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Marc Furth

DIY Flash Arms

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Here’s a unique site I came across that has some interesting components that might work for flash arms. All the parts are made from marine grade aluminum, stainless steel, and powder coated . I bought several 1 inch balls and couplings to make a prototype. The balls are made from rubber which probably will hold very firmly in their coupling clamps. I’m going to try aluminum rod and Delrin for the arms. I should have all the parts delivered in a couple of days and will keep you posted.

 

Marc

 

Ram Mounts

 

B237.jpg

 

B201UA.jpg

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Very interesting! Looking forward to your report.

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Looks good Marc - hopefully cheaper overall than "ready-made."

 

Cheers

James

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Well is it that much cheaper? ie 2 balls are going to be $25, plus the stock for the bar. and a ULCS arm is about $45...?

 

I have seen the RAM mounts for boat GPSes etc and they are very good quality.

 

Do let us know your results, interesting idea.

 

Jack

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The Navy dive team in Virginia just purchased arms and clamps to go with their base mounts made by RAM.

 

Terry

ULCS

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You can do your own math.

 

ULCS 12" arm.......... $ 47.95

ULCS standard clamp.. 29.95

.......................Total $ 77.90

 

 

Ram balls 2 @ 9.95..... $ 19.90

12" Delrin rod..................3.50

Ram double socket arm..10.95

..........................Total $ 34.35

 

Less than ½ the price of the ULCS arm. and enough left over savings to buy another 2 feet of Delrin.

 

Of course their might be unforseen expenses. I’ve not made one yet and I’m already thinking it might need a stainless steel set screw to hold the Ram ball from turning inside the Delrin rod.

 

Marc

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Will their clamps work on ULCS balls?? I want to rig up an aiming light setup for my wife's P&S setup, I've got enough arms and adaptors but need 3 extra clamps.

 

s.

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That’s a good question s,

I imagine they will but won’t know for sure till I get my hands on one and try it.

I’ll report back soon as I know.

 

Marc

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For us Canuks, the best source is GPS Central , www.gpscentral.ca

I ordered 3 clamps and 4 - 1" balls.

With express post shipping total was $100.

 

I'm using an Ikelite 1" ball adapter to mount to my Ikelite digital hsg handle,

and a ULCS 1" ball adapter to attach my Nikonos SB105 strobe.

These were $29 each. Add $10 for 2-12" delrin shafts and the net cost is about $170.

 

Mike D

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Sorry I’ve been very busy the past month or so that I never got around to posting the picture of the fist Ram Ball arms I made.

 

The arms are 8 inch’s in length and I made them for Delrin. I did however modify the Ram ball mounts. I bought the Ram balls that had a 1/4 inch 20 threaded rod mount .These looked to weak for my heavy SB 104 flash so I cut off the threads and tapped the balls the same size. Then I inserted a larger length threaded rod that gave more support. I also tapped a small set screw on the arm so that the ball would not rotate on the end of the Delrin arm. I also grooved the length of the arms to lighten them a bit with out sacrificing strength.

 

My first impression are these rubber balls are very tight and don’t work well with standard aluminum ball type clamps. The rubber balls need very little tension on them to keep them from moving. When used with standard aluminum balls you must over tighten the rubber balls to achieve enough tension on aluminum balls so they won’t move. I would say if your planning to build your own arms you should use rubber balls only and don’t mix with ridged type balls, however the clamps work great.

 

I’m very impressed with the holding power you get with these rubber balls. My SB 104 is very heavy and I’m able to mount it on the end of the arm set and extend it horizontally with out the arms moving. Now that’s above water so I would imagine it would take less tension to keep them where you want them underwater. Since I have not used them underwater yet I’m speculating that the water will be beneficial and act as a lubricant and make them smother to operate.

 

That’s about all I have for now and will update when I actually try them out.

 

P.S. I’ll be posting another DIY project soon. I just finished fabricating my first 6 inch dome port. Hopefully I’ll have it in the water later this week and I’ll report back.

 

Happy New Year to everyone,

Marc.

 

Ramarm.jpg

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Marc,

 

Impressive!!

 

Do you think that you DIY strobe arm system weighs more or less than a comparable ULCS, TLC, Ike, Inon, etc system?

 

thanks for sharing!

b

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Won't the rubber compress at depth, loosening the clamps? Tightening them at depth and having them expand at surface may cause reverse problem.

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I know this project is from 2 years ago, but I am curious to know how the story ended? Did it work well underwater?

 

Thanks

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I was wandering around the warehouse today trying to find the right grease cartridge I needed and stumbled across some strong black plastic tubes that were very light and threaded at each end. There was several different lengths, and I believe that they may be used for garden reticulation but I'm not sure. The internal diameter was about 10mm and they looked like they had interesting possibilities to build float arms from.

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