Early on in the filming I purchased a Sony Digital 8 camcorder which made the process much easier and the quality better. There was no more fighting with the broken down VHS camcorder. Using the Digital 8 camcorder taught me to use manual white balance and manual focus for optimum results. If you do not use proper white balancing, the colors of the film will not look correct. Using the manual focus helped to avoid occasionally auto focusing shifting errors.
The book by Marc Spess said that recording the audio before the filming would greatly help. I found that it was much easier to know proper timing of clips when the audio track is already laid down. Unfortunately I had created the characters before learning about using armatures from Marc Spess. Armatures are basically aluminum skeletons on which the clay characters are molded over. Having the metal support allows for ease of animated motion without gravity pushing the arm or leg to the ground. Also notice that there were no speaking parts for any of the characters in the film. This was intentional to avoid the need for lip syncing each dialog piece. This technique alone saved my countless hours and headaches.