How to make an Overhead Camera Mount that is also a Slider.
Making an Overhead Camera Mount Slider
If you work regularly on Youtube instructional videos, or simply want to document your how-to project, then you have felt the need to mount the video camera above your work while you are filming. In this article [video] I show you how I built my own overhead camera mount that also doubles as an overhead slider.
What you will need
I wanted my camera to sit on a sliding base. This way, I can easily move it into the precise position I need it to be in for a given shot. For the base of this slider, I found an inexpensinve $11, 48 inches “Geartrack Channel” at Lowes that turned out to be perfect for my needs. It comes in a plastic composite material that is very easy to work on so drilling and installing the rails was a breeze.
Base Board at Store
Base Board at Home
Besides the base board, these are the main components you will need (Associate Amazon Links included where applicable):
- Two 3/4in aluminum tubes (or some other rigid material such as copper or steel)
- Linear bearings (for the rail slider portion)
- 3/4 in copper end-caps
- L shaped aluminum bars (to hold the end-caps)
- Aluminum arms to hold the base-board to the ceiling
- Rectangular aluminum bar for the base plate
- Flash bracket with tripod thumb screws
- Miscellaneous nus and bolts
Start by cutting the L shaped aluminum ends and drilling holes for both the copper end-caps and for screws to mount them on the base board. In this case I used rivets to attach the end-caps but you could also use regular screws and nuts.
Brackets and Base Plate
Mounting the caps on L bracket 1
Mounting the caps on L bracket 2
Insert the linear bearing through the two aluminum tubes and connect them with a piece of aluminum.
Tubes and Bearings
Attach the L flash bracket to the base plate using the thumb screws provided in the set.
Mounting the Brackets
Drill and tap the base plate aluminum piece with a 1.4 in 20-thread hole using a tap-and-die set. There are many Youtube videos explaining how to use a tap if you haven’t done this before.
Base Plate Mounted on Rails
Flash Bracket mounted on Base Plate
To mount the fixture to my garage ceiling, I used two aluminum bars and screwed them to the base fixture as shown. You may choose to use wing nuts for this if you plan to adjust the angle of the camera.
The following photos show the final setup. Notice how I placed the overhead mount slider next to an overhead fluorescent light fixture which provides lighting to my table movies.
So far, I’ve been very happy with the results of this setup. You can see the video below for more instructions on this build and also some example footage obtained using this setup.
Final Setup 1
Final Setup 2
Final Setup 3
Final Setup 4
Final Setup 5
Comments, questions, suggestions? You can reach me at: contact (at sign) paulorenato (dot) com