I wanted to make a monopod that fit the following criteria:
1. cheap. super cheap.
2. no duct tape this time.
3. it had to be collapsible or telescoping.
4. The camera has to mount to it, not just sit on it.
5. I had to be able to make it in a few minutes because I have the attention span of a gnat.
Step 1: Determine the Specs
I wanted the thing to be roughly shoulder height, but collapsible down to something that would fit in a floorboard of a car. It also needed to have the proper thingy to mount to the camera.
Time to go to the hardware store. I had 15$ to work with. I brought with my, my camera to find a bolt that would thread into the bottom. From what I have seen, all cameras have the same threading. it turns out that the threading is 1/4 inch. nice.
Step 2: Buy the Stuff.
Note: this is where you could make the design MUCH better for not much more cost. I'll get to that in the end.
I found these pipes that threaded together neatly and felt decently sturdy. They were super cheap, like 3$ a piece.
2 end caps
1 1/4 inch bolt, long enough to go through an end cap and thread into the camera.
3 nuts to secure the bolt
1 huge washer to help steady the camera when connected.
My total was 10$ something.
Note: I bought some extras because I thought I would screw it up. so its actually cheaper than I said!
Step 3: Create the Mounting Thingy for the Camera
take an end cap and drill a 1/4 inch hole in the top center. Try to center it as best you can or else the camera will be tilted... like mine.
then assemble like this:
1.insert bolt into hole and thread into camera. Note how much extra space you have on the bolt.
2.add nuts on the inside of the cap to shorten the length of exposed bolt. (remember you'll need a bolt on the outside as well to secure it.)
3.place a bolt on the outside to secure it. Tighten A LOT.
4.screw your camera back on again to double check the length of the bolt. it should show any thread between the camera and the nut.
5.once you are secure with the length of the bolt, slide the washer over it. It would be wise to secure it with some j.b. weld or something to that effect. Mine keeps falling off. I'm sure I'll lose it.
Step 4: Assemble the Rest of the Monopod
screw the pipe pieces together like the picture. that's it! It's pretty sturdy.
You can un screw the middle section to collapse!
Step 5: Improvements
There are( lots of places that this thing could be better.
Idea #1. A rubber tip on the bottom. (cheap)
Idea #2. Make it from pvc so it could be telescoping. A simple pressure fit thingy should do the job without any modifications. (probably not any more expensive)
Idea #3. Add a hand grip. (cheap)
Idea #4. A level on the mounting bracket would be cool. (could be pretty cheap)
Idea #5. A quick release boot on the top instead of screwing and unscrewing the camera manually. (probably require more work and not as cheap)
Idea #6. Tilt ability... pretty big feature in hindsight. (probably require more work and not as cheap)