This tutorial will show how I made this tripod mounted camera slider for under $50. The design uses hardware available in most hardware/home improvement stores. I wanted a design that I could use with any of my tripods & cameras. This design utilizes the removal head aspect of tripods as shown in the last two photos.
Due to the high prices for camera sliders, I decided to create my own camera slider to use for movie making and stereo photography. All of the DIY projects for camera sliders I found weren’t suitable for use on a tripod and the commercial versions were simply too expensive. The main objective was to make a camera slider that would be light weight, yet sturdy enough to use with a professional DSLR.
How sturdy is this slider? The tripod head shown in the photo weighs 11 oz, my Canon SX20IS camera weighs 27 oz (1.7 lbs) and my Nikon D7000 camera with battery grip weighs 64 oz (4 lbs). Therefore, when using the Canon SX20IS there is 38 oz (2.3 lbs) on the slider and when using the Nikon D7000 there is 75 oz (4.7 lbs) on the slider. The slider itself weighs about 39 oz (2.4 lbs).
Step 1: Tools & Materials
- Metal hand file
- Pop rivet tool
Quantity Part Description
1 24" clamp & cut guide
4 3/8-16 x 1 1/4" chrome button screws
1 3/8” x ¾” <OR> ¼” x ¾” hex bolt (depending on the size of your tripod mounting screw)
1 3/8” <OR> ¼” bar knob (depending on the size of your tripod mounting screw)
4 3/8-16 nuts
2 1/2" x 4" PVC risers – outdoor use
1 1/2" x 4' aluminum round-tube
1 flat 4-plug electrical box cover
4 3/16” x (1/8” to ¼” grip) rivets & back-up plates (washers)
4 3/4" 1-hole conduit straps
4 1/4" x 1/2" hex bolts with lock nuts
2 2" x 4 1/4" aluminum angle-stock (left over from previous dolly project)
a. Not all PVC risers are manufactured to the same tolerances, so be sure that the ones you select for this project slip easily over the ½” aluminum round-tube.
b. Before selecting your 24" clamp & cut guide, be sure to read the first paragraph of step 2.