Hey, I’m heading to a local hardware store to get the materials to show you how to make three DIY low camera rigs. Rigs that’ll get your camera right down on the ground as low as possible or go in really tight spaces. Each of these rigs is going to be under $10 bucks each. And one of these rigs will allow you to hang your camera on the side of a fridge, no problem. So let’s get to it! Let’s go! Okay, let’s go!
So I’m going to get a machine screw and the machine screw is going to be 3/8 inch because I have my ball head here and all ball heads, all tripod ball heads are 3/8 inch. So that 3/8 inch screw will twist right in there. And that’s going to create my way to attach the ball head to my plate. The reason I chose the machine screw is it’s got a slot and that slot allows me to tighten it with the device I keep on my key ring all the time. And that allows me to tighten it. So I went with that slot which will allow me to tighten it on the camera. Alright, so there’s our screw, machine screw with a nut.
That’s what I’m looking for. This is a t-hinge. This is a t-hinge that goes from a 2”x4” to a 4”x4”. That’s why you get this blunt end. That’s going to be my plate. I can use that to create my plate. I’ll just drill the hole out from underneath. I’m going to set my 3/8 inch screw through it and that’ll allow me to attach my head. That’s why I’m doing 3/8 inch screws because my ball head is going to twist on that 3/8” on the ball head. It’s going to twist onto my screw. This becomes a heavy plate and that plate is, how much is my plate? It’s eight bucks, eight bucks! So there you go. With a two dollar screw for $10 bucks. That’s the most expensive plate we’re going to do right there.
All right, this is exactly what I’m looking for. This is a one by eight which is three quarter inch by seven and a half inches. It’s thick enough that I can countersink a hole in there so that screw is going to drop down below the surface. So it won’t poke up and cause problems. This is perfect. I can make three out of it. And it’s only $3.69. So I didn’t want to have to buy one of these long pieces of wood just to give a little plate out of it. So $3.50 cents, I can make that happen.
So I’m going to get some little rubber feet. This is because that screw is going to stick out of the bottom of the hinge just a little bit on the bottom. In order to level that up I’m going to put some of these little stickies that you put on a cabinet door so it won’t bounce against the other, against the frame. And that’ll just level this out for me. So, a few little feet.
Ah, this is perfect. This is exactly what I want. This is a magnet that will hold 95 pounds. It’s got a hole in the middle, I can drill that hole out. Allow my 3/8 inch screw to come through and tighten it onto my plate right there. Now I’ve got a magnet that I can put on the side of a fridge or anything metal. And I’ll be able to attach my camera there.
I’m going to get a couple of rubber washers to be able to create some tension between the nut going through and the head. Otherwise I’m afraid that’s going to start to roll. And so, I’m going to get a couple washers and I think we’re ready to go. There’s what I want. That’s a 3/8 inch hole. That’s going to give me a little rubber gasket that’s going to allow some tension when I tighten it up so that this ball head’s not going to slide. Those are perfect. I’m getting four of those just in case. They’re $1.19 each.
So let’s take a look at these camera rigs and how we put them together to get us down on the ground. This first one is probably one of the first DIY projects I ever did. I did this back in the late 80s or early 90s. I just needed to get my 4”x5” view camera right on the ground.I simply took a piece of wood. I bought this at the Do-It-Center for $3.50. I cut a section that’s about seven and a half inches by eight inches.And I drilled a hole through it with a drill bit that’s slightly larger than 3/8 of an inch. Now I took a countersink and I just countersinked it because my screw head has just a little bit of a flange on it. And I want that screw head to drop down in there and become flush on the bottom, so that it doesn’t stick up or make this thing wobble around. So there I have it. I’ve got my screw. I used an inch and a quarter screw to get through my thickness. The last thing I’ll add to this is I’m going to put a washer on that. And the reason I’m going to put a washer on it is because, when I put my head on it I want something to tighten up on there, that will allow me to give a little pressure and keep it from spinning. I want that washer to just give me some compression and tighten up. Look at that, that’s awesome! That pulled that screw in. This is tight on there. This is absolutely awesome. And that rig right there will get you right down on the ground. Now if I needed to I could pull this 3/8 inch screw out of there. I can put a quarter 20 screw in there with a washer and just feed that right into my camera, if I want to even get lower. But generally speaking I’m going to get it on a ball head like this that allows me to have some control of where I’m looking at, where I’m looking or how I’m positioning my camera. And that is probably one of the simplest DIY low angle rigs you could possibly make. It’s one drill hole, a little countersink, and a screw and a washer. And for definitely less than 10 bucks you have a low camera platform to get yourself really down low. So if you need to you can put a sandbag on each side of this. That would stabilize it. Or you could put a furniture pad or something underneath it so it doesn’t slide around. Because that sliding around is a bit of a problem on these. And what you could do, to keep it from sliding around is either glue these kind of washers on the bottom of it. Or we could put these little feet that you use for a cabinet so that the cabinet doesn’t bang when you close the door against the cabinet framing. I’ve never had an issue with that. I’ve used it just like that many, many times. So there’s our first rig under $10 bucks.
You can put your camera in the fridge, no problem!
So the next rig we’re going to look at is just basically a t-hinge. A t-hinge is a hinge, exactly that. It’s a T. But this is made for a 2”x4” to 4“x4”. Which gives us a large kind of platform area. This one needs a very short screw. So I can shoot a very short screw in there. I’ll put my washer on that. I drilled this middle hole out because it did not come at a size where I could run my 3/8 inch through it. These holes will not allow me to put 3/8 inch through it. But I put this on here. I put my washer on there. So after drilling one hole and using a very short screw, that’s the 3/8 inch screw, because it’s got only the thickness of the metal which is pretty thin. It doesn’t have to go very far and this will tighten up on there, with that washer on there, really nicely. Okay, so the reason I got this slotted screw, and I mentioned that when we were at the DIY Center, is because you can use my little Thinguma and I can tighten it. So here’s the problem with this setup. And this is a problem you have to solve. And that is it, it’s got a screw there that just makes it really wobbly. So the screw sticks out. It’s not thick enough to be able to countersink that screw like it was with the wood. So I’m going to take some little feet here that I got that give me a little stick-um on the sides. I’m going to put one of those on each side. And now I’ve got a nice platform and it doesn’t slide because it’s got those little feet on it. That’s a simple setup. That’s a simple drill, one drill hole, and tighten the screw. And some little feet to keep it off the ground. So there’s a little metal DIY low angle rig. There’s our second one. So this whole setup was eight bucks for this hinge. A dollar for the screw. And I think 50 cents or so for the little washer and the feet for a dollar. So this one is just around $10 bucks.
So this is a new thought. I have never done this one before. But it’s pretty exciting to me. This was on the aisle at the DIY Center in the magnet section. And it’s just a magnet that holds 95 pounds. So I’m sticking it on the wall and it’s hard to get off the wall. I’m thinking to myself, well that’s just a circular magnet with a hole in the middle. So I drilled that hole out better, so it’ll allow me to put in my 3/8 inch. I’m going to put two washers on this one. I’m going to put one underneath and I’m going to put one on the top. And now, the screw is just sticking to the side. Can’t get it to go through the hole. That magnet is so strong. Okay, there we go. I got my screw in there. I’m using that three-quarter inch 3/8 inch screw. That’s three quarters inch long. Because I want it to be pretty short. I have a washer on both sides and now I have got, I’ve got this thing that will stick literally to the side of… it’s just it’s there. It’s going to give me more than enough strength to hold up, a you know, five or six pound camera. And simple! So it’s just that round magnet. All right so there’s my second, there’s my third one. That one was like, the magnet was like four dollars. And the screw is a buck. That thing was less than six or seven dollars for that whole setup there. And just an awesome setup using a magnet. So there’s number three. If you’re worried about the magnet it’s not a problem. People have magnets on the front of lenses. They put magnets, I mean magnets are not going to be a problem. You’ve got an SD drive, a CF Express drive, those are solid state drives. It’s not going to be affected by a magnet.
That magnet just connects to the fridge and gives me a high angle. You can put that anywhere there’s a metal surface. That’s pretty amazing for under $10 bucks.
It hooks onto the front of your car without any problem. Just don’t drag it across your car. It will scratch it.
And now, a bonus! Walking down the aisle and I find the seven inch backing pad for resin fiber discs. Did you find this Julene? Yes. Yes, so Julene found this as she was walking down the aisle and it’s just, it’s a disc. It’s a plastic disc. It has an insert. The insert sits right there. That three-quarter inch screw is not long enough. That inch screw is probably just about right. Again we’ll put a rubber washer on there. That rubber washer, I think, is super important. Because it just allows us to snug up and not to spin. And we’re going to get our Thinguma and tighten this up. Why is Thinguma not a sponsor here at The Slanted Lens? I think we Thinguma about more than anybody. Look at that. Dang! That screw is just sticking up just a little bit. All right, no problem. I’ve got some little discs here I’ll put on here that’ll pull that up off the ground and make it so it doesn’t slide. Make everybody happy? I’m happy. Are you happy? I’m happy. There you go. Oh yeah, that’s kind of nice with those in there. Actually, that’s really lightweight and a nice round platform. That’s a great setup. So there you go. The seven inch backing pad for resin fiber discs low camera angle rig.
The bonus rig is working great. It’s a nice light platform. Put it in the washer there and I’m going to open that up, look in, throw something in there.
So which one of these would you use? Leave us a comment below. Tell us which one you like. There’s several things I like about this. I like the wood because the wood allows me, I can always shoot holes in this and shoot this to the ceiling. I can attach this to a wall. It just gives me a lot of different options. It’s just a piece of wood. If the wood starts to get beat up too much I’ll just drill a hole in a new one. It’s easy to make, quick to it to assemble and it gives you the ability to assemble it a lot of different places. This is nice because you do have holes where you can use drywall screws to attach that to things. The magnet does exactly what you’d hope a magnet does. It gets the camera in really unique places really easily that you don’t have to do a lot of rigging to accomplish. And then of course there’s the Julene seven inch bracketing pad for resin fiber disc rig that is just kind of lightweight.
So three ways to get low and to get those low angles. I hope you’ve enjoyed this. It’s a DIY project. It’ll allow you to get an interesting angle and to work in an area in a way that perhaps you haven’t done before. If you want to find out other ways to rig cameras in really interesting places check out these two videos. There’s some really interesting information there that’ll teach you how to rig those cameras in places you’d never thought of before. So keep those cameras rollin’ and keep on clickin’!
And still rolling! The only water on it is what came off my hands just now. The SKB case survived the cinder block in the pool test!