Modifying a SLR tripod for the HTC EVO 3D

Introduction:

I’ve always had a thing for 3D pictures and movies hence my recent acquisition of a HTC EVO 3D. It’s the US Sprint version hence only works on Wifi in this coutry due to the lack of a LTE network. But since I simply want to use it as a 3D camera it was what I’d call a bargain on ebay for about £60 including a decent size memory card. I wouldn’t say I’ve got a steady hand so I started to investigate what sort of tripods would be available for this sort of device. Not surprisingly HTC didn’t have anything on offer and the best I could find was a “one size fits all” type ultra low budget mini tripod on Amazon. Apart from the fact that it was simply too tiny for what I was trying to do (the 3D pictures get a lot harder to see if taken very close up to the target) it’s mechanism also simply did extend far enough to accommodate the EVO 3D in it’s Otterbox Communter case. I also had a spare SLR tripod gathering dusts in a corner which was missing the adapter plate that is attached to the SLR camera and then snaps into the tripods top mounting platform. So I set out to spend a sunny afternoon modifying both :)

 

1. The mini tripod:

The vertical lever arm has a spring in it and after taking the whole thing apart I found that it would actually extend a lot further but the spring was not allowing it to. Old spring out, slightly longer spring in and the result now holds the EVO 3D firmly in place. I was a bit afraid the arm might be blocking one of the cameras but it doesn’t. To make it easier to insert the EVO 3D I also drilled a little hole and put in a tiny nail as a retention mechanism to ensure the arm doesn’t slide back the whole way. Yes, I admit it: The nail has been laying on my work bench for a month or so and I was trying to find use for it in a project  to avoid having to throw it away… ;)

 

2. The SLR tripod:

This had two known problems. Firstly the screw mechanism which allows to tilt the mounting platform is simply not well done. It has teeth hence doesn’t allow a lot of precision and usually ends up in a position I don’t want and I then try and compensate by extending/shortening one of the legs. I still haven’t got a full solution for this (probably means removing the teeth) but I have fitted a downwards facing screw which at least keeps the platform in a stable horizontal position. Second problem was that I simply do not have the adapter which fits into the mounting platform neither would I have been able to get one to mount the EVO 3D. The top part of the mini tripod which includes the clamp mechanism luckily unscrews from it’s lower leg part so I only had to find a screw with the right size thread and fix that to the mounting platform.

EVO 3D tripod 1

EVO 3D tripod 2

EVO 3D tripod 3

EVO 3D tripod 4

 

3. What’s it like to use:

The result is far more stable than I initially expected, has proven very workable during the first test session and I’m very happy with it :) This is one of the 3D pictures taken with the above setup, more can be found in my profile over at phereo:

http://phereo.com/PeterHaban/album/4fc22d853785011371000008/

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