Introduction: Easy Bamboo Monopod
This is just a very simple monopod, that can be made in a few minutes, for less than a dollar. It is lightweight, rigid, and strong enough to use with a point and shoot camera or a compact camcorder. It is made from bamboo, which is very durable and needs little maintenance.
I use this monopod for a light point and shoot camera and a small camcorder, but I would have concerns using it for a DSLR with a large lens. A monopod will provide much more stability than holding a camera by hand, and it is much easier to carry around than a tripod, so it is a good compromise. This monopod is just a monopod, it is not strong enough to be used as a walking stick.
Step 1: What You Need
You will need:
- 1 piece of bamboo, about 5/8" in diameter, about 5' long. This is what I used, because it's what I have available. Use whatever you
can find, just make sure it's somewhat straight.
- 1 dual threaded stud, 1/4/'-20 machine thread on one end and wood lag screw thread on the other end.
- 2 1/4"-20 nuts
- 1 1/4"-20 wing nut
- 1 1/4"-20 lock nut
- Wrench (don't use pliers)
- Drill with a 13/64" bit
Step 2: Prepare the Bamboo
Cut the bamboo to length. Make the cut right next to the node. Bamboo is hollow, but it is solid at the nodes. When the threaded stud is inserted, it will bite into the node.
Drill a 13/64" pilot hole in the thick end of the bamboo.
Step 3: Insert the Hardware
Take the 2 1/4" nuts and place them on the dual threaded stud. Tighten them firmly against each other.
Using the wrench on the top nut, screw the wood threaded end into the pilot hole of the bamboo until the wood threads are fully embedded.
Remove the 2 1/4" nuts.
Step 4: Add the Wing Nut
Place the wing nut on the exposed threaded stud, as shown. If you prefer, you can use the lock nut instead.
The wing nut or lock nut is used to tighten against the body of the camera, to prevent it from rotating during use.
Step 5: Using the Monopod
Screw the monopod into the threads on the camera. Secure the attachment by tightening the wing nut to bottom of the camera.
Step 6: About Bamboo
There are many varieties of bamboo , and they all have different properties. The bamboo I have used was obtained from a clump that is growing in my yard. I don't know what type it is, but it has been there for over 20 years. It is slow growing and produces sticks about 6' long and 3/4" in diameter when mature. I occasionally harvest a few sticks per year for projects, but I am careful to maintain the sustainability of the clump.
Participated in the
Camera & Photo Skills Challenge
8 years ago
What was the camcorder name?
10 years ago on Introduction
One shortcoming with monopods for video is a tendency for them to pan side to side slightly. I think one solution is to add a 1 foot handle extending from the side.
Good luck :)
11 years ago on Introduction
Very cool and cost effective. I live in Ecuador for most of the year and have considered buying a monopod to use there, but I'm cheap. Great alternative! Thanks
11 years ago on Introduction
If one used 1" diameter bamboo, it would be more than strong enough as a walking stick. The bolt might not fit--maybe one would need to epoxy it in.