Nikon Coolpix Handle/battery pack.

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by BobS, Dec 21, 2004.

  1. BobS

    BobS Guest

    I just bought the Coolpix 8800 a couple of weeks ago and found that my
    hands were too big to stay out of the way of the flash and other

    I have been using one of those table top tripods with the flexable legs
    for my left hand hold. Worked kinda okay, but not all that
    comfortable. The extra battery pack/handle that Nikon has for this
    model is much too expensive for me.

    With that in mind, I made a couple of sketches on the computer, visited
    the local Ace hardware store and today put together my first iteration.
    Certainly will need a change or two, but it is a start.

    See it here:

    The hardware, less the PVC pipe was less then $4.00

    The 1 1/2" PVC pipe was on hand. I will wrap the final version with
    handle bar tape I have from my bike riding days. (most expensive part
    of the project.)

    At 1 1/2" inside diameter and 6" long, the PVC pipe has more then
    enough room to hold several batteries and ton of energy (micro
    amprere-hours). I will cap the top and probably use a "thermos bottle
    stopper" to plug the bottom. Open for ideas on every feature.

    QUESTION: Does anyone have a source for the connector that plugs in to
    the power plug on the Coolpix 8800 and/or the Nikon Speedlight power
    connection? They are different.

    Thanks for the help.

    BobS, Dec 21, 2004
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  2. not sure where that drawing in the background came from, but you built it
    differently than the drawing... the metal part it positioned over the pipe
    in the drawing rather than away from it. this changes the position of the
    camera given the same hand position... but that aside, it is very clever of
    you to create this device to solve your problem.
    Christopher Muto, Dec 23, 2004
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  3. BobS

    BobS Guest

    Thanks for the comment.
    I made the drawing in the background. That was the engineer in me.
    The actual part was the builder side. I have decided not to put a
    battery pack in the handle. Easier for my play to just get a new set
    of fresh batteries out of the bag and install.

    Here is the finished part installed. Have used it for about 15
    basketball games now and I haven't found anything to change. If anyone
    decides to make on, make sure and use a wingnut that will strip long
    before you strip the threads in your camera!

    Here is a picture of the final assembly installed. Notice I also use a
    cheap camera strap. ;-)
    BobS, Dec 31, 2004
  4. BobS

    bob Guest

    It looks like all you have is a simple handgrip installed to the tripod
    mount. Why not use an actual tripod instead? Those little table-top tripods
    are very inexpensive. They could serve the same function, but with the
    added function of holding the camera as a tripod, too.

    I have the battery pack add on for my coolpix 5000, and it is a really nice
    accessory. I almost never remove it. On a recent trip I shot 300 photos
    over several days, changing batteries only once. At least 1/3 were with
    flash, and all were with LCD screen. Many included a review of the shot
    after taking, and I also spent at least an hour looking over what I had
    shot on the LCD.2nd set still shows full charge.

    There is the added benefit of the zoom and shutter buttons for portrait
    orientation. I don't regret having bought mine for a moment.

    bob, Jan 2, 2005
  5. BobS

    BobSam Guest

    Thanks Bob,
    I was using the table-top tripod and it was not comfortable for an
    entire basketball game and my big hands kept getting in the way. Also,
    the added battery pack/grip for the Coolpix 8800 is, we will be remain
    polite, and just say it is vastly overvalued by Nikon. The bicycle
    handlebar wrapping tap I used makes it easy to hold all game long. It
    is angled for ergonomic comfort. I held a yard stick "naturally", had
    wife take a picture and then made it that angle. Excluding the
    expensive foam tape, it cost less then $5.

    BobSam, Jan 2, 2005
  6. BobS

    bob Guest

    For a single event, like a basket ball game, having a special purpose
    device that provides good comfort makes good sense. If you were going on a
    trip though, you might take the tripod, and use some closed cell pipe
    insulation to pad it. That would probably double the price of your
    investment ;-)

    How much do they get for the grip for the 8800? I think I paid about $125
    for the one for the 5000. I think it was worth it for the kind of
    photography I do -- mostly long trips. I think they improved on battery
    system for the 8800 too, reducing the need for extra batteries.

    bob, Jan 2, 2005
  7. BobS

    Hunt Guest

    When looking at the possibility of replacing my 5700 battery pack (before Ed
    Ruf helped me get it fixed by Nikon), the price was ~US$135 for THAT pack. Now
    that it works properly, it is great. As you stated, the available power is
    worth the price, as well as the general balance of the whole camera. Now, it
    fits my hand much better, plus the stated ergonomic improvement of the
    vertical release.

    Hunt, Jan 3, 2005
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