Hey everyone!

So I recently got an amazing geared head and it is VERY heavy and the crank takes some torque so....

I need to lock down my tripod, or get a new tripod with floor spreaders.

I am looking at this (because it's cheap) 

and this (because I can use it with my existing tripod legs)

I figured I could buy one of these items and then put my super heavy 20 pound sandbag on it and maybe it would stay put.

If anyone has any other solutions I would love to hear what you guys do!

Thanks everyone!

Jason Whetzell

Also here is my reel if you want to check out my stop motion stuff!

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If money is a factor, you could always go the old plywood & 2x4 route. Get a sheet of plywood and spread your tripod out on top of it. Mark where the legs go, then nail pieces of the 2x4 onto the plywood so they cover the spots where the tripod legs touch. Drill large holes, big enough for the tips of the legs to fit into, et voilá, instant secure tripod. Add sandbags on top of the plywood as needed.

Cheesy, but effective.

BTW, some creepy ass stuff on that reel!

Nice reel Jason ! 

Dan's suggestion is great, you might want to put some rubber (cut up inner tube?) on the bottom of the ply if you are using it on a slick surface (like a wooden or tile floor, or even a smooth cement one) so it won't slide around.


I liked your reel a great deel (sorry, couldn't resist).  One of the more imaginative pieces I have seen.  The human puppet was eerily life-like, maybe it was the eyes and eyelashes.  Where did you get the eyes, they looked absolutely real?

I suspect he was born with them. :)

(Think Madame Tutli Putli...)



MartindeMadrid said:

The human puppet was eerily life-like, maybe it was the eyes and eyelashes.  Where did you get the eyes, they looked absolutely real?

Haha yeah they are my eyes.  We comped them on (Like in Tutli Putli) It actually was to make the process faster if you can believe it.  The animation became easier when we didn't have to worry about facial expression.

I didnt want to rely on that technique so now I make my own eyes since I didnt like any of the ones I found online.

I have an instagram where I show all my work if you guys are interested.  (Whetzell)



MartindeMadrid said:

Dan's suggestion is great, you might want to put some rubber (cut up inner tube?) on the bottom of the ply if you are using it on a slick surface (like a wooden or tile floor, or even a smooth cement one) so it won't slide around.


I liked your reel a great deel (sorry, couldn't resist).  One of the more imaginative pieces I have seen.  The human puppet was eerily life-like, maybe it was the eyes and eyelashes.  Where did you get the eyes, they looked absolutely real?

Maybe I could just use 2x4s or even 1x3s?  Make an X that goes from leg to leg and attach them somehow?  Without the bulk of the plywood?  Not exactly sure how to attach the feet to the wood though.  I know you said drill holes to the size of the feet but maybe something more secure than that.  Maybe some plumbers tape or something...

grecodan said:

If money is a factor, you could always go the old plywood & 2x4 route. Get a sheet of plywood and spread your tripod out on top of it. Mark where the legs go, then nail pieces of the 2x4 onto the plywood so they cover the spots where the tripod legs touch. Drill large holes, big enough for the tips of the legs to fit into, et voilá, instant secure tripod. Add sandbags on top of the plywood as needed.

Cheesy, but effective.

BTW, some creepy ass stuff on that reel!

The benefit of the plywood is that it holds the "x" steady and you can pile sandbags onto it. But whatever works. I guess my main point is that you don't necessarily have to go out and spend a lot of money on "professional" equipment to get the job done. 

As for holding the legs in place, I've never had a problem. The holes are pretty snug. I wrapped some duck tape around the ends and really jammed them in there. But, yeah, I suppose you could just get an "L" bracket and bolt one end to the wood and tape the other to your tripod leg. You could bend it to the exact angle you need to match your tripod.

Could you be so kind as to take a picture of your rig.  Im really liking the sound of this.

grecodan said:

The benefit of the plywood is that it holds the "x" steady and you can pile sandbags onto it. But whatever works. I guess my main point is that you don't necessarily have to go out and spend a lot of money on "professional" equipment to get the job done. 

As for holding the legs in place, I've never had a problem. The holes are pretty snug. I wrapped some duck tape around the ends and really jammed them in there. But, yeah, I suppose you could just get an "L" bracket and bolt one end to the wood and tape the other to your tripod leg. You could bend it to the exact angle you need to match your tripod.


Sure, but give me a day or so. It's buried in the garage. :)


Jason Whetzell said:

Could you be so kind as to take a picture of your rig.  Im really liking the sound of this.

grecodan said:

The benefit of the plywood is that it holds the "x" steady and you can pile sandbags onto it. But whatever works. I guess my main point is that you don't necessarily have to go out and spend a lot of money on "professional" equipment to get the job done. 

As for holding the legs in place, I've never had a problem. The holes are pretty snug. I wrapped some duck tape around the ends and really jammed them in there. But, yeah, I suppose you could just get an "L" bracket and bolt one end to the wood and tape the other to your tripod leg. You could bend it to the exact angle you need to match your tripod.

Pretty basic. The 2x4 blocks have 1" holes drilled at about a 35° angle to match the angle of the tripod legs at full extension. The legs are just jammed into them and held secure with duck tape. When shooting I piled a big cinder block in the middle to hold everything in place. 

The reason I'd make an X (or a Mercedes Benz logo, actually) out of the 2x4s for the next model (assuming there is one) is so I could drill holes at varying distances to match the different spread when I've got the tripod legs compacted. 

One other thing, I'd probably cut the plywood smaller and maybe in a triangle with the corners matching the position of the legs. I'm a bit of a clutz and you have to make sure you're not going to trip on the plywood. I speak from experience.

I'm sure there are many improvements that could be made, but again, this was a cheapo solution and cost a grand total of about 7 bucks to make.


Wow thanks this is great!  

I think I might just use 2x4s and not use the plywood because I often work very close to the camera and I wouldn't want to step on the plywood and move the camera.  I think if I make a really solid benz logo and drop a 20 pound sand bag right in the middle of it, it should work.

what do you think?


grecodan said:

Pretty basic. The 2x4 blocks have 1" holes drilled at about a 35° angle to match the angle of the tripod legs at full extension. The legs are just jammed into them and held secure with duck tape. When shooting I piled a big cinder block in the middle to hold everything in place. 

The reason I'd make an X (or a Mercedes Benz logo, actually) out of the 2x4s for the next model (assuming there is one) is so I could drill holes at varying distances to match the different spread when I've got the tripod legs compacted. 

One other thing, I'd probably cut the plywood smaller and maybe in a triangle with the corners matching the position of the legs. I'm a bit of a clutz and you have to make sure you're not going to trip on the plywood. I speak from experience.

I'm sure there are many improvements that could be made, but again, this was a cheapo solution and cost a grand total of about 7 bucks to make.

I think that's a good idea. It was a pain to avoid stepping on the plywood, tho once the shot was set up I rarely had to go near the camera, as my remote cable and laptop were usually some distance away. But for the set-ups where the camera was very close to the set (maybe 50% of the shots) I couldn't use this anyway, as there was no room for it in and around all the wood holding up the sets.

The best of both might be something like the attached. (Sorry, I draw about as well as I sculpt.) Do the Mercedes Benz triangle out of 2x4s, but secure them better by attaching a solid piece of wood on top of the join. That could be plywood or a 1x10 plank or something. That way the three pieces of wood will be good and solid, and it provides a flat platform for sandbags. I'd drill three sets of holes to accommodate different tripod heights.

EDIT: sorry, don't know why the pic isn't showing up. click on it and it will pop.



Jason Whetzell said:


Wow thanks this is great!  

I think I might just use 2x4s and not use the plywood because I often work very close to the camera and I wouldn't want to step on the plywood and move the camera.  I think if I make a really solid benz logo and drop a 20 pound sand bag right in the middle of it, it should work.

what do you think?

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