Introduction: Camera Arm Made With Old Laptop Stand Parts
I was having issues with keeping my DSLR pointed where I needed it. A dig in the junk box gave me the solution.
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Step 1: Floppy Floppy Floppy
Keeping it up was getting to be a chore.
In all fairness, I was using cheap Chinese GoPro mounts to hold up a giant 2 pd camera. I was lucky nothing broke or fell over. It was time to figure out a better solution.
Step 2: Assemble the Junky Bits
I was lucky, I had an old laptop stand that I used to use in my work truck. It has ball ends and arms and loads of flexibility and is able to hold a good bit of weight.
Step 3: Extend the Main Arm
The main arm on the laptop stand is using threaded NPT pipe. Exciting stuff here, because you can buy that from the hardware store for cheap and use virtually any length you need. I started with a 2 foot piece and painted it black to match because I'm fancy.
I tried a longer 4ft chunk of pipe but the clamp wasn't able to hold that plus the weight of the camera at the extreme angle, so in the future I might fiddle with some sort of counter balance and made it a true jib.
Step 4: Assemble!
At this point, it's just a matter of assembling it all. In this case, the clamp system I am using is from RAM mounts. They focus on vehicle mounting systems from what I can tell. I am sure there are other systems that might be similar, this is just what I happened to have on hand. If you wanted to emulate what I did, you can grab the individual parts and build a similar setup yourself. It's still going to be cheaper than getting a super expensive Manfrotto accessory.
Step 5: Now I Can Hold All Sorts of Weird Angles
Not only can I hold weird angles, but they are all directly over my main workshop table so I have plenty of flexibility.