GoPro Vehicle Mounts: the Magnet Mount




UPDATE: Based on feedback from this site and a few forums, It is recommended that you make sure there is some thin cloth between the magnet and your car paint, as it will aggressively scratch the finish. This was originally made for a car that was going to be painted later.

I would use a thin enough cloth that won't compromise the strength of the magnet, but protects the paint.
You could use some light spray adhesive like super 77 to attach. Just make sure to trim the cloth to only be a little larger than the magnet to not get it in any shots.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The Bonneville Salt Flats have held an appeal to gearheads for nearly a century, the highlight of which is the annual "Speedweek" held in the month of August. For the past 3 years two good friends of mine have made the journey from Minnesota to Utah in a unique vehicle they built by hand, with each year adding to the already colorful history that they've created. This year is no different with the year's car being a completely rebuilt-for-racing 66' Coronet.

They recently decided that this year they were going to bring along a "GoPro Hero II" and attempt to capture some of the shenanigans that would undoubtedly ensue. A few days ago, they approached me to design and create several camera mounts and plan out several shots to add interest to their video. Overall we created three different mounts: A fender mount, a roll cage mount, and as seen in this instructable... a magnetic hood-and-roof mount.

As with all the mounts we created, versatility is key. We created the magnet mount with the idea that we will be moving the position from the hood to the roof to the trunk to wherever (that is vertical).

We were inspired by a few GoPro car videos, primarily "Drift Battle 2" and Ken Block's "Gymkhana five". It's worth checking both of these out whether or not you intend to build this mount. They are amazing videos.

Fun Fact! I took all of the photos for this 'ible with a GoPro!

I only have photos of immediately after I created the mount, but will upload photos of the mounts attached to the coronet soon

Step 1: Plans/Design

As stated before, We wanted to create this without the need for many tools. 

It had to be simple and small
The mount needed to be lightweight as to not dent the roof or hood
It could not be a suction cup as the car has yet to be painted with anything but primer.  MAGNETS!
It had to be able to remain attached after hitting bumps, jumps, vibration, water, heat etc.
It had to be able to be mounted without being seen in the camera's absolutely insane wide angle lens.

Step 2: Materials

Appx Prices
Washers - $2 (Menards)
25lb. Disc Magnet $5 (Menards)
OR GoPro Tripod Mount $7 (Best Buy)
1/4" - 20 x 1/2" bolt $2 (Menards)

Pro Tip: It is essential that you have the right bolt, if you need to use force to get it to fit into the tripod mount, you bought the wrong one.  One way of ensuring that you have the right one is to go to a hardware store (Ace, hardware hank, etc) and hand the tripod mount to an employee and have them get you the right bolt.  Also make sure that it isn't too long, or you will need more washers. (and you risk making the mount unstable by raising the center of gravity.)

Step 3: Assemble!

I found that only one washer would fit on the bottom of the magnet, and that the remaining 4 or 5 will need to go on top.  Assemble mount by placing the bolt through the hole that already exists on the magnet.  

(NOTE:  We did have to expand this hole very slightly with a "round bastard file"  if you buy the exact same one from menards you will have to do this with a file... or a dremel... or something.)

Ended up going Bolt>washer>magnet>washer>washer>washer>washer>GoPro Tripod Mount

Step 4: Bingo Bango

Alright! Magnet mount is complete!  

More photos to come!

Don't forget to check out the GoPro Fender Mount!

Step 5: Mounted on Vehicle

Here is the magnet mount in action, it ended up being used the most on their trip.  I've yet to get my hands on the footage, but this is what it looked like as I was testing on the Coronet before they left.  You'll notice the Universal Safety Cable attached.  It didn't end up needing to be used, but provided some nice peace of mind.



    • Pocket Sized Contest

      Pocket Sized Contest
    • Remix Contest

      Remix Contest
    • Epilog X Contest

      Epilog X Contest

    15 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    U can probably just throw a layer or two of duct tape on the magnet so it doest scratch the paint...

    The prblem with useing a magnet verses a suction cup is a lot of the proes cars have carbon or fiberglass hood doors trunks front fenders and even rear wide body fenders leaving only the roof... Its a nice mount... But its still better to just use the suction cup ...

    On that note... I got a new mount idea for a chase car... Thank you for that... Good instructable

    2 replies

    Reply 1 year ago

    The suction cup can be attached to glass, even the side windows...


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    When I did this I made a number of mounts, one of which was a fender mount, doesn't use magnets.

    And your welcome!


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Does a magnet that strong affect the digital media in the camera? I love the idea but would be afraid that one close pass of the magnet to the camera and you have an erased memory card. Thanks.

    1 reply

    Reply 1 year ago

    Magnetic field don't affect digital media cards...they were a problem with cassettes, VHS tapes and floppy discs that recorded by aligning metal flakes on their bases.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Great idea. Simple ideas can be the best.

    You might think about some kind of thin plastic or teflon sheet to put over the magnet to help protect the paint on a car. I like the fact that you figured out a 25 pound magnet was the right amount of force to keep the mount in place. Nothing like telling me the camera stayed put at Bonneville!

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I thought the same thing, though my friend told me not to worry about it for now, as the car just had primer on it, and after the flats he'll probably have to re-bondo a bunch of stuff and re-paint it anyway (from the salt damage) so not to worry about it.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I'll see if I can dig up some more for ya, it's a beast. I'm still trying to get the actual video from the trip from my friend, but it's taking a while for him to do the rough cut.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Cool - can't quite tell how the bolt fits in there though - does the magnet have a recess? And then how do you get the washer to hold it? I guess I'll go find a magnet and sort it out, just wondering how you dealt with the bolt hanging below the surface of the magnet. Thanks for putting this up!

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    The magnets we found have a recess on them specifically so you can bolt something through it. I'll see if I can find an amazon equivalent of it and link it on the 'ible for you.