Low Cost Video Stabilizer

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Introduction: Low Cost Video Stabilizer

Video stabilizers are used to improve the smoothness of video when the operator is in motion. Professional version cost in excess of $500. The version shown below can support the weight of a DLSR camera and is made from less than $25 of materials. I’ve also included a video of the stabilizer in use along with a PDF version of the plans.

Drawing File:

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B21TbB8gGNQbMldmcE...

Video:

Step 1: Tools

  • Tape measure
  • Saw

Step 2: Materials

Step 3: Top Level

Follow these views for the build.

Step 4: Cut Pipes and Organize Parts

Cut the ¾” PVC pipe as shown in the material list.

Step 5: Side 1

Assemble first side as shown. You will use five (5) 1 ¾” length pipes, one (1) 3” pipe, and one (1) 24 ½” pipes.

Step 6: Side 2

Assemble the second side which is a mirror image of the first side.

Step 7: Cross Support Assy

Assemble cross assembly as shown. You will use two (2) 4” pipes and one (1) 3” pipe. Repeat process to build a second assembly.

Step 8: Camera Mount

Drill hole through cap. Insert ¼-20. Captivate bolt with ¼-20 nut.

Step 9: Assembly

Connect Side 1 to Side 2 with the two (2) cross support assemblies and the two (2) 9 1/8” pipes. Add the camera mount to the front assembly. Add weight and cap to the rear assembly.

Step 10: Glue (optional)

For additional rigidity, glue connections together. This will obviously prevent you breaking the rig down later.

Step 11: Paint (optional)

Mask off the screw threads and paint the complete assembly.

Step 12: Additional Damping (optional)

Add foam pad for additional damping and comfort

Step 13: Final Product

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    18 Discussions

    This is an incredible project, thanks for sharing your diagrams. This would save a lot of money because video stabilizers are hundreds of dollars!

    I love this. Half of YouTube needs to love this!

    My daughter attends a media based high school. This will be a great asset for the students that won't break the school's budget. Thanks for sharing.

    The decision to "cement or not cement" (all or none) isn't binary. You can cement both sides as separate units, and then cement cross-pieces to the sides in an alternating fashion to have a rig that can be torn down with few uncemented joints, and it shouldn't come apart easily in the field.

    stabilizer.jpg
    1 reply

    Awesome Ible! I made one as soon as I read your post. I made a slimmer version though. It definitely stabilized my footage by 60%. Thanks!

    IMG_20141102_201005.jpg
    1 reply

    Gosh that picture came out small! What it says is to cement alternate cross pieces to opposite sides, but you can't read it. Sorry!

    stabilizer.jpg

    Looks like it's smooth

    What an excellent set of instructions, keep up the good work Again, Kudos

    Very good. My brother-in-law is a photo and videographer and is always looking to save some money, I 'll have to show him.

    Really Cool! I work at an Ace Hardware so the only suggestion I have is to supplement glue for PVC Cement. Its the only way to truly make that PVC stick together, otherwise you risk the PVC just falling right apart if its not tight enough!

    Nice job!