Versatile motion dolly for time lapse photography

time-lapse-motion-system

This beautiful build is a motion dolly for making time-lapse videos. It is at a point where you could consider it complete. After all, the segments featured in the video after the break look marvelous. But [Scottpotamas] has a few additions planned and it sounds like it won’t belong before he accomplishes his goals.

The build is a linear rail on which the camera rides. In the image above you can see the stepper motor which moves the camera mounted at the far end of the rig. This is controlled by an Arduino. Currently the camera is responsible for timing the capture of the images, but [Scottpotamas] says the firmware is nearly ready to hand this responsiblity over to the Arduino. The system is modular, with a simple setting for the length of the track. This way he can swap out for a longer or shorter rail which only takes about five minutes. He also included support for a panning mount for the camera. It allows the control box can be programmed to keep the subject centered in the frame as the camera slides along the track.

[via Reddit]

Comments

  1. messmaker says:

    I work for a production company and have been wanting to do something like this for a while, now. In the last few weeks I have decided to add this to my TODO list for this year. Thanks for the inspiration, I hope mine turns out equally nice.

  2. wretch says:

    Beautiful build, though what makes it is the moody piano solo. Is that controlled by the Arduino as well? (c:

  3. Phrewfuf says:

    So the four images and the video is all we know about this project?
    Great -.-

    Just thought i’d be able to use the – sadly non-existant – writeup, since i am planning to build something like this, but for video recording with direct user control.

    • Whatnot says:

      Yeah and the description of the youtube mentioning it’s a NEMA 25 motor and an arduino.
      But I also think this isn’t HaD worthy without some more detailed info.

      But there are many similar projects that Do have info though.

      • Phrewfuf says:

        I think i will just do it completely from scratch all by myself.
        How hard can it be to connect some steppers to some stepper drivers which are interfaced to – let’s say – a stellaris launchpad with some xbee magic to another launchpad with some analog joysticks? I think xbee is the hardest part in here :D

        • scottapotamas says:

          You’re right, it isn’t ‘that’ hard. The trickiest part was actually figuring out the mechanical side of things, namely finding the right pulley and belts. Programming shoot move shoot also had it’s challenges.

          I didn’t really intend for my post to go further than a ‘look at my little thing’, so there isn’t a write up yet, but I will make one by next week.

          • Whatnot says:

            Not really blaming you, it’s not like you work for HaD or us :)

            Also: I’ve seen worse, much worse, single page, zero description and one photo kind of stuff

          • Johny007 says:

            Looking forward for the write up. I’m thinking about buing commercial slider and adding motor.

    • scottapotamas says:

      I didn’t really expect for my little post to end up here. I will be doing a write up in a week or so, with build instructions etc.

      Just quickly, total cost came to just under 400, but would be cheaper if parts didn’t need to be shipped (USA to Australia is costly for the rail) etc. Arduino Pro Mini 5V, optoisolator, Big Easy Stepper Driver, serial LCD, rotary encoder, NEMA 23 stepper on a 1m IGUS Dryline rail.

      Supports continuous timed slides, shoot move shoot, fast move manual for video and control from computer application. Fully automatic and I just set and forget it.

  4. n0lkk says:

    In that I’m unlikely to publish anything soon, I should keep still on this. More often than not I find Imgur a poor method to publish build details on the web.

  5. wetomelo says:

    Isn’t the first time i see this rig here in HaD. Automated rig is the first part of the problem. the other part is programming the camera to deal with the exposure, light, “bracketing”, etc. because light and image parameters change too much over long periods of time

  6. I was working on building something very similar to this for a while now. All printable parts. I’d love to see the stepper driver and Arduino code for this.

    • Scott says:

      All printable? Sounds great.

      I’ve been working on a writeup for the last few days (it will be on my website). The driver is just a Big Easy Driver from Sparkfun. The code for the actual moves is quite simple. If you can wait a few days it should be up.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 96,725 other followers