Production: How To Make Your Own Pan-&-Tilt Jib

With any video production you must make the finished project look as special and interesting as possible. There are a number of ways to add interest to a video. One such possibility is using a Pan and Tilt Jib. These add movement to your video and make it easy to track things when shooting. Pan and Tilt jibs are professional pieces of equipment which are generally out of the reach of most people. However, it's actually fairly easy to make one yourself.

Using a jib you can create moving shots which makes it possible to make unique videos. It's possible for the camera operator to sweep the camera from a high shot right down to a very low shot. These are very expensive which is why this tutorial will look at how you can make one yourself for a fraction of the cost.

Materials Needed

  • Perforated Steel
  • Threaded Rod
  • Galvanized Steel Corner sections
  • Galvanized pipe hanger
  • Screws
  • Nuts
  • Washers
  • Locknuts
  • Tripod - Any good quality tripod will work as long as the head can be removed

Step 1: Measuring and Cutting

The first thing that you need to do is clamp your perforated steel onto the workbench and measure 7 inches. Ideally this will be nine holes which will allow plenty of adjustment. Cut the steel using a hacksaw on the tenth hole.

Step 2: Making the Bracket

Once you have cut the perforated steel you need to bend it into the right shape so that it forms the bracket. Bend the perforated steel at the third hole on either end of the piece of steel. This will leave you with a U shaped bracket.

Step 3: Attaching Bracket

The bracket now needs to be connected to the tripod post using a nut and screw. Make sure that the bracket is fixed securely and will hold your camcorder properly.

Step 4: Preparing Pipe Hangers

Separate the pipe hangers and attach either side loosely onto the sides of the hanger. Use a 35mm film canister to conceal the pipe hanger. To do this simply cut off the bottom of the canister and slide it over the hanger. Once this is in place you should tighten the pipe hanger.

Step 5: Attaching Tripod

Attach the tripod post with the bracket fixed to the pipe hanger using a nut and washer. Make sure that you don't tighten it up too tight yet until you get it perfect. This will allow your camera to move up and down.

Step 6: Painters Pole

A painters extension pole can be used to extend the height of the camera. You will need to use a drill bit to make these holes larger so that the rod can fit through the hole.

Step 7: Trapeze Bracket

Bolt the two brackets together to make the Trapeze bracket. When these are connected drill a hole through the middle so that it can hold the camera straight as you raise and lower the jib.

The finished bracket can now be fixed onto the painter's pole. The camera can then be mounted onto the bracket using a 1/4" threaded nut and washers. Once the jib is finished you can then experiment using it to take some great aerial shots and low down shots.