DSLR Shoulder holster with follow focus

[Erik] and [Jonathan Bergqvist] built this shoulder mount for a Canon 7D camera. It’s made from wood and it hooks over the top of the photographer’s shoulder with a handle for each hand. The left handle also controls the focus, using a similar method to the hardware store follow focus we looked at in January. Like it or not, you’ll love watching a master woodworker build this starting with un-milled logs. It’s all about having and knowing how to use the right tools.

[Thanks Juan]


  1. Frogz says:

    stupid comment time…..
    (see youtube video of cameraman being shot from helicopter if you dont get the comment)
    props for using raw materials instead of buying lumber through

  2. Amnon says:

    Nice work!
    You and your father!
    And great video.

  3. Tim says:

    could some one tell me what the word hack means?

  4. swede says:

    mycket bra gjord, fint utfärda.

  5. LuzzyFojak says:

    and how do you actually pull a trigger? How do you take a photo? Whats the purpose of this? I dont get it…

  6. spyder_21 says:

    hack means:
    # chop: cut with a hacking tool
    # one who works hard at boring tasks
    # be able to manage or manage successfully; “I can’t hack it anymore”; “she could not cut the long days in the office”
    # machine politician: a politician who belongs to a small clique that controls a political party for private rather than public ends
    # cut away; “he hacked his way through the forest”
    # a mediocre and disdained writer
    # kick on the arms
    # a tool (as a hoe or pick or mattock) used for breaking up the surface of the soil
    # cab: a car driven by a person whose job is to take passengers where they want to go in exchange for money
    # fix a computer program piecemeal until it works; “I’m not very good at hacking but I’ll give it my best”
    # an old or over-worked horse
    # significantly cut up a manuscript
    # a horse kept for hire
    # cough spasmodically; “The patient with emphysema is hacking all day”
    # a saddle horse used for transportation rather than sport etc.

    hack a day means:
    Whatever else they feel to post. I know this site is getting less and less info on hacks and more on everything else.

  7. Don says:

    Great build and video, but best of all is to see
    how much you Dad loves you!

  8. Cynyr says:


    This is for shooting video. So you press “start”, shoulder, shoot, un-shoulder, “stop”, edit video, profit.

    My only suggestion for this hack is modifying the focus handle so that the side towards the shooter has some graduations on it to help with those tricking focus changes, like when you swap focus between 2 targets. Perhaps a disassemble-able design so that it is easier to transport.

  9. TJ says:


    I came here expecting a horse porn site…

  10. Brad says:

    Excellent job. And to the commenter that wanted to know what a “hack” is, it is a (to quote Wikipedia) “clever or elegant solution to a difficult problem”. For another definition, see the Jargon File. http://catb.org/jargon/html/meaning-of-hack.html This is probably where it was first defined.

  11. pookey says:

    First off, very nice work.

    Second, this “it’s not a hack” stuff is really becoming troll-ish. The day I stop visiting HAD, it won’t be because some article doesn’t fit my definition of “hack”… rather, it’s going to be because I’ve finally grown sick and tired of the inevitable lame comments.

    Speaking of my definition, I generally consider a project to be a “hack’ (in the complimentary sense) when somebody has either modified something to accomplish purposes unintended or unforeseen by the original maker, or when somebody uses parts and materials in creative or non-obvious ways.

    Looking at a broken j-shaped tree branch lying on the ground, my first thought would NOT have been, “look, a shoulder-stabilized video platform!” In fact, looking at the finished product, it’s difficult to imagine that the raw materials didn’t come from a supplier of furniture-grade wood.

    If your specialty is videography, and you want to debate whether this solution actually solves a problem worth solving, have at it.

    But this IS a hack, and a nicely executed one, to boot.


  12. plokko says:

    My modded photosniper modded into digital(af button+take shot with trigger)and adapted also for other lenses and my bellows(macrosniper:a 135mm with bellows XD)

  13. Juan Pablo Kutianski says:

    If you want to see a short video made with the same Canon 7D, you can understand what is used for.


    This is the cinevate shoulder mount what’s a little bit expensive ($2400) than this wood one.


  14. Scott says:

    SERIOUS PROBLEM – If it’s for shooting video, why do we never see a “this is what it looks like” scene at the end? I inherently don’t trust it works that well if they don’t even bother to show it in action! Let me see him walk and shoot smooth video at the same time – then I WILL be impressed.

  15. Jeremy says:

    “Pro” DSLR video shoulder mounts are often very expensive, I think this is a good project if for no other reason then to show that they are basically just a way to span the gap between your hands, the camera and your shoulder and no reason to be expensive.

  16. jproach says:

    First link in the summary should point here: http://athan.se/diy-shoulder-rig/

  17. jproach says:

    @scott: he has sample footage at the link in my previous post.

  18. For me, love the artisin (sp?) kudos to your father and you.

  19. kols says:

    Fantastisk pent utført! Thumbs up from Norway

  20. fartface says:

    I love how all the DSLR guys are stealing the tools we have used in video for decades and claiming it’s a “discovery” or “i invented this!”

    you didnt. us video guys have been there done that. you’re 4 hours too late and simply copying what we have had for a very long time.

    What’s next, DSLR on a steadycam! Oh HOW GENIUS!


  21. Jentulman says:

    @fartface He does quite clearly state that he spent time researching the equipment already available, and I don’t think there’s anything like a claim of invention.
    It is however a really nice example of making something, that I assume is pretty expensive, yourself, and in this case getting it made with skill and attention to form as well as function.

    And I really want that guy’s dad’s shed.

  22. hooooooooooooooooorj says:

    I would kill an entire bus filled with children, kittens and the elderly for a shop as well outfitted as that.

  23. Brian Aday says:

    Nice workmanship. The only thing I would change is I would use a plastic ziptie with the lever release instead of a band clamp. And I would probably make it out of PVC and paint it black. Hmm, I think I feel a weekend project coming on. :)

  24. dcept905 says:

    This is a very nice project and very well done. Don’t mind the spoiled piece of shit parasites on here who criticize your work/ideas while providing nothing worthwhile of their own. Keep up the good work!

  25. Rich says:
  26. gray says:

    Hi what mic did u use?

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