This is an affordable and functional DIY Camera Stabilizer/Steadicam rig pieced together using exclusively off-the-shelf parts and assembled with nothing more than a screwdriver and multi-tool. The main structural piece is just a cheap ladder hook! It combines elements from the Steadicam Merlin and Camera Motion Research Blackbird to make for a solid and relatively compact unit, and was a project inspired purely by curiosity over whether you can build a solid DIY stabilizer without access to professional shop tools and high-end materials!
As I culled/found components for this on a pretty ad hoc basis, I don't have an accurate tally of costs, but am estimating this to be around a $65 build (not including the Manfrotto 323 RC2 plate I've attached). Almost all hardware components can be found at a standard hardware store, save for the RC driveshafts for the gimbal which can be found on eBay for under $10. If anyone actually tries to build this using the specs provided, curious to know the actual cost!
I've test-driven (albeit briefly) both Merlin and Glidecam designs and found that in comparison, this set-up is easier to navigate with limited practice. I have a relatively heavy DSLR set-up (Canon 7D with heavier zoom/prime lenses) which I find works well on this.
For upcoming projects where I'll be testing this design, please subscribe to my Vimeo Channel: Studio Amarelo
MAIN BODY COMPONENTS:
2 x Electrical Ground Clamps
1 x Approx. 7" Curved PVC Conduit Elbow
1 x Male (Threaded) PVC Adapter
MAIN BODY HARDWARE:
1 x Extra Large Ladder Hook (Approx. 15" High x 10" Deep)
2 x Universal Brackets, 1.5" Wide, 2" High
2 x 1.5"-1/4" Flathead Screws
1 x 1"-1/4" Flathead Screw
2 x 6"-1/4" Bolts (Smooth Shaft)
2 x 1.5" U Clamp
1 x 4"-Wide Double Eye Tension Rod
2 x 3.5"-1/4" Screws (Fully Threaded)
8 x 1/4" Locking Nuts (Nylon Locks)
4 x 1/4" Regular Nuts
3 x 1/4" Wing Nut Locks
1 x Zap Strap
2 x 1/2" Washers with 1/4" hole
2 x 1" Washers with 1/4" hole
36 x 1.5" Washers with 1/4" hole
Adapted from "WSCLATER" YouTube Design
2 x Traxxas T-Maxx 2.5R - 3.3 F/R Center Driveshafts (#5151) - get on eBay
2 x 1" (Diameter) Skateboard Bearings
1 x 1" (Diameter) Male (Threaded) PVC Adapter (for top of gimbal)
1 x 1" (Diameter), 1.5" long PVC Straight Connector (No Threads, for bottom of gimbal)
2 x PVC "Shims"
1 x 1" (Diameter) Screw-on Hose Cap
2 x Small Screw + Washer (To Mount Driveshafts to Bearings)
1 x Manfrotto 323 RC2 Quick Release Plate (w/ 200PL-14 Plate)
1 x 1/4"-to-3/8" Step Up Screw Adapter
1 x Rubber Bike Grip
"LADDER HOOK/STORAGE HANGER" ONLINE
**similar but with 90 degree bend on end, except for 2nd Aubuchon link that looks to be the same one I found, but sold in bulk
This video is quick DIY tour for making POV helmet and using it with DSLR like 5D or many others.
This is my upgraded version of Enrique Rodriguez Bencomo's rig which you can see here (vimeo.com/26072379)