Saturday, April 23, 2011

Follow Focus DIY!

Ever since I started focusing on video (pardon the pun), I've always needed a good follow focus system. A quick search in ebay got me running away from all the ads at top speed. The prices were just outright plain ridiculous for such a simple mechanism. I mean, paying $600 or more for what was practically some gears and a couple of rods were just plain crazy. 

Luckily we have the internet with its vast resource and a quick search gave me a blueprint to make my own follow focus system and a not too shabby one at that. As usual ACE hardware and Thye Huat were the typical hardware shops available locally (how I wish we had Home Depo) and a couple of minutes later, I had most of the materials I needed.

Assembly of the rail system and the focusing mechanism were very straight forward but a little bit of work was needed on the L-bracket. I sent it to the local metal work shops to get mine modified and should be ready for pickup tomorrow. Anyway the photo shown is the completed rail system mounted on a Manfrotto 701 video head and the focusing mechanism. All that's left now is to fix the L-bracket and I'll have a fully functional follow focus system. 

Total cost? $80 which is a fraction of what you'll be paying for, if you buy it off the shelf.

Sample video footage showing the use of this follow focus.



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