Last night I built this stabilizer for the D3100. Its a simple design that I saw on the Frugal Filmmaker. It looks like a bunch of PVC pipe and it mostly is but the important parts are under the camera where a t-joint hides a bolt, two springs, and two nuts. The springs provide the stabilization by counteracting jerkiness (that’s the scientific explanation). Here’s the video:
But does it work? I took it to the cemetery to find out.
The answer is… sort of. A solution this simple isn’t going to work magic. Getting a smooth pan is as much technique as it is equipment. I thought my panning was nice and slow but in the video its way too fast. There are also a couple of things I need to correct with the stabilizer itself. One is that I had a very limited selection of springs at the hardware store I went to. I ended up using a pair of the tiny springs that go inside a faucet handle. With a better spring the stabilization should improve. The second is I accidentally bought a threaded PVC plug instead of the fitted one. The result is that the camera will swing around on the screw if rotated too far up or down. It seems to work ok. Its not Steadicam but for the price its performance is pretty good.