I got a new phone for Christmas and I was amazed by how good the front camera was. It shoots fullt HD and the microphone is awesome as well. Naturally, I wanted to implement the phone in my video production, so I decided to make this simple device, that allows you to attach your phone to a tripod.
Tools: drill press, vice, jigsaw, shop torch, heat gun.
Materials : 25x10 (1"x3/8") aluminum bar stock, soft pad, (spray) adhesive, 5mm (3/16") threaded rod, heat shrink tubes, 2 wing nuts, nut.
Step 1: Base
The base was made from 25x10 (1"x3/8") aluminum bar. I started by drilling first 3/8" (9,5mm) hole all the way through, then 17mm (43/64") hole 1/4" (6mm) deep for the nut. Notice that here I´m using imperial units, because hardware for photography is made using the imperial instead of the metric. (I should finally buy imperial tap & die set.)
Then I pressed the nut into the aluminum bar using my vice. This interference fit ensured, that the nut won´t move. It would be easier to just tap the hole but again, I don´t have the tools necessary for this.
Then I drilled 6mm (1/4") holes for the cage, that I will be making later. Next I cut my piece to size using jig saw, with blade for metal. This worked really well, the cut was nice and square.
Later I attached soft pad to the base using spray adhesive. This not only helps to hold the phone securely, it will also protect it from scratches and such.
Final step for the base was to adjust this extension nut. It´s basically a cylinder with nut on one end and bolt on the other. I ground it´s sides down on my belt sander, so it would fit in 13mm (1/2") wrench. This allowed me to fasten it in the base and later in the tripod.
Step 2: Cage
For the cage I used 5mm (3/16") threaded rod. I started by fastening the rod in my vice. Then I used a shop torch to heat it in specific places and make 90 degrees bends. I did 6 bends and it worked really well with a torch.
Finaly I added heat shrink tubing to the upper parts of the cage to protect the phone from scratches. This was fairly tricky, because my tubes were only 1mm (3/64") bigger than the rod, so I had to fight them a little to get them to their place.
Step 3: Assembly
I simply screwed and tightened the extension nut to the base, then I fed the cage through the holes in the base and screwed wing nuts onto the straight rod ends. After this, the stand is ready to use.
This project was really simple, but it was really valuable to me, because I can now upgrade my videos with using my phone as a camera. As you can see in the video, you can use functions of your phone freely, without hesitation. Ironically enough, after I took pictures of the finnished stand I dropped my main camera and broke something inside the objective. Darn it!! Now I get to use the stand much more than I originally planned.
I hope that you liked this project, check out my YouTube channel I post new project video every thursday and QuickTip video every monday. Thanks for reading, let me know If you have any solutions or hacks for filming with your phone and don´t forget: get inspired, use what you have and make the best out of it!