- Category: Articles
- Last Updated on Saturday, September 21, 2013
- Fred Ginsburg
A soundcart is not just a wagon for hauling around equipment; it is where you work, live, and breathe on a movie set.Trick out your cart into a mobile, well stocked, audio "village" that will steamline your workflow and match your professional image. On my carts, I have transformed bare frames into my own remote studio, putting what I need right there within my grasp... neat, organized, yet secure for instant transit when I need to relocate within the set or pack off to a whole new location.
On my cart, I drilled 3 holes through the top of the handle to accommodate large (squarish “S”) hangers that I found in the hardware store – for my cables. The cable hangers just drop into the holes, are free to swivel to the sides, and quickly remove when I need to fold up the cart for transit.
Note that the cable hooks are on the end of the cart with the fixed axle, because we normally push and steer the cart from the end with the castered wheels. I prefer not to have cable hooks jabbing into me. Therefore, I store my boompoles at the steering end, and cables at the far end.
I also added a bunch of eye hooks under the main shelf so that I could snap on some hook & loop cable straps, because you can never have too many places to hang stuff such as additional cables, headphones, gaffers tape rings, and so on. I use an eye-bolt going up from the underside, and secure it on the top with a fender washer and locking nut.
The hook & loop straps also serve to anchor at least two of the wheels to the underside of the main shelf deck when I fold the cart for transit and nestle it atop the nested shelves for transit. Keeps the cart from rolling around in the back of my vehicle.
A strip of adhesive backed hook & loop material runs underneath my hutch, and can accommodate a battery powered LED work light and other small accessories.
A trip to the car parts store located a nice canvas (seatback) apron full of pouches, originally intended to hang down from a seat headrest that can hang off of one of the uprights.
Karau Products in Pasadena CA manufactures a canvas Boom Apron specifically designed to slip over the upright handles of the R12: with pocket sleeves to accommodate 4 boompoles, antennas, or similar pole equipment. Price is only $59.95
Karau also plans to offer a full skirt that backs one length of the cart for privacy/security as well as external storage.
Because liquid refreshments are a necessity on the set, I purchased a gimbaled beverage holder from a nautical supply house and attached it to the upright post that supports the hutch. Keeps my coffee or cold drink safe from spilling onto any equipment.
Setting up the cart with only two hands can be tricky, since the T-bolts need to be inserted while you hold the main shelf up at the same time. Rock N Roller suggests laying the cart on its side and letting gravity take over.
However, I have found a more practical solution is to permanently install two 5/16 inch bolts into the U-shaped receptacles at each end of the main shelf supports. Just insert a two inch bolt and tighten with a thin nut. I prefer to install the bolts at the back of the shelf, but it really does not matter. To install the main shelf, just catch the two fixed bolts a little ways into the holes on the upright side supports and the shelf will stay put. Then you can go around and properly insert the bolts and the T-bolts all the way and secure with wing nuts. Note that you might need to loosen/enlarge the holes on the uprights just a tad so that your bolts insert easily.
I also recommend painting a white band on the deck frame to indicate the proper amount of frame extension for use with your shelf. It will save you the hassle of kicking the frame shorter or longer to match the 36” main shelf.
Of course you will need to secure a power strip or two to the cart. Some folks prefer to attach the strips to the underside of the main shelf, or even topside somewhere out of the way. Personally, I like my AC away from my audio cables and gear, so I use hook & loop to strap them to the lower deck. But whatever works for you.
It is wise to cover the cart when stepping away. Out of sight, out of temptation. Not to mention dust or rain. If you shop around, you can find some outdoor furniture covers or large BBQ grill covers that are heavy duty and the right size.