Instructables
Picture of Yes, Another Camera Slider Idea
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There are lots of great designs here, there, and everywhere for camera sliders. Whether this is better (doubtful) or worse (anything is possible) it was within my capabilities and so far, is doing what I ask of it well.

My goal is to add a 5rpm DC motor to drive a full length piece of all-thread to move the carriage for time lapses - but have not found any locally yet, so after I figure out the linkages eBay has a few to choose from and we'll give that a go.

The shopping list (save for the wheels) is a Home Depot/Lowes/Ace Hardware trip away, and approx. $15.00 of parts/pieces.

2 - U-Post fence posts (3')
1 - 1/4" All Thread (3')
1- 1/2" square steel tubing (3')
1 - Simpson T-Strap (6")
4 - 1/4" Cap Nuts
12 - 1/4" Washers
3 - Inline Skate Wheel Assemblies

(In the picture are some 3" x 1/4" bolts and coupling nuts, these are/were to make leveling legs but so far have not been needed)

UPDATE: The motorizing of the dolly is complete, the instructable for it is here: http://www.instructables.com/id/Yes-Another-Camera-Slider-NOW-MOTORIZED/
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Step 1: Dolly Assembly

Picture of Dolly Assembly
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A used set of inline skates is a great way to acquire quality wheels and bearings on the cheap. Will the wife miss them? Eventually, but thus far she hasn't put two and two together so wish me continuing luck...

The T-Strap is rigid enough, dirt cheap, and has perfect clearances for the wheel diameter - the mounting holes are large enough to allow the wheels to move in and out 1/8" or so for fine tuning tension in the frame.

A couple washers help take up the space the skate frame provided, and the bearings and axles all go together as easy as could possibly be.
shootr (author) 10 months ago

UPDATE #2: The reversible motor came today and it has loads of torque at 5v, with a nice 5-6 rpm speed. I stripped a USB cable so it can be powered off a Voltaic V15 USB battery pack, which will also back up the camera battery so I can do 2+ hour sessions. The motor only draws .05amps so I think 4AH will suffice since the camera will start with a fully charged battery as well.

shootr (author) 10 months ago

UPDATE: The motor and bushings are due to arrive this week. Taking the weekend off so hopefully next week will have time to put it together.

whizbo10 months ago

If you're just pulling with string, add a rubber band in between the string and the dolly. It will smooth out the jerkiness (is that a word?) of your hand.

shootr (author)  whizbo10 months ago

Right on, thank you!