Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking GearReviews and Roundups

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  1. #1
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    3D Printed Camera Mounts and Accessories

    Thought this could use its own thread. In recent weeks I have been dusting off my limited CAD skills and created some mounting options that I needed for mounting my Contour and Sony action cameras. The end result is t directly mount these cameras with the ubiquitous GoPro mounting system. GoPro is so big that there are mounts for everything. They are available everywhere. The Chinese are in the act with very cheap, good quality clones and unique mounting options. I am starting with the Sony AZ1 as well as the Contour T-Rail mounts. My Contour cameras are older and do not have a built in tripod socket.

    The reason I did this, is that no matter how I tried to prevent it, adapters induced camera shake or unsafe mounting as sometimes there were needs to mount adapters to other adapters. I also tried the RAM mounts, but in the end, they are just too big and bulky for bicycle use. I did not try to recreate existing adapters but instead focused on what I would use that I simply couldn't find a good alternative for.

    As with anything one person wants to fabricate, I thought others could use them to so I have made them available in the Shapeways store. For those who have their own printers I have lower triangle count versions on Thingiverse.

    The Revolutionaries Shapeways Store
    About WheresWaldo - Thingiverse

    I would also like to encourage others who have designed or printed any 3D mounts or accessories to please post them here also.

  2. #2
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    Sony AZ1 direct to GoPro mount

    One of the first things I wanted was a way to directly mount my Sony AZ1 into a GoPro mount. I have two mounts on my bicycle and wanted a way to use the camera without the waterproof case. They are splashproof cameras without the case, so why not take advantage of that fact.

    The Sony AZ1 does not have a tripod socket like some of the other action cams available. It uses an M4 metric screw. For my mount you would need to supply your own M4 x 10 mm socket head cap screw. they are readily available at any of the large home improvement stores and local hardware outlets.







    This was my test print. It is fully functional and works as intended. It holds the camera with a tight grip and there is no play when mounted on a quality GoPro base. There are some aesthetic issues I will address with a version 2 of this mount. Lastly this is an image of the camera mounted on the bike.



    Available here.
    Last edited by WheresWaldo; 02-08-2015 at 02:52 PM.

  3. #3
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    Sony Live-View Remote to Garmin quarter-turn mount clip

    The next thing I needed for my Sony AZ1 was a way to remove the Live-View Remote from its strap and my wrist. I wanted something I could quickly mount it to and remove just as quickly. Garmin always includes extra mounts and o-rings in their packages so I had a few of these laying around. Garmin well engineered the mount itself and since they are readily available I made no sense to make a clip that used some other mounting system or to create my own proprietary one. Here is the results of my prototype 3D print.





    The clip itself mounts very firmly in the slots that originally hold the velcro web straps. There is about 1 mm of up and down, so my suggestion is to place a small piece of foam on the backside of the clip. The foam will snug everything up without making it impossible to snap the clip in place. Here is the clip installed on the Live-View Remote.





    Of course here is an image with the clip mounted in a Garmin compatible plastic handlebar mount.



    There is already a version 3 of this clip that makes it a bit more flexible and not quite as hard to snap in place. You still need the small piece of foam taped into the recess on the inside of the clip.

    Available here.

  4. #4
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    Contour T-Rail direct to GoPro mount adapter

    The one thing I wanted to do is get my Contour action cameras back into service. Although much bulkier than the Sony AZ1 they are still good cameras with the ability to mount on their sides with the rotating lens. Since I have Contour GPS and a Contour + there is no tripod socket on the bottom of the camera. You must use the Contour tripod adapter, which doesn't appear to be available separately anymore. Besides, use of that adapter and a tripod to GoPro adapter forces the camera into an upright orientation. This is a problem with the GoPro style dog and chest mounts. It isn't much to look at but it does the job.





    Since it is a T-Rail mount, you just need to slide it into the slots on the side of the camera or the Contour Waterproof Case. The tabs are just a bit longer than many GoPro adapters to allow just a bit more angle adjustment. Here it is mounted on a Contour camera.



    Here it is mounted on a 3D printed seat post mount.



    Available here.

  5. #5
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    3D Printed Camera Mounts and Accessories

    I love all this 3D printing stuff. Wish I had a printer!

    Though I preferred the form factor of the Contour GPS, with the Gps data and all ... the Gopro is definitely a better picture.
    Trek Fuel EX 8 29er.

  6. #6
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    Coloring nylon parts

    Just pulled the parts out of the dye bath. This is about 30 minutes in RIT Royal Blue. Shorter time would have given a paler color. This image was snapped about 20 minutes after the parts were removed and washed. RIT dye tends to darken as it dries. Dyeing parts does not work with ABS (color built into filament) or PLA (water soluble). This process only works with previously undyed parts. It can be messy and permanently stain any clothing you are wearing and any plastic utensils or counter-tops the dye comes in contact with.



    Steps required:

    1. Wash and rinse parts thoroughly. There is almost always residue and nylon dust left behind from printing process. This will remove anything stuck to the surface.
    2. Put parts in bowl of hot water. Water needs to be at least 140° F but hotter is better for dark colors. I used two cups of water just about to boil. I set the parts in the water for about 10 minutes, reheating the water in the microwave every 3 minutes for 30 seconds.
    3. Set the parts aside and prepare dye. Here I used the liquid dye as its a bit easier to work with. One teaspoon of dye was all it took. Added 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to the mix. Again heat the dye mixture until simmering.
    4. Place parts in dye mixture and stir occasionally. I also zapped the mix in the microwave every couple of minutes to keep the mixture hot.
    5. Once I got them to a shade lighter than the finished parts, I pulled them out of the dye bath and washed them with hot water. You have to keep washing until no dye is visible in the rinse water.
    6. Set parts off to dry.


    An interesting thing is that since the dye actually sinks slightly into the part you can handle them right away without fear of removing the finish. RIT dye comes in 27 different colors. They do have a color chart that shows you how to get nearly any color you want by mixing their dyes together. It is not quite the same as dyeing fabrics, you can use a lot less dye than whats called for with fabrics. Although I am not going to try it, some people have suggested that you can seal the part with some clear acrylic spray paint after they have thoroughly dried.

  7. #7
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    3D Printed Camera Mounts and Accessories

    Nice!!!

    I don't have any cam related accessories but I did make a valve core remover that I use for my tubeless installations:

    http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:429677

    I'm definitely going to try out your Contour to GoPro mount.



    Bryan
    Just keep pedaling, don't stop pedaling.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bryan_d View Post
    Nice!!!

    I don't have any cam related accessories but I did make a valve core remover that I use for my tubeless installations:

    Chain Shaped Presta Valve Core Remover Tool by bdeleon - Thingiverse

    I'm definitely going to try out your Contour to GoPro mount.



    Bryan
    You just gave me an idea. I am going to go think on it for a bit. I liked you tool on Thingiverse.

  9. #9
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    3D Printed Camera Mounts and Accessories

    Please share your idea when it's finished.

    I will give your mount a go when I get home tonight.



    Best,

    Bryan
    Just keep pedaling, don't stop pedaling.

  10. #10
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    Presta - Cap, Core & Extension Tool Combo

    Quote Originally Posted by bryan_d View Post
    Please share your idea when it's finished.
    I will give your mount a go when I get home tonight.
    Best,
    Bryan
    Thanks for trying this printed adapter.

    Here is my idea. I always lose the core removal tool in my bag. I also have a bunch of road wheels that need valve extensions. so why not have a tool that has both but doesn't get lost in the bag. Print this out and try it and let me know how it works.



    I had to guess at the hole size, since its just too hard to design a threaded part, much less print it accurately when dealing with such small threads. The first time you thread the cap on a valve should be enough to cut threads on the inside.

    All you would need is one of these per set of wheels since It would stay on the wheelset between rides and that way not get lost. I could see using this on the trail, especially if you burp a bit too much sealant and need to top it off out on some big ride.

  11. #11
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    You know what I think would be cool, is a tripod mount for the Sony that fit the Contour mounts.

    I'd get a Sony in a heart beat if I could mount to my bike and Helmet on it's side like a Contour. I'd think there would be some money in that since Contour is back and you can buy the stick on mounts.
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  12. #12
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    AZ1 GoPro Side Mount

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    You know what I think would be cool, is a tripod mount for the Sony that fit the Contour mounts.

    I'd get a Sony in a heart beat if I could mount to my bike and Helmet on it's side like a Contour. I'd think there would be some money in that since Contour is back and you can buy the stick on mounts.
    Do you mean like T-Rails on the Sony or a side mount for the GoPro style mount. I already created one, but it hasn't been printed yet. Just click on the picture below. Note that it mounts on the left side only. Still need to swap batteries while its in the mount, so its the only orientation available that leaves the battery door available.



    It would be harder to put T-Rail slots on a Sony mount and still have access to the doors and buttons.

  13. #13
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    AZ1 to Contour T-Rail Direct Mount

    Played around with my Contour and took some measurements with my calipers. Here is what I cam up with in about an hours worth of work.


    Again, this is left side mounting only so you can get to the battery door. You can't see it but there are the notches in the groves for the little nubs on the mount so it won't slide off.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by WheresWaldo View Post
    Played around with my Contour and took some measurements with my calipers. Here is what I cam up with in about an hours worth of work.


    Again, this is left side mounting only so you can get to the battery door. You can't see it but there are the notches in the groves for the little nubs on the mount so it won't slide off.
    That's exactly what I was thinking. As I said in other post, I love my Roam for the mounting and dislike all the other bullet style ones because of the bottom based mounts.

    you got me to re-look at the Sony, I had forgotten they don't have the rotating lens. So I guess it's those two items that make it so I'll wait for the new higher end Contour.

    They released a lower end Roam 3, so I'm hoping a new 3 Plus is on the way.
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  15. #15
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    Only thing I have against my Contours, none have a tripod mount. I have two GPS and one +, so to use the really nice or really cheap Chinese chest mounts, the camera sits way up in the air. That is why I created the little slide on T-Rail to GoPro mount. You can use it to mount the Contour on it's side then to the chest mount.

    A couple of things I like about the AZ1 are the size and the multi-cam sync. The Sony mobile app is also much better than the Contour mobile app.

    Since I went to the trouble of working up the T-Rail to AZ1 Direct mount, I put it up for sale if anyone wants to try it.


  16. #16
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    This is a whole new world to me, you guys are geniuses! Waldo, I'll be buying one of your az1 to go pro helmet side mounts, but need to figure out how to add vertical adjustment...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by WheresWaldo View Post

    Waldo before I buy the two awesome az1 mounts you made up here, just wanted to check, I noticed where your mount meets the back of the camera where it "clips in" to the groove in the camera body, there's a gap showing, did it not fit right, is the mount a bit too long, or is it just the camera angle I'm looking at ?

    Thanks!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtm2525 View Post
    Waldo before I buy the two awesome az1 mounts you made up here, just wanted to check, I noticed where your mount meets the back of the camera where it "clips in" to the groove in the camera body, there's a gap showing, did it not fit right, is the mount a bit too long, or is it just the camera angle I'm looking at ?

    Thanks!
    It was a bit long (about 0.75 mm) but still stable as the nub fit in snugly. Also the back edge was about 1 mm too high and could interfere with the lower back camera door. All that has been fixed in the currently available version. I made the nub smaller and the back end a little lower on the current version. Some words about the screw hole should be noted. The hole is for a socket head cap screw, the type pictured, but actually a low profile head would look nicer and fit more flush. If weight is a concern you can use an aluminum water bottle cage bolt since it does not need to bear much weight. Here are a couple of examples from McMaster-Carr:

    McMaster-Carr Low Profile Stainless Steel
    McMaster-Carr Low Profile Alloy Steel

    Vertical positioning will always be an issue for some. That is why there are so many bulkier (heavier/uglier) solutions out there. I was looking for streamlined and lightweight. Since I have tried nearly every type of mount out there, my research has led me to the conclusion the the smaller, lower profile and more direct mounting methods yield the best results. When I say everything I mean that too. I tried adjustable Contour mounts, GoPro mounts and the RAM mounts but all have drawbacks especially on MTB. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best. If you take some time beforehand when you position your mount, then adjustability becomes more of a liability than an asset, possibly inducing instability in the camera requiring more post processing.

    One more note. The side mounts are a work in progress, and may not be the most streamlined out there. I am about 99.9% there, but they might need a bit of tweaking to be perfect. I also prefer the GoPro curved mount over the Sony one. If you are looking for adjusting the angle then maybe using the Contour adjustable rotating mount might work in combination with the T-Rail side mount. Or maybe something like this one from Revo.

    Revo Curved Helmet Mount for GoPro AC-CMH B&H Photo Video

  19. #19
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    I suppose I'll give it a while then till all the bugs are worked out to get the side mount. And you're right, Weight is really the issue, I'll just have to take my time finding that sweet spot for the adhesive part.

    Does your solution feel solid enough that you don't worry about running any sort of tether from the camera to a solid contact point?

  20. #20
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    I don't really run into things and the camera doesn't protrude out so far that I feel the need for a tether, but that is a personal decision. The M4 screw as well as the tab in the back makes the mount so strong that the camera would likely break first in the event of a catastrophic crash. But then I would suspect you have bigger concerns other than the camera mount if that were to happen.

    BTW, the part is where it should be as far as design is concerned, I just like to tweak stuff when I feel the need. Even if I change it in the future it will be for cosmetic reasons.

    Look at the other thread for a picture of everything on a scale.

    One more thing, I am liking the Live-View Remote clip more and more each day. It is so nice to get that thing off my wrist and on the bike where it belongs.

  21. #21
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    Great then I'll go ahead with it. Your remote clip makes me wish I got one with the remote! Really don't think its a need for me though, hoping I can just set it up quickly with my iPhone before I start peddling.

    I'm going to get both az1-gopro mounts you designed, I take it you've done a fair bit of handlebar mounts with it....I was pretty much talked out of mounting it on the frame, especially the handlebars, as it was advised the jitter would be too much, which made sense to me....but seeing how many handlebar mounts are out there...is it doable?

  22. #22
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    For road, which is my primary riding, handlebar mounts work great. On some single-track and desert trails they probably work well too, but you get much more image bounce when frame or handlebar mounted. Seat post seems to be better than handlebar as far as camera shake goes. Ideally the best seems to be helmet or chest mounting when riding more challenging trails.

    I know I could have used the AZ1 without the Live-View Remote and simply used the Android app. The thing was, I have two AZ1's and the app in its current form cannot display multi-image, only the remote can. I know that they showed multi-camera control from Android at CES when they announced the 4K cams but it still isn't here yet and who knows when Sony will have that feature available.

  23. #23
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    Go to know. I'm second guessing the side mount idea now. Think I might just get the vented strap mount and use your standard az1-gopro adapter. I'm just hoping it gives me enough clearance if I have to tilt the camera back. Otherwise I'll have to add a short arm to bring it away from the helmet.

  24. #24
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    Why did you decide to make the side mount adapter anyways? I know it's not ideal to have a camera protroding far above the head, but what makes weighing one side of your head down so appealing to people?

  25. #25
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    Clearance! Any camera when mounted on top of the head always sticks upward more than most people think and can become an obstacle for low hanging branches, among other things. Generally people will go under more things than they will allow brush by their faces, so you have more room sticking it out to the side. Also your torso is in the way and the side of your head is more protected than the top. After a while you stop noticing that one side is heavier than the other. There are other human factors too as to why people prefer side mounting, some of which are peripheral vision, intuitively knowing that what you are looking it is what you are filming, etc.

    Still, a lot of people have a lot of weight off the side of their helmets, one of the very reasons I bought the AZ1 and designed the mount. Here are some sample configs:

    • GoPro helmet top mounting requires, at a minimum, mount bracket, short insert, long thumbscrew. With camera + battery + case ~ 165 - 175 g.
    • GoPro helmet side mounting requires, at a minimum, mount bracket, short insert, short extension, medium extension, two short thumbscrews and one long thumbscrew, With camera + battery ~ 195 - 200 g.
    • Contour helmet top mount, tilting mount and straps, with camera and battery ~ 190 - 200 g.
    • Contour helmet side mount with profile mount, camera and battery ~ 160 - 170 g.
    • Sony helmet top mount with Waterproof case, curved mount and insert, camera and battery ~ 140 - 150 g.
    • My mount for Sony/GoPro with Gopro QR curved mount, camera and battery = 88 g. (~ 3 oz)
    • My mount for Sony/T-Rail with Contour Profile mount, camera and battery ~ 65 g.

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