Random post. This blog is sometimes used for me to keep tabs on the random things that run in my head. So while i'm out here in Maui on vacation i'm pretty sure i'll forget this little idea. Redrock Micro makes a cool handle that uses the hotshoe on top of the DSLR. For the Canon 5D Mark II & 7D, the hotshoe can be used with a handle, because the body is designed with a beefy magnesium frame. The cheap shoe mounts that I recently blogged about would make a great starting point for my new DIY top handle, and combined with the Double L bracket stabilizer Idea would make a complete lightweight solution that's easily broken down. It's so handy to have a top handle with your DSLR.
By the way, I've been using the Sima L brackets I received with my GoPro HD + Modified GoPro Underwater Housing by EyeOfMine together in the ocean. The Sima L bracket has nothing I can see that will be affected by the water, and I give it a decent rinse when i'm done. Definitely a great underwater stabilizer too. I've also been using the other one with my Canon SX210 IS, and it's like a match made in heaven. The Canon SX210 IS has built in optical stabilization and a crazy zoom. The extra handle off to the side gives me a more comfortable hold to take super steady video footage even in complete low light. I think i've used this Point and Shoot more than my other cameras on this trip, safe to say I overpacked.
Chuckarama sends in his complete configuration using two Alzo brackets, one double flash bracket, and a Macro Rail. The Macro rail is not necessary, you can probably swap that for a nice QR adapter. So everything looks like a straight bolt on of parts without any DIY cutting, grinding, or drilling. It's definitely got a wide grip stance for extra stability and at the same time plenty of room for accessory mounting with the 4 cold shoes.
I was planning to cut an Aluminum flat bar to join my two L brackets together, but I really like the simplicity of that double flash bracket, I may have to go that route myself. This design is for lightweight setups, so i'll probably use this setup without a battery grip. I should be able to shrink down many of the accessories I have if I use the Zoom H1 instead of Zoom H4n, and change the Rode VideoMic to the smaller Sennheiser MKE-400 Shotgun Mic. I'll also replace the usual 126 LED Video Light with the Z96 Dimmable LED light to make things even more rigid and compact and it should be a nice little runner gunner.
I'm still looking to mount two L brackets but with an Aluminum flat bar in between to make the handles more level, and a QR adapter dead center. Maybe i'll change that center AL bar into a 'T' bar so that I can support both a QR adapter and room for the T-Pod configuration. Thanks for sharing Dave!
Update: Reader Chuckarama just sent in this Flat bracket that looks like it will do the job in between the L brackets. Should be able to mount a QR plate and still be Tripod mountable. Great job Chuckarama! Let me know how that comes out when you're done.