In this instructable you will see how Erik Monden and Jeroen Kraijema made an underwater housing with buttons for shutter release and focus.
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Step 1: Finding the Base Components
First you must find something to put your dslr in, so take it with you to a hardware store. We used a drain in which the lens fitted perfectly.
Saw off the square end of the drain and measure the diameter on both ends of the drain. Now saw these two circles out of plexiglass. Then drill a hole a little smaller then the smallest of the two diameters in a pvc end cap. Glue the smallest plexiglass circle in the end cap(on the inside) and glue this to the small end of the drain. Make sure there are no scratches on the plexi, because this is where you make the pictures through. Also make sure you remove the protection foil before gluing.
Step 2: Close the Back.
Saw the circle that fits in the drain out of the draincover, and drill 12 holes in it. Also drill 12 holes in the plexi. The best way to do this is to clamp them together and then drill both at te same time. Put bolts into the 12 holes, make sure they fit tight (drill smaller then the bolts you use, then drill the holes in the plexi a little bit bigger afterwards). Also make a gasket to fit between the draincover and the plexi.
Step 3: Making the Handlebars
We want to hold the housing properly, so we have to make handlebars. We made it from pvc pipe and corners, and attached it to the housing with hollow brass bolts.
Before you glue and bolt everything together:
We first need to make buttons for shutter release and focus to put in the handlebars. See next step how to make these.
Step 4: Make the Controls
We want to have a focus button and a shutter release button, so one button on each side will do perfect. Find two buttons that fit right into the pvc pipe. We used the buttons of two cheap flashlights. Take a 2.5mm jackplug and you'll see 3 wires, of which one bare. find out which of the coloured wires is for focus and which for shutter release and connect them to the buttons, but make sure you can detach them right before the jackplug, because the wires need to go through the handlebars and through the brass bolts (which is why they were hollow).
If you connected the buttons, pull a washed out condom over them to make them watertight. Then glue them in the pvc pipe and attach the handlebars to the drain.
The jackplug will go into the cable release of the camera.
Step 5: Waterproofing
Now first make sure everything fits and works, then make sure everything is waterproof by putting elastic kit on every seam.
BUT NOT BETWEEN THE LARGE PLEXI CIRCLE AND THE GASKET!
Because this is the opening to put your camera in and out.
Let the kit dry for a couple hours.
Step 6: Preparing for Use
Put a layer of vaseline on the gasket and put the plexi over it, then some rubber rings, then washers and then the nuts. Make sure you screw them tight, but you don't want to break the plexi.
Step 7: Testing
Now it's time to test if everything is waterproof! First try without your camera, then look if there are any leaks, then put your camera inside and make some test shots!
Step 8: Finishing
After you've made some test shots, make sure there were no leaks. If you have leaks, you need to fix them first.
If you have no leaks and everything is working, it's time to paint!
Step 9: Result
You now have an underwater housing for your dslr!
Feel free to comment or to send pictures of your versions.
Erik Monden and Jeroen Kraijema