So the first thing I built was the The Frugal Filmmaker Camera Stabilizer Rig.
I made some slight modifications to it, because my camera is longer than his, especially when I have the extended battery on it.
I realized something important, however. As an event photographer, I don’t have time to screw on one tripod quick release, then another, then another. I can’t go from one rig to another and take five minutes to transition. Plus I am a little concerned because a friend stripped out the threading on his camcorder’s tripod screw hole. What I needed, I realized, is a universal quick release plate. The problem is every piece of gear I own comes with a different shaped quick release plate.So I found this item, the Sima Quick Connect for Tripod. I bought only two to test out, and then I bought another five. I am in LOVE with them. First reason is, of course, price. When buying 5, they came out to about $7 each including shipping. I had to add 3 different sellers to my cart 3 times to figure it out, but in the end, that’s what being frugal is all about. Adorama’s closest option, as much as I love them, was $19. Second reason was grip. Now these are plastic, so you may want to run some tests before using on you HDSLR and 400mm lens. However, my tests with my Canon HF-S200 were rock solid. I would not hesitate to dangle this upside down, and shake it too. Hard. Also, the quick release first springs closed like 70%, and then you can push it tight the other 30%. This makes it super solid. It doesn’t have one of those accidental release blocking pin things, but I’m ok with that. It also doesn’t have the part that keeps it open till you slide the plate in, so you might need both hands to mount it. If there is call for a video review I will make one I guess. Chat it up in the comments if there is interest.
So I now have one of these attached to the Frugal Filmmaker Stabilizer rig, one attached to the lighting arm I use, and one attached to my new, heavy duty tripod. At some point I will also attach one to my monopod.
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