East Grinstead photographer and filmmaker Nitsan Simantov. Wedding photography and commercial video production in London and West Sussex.

DIY Glidecam/Flycam arm brace

If you had read my previous post from yesterday you may have been waiting for the DIY arm brace build - and here it is..

The problem with the Glidecam's design is that because the handle is not directly underneath the center of gravity like other stabilizers such as the Steadicam Merlin or the Blackbird Stabilizer the weight on your wrist increases dramatically. My setup weighs almost exactly 2.5kg (5.5lbs - 550D + 17-85mm + HD1000 with all weights - See note below) which can get very heavy on the wrist.

My first design did help a little with the weight but unfortunately it was very uncomfortable to use because the plate was on the side of the wrist rather than below the whole arm as with the factory-made arm brace.

I'd tried several builds yesterday and finally today I created a successful one. Although it did take me quite a while to design and build because I tried to make it as neat and professional looking as possible. I ended up with something that could sell well as a punk styling accessory - but doesn't look too 'DIY' and won't look completely stupid in public (when used in conjunction with a camera).

I have some proper straps to fit the inner side of the brace that will allow for super fast fitting and removal of the arm support, but I need to shorten them so for the photo below I have just used another lace.

Here it is with the Glidecam HD-1000..

It's fairly simple to build and also looks alright if you've got the patience for sewing the fabric over it. I've shot a video tutorial on how to make it, that will be posted soon along with some test footage and proper feedback on usability.

Note on weights: In order to have the Glidecam as heavy as possible for better results, I have put two weights on top of the camera and the other 6 at the bottom. My current camera and lens setup weighs exactly 1kg, which will happily balance on 4 bottom weights, so I imagine that you could use up to 2kg on the HD-1000 with all 8 bottom weights, and probably even more if you add more bottom weight. (That's just a guess, please follow the weight guidelines given by Glidecam)