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Old 04-29-2013, 01:23 PM   #1
Deso
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Default 360deg Photo/Video Project

Time for a fun artsy side-project. I'm planning a 360 degree pivoting camera mount that swings around a car. The goal is to have a stable and smooth platform to take a 360 view of a car and/or pictures all the way around. Imagine a car on a spinning platform and recording it with a stationary camera. Now imagine the opposite, where the camera is moving around the car. I'm designing all the parts needed to make this a mobile structure that can be set-up at any location.

Anyone in the Pacific NW that is interested, post here if you want to get involved or if you are interested in getting 360 videos/photos of your car. We can discuss good locations and schedule photo meets.

It would look something similar to this:

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Old 04-29-2013, 01:36 PM   #2
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I'd be interested in some photos/videos. I could also give a hand of needed although I'm up here in bellingham. I'm a weld inspector by trade although Im not sure you'd need Welds to be inspected haha
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Old 04-29-2013, 04:00 PM   #3
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Neat idea! I thought about his too, I came up with two ideas.

1. take a rope and suction cup it to the top of the car, then walk around the car with a bag of flour while keeping the rope tight, that will give you a perfect circle on the ground. Then, mount your camera to a board around 2 feel long. If you set the board down so the corners touch the flour, and when you move it you make sure the back corner hits eactly where the leading corner was, this should give you equal camera spacing AND make sure the camera is pointed at the center of the circle each time. The effect would be like a stop motion matrix type shot.

2. Get a couple of those cheap oversized train sets they sell around x-mas. Get enough track to make a big circle, then build a camera rig on a few of the cars. Being driven byt the electric motor you should get a smooth, constant speed shot.
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Old 04-29-2013, 04:18 PM   #4
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Those are very good ideas. I think they would work fantastic on flat ground locations. My original idea for this structure was for outdoors locations where you will probably not be level. I toyed with some similar ideas of having markers on the ground, but it wouldn't let me make a fluid video and the height might be off as you move around. With structure, you could add adjustable height legs and either match the level of the car, or make it completely level.

I'm going to lurk home depot and think about building material tonight.
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:17 AM   #5
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Yeah, only dissadvantage of the structure is that you will see the legs in the shot
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beau M View Post
Yeah, only dissadvantage of the structure is that you will see the legs in the shot
Bro, do you even photoshop?
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:33 AM   #7
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Well, that is true. Especially for the video idea where you could not photoshop them out. My current design will be using 1/2" black oxi piping for the structure, so it should be less noticeable.

I almost have a parts list ready for Home Depot and McMaster Carr
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Old 04-30-2013, 03:58 PM   #8
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Parts for the bearing have been ordered, finishing touches on the full build design and sizes are finished. Just need to pick up a few steel pipes, fittings, and find the time to weld. Should be up and running in about a couple weeks if the construction goes smoothly. The Final design has a swing diameter of 275" and a height of 156". It will break down into 5' sections for transportation. The boxes in the center are the overall length, width, and height dimensions of a 2012 WRX (180/70/56 approx)

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Old 04-30-2013, 04:59 PM   #9
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Im definitely interested. Pm me and keep me posted!
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:36 PM   #10
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Thanks, I will keep you informed.

I'm going over some design challenges in my head. I might make a change to aluminum C-Channels for the supports so I can make brackets to keep the entire structure sturdy. C-Channels or square rods. It would be a bit more spendy, but a lot lighter and more stable. I wouldn't have to weld anything I believe.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:11 PM   #11
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I would think you should make the cameras path in an oval. This would ensure that your lens is at an equal distance from the panels of the car at all times.

That said, I have no idea how to calculate and create a device to move the camera in said oval path.
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:20 PM   #12
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That's funny, I was thinking of a mechanism to create that oval shape, but it would be far too complicated. Maybe an addition at a later time.

I stopped by the hardware store again and I'm split... all that steel pipe is the cheapest route, but it is HEAVY! I'm not sure if it will support itself with the angles of the supports without some sort of bracing. I'm going to try and find a place that will sell aluminum square rods at a better price and longer lengths than Home Depot. If you know of a place, post it here and i'll check into it.
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:07 PM   #13
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Been watching this thread and interested in the outcome. Would a "pop up" style tent be too small? Those frames are pretty light weight and they fold!
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Old 05-01-2013, 11:05 AM   #14
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Which tents do you mean? Like the "easy-up" canopies you bring camping to provide cover from sun/rain? Those are about half the size of this.... I can't think of anything else that is similar.

Waiting for a quote from Everett Steal. They deal in bulk Aluminum at 20' lengths. Looks like I can get exactly what I need, hopefully at a decent price. I will update when I get the quote.

Last edited by Deso; 05-01-2013 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:00 PM   #15
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Yes those are the ones. Figured it would be too small but who says you cant extend it.
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:23 PM   #16
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Bumpdate

I had some time to finish designing the upper portion of the structure. The picture shows the Swing arm (blue) and 2 of 4 supports including the upper section of the supports. The Swing arm is supported by 2 ball bearing locations for stability. The Bearings are connected to a 1/2" diameter aluminum shaft that will extend through the support upper section and be held in place (hopefully) by a few 1/2" shaft collars. If that doesn't work, I'm sure I could machine a few pins in their place. The entire structure will be made of 3/4" aluminum square tubing joined in sections by 1/2" aluminum square tubing.

Close up detail of the bearing area



Overall shape/size

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Old 05-07-2013, 02:07 PM   #17
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Lower section of the bearing assembled. More parts on their way. Should have a deal for all the aluminum soon as well.

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Old 05-07-2013, 02:55 PM   #18
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Plastic pipe too flimsy?
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:03 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beau M View Post
Plastic pipe too flimsy?
It is a 1/2" Aluminum rod. The plastic piece you see is just a spacer to separate the bearings.

If you were asking why not use plastic pipe, yes it is too flimsy. This section will be experiencing a lot of torque from the swing arm weight and because the arm is so long. Then there is the additional weight from whatever camera is mounted to the arm. Lastly, in order to have a fluid and smooth movement, I decided ball bearings would offer the best results. You wouldn't be able to use ball bearing on plastic pipe.

If you were asking about plastic pipe for the rest of the structure. Yes again, far too flimsy. This thing will stand 16ft in the center and plastic pipe is not rigid enough at the ~24ft lengths of the supports. It would bend and wobble like nobodies business. You would have to use really large pipe, something like 4-5" diameter. At that point, the supports will stand out really bad in any picture or video taken. The 3/4 aluminum tube will be subtle and difficult to notice as well as extremely light and rigid for it's size.

Last edited by Deso; 05-07-2013 at 03:12 PM.
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:18 PM   #20
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Plans finished, aluminum ordered, final parts arriving tomorrow, construction begins next week.

Should up and running the following weekend. I'll be camping that weekend so hopefully I can give it a test run somewhere in the wilderness!

I need to find a body bag to put the materials in for transport; the majority of the parts are going to be 6ft long. Maybe a Christmas tree bag will work

Last edited by Deso; 05-09-2013 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:33 PM   #21
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This sounds awesome man. Keep me posted.
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:44 PM   #22
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Ya know, when I first read the OP I went into instant troll mode and wanted to make fun of the project. Mainly because I'm a dick.

I'm glad so far that I didn't. This sounds neat and I hope it comes out as planned.
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Old 05-09-2013, 04:00 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psychoreo View Post
Ya know, when I first read the OP I went into instant troll mode and wanted to make fun of the project. Mainly because I'm a dick.

I'm glad so far that I didn't. This sounds neat and I hope it comes out as planned.
Well then... thanks?

BTW, name for the contraption "WRXbox360" lel
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:32 AM   #24
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Picked up all the aluminum from Everett Steel last night



Started cutting some of the parts. These are the brackets that will attach the swivel arm to the bearings.





Tonight i'm going to cut all of the aluminum to the correct lengths. Drill all of the bolt holes tomorrow. Test assemble hopefully on Thursday.

Stay tuned!
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:56 PM   #25
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subscribed. looks cool
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