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The Glidearm is a unique 'joint structure' camera slider with auto-panning and linear motion that extends up to 4X.
The Glidearm is a unique 'joint structure' camera slider with auto-panning and linear motion that extends up to 4X.
85 backers pledged $35,987 to help bring this project to life.
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About

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$35,987

85

Filmed most scenes of a short film titled "In Peace" using the GLIDEARM with a mirrorless camera.

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In Peace (the making of)

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FEATURES & SPECIFICATIONS

[Specs] 
size : 9.4"x2.5"x4.5" (WxLxH)
weight : 2.2 lbs
payload : 2.2 lbs


INTRODUCTION

From the designer: Hello, I’m Ji-hoon Lee, a videographer from South Korea. I love art and making videos. 

I prefer making videos that are emotionally driven. Though I didn’t major in engineering, my work involves design work as well as working with 3D software. I loved making things from a young age and studied machine design for fun. Moreover, I wanted to make my own equipment for shooting videos.

I wanted a slider that was portable, easy to use, had multiple motion capabilities, rugged, and stable. I couldn’t find such a product on the market, so I decided to try and make my own.
 I was inspired by the human joint system and started building my product from there. This was the start of the journey: the “Glidearm Project.”



FEATURE DETAILS

4x Extension design  

The folding 2-step design allows the slider to be only 2.46”(W) x 9.35”(L) x 4.55(H)” while expanding up to 4 times its size. 

While most camera sliders are marked by the length of the rails, the Glidearm has a total motion of exactly 27.52” from end to end


Linear Motion  

Basic camera linear motion is possible. You mount your camera on the outermost mount found at the end of the Glidearm. The camera will always be facing the direction that it was facing when mounted. 

Though you get the similar results as with any other slider, the Glidearm works differently. A soft start and end are possible when used. (Please see ‘Risk and Challenges’ below)


Auto-panning

This time, you mount the camera on the inner mount. In this case, not only do you get linear motion, the camera is set 2.1’ away from the subject while auto-panning at 135 degrees for 21.1”. 

Though the viewpoint is fixed and can’t be adjusted, the panning is mechanically smooth and automatic. Again, a soft start and end are possible.


Strong and Lightweight  

I chose to use a timing belt system for the folding mechanism. This system, which is widely used in the industry, is strong, flexible, and simple. The Glidearm has 3 sets of timing belts which work in conjunction with 5 aluminum pulleys. 

The frame of the Glidearm is an aluminum plate. With a thickness of 2.5T, it is fastened with 10 aluminum tubes and 20 stainless steel bolts to make a joint. The frame plate, joint tubes, and timing belt pulleys are made from hard anodized aluminum, making them much stronger than untreated aluminum. 

The Glidearm was designed using 3D Cad and made with software simulation for 16 various prototypes. After many beta tests, the present design was completed to be optimized and simple. As a result of the technical research, the Glidearm has no plastic parts and is solid while weighing in at a little over 2 pounds.


Top-quality Parts  

The Glidearm is made with the highest quality parts, making it durable and reliable. The core component of the Glidearm is the axis module, made with 10 bearings and shafts. 

The main pulley was precision manufactured from custom, hand-lathered shafts, 10 steel ball bearings, and NTN angular bearings.
The timing belt is a Mitsuboshi product made in Japan.
Each knob and bolt was carefully chosen to meet strict industrial standards.
In addition, the logo characters are CNC etched and will never erase.


Friction Adjust Knob  

Oiless bearings made from brass and graphite were pressed by a screw bolt and placed on a friction knob that makes minute friction control possible. 

The knob is custom made from brass that is polished and will not rust. The Glidearm helps to give steady results as you adjust the speed of movement.


Diverse Applications

The Glidearm has some features not found on other sliders.
One is that it allows greater motion pass from a small range of movement. (Please see the ‘Other issue’ below) 

This feature allows for the possibility of high frame rate photography.
In addition, unique motion passes are possible when mounting the Glidearm at different angles on a tripod.

Glidearm with motorized camera slider
Glidearm with motorized camera slider
High frame rate video use glidearm(with sony RX10 II camera)
High frame rate video use glidearm(with sony RX10 II camera)
Glidearm at different angles on a tripod
Glidearm at different angles on a tripod



HOW TO INSTALL THE GLIDEARM

1. At the bottom of the Glidearm is a 3/8" tap to mount it to your tripod (or other apparatus). You may need to remove the head from the tripod.

Installation 1
Installation 1

2. You could even use a 1/4" to 3/8" adapter to mount the GLIDEARM directly on the camera head to get various angles. (Make sure the camera head can support the extra weight of the GLIDEARM.)

Installation 2
Installation 2

3. Connect the mini ball head to the top of the GLIDEARM, choosing the proper mount for either 'linear motion' or 'auto panning.'

Installation 3
Installation 3

4. Mount the camera on the mini ball head.

Installation 4
Installation 4

5. You can use a smartphone by using a holder mounted on the GLIDEARM.

Installation 5
Installation 5

6. Using the GLIDEARM for side linear motion.

Installation 6
Installation 6

  7. Using the GLIDEARM for front linear motion.

Installation 7
Installation 7

8. Using the GLIDEARM for auto panning.

Installation 8
Installation 8

9. Turn the friction knob to the right to increase the friction of the GLIDEARM. Turning the friction knob to the left will make the GLIDEARM movement smoother. (Coin grooves will assist in tightening the knob.)

Installation 9
Installation 9

REWARDS

* Reward Level Comparison

  • The difference between the bearings doesn’t have a major impact on the actual performance of the GLIDEARM. 
  • The nickel plating bolts aren’t physically different from the stainless steel bolts and don’t have a major imnpact on the acutal
    performance of the GLIDEARM. However, the stainless steel bolts are stronger and more durable. 
  • The stainless steel knob of the limited edition RED Glidearm is the most durable. However, this adds a little weight to the RED GLIDEARM. 
  • The developer signature found on the limited edition RED GLIDEARM is a white CNC engraving done after the anodizing. Other markings are done before the anodizing and are the same color as the body.  -The ‘Micro Tripod’ included in the limited edition RED GLIDEARM can hold up to 1.3 lbs when the legs are completely extended and adjusted to the lowest level and used in conjuction with the included ‘Micro Head.’
  • The ‘Micro Tripod’ included in the limited edition RED GLIDEARM can hold up to 1.3 lbs when the legs are completely extended and adjusted to the lowest level and used in conjuction with the included ‘Micro Head.’
  • Most smartphone brackets with a 1/4” tap can be used with the GLIDEARM. I recommend the bracket by 4th Design http://4thdesign.net/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=187
  • ‘Micro heads’ that have a 1/4 socket and are less than 2.2” in circumference (including the knob) are compatible with the GLIDEARM.

TIME LINE


CONSTRUCTION

The GLIDEARM is custom made from 4 body plates and 5 timing pulley modules.
I manufactured the body plates using 700x500 CNC machine in my lab. I hand assemble the timing pulley modules with parts that are manufactured by my technical partner nearby after a long process using a lathe machine. 
If the project is successful, and there a 100 pieces ordered, I plan on switching to a more efficient the manufacturing process. 

Presently, the manufacturing infrastructure of South Korea is advanced enough to support a stable manufacturing for me and companies I am working with.

CNC Machining center partnership / A friend lathe machine master
CNC Machining center partnership / A friend lathe machine master


OTHER ISSUES

The Glidearm is structured horizontally and designed to be affixed when used. Though it is possible to affix it at various angles, you must understand how to control the friction knob as well as the range of your camera.

Because the Glidearm is based on a joint structure, there are limits to using larger cameras. It is the same as extending out your arm and lifting a heavy object. Though you could use a camera that is heavier than the recommended weight, there is a high possibility of shaking due to tension.

The Glidearm range of movement is not directly proportional with speed. This is due to its unique structure and is shown with the end result of a soft start/end.  

Though I believe many will accept this quality as a strong point, I recommend to those who desire for the range and speed to be proportional to either practice controlling the rate of movement or use a slider with a different design.

EPILOGUE

From the designer: Let me end by sharing my personal story.

I focused on this project for the past year designing and manufacturing the GLIDEARM alone and without financial backing. From the design, the actual manufacturing, the making of the introductory video, to the design of this Kickstarter project, I worked alone. This in turn kept costs down and increased the overall synergy of this project. However, I knew that the limiting factor was in the manufacturing of the GLIDEARM.

It is my hope that a great idea can become a reality with help. In any case, I believe that I put my all into this project, am pleased with the results, and thank God for His grace (regardless of whether or not this Kickstarter project is successful). I sincerely thank Woo Chan Lee, Kwang Hyun Yoo, and Raymond Yang for their help in allowing the GLIDEARM to make it out to all of you. 

Special thanks to my friends (from left to right) Raymond, Woo Chan, and Kwangn Hyun.
Special thanks to my friends (from left to right) Raymond, Woo Chan, and Kwangn Hyun.

Risks and challenges

-In order to increase the payload capacity, the axis shaft diameter would have to increase.
We could increase the thickness of the body plate, but this would make the Glidearm heavier. When taking the two reciprocal proportions into consideration, I found the compromise to be at the mirrorless camera size (less than 2.2 lbs.)

-Many people use a Canon 5D system. However, there isn’t that great of a difference in the final end result when compared to mirrorless cameras. People prefer the Canon system for its many lenses, exterior interface, reliability, etc.
I’m confident that as time passes, cameras will get smaller while their performance will increase.

-The Glidearm requires the use of a tripod or other basefoot with a 3/8” mount.
I’m in the process of designing a bracket arm that would allow the use of the Glidearm without a tripod. If this Kickstarter project is successful, I will naturally share that information as well.

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Support

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    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1

    GLIDEARM SUPPORTER
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    Pledge US$ 395 or more About US$ 395

    SILVER GLIDEARM
    This is the most affordable model with all the features. You get:
    ONE SILVER GLIDEARM (Retail @ $550)
    Note: We are not responsible for any import/duty taxes that may incur.

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    Pledge US$ 465 or more About US$ 465

    EARLY BACKER 2 BLACK GLIDEARM KIT
    Get the high quality GLIDEARM BLACK KIT for less by being an early backer. You get:
    ONE BLACK GLIDEARM (Retail @ $580)
    ONE MICRO HEAD WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    ONE CARRY POUCH

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    Pledge US$ 495 or more About US$ 495

    BLACK GLIDEARM KIT
    Get the high quality GLIDEARM BLACK KIT. You get:
    ONE BLACK GLIDEARM (Retail @ $580)
    ONE MICRO HEAD WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    ONE CARRY POUCH
    Note: We are not responsible for any import/duty taxes that may incur.

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
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    Pledge US$ 645 or more About US$ 645

    LIMITED EDITION RED GLIDEARM KIT
    With linear motion and auto-panning to help you make your project shine, this LIMITED EDITION RED GLIDEARM KIT which includes the GLIDEARM with a stainless steel knob and is a personally signed, custom model. You get:
    ONE RED GLIDEARM (Retail @ $620)
    ONE MICRO HEAD WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    ONE CARRY POUCH
    ONE MINI TRIPOD
    Note: We are not responsible for any import/duty taxes that may incur.

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    Pledge US$ 925 or more About US$ 925

    TWO (2) BLACK GLIDEARM KITS
    Get 2 high quality GLIDEARM BLACK KITS. You get:
    TWO (2) BLACK GLIDEARMS (Retail @ $1,160)
    TWO (2) MICRO HEADS WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    TWO (2) CARRY POUCHES
    Note: We are not responsible for any import/duty taxes that may incur.

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    Pledge US$ 2,250 or more About US$ 2,250

    FIVE (5) BLACK GLIDEARM KITS
    Get 5 high quality GLIDEARM BLACK KITS. You get:
    FIVE (5) BLACK GLIDEARMS
    FIVE (5) MICRO HEADS WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    FIVE (5) CARRY POUCHES
    Note: We are not responsible for any import/duty taxes that may incur.

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    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    Join the GLIDEARM team.
    This reward will have special perks and benefits.
    Please send an email for more details.

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  9. Reward no longer available

    Pledge US$ 435 or more About US$ 435

    EARLY BACKER BLACK GLIDEARM KIT
    Get the high quality GLIDEARM BLACK KIT for less by being an early backer. Early backers get their GLIDEARM by FEBRUARY 2016!
    You get:
    ONE BLACK GLIDEARM (Retail @ $580)
    ONE MICRO HEAD WITH 1/4" to 3/8" adapter
    ONE CARRY POUCH

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Funding period

- (42 days)