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manufacture arm steadicam

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#1 MathieuTorabi


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Posted 27 July 2015 - 03:07 AM

I want to make my own steadicam based on 3A. I already made plans in 3D but I would like to know if it is more advantageous to the machine myself or buy it.

what do you think about it?
Photo here: 

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#2 Janice Arthur

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Posted 27 July 2015 - 07:23 AM


I can't imagine how this would be cheaper than buying a used 3A arm.

Materials and springs let alone time is just not worth it, is my opinion.

That also assumes you make no mistakes and have to make parts more than once.

Price out the materials and the springs, that should tell u a lot.

Even if you make a modestly successful version and use it for a while I doubt anyone will buy it from you used.

Good luck.

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#3 RonBaldwin


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Posted 27 July 2015 - 08:54 AM

Have you seen the prices of used arms?! Do you really think you can simply copy the design, and cover all the materials with some trial and error in there for less? just buy right the first time and you are done and flying right away.
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#4 Louis Puli SOC

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Posted 27 July 2015 - 06:54 PM


You should email Hugo from Steadyrig who went through this exact process quite a few years ago .Hugo is a fantastic engineer and designer and made a very good arm Silver spring arm which many operators are using world wide .

The arm is a very good upgrade from a 3a arm and works very well .

Second hand EFP /3A arm sell for $4k-$6k

If you have access to a CNC machine and spring maker and many other parts then give it a go but I know you will spend more then $6k on the process.

Good luck . 

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#5 MathieuTorabi


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Posted 29 July 2015 - 03:37 AM

that's exactly what I thought. Thank you all for your answers.


Janice: it's true that what makes me most afraid of these springs :(


Ron: I thought it went well be complicated


Louis: Yes I had seen the Steadyrig, now that you told me it's worth, I will perhaps finally directed me to this one. :)

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#6 Philippe Bordelais

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Posted 03 August 2015 - 03:33 PM

embarked on this adventure in 1991, more than 24 years ago, already !!

I don’ really know why? Passion? Defiance? Youth? Folly surely !

Today I wouldn't even think of doing it.


At that time I had neither CAD nor CNC to help me.

Here is my copy of the 3A arm (1992), totally homemade, only the spring covers are CP origin.


                 Manufactured in a single copy for my personal use and never marketed


Making successfully each mechanical parts at the first attempt seems unlikely to me. It’s harder than it seems.

I think I had to make about 3 arms before making one with success !!


But the most important difficulty isn’t there and can’t be seen:

The calculation of the springs, the iso-elasticity and their manufacturing, especially if you choose titanium springs, like me at that time.

You can’t have the same iso-elasticity quality and the same range oweights with steal springs.


I remember: :wub: 



At least I advise to buy the springs (Steadyrig for example, if possible)



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#7 MathieuTorabi


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Posted 10 August 2015 - 12:12 PM

Oh yes it is really impressive. Really I confess that at that time it was really diffcult to compute all that. I made all the plans on autocad 3A . I try to find someone who would like to embark on this adventure.

Anyway Philippe is really remarkable work.

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