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Tips & Tricks

Make Your Own Lightweight GoPro Camera Stabilizer With Some LEGO Bricks and Rubber Bands

By Hanssie on January 28th 2015

You could spend anywhere from $70 to hundreds of dollars for a stabilizer for your GoPro OR you could be super cool and build your own out of LEGO bricks like this guy did. For free.

DIY-Camera-Stabilizer-1

If you’re a filmmaker, you know the value of a camera stabilizer. Who doesn’t have shaky hands after a long day of shooting with heavy gear? Or if you’re doing any kind of shooting while moving, a stabilizer gives you the versatility and mobility you need while filming. Keeping your hands stable so that the footage doesn’t make people want to throw up is also an added benefit of a stabilizer.

What You Need To Make This Camera Stabilizer

  • Lego Bricks – esp. technic universal joint 3L
  • Rubber bands
  • A piece of paper
  • Tape

The 5 and a half minute video by producttank shows you the stabilizer and some tricks to make it work well for you, such as taping napkins to the handle for comfort or super gluing the bricks together to make it more solid.  Toward the end of the video, he even shows you some hacks for the hack. Because the GoPro doesn’t have a screen, using a piece of wood, he creates a handle system that you can attach an iPad or tablet to so you can frame your shot.

While the rig looks more like an experiment from your physics class, the footage from the video seems pretty, well, steady. It’s clearly not the most professional looking camera accessory out there, but it would be a neat project to do with kids, make as a novelty item or even just for fun. The whole point of the video was to create something lightweight, usable and free. He also offers some recommendations such as wearing soft soled shoes “to limit vibration,” and cautioning against using it outdoors on windy days.

For those of you deprived people who no longer have access to LEGO toys, he mentions at the very end, that a similar indoor stabilizer can be made out of cardboard, tape, a sewing needle, coins and a golf tee. It’s pretty much all about engineering and with some simple principles, you’ll be designing your own stabilizer while humming “Everything is awesome” in no time.

Alright my engineering friends, would you build something like this for a quick and inexpensive stabilizer? Would you build it for fun? Leave a comment below and let me know what you think of this project.

[Via ISO1200/producttank]

About

Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at www.hanssie.com and www.fittedmagazine.com. Follow her on Instagram. Email her at:
[email protected]

8 Comments

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  2. Clare Havill

    Fab, love a bit of DIY.

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  3. Murray Severn

    That’s a nice handy trick!

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  4. Joram J

    The power of Lego!! Yeah! ;)

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  5. David Hall

    Well, it’s cute if nothing else.

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  6. Basit Zargar

    Lately posted here

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  7. Aaron Cheney

    This is really awesome!

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  8. robert garfinkle

    ok, this reminds me of Radio Shack’s 30 n 1 kits, kind of… Is this the “Rube Goldberg” of camera stabilization? I guess necessity is the mother of invention, to phrase a coin :)

    What lengths we go to, to get what we need. For example, though not related to stabilization, I remember going to shoot the Venus Transit of 2012 (what an event!!) yet I knew I could not just aim at the sun directly, and had I known about Baader Filtering prior to the event I would have used it, but had to resort to Mylar! I put two layers of Mylar over the hood, trapped down by a rubber bands, of my 400mm which I learned later on cut down the UV by 95% and allowed me to resolve the disc of the sun, capture sunspots, and the shadow of Venus as it transited… Excellent capture considering the mouse-trappy contraption I put together…

    But Baader filtering is the real way to go – as it will allow you to capture the granularity of the fire on the sun’s surface as well as the fibrous details of sunspots – just saying… all to the necessity side of the conversation.

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