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By impulse
Thought I’d post up what I found in my search for a cheap and sturdy way to mount my action camera to my canoe and kayaks. The commercially available mounts were pretty expensive, and looked like they’d wobble quite a bit because of the length and diameter of the arms.

The PVC part of these are designed for making furniture out of PVC pipe. I chose to work with 1-1/4” PVC, but they’re available for different sized PVC pipe. I'd go with a thicker pipe for a longer extension. I “chose” orange because it was available for quick ship that particular day.

I’m not showing them mounted on my kayaks or canoe because most of the guys here can envision how they’d mount them in their own situation based on their kayak, their camera, and their conditions. Either of the 2 end styles can be screwed into a kayak. The simple end cap looks cleaner since the screw will be in the middle of the cap and not seen. It’s also ideal for mounting on a rail with the right fasteners. The rail avoids having to drill any holes in the kayak.

I showed the crow’s foot anyway, though I’m not anticipating using them. That's $15 down the drain. Live and learn...

I’ve used SJCAM SJ6 and SJ7 action cams for years now, mostly because there are waterproof motorcycle mounts available that allow me to keep them plugged in to a USB power bank instead of swapping batteries every hour or so. (That was critical to the time lapse videos I like to do that compress a whole day or night into a 15 minute video) Or they accept external microphones for better audio. Unfortunately, the microphone cannot fit on the waterproof case. GoPro’s are better, but more expensive.

Here’s the goodies I used, all available on Amazon. Unfortunately, they’re sold in quantity so I ended up with a lot more than I need, but still less $$ than a single $60 commercial camera mount. Keep in mind you don’t really need the crow’s feet unless you have a specific application. I figure I'm all in at about $8 for each of the 4 mounts, including some plain PVC pipe and some SST screws.




Of course, this is just one way to do it, and I’m always eager to hear from folks with better ideas…
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Ron Mc wrote:If you get a chance, show us with it mounted on a boat...

Here’s the rail mount version, along with a photo of all the tools and components. It’s on my Tarpon 160.

I’m still experimenting with the best height, so I’m using Gorilla clear tape to hold the PVC bits together. Once I settle on a height, I’ll glue the bottom piece to the PVC pipe and leave the top piece as a friction fit, or maybe keep using the tape. The bottom joint is the one with the long moment arm, needing to be firmly fixed. A friction fit may be adequate for the top joint.

The one aspect that doesn’t show up clearly is that I used a ¼-20 tapping set to drill and tap the ¼-20 hole in the top and bottom (orange) cap. With a ½” long screw on each end, the mini ballhead (black part) screws into the top, and I can screw the bottom into a rail, or anywhere flat that I’m willing to drill a ¼” hole in my hull. The 1/4-20 screw is the same for the ballhead and for the rail plate.

I should note that I tried using Home Depot PVC caps, but the ones they sell in this size (1-1/4") are bullet shaped. I needed flat.

Of course, I’m happy to hear suggestions because there are a lot of creative people tuned in here.
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