Introduction: Creating DIY Sandbags for Your Light Stands

Picture of Creating DIY Sandbags for Your Light Stands

Sandbags for light stands can cost anywhere from $15-30 or more.  And if you've gotten into making your own PVC light stands, it really doesn't make sense to spend that kind of money to hold them down.  I'm going to show you how to make sand bags in about 10 minutes.  Total cost?  How's $2 or less do you?

Step 1: What You Need

Picture of What You Need

Here's the list of what you need:  

1 roll of duct tape (I got mine at the local Dollar store)
1 box of Gallon Zip lock bags (again, at local dollar store)

That's it!

I have two rolls showing because I made two bags.

Step 2: The Handle ...

Picture of The Handle ...

First thing you want to do is make the handle.  It'll take three strips of tape about  13-15" long.  Start with one strip and fold in thirds on top of each other to make a strap.  Make a second and stack them.  You can use some tape to put them together.  Now, take the strap you've made and lay it on top of the third.  Make small cuts about 1 1/2" from the end and fold the middle over the straps to seal.  Set aside.

Step 3: The Bag

Picture of The Bag

Now it's time to reinforce the bags.  Sand is heavy and it's not likely to last without reinforcement. Start with the bottom seam and then the sides.  Once done, use duct tape up both front and back to make a bag.  Stop about 3 inches from the top.  

Repeat for the second bag.

Step 4: Fill Bags With Sand

Picture of Fill Bags With Sand

Now you want to fill both bags with sand.  But you don't need to fill it up all the way.  Sand is pretty heavy and you want to remember you're working with duct tape here.  Filling half way will do the trick.  It's also a lot easier to handle during the next step.

Step 5: Put the Bags Together.

Picture of Put the Bags Together.

Lay both bags flat opposite one another and overlap the sealed tops.  Use strips of duct tape to join them together on both sides.

Step 6: Attach Handle

Picture of Attach Handle

Decide which side will be the interior side and begin to attach the handle with small stips of duct tape. You should have about 2-3 inches to tape down on each side and it helps to make sure they are balanced.

Step 7: You Are Done!

Picture of You Are Done!

There you have it!  A sandbag which will hold down you PVC light stand!  And at under $2 a bag, you can make as many as you need!

Comments are welcome. 

Comments

atan16 (author)2012-05-19

This is awesome, I was thinking of this and then found your article.

If Mythbusters is anything to go by, Duct tape can be used for nearly anything haha..

filmnuts (author)2010-05-16

How durable do these end up being?  I know duct tape is pretty strong, but I also know that sandbags take a beating on set.

I've been considering making my own sandbags out of material similar to what store-bought sandbags are made out of, but if these duct tape sandbags are just as durable, they certainly present a much cheaper option.

This idea could easily be modified using smaller bags to make T mark sandbags for marking actors.  Durability wouldn't be much of an issue with that.

jgderuvo (author)filmnuts2010-05-18

Although I think the bags themselves would hold up, the weakest point in the design are probably the handle straps.  So,  I wouldn't go tossing them around. But I think just having them on set holding down the C Stands will work fine.

retrofilms (author)2010-05-16

Nice work!  These can come in very handy (and not just for light stands) and the price is just right.