How to Properly Wear a Steadicam Vest

The Steadicam Flyer allows users to move around while wearing a camcorder via the Steadicam Vest. But, before a user can start walking around in the vest, they have to know how to properly wear it. While it may seem complicated, it is actually quite easy to put on, but users may need some help tightening it. Or, they will at least need a very large mirror.

Step 1: Loosen the Vest

Before someone tries to start putting on the vest, he will have to loosen it so that he can slip it over his clothing. Loosen up the chest and hip straps. Unbuckle all of the side buckles until the entire vest hangs loose.

Next, slip it on and ensure that it is in the middle of the chest. The Steadicam Vest is similar to a life jacket, except that down the middle with be additional buckles as opposed to a solid piece.

Step 2: Match Up the Pieces

Now, start matching up the pieces so that the shoulder rests sit on the shoulders, and the hip rests sit on the hips. Start buckling the pieces, beginning with the shoulder buckles. Next, move down to the chest buckle and lock.

The center plate should be directly in the center of the person’s chest. Users may have to manipulate the straps until they are in the center of the chest. An assistant would be helpful in this situation since he would be able to see where the chest plate should be, and he can assist the person with getting it correct.

Step 3: Manipulate the Chest Plate

Once the chest plate is in the center of the chest, users should double check the shoulder pads to ensure that they are still in place. Now, remove the chest plate release pin. Experiment with moving around the center spar until the chest pads are firmly center on the hip bones. Basically, the pad should cover the hips bones plus half the area above and below the hips. Put the chest plate release pin in one of the holes.

Step 4: Tighten up Everything

Now that the hip pads are firmly in place, users should pull them tight and make sure that they are even. Further, make sure that the Velcro pads are completely horizontal. If not, fix them all the way around. Again, this is another area where it would be helpful to have an assistant.

Keep tightening the rest of the straps until the whole vest is tight enough that the person can still move in it, but the equipment stays firmly in place. One word of caution on this front is that the vest should not be so tight that it constricts breathing. This could be dangerous. If a person is have trouble moving or breathing, loosen some of the straps.

Step 5: Remove the Vest

To remove the vest, start from the hips and then move upwards. And, just undo all of the straps and buckles. Try not to pull them straps out of place as this will make it easier to put back on.