Tripod Quick release mount

Fri 13 June 2014 by Dr. Dirk Colbry

I got a tripod for my birthday this year. It is a really nice one, but I lost the quick release mount. Here is a picture with a quick release mount from another tripod. Obviously, it doesn't fit:


After some shopping online this one looks fairly good, but possibly not the right size.

So, I took some measurements and came up with this drawing


My goal is to see if I can print this out using a 3D printer. When I started this project I was planning to use the one in the engineering department where I work, but now I have an Ultimaker 2. I know I need an stl file but I was not sure the best way to generate one. After some quick internet searching I found openscad.

I downloaded the software and found the wiki quick start page. It did not take long to figure out the simple language. I started by making a cube and then creating the top. Then I made objects to cut out the inside and the bevels. Here is the resulting model.

./images/QuickRelease.png ./images/QuickRelease2.png

The hardest part was to get the surface normals for the wedge shape object to face in the right direction. However, once I drew out my points and used the right hand rule things settled in nicely. Openscad outputs stl files so all I did was import it into the cura program to generate the gcode for my printer and save it to the SD card to print. The first print was a little too close to my tolerances and I could not get it to fit inside the tripod. However, with some simple modifications to the openscad file I was able to generate a quick release mount that I think looks quite nice and works well:


A future design would fix the bottom to the mount somehow. I posted the STL and OpenScad files on if you are interested in makeing your own:

- Dirk

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