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Old 21st of April 2009 (Tue)   #46
scot079
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Where do I buy one of these

Great work!
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Old 21st of April 2009 (Tue)   #47
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

You had said that you added a bubble level to it where did you insert it don't see it in pictures.
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Old 21st of April 2009 (Tue)   #48
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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You had said that you added a bubble level to it where did you insert it don't see it in pictures.
The bubble level is round and looks like a bulls eye (its actually called a bulls eye level). You can see it in the pictures. It is in the middle of the horizontal arm directly over where the arm rotates.
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Old 22nd of April 2009 (Wed)   #49
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Sorry Steve I just found out when lookingat the documents again.

Thanks Again
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Old 23rd of April 2009 (Thu)   #50
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Really impressive. Way to take an idea (even if just improving on another) and see it to the end....
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Old 23rd of April 2009 (Thu)   #51
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

how did you ease the edges so smooth and consistently?

Very nice work!
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Old 23rd of April 2009 (Thu)   #52
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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how did you ease the edges so smooth and consistently?

Very nice work!

I rough cut the edges round corners using a hack saw, and then just used a file to round them over. I placed the file on my jig at a 90 degree angle and then slid my part against the file to round the corner. This setup guaranteed that my edges would be at 90 degrees. I matched the corner radius to be the same as the base. It actually did not turn out to be as difficult as I thought it would be.
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Old 27th of April 2009 (Mon)   #53
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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Here is a picture of the finished head. So far I've only taken a quick 360x180 panoramic shot of my living room, and the head seems to work exactly as expected. No stitching errors .
Nice work 5teve, but this looks a *whole* lot like a copy of a device I made a few years ago, especially the rotator, so your use of the words "my design" is inappropriate - there's not much original work there - but the detents have potential. Excellent craftsmanship aside, well, you know the old saying ? ... Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Here's a picture of the one I made a few years ago:



Just for the record (for everyone else), here's the url of my build (below). The description has been up several years, just Google "homemade panoramic head" and click "I'm feeling lucky".

http://xray.uky.edu/people/parkin/pa.../panohead.html

Cheers, Sean

Dr. Sean Parkin
Director, X-Ray Laboratory
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY, 40502.

Last edited by sparkin : 29th of December 2011 (Thu) at 12:16. Reason: changed URLs.
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Old 27th of April 2009 (Mon)   #54
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Sean, I've gone through and edited my previous posts to give you credit where due. You definitely have a great deal of information on your site.

Last edited by 5teve : 9th of October 2009 (Fri) at 18:07.
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Old 28th of April 2009 (Tue)   #55
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Great design, I'm going to try to build one using the 8020.net aluuminum tslot stuff. Luckily McMaster Carr is only about 10 miles from me and I use it like my local Home Depot.
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Old 28th of April 2009 (Tue)   #56
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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Sean, I did come across your site when I was researching my design and definitely used some of the ideas from your site for my inspiration. Thanks for all the great information on your site as well.
Yes, I could tell

I have since made a second one, smaller and much lighter (about 1 pound - the bulkiest part is the Manfrotto quick release). This new one is fully adjustable for different lenses/cameras, and collapses down easily and reproducibly. It has a rotation mechanism that fits completely within the centre column of my backpacking tripod (a small Manfrotto). This is similar in principle, but very different in design, to Michel Thoby's slim rotator (http://michel.thoby.free.fr/Nadir/Sl...m_rotator.html). This means that there is very little at all on the nadir of a full 360 pano.

Here are a few pictures:



Again, this was largely made with hand tools, apart from a drill press and a small bench sander. Most of it is aluminium, but the stops on the horizontal base and the camera arm are made from delrin plastic cut with a hole saw. I also made some washers and gaskets from oak veneer. A colleague at work black anodized it for me, so it looks pretty. I've since added a graduated collar for reproducible rotations. It also works well on top of a monopod. It looks to be a bit overpowered by the quick release, but the convenience of this fixture can't be overstated, and its mating plate is permanently on my camera anyway.

Here's a few panoramas taken with this Mk2 head:

http://xray.uky.edu/people/parkin/pa...n/welcome.html

http://xray.uky.edu/people/parkin/pa...m/welcome.html

Cheers, Sean

Last edited by sparkin : 29th of December 2011 (Thu) at 12:19. Reason: updated URLs
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Old 28th of April 2009 (Tue)   #57
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

Sean, that is an awesome second design! I now have some inspiration to work on a second revision as well . I tried to anodize mine in black, but didn't have good luck with the color. I think next time I'll purchase some good dyes to use and try that. How thick is the aluminum you used? It looks to be less than 3/8" to me. Do you have any closeup shots of how you secure the adjustable washers? Also, how did you end up cutting the slot?

Last edited by 5teve : 28th of April 2009 (Tue) at 10:34.
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Old 28th of April 2009 (Tue)   #58
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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Sean, that is an awesome second design! I now have some inspiration to work on a second revision as well . I tried to anodize mine in black, but didn't have good luck with the color. I think next time I'll purchase some good dyes to use and try that. How thick is the aluminum you used? It looks to be less than 3/8" to me. Do you have any closeup shots of how you secure the adjustable washers? Also, how did you end up cutting the slot?
The aluminium (apologies for the British spelling, but I'm British) is 0.25" thick. This gives it a barely perceptible flex (my original is essentially flex free), but in practice it makes hardly any difference.

To cut the slots I used a scroll saw (so I should have added that to the list of non-hand tools) and files. I made it about 18 months ago, and the slot cutting had slipped my mind. The slot on the camera arm is a little more complicated, as it is not just one piece of 0.25" aluminium. It is two pieces of 0.125" bolted together, and one has a wider slot. I did this to allow the panhead bolt that fastens the quick release base to lie flush with the surface so that it would not get in the way as the elbow joint moves. A proper machinist could easily cut this arm from a single piece of 0.25" thick metal.

The rotation mechanism for this one is beautifully smooth. I found that in order to forgo the normal-style rotation mechanism, which in my original head was 2.5" in diameter, then to achieve truly smooth rotation the mechanism needs to be quite long. This has to do with the maximum allowable angular deviation. That is why I built it into the centre column, as I didn't want it to become unwieldy. It is difficult to describe without pictures, but basically there's a single threaded rotating rod that runs the length of the centre column with a series of bearings, belleville washers and delrin bushings. Actually, it is really half the length of the centre column, because I chopped the centre column in half so that I would also have a half-height centre column with the integrated ball head (that came with the tripod).

I guess it is time to dismantle it, photograph the parts and do a proper write-up for this one. Maybe I'll do this soon now that the semester here is about over.

Cheers, Sean

Last edited by sparkin : 29th of April 2009 (Wed) at 09:25.
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Old 30th of April 2009 (Thu)   #59
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

5teve, great job.

Can you show a close up of the indexing pin and how you constructed it, or was it bought. Also, any info on how you anodized the parts and what's involved. Many thanks.
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Old 30th of April 2009 (Thu)   #60
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Default Re: My homemade spherical panoramic head design (w/ pics)

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5teve, great job.

Can you show a close up of the indexing pin and how you constructed it, or was it bought. Also, any info on how you anodized the parts and what's involved. Many thanks.
The indexing pin itself I bought from McMaster-Carr. It is actually a small ball nose spring. Here is a picture from that site:



You can find pretty good resources for anodizing aluminum by searching on Google, but the general process is this:

1. Clean aluminum well (use Degreaser, and hot soap and water).
2. De-oxidize by dipping in strong base (sodium hydroxide or trisodium phosphate (TSP).
3. Anodize - attach 12v positive lead to part and negative lead to piece of aluminum foil dipped in a 25% sulfuric acid mix.
4. Dye parts by placing in solution of heated dye (but not too hot)
5. Seal parts by placing in boiling water.

I hope this helps.
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