Once in a awhile a project comes along and everything just seems to fall into place right out of the box. This has been the case with this little project that I put together yesterday. I had just finished a similar project for my video camera the day before yesterday when I realized that a sun shield could be made for my little point and shoot camera as well. So this is that project.
As with all of my projects that I create I start designing my ideas on my computer using my CAD software. In these three photos the camera and new sun hood were modeled using Inventor 2013 software. I modeled the camera in red only to show some difference between it and the sun hood. I really like the detail from the software that you see in these images. Leaves nothing to the imagination as to what I am trying to create.
Next I took the computer model that I created and converted the file to a STL (stereolithography) file that my Makerbot Replicator 3D printer could understand. The STL file is fed into the software for the printer where it is sliced into layers. These layers are read by the 3D printer. Each layer is only the thickness of six human hairs when it is printed. The new Makerbot Replicator 2 (I have a the first Replicator) prints at the thickness of only one human hair. That machine is on my wishlist for the Tinker's Workshop.
Here the camera and the sun hood are mounted together ready for use. The sun hood only weighs 1.5 ounces and cost just $2.25 to make including the cost of the small bolt to hold the hood to the camera.
The camera and sun hood now upside down shows how they are mounted together. The sun hood is held to the camera using a standard 1/4-20 bolt that is 1/2 long and threaded into the tripod mount. This holds everything together nicely and is simple to put on or take off the camera.
As with the video camera sun hood that I designed a few days ago this new sun hood for my digital camera will make a nice accessory. Both of them will make it a lot simpler to shoot photos and videos outdoors once again. The sun hood mounted to the camera still allows me to turn the camera on and off, zoom in or out, and of course shoot the picture. The hood also feels nice in your hands as it was printed all in one piece and is very smooth to the touch. Feels like a little digital box camera now.
The sun hood was made specifically for my Sony digital camera so I doubt that it would work on a different camera. Maybe but I doubt it. I would have to make the next version more universal so that it could be used on a lot of different point and shoot cameras. It's a thought but for now this will work with what I now own and so it fits my needs very well. So unless I get a lot of requests for this item I will hold off on designing a universal hood for now. Let me know your thoughts on this or anything else that I've posted and I'll be more than happy to hear from you and go from there. Have a good day tinkering.