How to Make a Tripod Mount for the iPhone
Making cinemagraphs has become my new favorite thing to do. I work in the downtown area of Springfield, Ohio where there’s a lot of activity and scenes for me to record and turn into cinemagraphs. I was in the market for a tripod mount for my iPhone 4 so I could leave a tripod in my car in case I was in the mood to capture some video at lunch or after work. There were several on ebay and Amazon but I wanted one STAT to record some live music at the City Hall plaza. Luckily, I had some parts left over from a kitchen renovation that I used to make a simple tripod mount and I went to Lowes for the rest of the material I needed.
- One 1.5 inch corner bracket with quarter inch holes
- One 3 inch T bracket with quarter inch holes
- One quarter inch machine screw, the one I used was a half inch long
- Two quarter inch wingnuts
Finally, I used an old Incase Snap Case as the housing and Advanced Formula Krazy Glue. Depending on the type of case you use will depend on the type of adhesive. The Incase Snap Case is made of hard plastic so the Krazy Glue bonded the case to the metal bracket perfectly. Also, if you don’t have a spare case and need to purchase one for this purpose, I recommend going to somewhere like Walmart or Marshalls where they typically have inexpensive cases.
Now on to the construction:
First I attached the T bracket to the back of my case by drawing a level guide line on the back of the case using a square. Then I applied some adhesive to the top of the T bracket, lined it up with the guide and clamped it to the case until the adhesive dried. I affixed the bracket to the case so that the camera lens was on top, but I don’t think it matters either way.
Once the T bracket was completely adhered to the case, I attached the T bracket to the top of the corner bracket with the quarter inch screw and wingnut as shown above. The iPhone tripod mount is now complete.
To attach the mount to the tripod, I pushed the tripod screw up through the end-most hole on the bottom of the corner bracket and used the other wingnut to hold it into place.
All I have to do is snap my iPhone into place and I’m ready to shoot. A level application is very handy when I’m recording on uneven surfaces.
I can even switch orientations by loosening the wingnut that attaches the T bracket to the corner bracket.
I had most of the parts on hand that I used to make this mount but the cost of these items, minus the case, is around 8 dollars. Of course a downside to this method is that unless the next iPhone has the same form factor as the iPhone 4 (which rumors are pointing to a new design), I’ll have to make another top bracket. If I employed a little more ingenuity into making this, I would have put that and several other factors into account. I was in a rush but it does exactly what I want it to do.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive way to mount your iPhone to a tripod, I hope you find this helpful.