G6 Added Grip

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by ThomD, Dec 21, 2013.

  1. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    I've very happy with the G6, but the ergonomics of it didn't quite work for me. Because of very subtle design changes since the G2, I've found myself accidentally pressing the ISO and WB buttons with the palm of my hand. When I'm shooting on the bicycle, one hand is a must, so I have to grip fairly tightly. I'm an endless tinkerer, so a solution to the grip shape should not be hard to find.

    The players:

    Air hardening clay, for the prototypes. Epoxy clay for the core of the solution. Sugru for the skin of the solution.

    P1020034-L.

    The first draft was a modest effort to increase the grip size near the back of the camera. It didn't quite work. And I forgot to get a picture of it on the camera.

    For the second draft, I went whole hog - a big fat grip. The camera is covered in scotch tape.

    P1020045-L.
    P1020046-L.

    Shown with the first draft:
    P1020049-L.

    The big grip was too big. For the 3rd draft I moved the added material forward, so that rather than provide extra area for my palm, it would make it easier to grip the camera with fingers.

    P1020055-L.

    Versions 3, 1 and 2 (propped up because the bottom was rounded)
    P1020060-L.

    Version 3 was pretty close, so version 4 refined that idea of more material forward.

    P1020065-L.

    Versions 2, 1, 3 and 4:
    P1020067-L.

    I modeled version 4 in epoxy clay and coated it in Sugru (textured with a paper towel). I had trouble finding something that would stick to camera and ended up using double sided tape. This left a gap that I filled with more Sugur. I added a bump out at the back to further protect the ISO button.

    P1020073-L.
    P1020076-L.

    After I took these photos, I cleaned up the Sugru a bit. If the bump out on the back corner doesn't work I can file it or sand it or remove it. I'll find out how it works on Sunday.

    I did have to cover the ports on the side, but I never use them.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Vin
    Can you show a pic with this camera in hand? Because that looks extremely uncomfortable.
     
  3. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    So far it feels pretty comfortable. The rear Sugru lands in the crease of my palm under my thumb. I'll have a full assessment after we go for a ride on Sunday.
     
  4. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    I thought the G6 had a pretty grip to begin with (compared to the G5 & G3).
     
  5. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    So far, so good. The camera is workable on the mountain bike. I added some more Sugru to protect some of the buttons I kept hitting with the bike gloves on.

    i-9Xrm2Rr-L.
     
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  6. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Portugal
    Jaime
    Is it safe and comfortable to riding the bicycle and shooting the camera at the same time?
     
  7. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    Safe? Absolutely not! Don't try this at home.

    Comfortable? Sure. I keep the camera in a Peak Designs clip on my camelbak. I can pull it off one handed. Camera adjustments are just about impossible, and shooting over the shoulder on the mountain bike doesn't yield a lot of keepers, but it works.
     
  8. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Portugal
    Jaime
    :smile:
     
  9. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    I like the idea of bulking up the area around the buttons. I'm always palm mashing the buttons on my G5.
     
  10. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    I'm becoming a real fan of Sugru. I was skeptical about how it would look and feel - many of the things I've seen done looked sloppy to me. This isn't quite as polished as I might have liked, but it blends well. The texture is almost exactly what the grip feels like and the color matches. Sugru has a long work time, so I was able to sculpt around the buttons and even the WiFi indicator.

    The only down side is that it is silly expensive.

    This is a three pack.

    http://www.amazon.com/Sugru-Air-curing-Rubber-5g-Black/dp/B009X0YYJQ/

    I used just about 3 on this project with the skin on the handle, plus the corner bump and the button guard. Once you open a pack you have to use the whole thing or it just hardens up in the wrapper.
     
  11. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    When not shooting, I hang the camera off my finger tips. This is unchanged. The side grip makes the grip a little wider, which makes the shutter button fall more naturally under my finger.

    i-pWJZRmK-L.
     
  12. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    Well, after the first real use, I can declare this a success. I didn't accidentally press any of the buttons on the back (even when shooting while riding) and the shutter and Fn1/Fn2 fall more naturally under my There is such a thing as a camera that is too small.
     
  13. chipbutty

    chipbutty Mu-43 Veteran

    At first I thought you were mad but after extended use with my G6 I'm having major issues with my palm activating the buttons on the camera. It's infuriating. I just wish the G cameras had a lock button to deactivate all the buttons. The closest to that is to enable Direct Focus Area but that isn't always practical. The issue is far worse with heavier lenses. It's such a comfortable camera to hold but this is certainly troublesome for me with heavier lenses, mainly legacy lenses. Mind you I had the same problem with the G3, so it's not unique to the G6. Many reported the same problem with the G3. I guess this is a compromise with these smaller bodies.