaby

    4 years ago

    Nice job! You really know the topic. The video looks great. I know it seems like quite a bit of gear to pull this off, but the results are impressive, and once you've mastered it, more good videos will be forthcoming. Being a motorcyclist myself, I can appreciate the attention to detail. Good luck, and keep the shiny side up!

    0
    offseid
    offseid

    4 years ago

    Interesting and fun Instructable...thank you!

    0
    Skymag
    Skymag

    4 years ago

    Interesting but needs to much equipments :/