Introduction: PVC FIG RIG

This is a Fig Rig Steadicam made from PVC pipe. This parts, which can be picked up at Home Depot, cost about $10. Assembly took 30 minutes.


Here is what you need to build the Fig Rig --

3/4" PVC PIPE - Cut to :

6" Length (6x)
3" Length (2x)
2.5" Length (4x)
1.5" Length (4x)

45 Degree Connector (10x)
"T" Connector (2x)
"Cross" Connector
Endcap with 1/4" hole drilled in middle (2x)

1/4" 41/2" Long Size 20 Carriage Bolt
1/4" Wingnut
1/4" Nuts (2x)
1/4" Fender Washer

PVC Cement (Optional)


Assemble the main body as shown in the picture below. The camera mount will come next.

Step 3: Camera Mount

1. Drill a 1/4" hole through the middle of the PVC endcap.

2. Screw a nut onto the carriage bolt about halfway down.

3. Thread the bolt through the endcap.

4. Connect the endcap to a 1 1/2" length of PVC.

5. On the outer part of the carriage bolt, screw on another nut and tighten it with pliars.

6. screw on the 1/4" wingnut.

7. Place a fender washer above the wingnut.

8. Screw the bolt into the camera bottom and then tighten the wingnut.

9. Place the assembled mount into the "Cross" PVC connector and cement it.


Shoot smoothly with your new fig rig!



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25 Discussions

​so, riffing off of your project, and a couple others I have seen here... I built this... Phot was taken after building the main piece, what's not seen is the screw adapter for mounting the camera and the microphone clip up top. You can see the screw for it at 12:00 on the bike wheel.
For the cross piece, I used 3/4 inch PVC, and stuck a piece of dowel in each end and secured through the bike wheel with drywall screws and then ran 1/4 bolts through the pipe and dowel to keep the mount upright and serve as accessory attachments, if needed. Hope you guys like it.

14, 12:29 PM.jpg

would it be a wise idea to add some extra weight on the rig's bottom for improved stability?

Nice PVC rig!

I set up a Rig with the Atomos Ninja-2 on the Nikon D4.

From my blog:
Once set up all I have to do is start Live View (in video mode) and start the Ninja-2 recording. When I cycle the Live View button on the D4, the Ninja-2 starts recording when Live View is on and stops when I shut it off. Each time the Ninja-2 creates a new file for the next take. I turn on the Focus Peaking to ensure perfect focus and it stays on the whole time (does not reset when Live View is cycled). Perfection!

Check out my rig

Dan at Vigorotaku

So here's what I was able to slap together in about an hour and a half. I used 1 inch square cedar (cuz I had it). I shaped the grips with a grinder. I also used some rubber from an old mouse pad to cushion the bottom of the camera. And it works.


Since the concept of this "steady cam" design is based on the positioning of the hands to the camera body itself, introducing a "flexible" property would only enhance the overall steadiness of the video/image. Yes? Maybe?
My thoughts would be to somehow reduce the rigidity of the cross-bar section, using yet smaller PVC diameter and a longer piece. You could even remove the top straight section of PVC. All of these changes would allow greater flexibility and would reduce the motion transferred to the camera. Bottom line, this design is for very basic use. It would be useless when attaches to a bike, scooter, or other moving object.

Probably so you can access the underside of the carriage bolt to slightly adjust the height of the camera depending on what camera you are using. Just a guess.

I suggest not cementing the cross portion. That way you can adjust the tilt of your camera for your shot without having to adjust the way you hold it. Everything else should be cemented though.

1 reply

if you dont cement the cross the camara can flip /roll over mid take it happened to me :! I plan on adding an extra T section down there to fix this but i can choose to leave it out if i need another angle

No need to be rude! There are several duplicate projects on here. Are you going to post in every "how to make an acr reactor" ible as well? How many Halo costume ideas are there? etc etc.

1 reply

I think this Instructable is to elaborate on the one that you linked to, considering that the other one contains little information on building a PVC Fig Rig.

If the camera has a remote control you could add a holder near a thumb so that the camera could be more smoothly control be the remote. That would allow for use of the zoom and pause function without stopping the filming.

I notice from the pic in step 4 the top of the rig has come apart, not very stable if it's broken?

1 reply

ha! it is! i didnt even see that at first

how is this supposed to keep the camera steady? Sure the camera wont be directly effected my hand/arm movement, but wont any movement just be transfered to the rig and then to the camera? Confused....