Arduino Forum

Using Arduino => Project Guidance => Topic started by: blar1234 on Nov 07, 2016, 05:30 pm

Title: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: blar1234 on Nov 07, 2016, 05:30 pm
Hi everyone,

for a project I need a camera platform that can rotate in all 3 axis. Instead of building this module myself, I noticed that brushless aerial camera gimbals (https://hobbyking.com/en_us/quanum-mid-size-brushless-gimbal-4mm-carbon-construction.html) have everything I would need already in a nice and reasonably priced package.

Those gimbals are generally used to stabilise motion, so there are quite a lot of sensors on board. I just to be able to rotate each motor individually via Arduino. Has anyone ever done this? What would I have to look for when choosing a readymade gimbal? Would you recommend anything else?
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: DVDdoug on Nov 07, 2016, 07:28 pm
It appears to be serially controlled and the do publish some code, but it's not clear to me what that code runs on.   I dunno...  You might have to "port" it to the Arduino and figure-out the serial connections.

It might be better to look for a pan & tilt mechanism from a robotics site.  These usually use regular servo motors that can be controlled with the servo library.
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: blar1234 on Nov 07, 2016, 09:07 pm
This is pretty cool, thank you for your input. It's a shame though that all of these seem to be pan and tilt axis only; except one which is over 1000 USD. I will be thinking about adding my own roll axis, but I also don't love that idea…
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 07, 2016, 09:22 pm
Have you looked at servocity.com?
Looks like SPT-200 with DDT500 might do all 3 axis if I follow the end of this video correctly.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdusJQmh3gU (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdusJQmh3gU)
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 07, 2016, 09:24 pm
Or maybe this one
https://www.servocity.com/pt785-s (https://www.servocity.com/pt785-s)
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 07, 2016, 09:28 pm
Are you also looking to turn the camera 90 degrees for horizontal/vertical orientation shots?
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: blar1234 on Nov 07, 2016, 09:47 pm
Hey CrossRoads,

I did look at Servocity, yes. The quantity of your answers is impressive, but unfortunately did not help a lot ;) The first link shows two systems which cover one axis each (2 total; pan&tilt again). The second one looks like a robust system which I looked closely at, but is also only a pan&tilt. I also need the roll axis covered, which would be a third degree of freedom.
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 07, 2016, 09:53 pm
This one seems to add Roll to a Pan/Tilt system
https://www.servocity.com/r2100-ds-roll-attachment (https://www.servocity.com/r2100-ds-roll-attachment)

Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 07, 2016, 09:57 pm
Maybe find a different bracket so that one of $50 or $100 pan/tilts can be used with it.
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: blar1234 on Nov 07, 2016, 11:05 pm
So that would be around 350 USD, but is also not really a clean solution, because the parts are not intended to go together. Hacking an existing system IS appealing in the face of that. Also, it surprises me that nobody came up with an open 3-axis system yet…
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: CrossRoads on Nov 08, 2016, 12:01 am
Well, isn't making the smaller pan/tilt fit on the roll also kind of hacking an existing system?
Title: Re: Hacking a camera gimbal
Post by: blar1234 on Nov 08, 2016, 07:49 am
Don't get me wrong - I don't want to hack an existing system just for the sake of it. I'd much rather have working solution that is affordable. And if I have to pay a premium (300+ USD), I want it to be easy to use!