When it comes to moving the camera the Dolly is one of my favorite tools to use. We have so many ways to add movement in shots from compact sliders to large platform dolly’s on a track. Matthews has a new dolly called the Dutti Dolly and it’s a heavy duty versatile way to get both the slide and the long tracking shot in one solid built kit.
The Dutti Dolly
The Dutti Dolly is a solid 25 lbs. (11.3 kg) 20” x 24” x 3.5” (50.8cm x 61cm x 8.9cm) thick rectangular CNC’d aluminum platform with (14) 3/8” tapped mounts. The Dutti Dolly can hold up to 800 lbs. (363 kg). That is somewhat mind-blowing that it can hold that much weight, however, the Dutti Dolly is made to work on a film set with big camera rigs.
Underneath is eight fluid inline skate wheels, two in each of the four positions. For ground use, the Dutti Dolly can be used with inexpensive angle iron that can be purchased at most hardware stores in a variety of lengths. If longer sections are needed, you could also check out a specialty metal supply store in your area.
Lay two rails on the ground, set the Dutti Dolly on top and you’re ready to go. If longer dolly moves are needed, traditional “scissor track” is also an option since the Dutti Dolly can roll on top of round tubing as well. The Dutti Dolly can be used without a track on a flat smooth surface or countertop as well.
The inventor of the Dutti Dolly is professional grip, James Saldutti. He created the Dutti Dolly out of necessity. DP’s seem to always want to get really low on the ground, so James started designing what is now the Dutty Dolly. The original idea was to use it for those low shots but it has become a whole lot more useful when Matthews started making accessories for it and wow are there a lot of options.
The Dutti Dolly in detail
In the center of the platform is a built-in Mitchell mount. Now, when a platform supports a Mitchell mount you know it’s a serious piece of gear. Fluid heads with a Mitchell mount are generally very heavy duty and designed to hold a camera package from 60 to 120 lbs. and more.
If you don’t use this type of fluid head Matthews has accessories that fit right into the base so a riser and a 75mm, 100mm or 150mm bowl can be used.
The cool thing here is even if you use smaller lighter cameras the Dutti Dolly will work great. Having that 800 lbs. payload gives you a ton of options. No minimum weight required. This thing is built like a tank.
- Weight: 25 lbs. (11.3 kg)
- Capacity: 800 lbs. (363 kg)
- Dimensions: 20” x 24” x 3.5” (50.8cm x 61cm x 8.9cm)
- Platform Height: 1.75” (4.4cm)
- Center Mount: Mitchell System
- Mounting points: (14) 3/8” tapped mounts
- Material: Machined 6061 T-6 aluminum
- Finish: Non-reflective type 2 hard anodize
- Wheels: (8) Inline Skate
The wheels are soft but not mushy and give the dolly a very smooth slide. If the wheels ever get damaged, they can easily be replaced without the need of any proprietary tools or service. The Dolly rolls extremely low to the ground at just over 2” in height and since it’s fairly compact it can fit through a doorway or aisle relatively easily. The real advantages of the Dutti Dolly is its versatility.
Off the ground
Using the Dutti Dolly in a traditional way on the ground is great for low shots but it can also be used as a slider with a few accessories.
Matthews has these very solid Slider Stands with junior (1-1/8″) receivers that works great not only for the Dutti Dolly but also for any slider that has a light post receiver on the ends.
To use the Slider Stand with a slider that does have a light post receiver a Junior 1-1/8″ Stud to Baby 5/8″ Stud is required.
Matthews offers a Dutti Dolly Universal Stand Brackets ($79.00 for a pair) that doesn’t require any adapters. Just take the knob off and insert directly into the stand. This is a nice design because if you already have some heavy duty combo stands you can simply pop the Universal Stand Brackets in. On a baby pin type pin simply slide the bracket on the baby pin and tighten them down with the supplied knob. Again versatile is the name of the game with the Dutti Dolly and Matthews grip.
Several different types of rails such as inexpensive square tube, speed rail, and even PVC can be used which is readily available at your local hardware store.
I’ve used a lot of sliders from small compact ones to 4′ heavy duty models and the fluid feel of the Dutti Dolly in this setup is really great. Yes, it’s heavy but, because it’s bigger makes it easier to control and the fluid moves are very nice. When I first started using sliders I would mount them on a tripod in the middle of the slider. This was easier but not a good way to go. I use stands now and get much better results. Say goodbye to that Teeter Totter look. Getting the kit level really can only be done when using two stands on each end. I highly recommend heavy stands for sliders. Makes for a much more solid setup.
Not just for low shots
Because the Dutti Dolly can hold up to 800 lbs. it can actually support a seat & riser ($365) and bazooka ($ 1,457.00) platform turning it into a full-on dolly. Here are few BTS shots with the Dutty Dolly in use on bigger productions with some impressive camera setups.
Retailing at USD $1,217.94, the Matthews Dutti Dolly is a very impressive piece of kit that can do more than just one thing in one way. I like that you can go small or really big. Up high or down low with pretty much any camera package.
Or can be purchased as a kit for $2500.
The kit includes:
- Dutti Dolly
- Track Brackets – 3EA
- 75mm Bowl – 1EA
- 100mm Bowl – 1EA
- 150mm Bowl – 1EA
- Mitchell Riser – 1EA
- 3/8″ threaded to Baby – 2EA
- Plastic Case – 1EA
The simplicity of the Dutti Dolly is what I like the most. Nothing needs to be adjusted to the cart itself to use it. The wheels are installed and do not require any fine-tuning. It’s up to you to build it out in the way you want to use it. The one downside of the kit is the weight of the Dutti Dolly itself. Together with the kit, it’s even heavier so transporting the Dutti Dolly may be an issue for some people. Good thing the case has wheels! All in all, I think it will last a long time and handle the rough use of a production set for many years. Other Dolly’s that are worth looking at is the Kessler Shuttle Dolly and the Dana Dolly. However, I don’t know of any other system that can handle 800 lbs payloads.
What’s your dolly of choice? Let’s talk about it in the comments section below.