Camera housings

Does anyone know how to make a camera housing? I want to do a surf video for school but I’m on a budget.

I found a plan online, but it wasn’t any cheaper than housings you could buy. I’m just thinking aloud here, but I had a moment of inspiration from the Simpsons. You know in the early to mid 90’s intro to the show, Homer Simpson is messing with the radioactive stuff through the protective glass/whatever, but the has the glove extensions where he can manipulate whatever he’s working on but are attached to the glass and are still sealed off. I wonder if you could make a ghetto-rig camera housing that worked like that, with rubber gloves attached to just a plastic box. I know my description isn’t great but if you’ve seen the show you definitely know what I’m talking about.

Just put you camera in a Ziploc bag? That’s a low budget deal? -Jay

Anyone who’s had to put an ice pack on an injury and used a ziplock bag knows they leak. But that’s good thinking. Some ductape around the seams? That’s some low-budget stuff! Maybe a bit too ghetto-fabulous for me. o_O

Years ago, I spent an afternoon listening very carefully as Rod Sumpter explained how to make a motion picture camera housing. And it’s not exactly easy or something you can knock out in an afternoon. Nor is it cheap, what with some good and expensive hardware used to run the controls and such. First thing I’d do is haunt eBay for a housing that’ll hold your camera, doesn’t have to be a 'video camera housing’but any housing that will physically accomodate the camera you’ll be using. Many of the 35mm still cameras are in the same size range as the more modern small video cameras. You can do some adapting and make it work. Likewise pawn shops, that sort of thing. I just looked and saw a number of pretty good items there. Ikelite is one of the good ones, there’s others, on the other hand the EWA bags don’t fill me with confidence. Second- a camera housing is no more than a box with some controls on it. You can adapt, for instance, a heavy duty plexiglass box ( with o-rings and such) made for something else. Controls you can buy. Likewise an alloy box with a flat end to it- plexiglass is pretty easy to work with and you’ll need to in any event. Making a housing out of glass cloth, resin, plexi for the window and buying controls- that’s kind of a last resort. Other water photography advice- o-rings are critical and everywhere in a housing, they need to be cleaned and greased with silicone grease regularly. Have a lanyard on the housing, otherwise it’ll be awfully hard to hang on to. Same thing goes for big, strong handles. hope that’s of help doc…

how about an aquapak they do them in different sizes and are very strong plastic

yeah, I think what Paul is talking about can be found in any scuba diving magazine. Its basically a baggie to put your camera in. Cheaper than the average housing. Check your local dive shops. Also epic makes video housings for $250 to fit many camcorders.

I got the epic camera housing and it is decent for the cost as compared to much higher priced housings. The big drawback was you only can control the on/of and no other functions for the camera. So you pretty much have to be panned out while shooting. Also, you have no frame view for shooting. You sorta have to learn to aim it like the barrel of a gun. I took it to Indo this summer and got some decent water footage so for the price it did the job but if you are going to need access to other camera controls the epic housing probably is not the option.

I’m just the guy for this question but I am going to be brief an give a one response answer. Buy an old Ikelite housing on ebay and modify it. You might end up needing some smal sheets of lexan or plexiglass and the proper glue. I can be a b___, but mine worked excellent. It cost me a total of $50.

I used one the of baggie housing on a Canon SLR awhile ago and it actually worked pretty good. It’s basically a baggie which has a lense, similar to a skylight or UV, that screws into the lense on the camera so the optics are very good. I wouldn’t take it on a deep dive though or in rough conditions. I used the same camera in a Seaquest(?) housing, which was $$$$ and got about the same picture quality.

A guy down the hall is an Ikelite dealer - the box prices are more than the camera. Ziplocs are okay for ziploc priced cameras. Suggest that if you’re not fully committed (in which case get high quality stuff and pay up front), here in Honolulu every corner dive shop rents still and video equipment. They probably don’t want to know you’ll be taking impact zone shots at Pipe, though.

yeah i to am looking for the same thing. i think i might just spring for the “epic” camera housing. its like 260. but it looks good. dk