Canon Digital Photography Forums

Canon Digital Photography Forums (http://photography-on-the.net/forum/index.php)
-   Accessories & Storage (http://photography-on-the.net/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=34)
-   -   My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics) (http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=679708)

5teve 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 13:35

My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
Moderator Update 10/9/2009: It was brought to our attention that this design is from Dr. Sean Parkin http://xray.uky.edu/people_documents.../panohead.html. Please give credit where credit is due.:

UPDATE 4/21/09: Added actual build details starting from post #41. http://photography-on-the.net/forum/...=679708&page=3

Update 10/9/09: Modified post to indicate that this design is based off a design from Dr. Sean Parkin. http://xray.uky.edu/people_documents.../panohead.html

I was interested in desigining my own Panoramic head. Initially I was looking at purchasing the Panosauras, but after much research decided I wanted something a bit sturdier and also something that could I could disassemble easily for travelling. I also looked at the ever popular Nodal Ninja, but did not want to shell out $300-$400 for the NN5 (as the NN3 was too small for my camera). I ended up modifying a design that I came across here http://xray.uky.edu/people_documents.../panohead.html. This was a design from Dr. Sean Parkin, and the only modification I made was to remove the use of the Manfrotto plate, and also added the ability for some detents to be placed every 30 degrees or so on the rotator.

I started with the plan of using a Manfrotto quick release plate that would be permanently attached to the head, like how Sean designed his head. The vertical arm is removable by unscrewing the one knob at the bottom. Unscrewing the vertical arm will be the only thing that will need to be done to take apart the head for travel (no tools needed!).

I then created a simple Visio diagram which detailed all the necessary measurements that I would need for my specific camera and nodal point, taking into account the thickness of the material, and the Manfrotto plate.


I purchased the Manfrotto plates from Amazon, but after receiving them had second thoughts on using them. The plates were rather heavy and bulky (and a bit pricey ~$30), so back they went.

Here is my revised plan without using the Manfrotto plate. In order to keep with my criteria of not needing tools to assemble or use the head, I needed to add a spacer between the vertical arm and the arm that the camera mounts to.


To validate how this adapted design would look, I then made a 3D model using Sketchup.


Model with the arm rotated up 90 degrees.


And finally, model with the camera mounted and ready for action.



If all goes as planned I should have my head completely finished this weekend :). I will post a build thread once complete.

czeglin 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 13:52

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
How do you guarantee alignment between the horizontal & vertical arms? Seems like an alignment slot/tab would be helpful, but then you're moving from DIY territory into machining.

Are you using the panning base on the ballhead or do you have a separate panning head?

Finally, a shout out to McMaster-Carr. Best website ever for finding "I-don't-know-quite-what-I'm-looking-for".

5teve 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 14:11

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by czeglin (Post 7750866)
How do you guarantee alignment between the horizontal & vertical arms? Seems like an alignment slot/tab would be helpful, but then you're moving from DIY territory into machining.

The pan head screws that are used to hold the vertical arm onto the lower plate actually have a bit of adjustment to them. They don't have much adjustment (about 1/32"), but enough to guarantee that the distance is correct.

An alignment slot would have been great! But you're right that is more of a machining task. I actually thought about how to make a slot so that the head could be used for multiple cameras, but without a CNC couldn't really find a good way to make one.

Quote:

Are you using the panning base on the ballhead or do you have a separate panning head?

Finally, a shout out to McMaster-Carr. Best website ever for finding "I-don't-know-quite-what-I'm-looking-for".
I am not using the panning base on my ballhead, since the panoramic head is designed such that the base rotates. The thin silver color you see in the 3D model is actually a bearing which allows the upper disk to rotate against the lower one. I also modified Sean's original design such that there are detents every 30 degrees and these detents are adjustable by switching out a "detent washer".

Yes, McMaster-Carr is awesome. That is my new favorite site for finding those random parts that I didn't even know existed.

5teve 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 18:09

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
I created a rendering which shows the exploded view of the base of the panoramic head. I wanted to sketch up the head to see if I could find a way for the detent indexing pin to work properly. There is a needle bearing between the upper and lower disks. I drilled out small holes on the inner washer every 30 degrees which allow the ball detent spring to index against. There is another small pin to locate the washer and prevent it from spinning inside.



Here is another view with "see through" enabled on the model, which may or may not make things clearer.


Grentz 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 20:25

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Very impressive work, will be interesting to see how the final piece comes out ;)

SYS 17th of April 2009 (Fri) 20:28

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Me too. :)

A_Whelan 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 20:22

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 5teve (Post 7752281)
I created a rendering which shows the exploded view of the base of the panoramic head. This piece actually took the longest time to figure out how to make it work :). In any case, there is a needle bearing between the upper and lower disks. I drilled out small holes on the inner washer every 30 degrees which allow the ball detent spring to index against. There is another small pin to locate the washer and prevent it from spinning inside.

Will this act in a way to feel it "click" as you turn every 30 degrees? If so very neat idea!

Also how are you doing to fabricate it? CNC Machine? I was thinking getting some help with doing something similar. It will be interesting to see the final product!
Aaron

ben_r_ 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 20:29

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
Looks a little like the RRS solution. How much would something like this run you actually produce?

5teve 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 20:53

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by A_Whelan (Post 7758008)
Will this act in a way to feel it "click" as you turn every 30 degrees? If so very neat idea!

Yes, the detent is so that I will be able to feel it "click" every 30 degrees. I noticed that the commercial heads had this feature, and thought it was a great idea as well.

Quote:

Also how are you doing to fabricate it? CNC Machine? I was thinking getting some help with doing something similar. It will be interesting to see the final product!
Aaron
I am doing all the fabrication at home with basic handtools and woodworking tools. I've actually finished fabricating the parts and just need to complete the finishing touches tomorrow. The base seems to "click" just like I had planned! I'll test it later with the camera attached and see if I am still able to feel the detents.

joeseph 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 21:11

Re: My Panoramic Head design (with pics)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 5teve (Post 7750991)
The pan head screws that are used to hold the vertical arm onto the lower plate actually have a bit of adjustment to them.

them pan head screws are likely the most stressed points in the design I think - I'd be inclined to get the best quality ones you can. Only other area I'd suggest might need beefing up is the threaded aluminium for the swing arm doesn't have a lot of threads for the load you'll be putting on (and every time you tighten it up) if needed you can always suppliment this with a captive steel nut.

Great work with the drawings!

WillOPhotos 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 21:43

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
looks like 360 Precision Panno head, I have one that looks similar.

5teve 18th of April 2009 (Sat) 21:49

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by WillOPhotos (Post 7758404)
looks like 360 Precision Panno head, I have one that looks similar.

Wow, I just took a look at that head and it looks really nice. Very pricey though. I would estimate that the parts for my head are only around $100. Of course I am not factoring in the "cost" for my time, but since I enjoy doing this type of work I figure that cost as a benefit.

WillOPhotos 19th of April 2009 (Sun) 03:44

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
yeah its the only bit of equipment where I wasnt happy spending the money haha good luck with yours it looks like you know what your doing!

5teve 19th of April 2009 (Sun) 21:08

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
I finished building my panoramic head this weekend! The only part that didn't go as planned was being able to dye my parts black. For some reason the test piece that I anodized did not take the dye well and ended up very splotchy and purplish in color. I decided to just go ahead and anodize without the dye. I will post pictures of the completed head shortly.

5teve 20th of April 2009 (Mon) 11:18

Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)
 
I also decided to have an arm detent that clicks at 0, +45, -45, +90, -90. Below is the exploded view of the design for that feature.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 00:32.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.12
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
This forum is not affiliated with Canon in any way and is run as a free user helpsite by Pekka Saarinen, Helsinki Finland. You will need to register in order to be able to post messages. Cookies are required for registering and posting. HTML in messages is not allowed, plain website addresses are automatically made active by the board.