DIY Glidecam Update - Gimbal Handle

Test Video - Shot with My DIY Steadicam

Everything I know about building a DIY steadicam is now is in this new guide. Learn how to get amazing cinematic video with this cool gadget that you can build using parts from your local hardware store.

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DIY Glidecam Steadicam for GoPro HD Camera

Since I'm no longer selling the DIY Highball steadicam, you may wanna check out these other camera stabilizers. Click on any picture.
GoPro Smoothee Stabilizer by Steadicam
Glidecam HD 2000
Flycam Stabilizer
Check out the stabilizers on Amazon CanadaAmazon.UK and Amazon.DE.

UpdateCheck out my latest GoPro steadicam design (works with compacts and DSLRs as well). Watch the videos below for more details.

This post adds to my previous article on How To Build Your Own Glidecam.

I added a handle to the PVC gimbal for a better grip. The need for a handle also arised from the fact that the outer plastic ring in the gimbal is not thick enough and it used to become oval when I held it. Not it keeps its round shape working better with the other inner rings.

For some reason I placed a ball bearing in the handle, thinking that this will allow me to move my arm more (sideways) but still keep the camera steady. And I would have been right without the PVC gimbal already in place. The bearing in the handle was redundant as the sideways moves were already eliminated by the tilting of the outer ring. In other words, in order to for the ball bearing handle to make sense I must either block the two outer rings (largest and middle sized) or I must eliminate the outer ring altogether. I blocked the bearing with duct tape - so it's still there in case I will reconsider my DIY glidecam design. Now that I hold the steadicam by the handle I endure a considerable stress on my wrist. The center of gravity is further from my grip and my wrist became part of a lever which brings fatigue in the arm much earlier whereas before I was holding the gimbal (just above the G center) without getting fatigued. It's not hard to see why the professional Steadicam comes with the articulated flying arm and body vest - to let the operator concentrate on shooting video, taking the weight off his arms and transferring it onto his/her body. A friend of mine solved this problem neatly with a forearm rest which I grossly overlooked when I first watched his video. His glidecam design incorporates a gimbal with two ball bearings - one in the main axis and one in the handle. Materials needed to make your gimbal handle:
  • ball bearing (skate bearing)
  • bolts
  • nylon nuts
  • flat stock
  • PVC pipe and joint
  • super glue (Bison Power Adhesive)
  • duct tape (for fixing whatever you may do wrong, like I did)
As tools I used a vise, pliers, a power drill, drill bits for metal drilling, a file. If you think the handle looks scrappy then you should know that IT IS scrappy. I used two hinge blades instead of flat stock and I added the ugly touch with duct tape - dampening the futile bearing... If you would like to learn more about the concept behind the glidecam watch the videos at the end of this post with the creator of the Steadicam.
Garrett Brown talking and giving demonstration on his invention - The Steadicam Shoot your videos on your DIY glidecam. Cheers!

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  1. Bravo!!! I knew that you probably spoke better english than me. You don't have all those nasty American verbal habbits

    Seriously, it sounded good. I understood every word.

  2. Thanks Brant! Just a couple of thousands videos and I'll be better. :-)


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