A home made remote shutter release DIY solution for the E-PL1

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by julienrl, Aug 12, 2010.

  1. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Well as I had mentioned in my blog, I have a few more projects on the go other than my reconstruction of the old kodak (which was my first, but by far longest), and the first project to start after and finish before is done! I have built a mechanical shutter release cable bracket that allows me to use an old-school cable on my new E-PL1.

    As usual, you can see more pictures here on my flick!

    First I picked a piece of metal (from an old stereo system).
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4881417270/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    I then added a bolt with the same size as the tripod mount and used nuts to make sure I had the right length (no more than 5 thread lines visible) and glued them in place with gorilla glue. also, by having the on both sides of the metal, I now have a moving screw that won't fall off! (washers will be needed if you don't have a lucky groove in your metal like I had, this will also make rotating snugger and better).
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4881419436/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    I then added a hole for the camera strap bracket to stick out of.
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4880812859/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    Afterward, the bracket was painted with latex molding paint to rubberize the metal to avoid scratching my camera and the tip under the camera was bent upwards so it could add pressure between the metal and the camera (because of the spacing the bolt made) as you can see on the right of the camera.
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4880821601/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"375" height="500" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    The bracket lined up, I made a hole where the release cable tip would go and I glued a bolt on the underside.
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4880826593/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    And voilĂ !
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4881435630/" title="IMAG0006 by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"297" height="500" alt="IMAG0006" /></a>
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4880827699/" title="IMAG0009 by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="297" alt="IMAG0009" /></a>

    Now to make it hold on a tripod with the bracket on, I added another nut, I surrounded it with plasticine and filled the cap with glue. After it set, I shaved off what had foamed over (there was a bit in the threading, but i just picked at it and then used a screw to push some of it out of the way).

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4882576829/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/4883187530/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
     
  2. JoeFriday

    JoeFriday Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Jun 28, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    Make it black and start mass producing them. You can say it's a post-war Russian knockoff and sell them on ebay! ;)
     
  3. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario
    haha... well I do make casting and molding... now that I have the exact dimensions, I could probably make solid plastic ones.... oh my now you have me going on new ideas! lol
     
  4. cojovo

    cojovo New to Mu-43

    3
    Jul 24, 2010
    Ha. I love this!

    I'm getting ready to build a Kite Aerial setup for an old point and shoot that involves a servo to push the button. I was considering rigging up a second version of the servo+finger to use as an E-PL1 but this is a much easier solution.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario

    The only issue with the manual cables is that as they bend, the part sticking out becomes shorter, so I would recommend affixing the cable to the side of the bracket when setting up so it can't shorten if left to hang after the trigger was pulled (if its already hanging down when you push it, it won't get shorter when you let go)
     
  6. Brianetta

    Brianetta Mu-43 Veteran

    438
    Sep 5, 2010
    North East England
    Real Name:
    Brian Ronald
    Sorry to exhume this old topic... I was thinking of an improvement. Rather than fix a bolt into it to attach to the camera, and a nut for mounting on a tripod, why not just have a hole in it for the tripod's bolt to pass straight through into the camera? It's rare that a remote release will be used without some sort of 'pod, and this would simplify the design greatly. All you need is a strip of coated metal or plastic, bent in two places, with a hole a the bottom and a small threaded hole at the top for the release itself.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  7. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro Charter Member

    Jan 19, 2010
    Midwest
    Real Name:
    Paul
    Thank you very much for exhuming the topic! I'd forgotten about it myself, and went searching again on ebay. I found this:

    Sigma custom mechanical release

    I contacted the seller and told them I would work with them on getting measurements if necessary, and that there would be a large base of interested buyers due to electronic cable release being left off the E-pl1. Hopefully I hear back!
     
  8. Otto

    Otto Mu-43 Regular

    64
    Apr 9, 2010
    Texas, USA
  9. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro Charter Member

    Jan 19, 2010
    Midwest
    Real Name:
    Paul
    I recall discussing that option as well, Otto - how is it working out?

    I have been going back and forth with the seller I mentioned in the post above. I even suggested a possible group buy, or selling through the site here - I think it would be a great solution for the e-pl1 for a mechanical release. I also provided him all of the top plate measurements for the e-pl1 and the seller sounds quite interested in making a version for the e-pl1. I think his sales would do much better than the cameras they are currently making this mechanical release for (lx3, digilux3 and sigma dp2), and if they sell directly here I am sure we could get a better price by avoiding ebay!
     
  10. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario
    ........................................................ :eek:
    do I ever feel foolish for not thinking of it! lol
     
  11. Otto

    Otto Mu-43 Regular

    64
    Apr 9, 2010
    Texas, USA
    It works really well. It does take a little to set it up in the right position, but once done it works fine. For the few times I need a remote, this suffices. I can also attach the quick release plate for my tripod to this.

    The one you show looks like it is made well, but looks like it obscures the top of the camera more. I don't like that it attaches to the hotshoe as I use the VF-2 as well as the remote. Unfortunately, I can't show it with the VF-2 as I had to send it in to Olympus repair because of hot pixels in the viewfinder.

    The nice thing is that there are options for a camera that doesn't provide for remote shutter actuation.

    Excuse the "snapshot", but it shows it attached.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. photoSmart42

    photoSmart42 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    628
    Feb 12, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    Sorry to ask the obvious, but by the time you buy all these extra pieces of gear, and/or spend the time to build your own, wouldn't you be better off spending the extra few bucks on an E-P2? You also get the higher shutter speed while you're at it. I'm not an E-PEN user, so I don't know any better.
     
  13. Otto

    Otto Mu-43 Regular

    64
    Apr 9, 2010
    Texas, USA
    I think it depends on your needs. I had an E-P2 at the same time I had the E-PL1, and decided to keep the E-PL1. The E-P2 is quite a bit heavier, and the remote for it is about twice as expensive. For me, there was no advantage to the E-P2, and the cost was considerably more at the time.

    To each his own. There isn't a wrong decision as they are both excellent choices.

    Good shooting,
    Otto...
     
  14. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario

    one way or another, I like building stuff, but when I chose the EPL1 over the EP2, I thought I was saying good bye to remote shutter for good. I chose the EPL1 for its flash and nothing else because the move to mu-43 cameras was to have something portable for snapshots. An extra flash did not fit that criteria... also knowing i wanted to go for the 20mm, there was no way i could get the ep2 for the extra 500$ it cost over the epl1 before taxes (keep in mind prices are higher in canada).
     
  15. robertcarstens

    robertcarstens New to Mu-43

    3
    May 29, 2010
    EPL1 flash

    I have experimented with flash, including using the FL36 I purchased with my E500. I would prefer to use the onboard flash if possible. Can you please tell me what camera settings you typically use for flash, P, A, S or M, auto ISO or set yourself, do you use a particular f stop?
    Thanks.

    Bob Carstens
     
  16. julienrl

    julienrl Mu-43 Regular

    100
    Jul 28, 2010
    Ottawa, Ontario
    i mostly avoid the flash and will play with most other settings before falling back on it. But a fun thing with the EPL1's flash is you can push back on the mechanism to point the flash upwards so it bounces on the ceiling instead of having a washed out bright spot.
     
  17. photoSmart42

    photoSmart42 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    628
    Feb 12, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    I didn't realize the price difference was that much between the E-P2 and the E-PL1. That's significant! Makes sense now. :redface:
     
  18. rachelbelle

    rachelbelle New to Mu-43

    1
    Mar 8, 2011
    Hi Otto

    Do you know if that mechnical device is built with a standard thread so it can fit other remote shutter devices? i.e. could I buy that device, but then instead of using the short chord it comes with, could I hook it up to something like this?

    5 Mtr AIR SHUTTER RELEASE (eBay item 150573509469 end time 14-Mar-11 10:05:06 AEDST) : Photography

    I want a remote shutter release that works from a few metres away. The ebay store has not responded to my question so I thought I would try my luck here! :)

    Thanks
     
  19. Otto

    Otto Mu-43 Regular

    64
    Apr 9, 2010
    Texas, USA
    The cable release end is not tapered like the one in the photo from the link you posted, and is a regular thread. I have an old mechanical release that I used on a film slr from the early '70's that won't attach to this bracket because it is tapered also. You might run into the same problem, but I'm sure there is a way to make something like that work. You could copy the way this bracket is made, and adapt it to work with a longer release of some sort. I would think some hardware, hobby shop, components would do the trick.

    Good luck with your quest,
    Otto...