Review of Spider Brace Camera Mounts
Over the last few years, we’ve met quite a few hunters who are getting serious about preserving their hunts on video. If you’re interested about filming your hunts, you’ll want steady camera work. No one wants to watch several minutes of footage that looks like deleted scenes from “The Blair Witch Project”. Spider Brace addresses this issue with an affordable alternative to high priced camera mounts. Hey, we’re all about “Affordable” but the product also has to be functional too. We believe Spider Brace has a solid place in the filming of hunts.
Spider Brace 1: This model is designed for cameras with an offset eyepiece, however we found it to work well with smaller cameras just as well (ex. Our Canon GL2) The nice thing about this model is that it has the two handles which double as a base to prop the camera on the ground for continuous filming. We found that we used this model most when we didn’t have the need for the in/out zoom or manual focus (ex. Tracking a downed animal)
Mini Rig: This model is for cameras that have the eyepiece directly at the rear of the camera body. Smaller cameras work best with this model and the angled PVC at the rear fits perfectly over the shoulder for steady filming. When using this model, we found that we could still control the variable zoom with one hand.
Videos of these two models (and others) can be found on the Spider Brace Website
Both models are made of PVC plastic and weigh about 1 pound. The units come as a collapsible “take-down” model or welded depending on your preference. All models use a standard ¼ inch screw to attach the camera to the brace and all points of contact (handles and shoulder) are covered with foam for extra cushioning. Although there is no attachment for a tripod underneath the set screw, the Spider Brace 1 works great for those low to the ground “Hero” shots.
Our experience with Spider Brace:
We found that these mounts work extremely well for on the go, run and gun, type footage. Turkey season, walking to/from stands, etc. We did try the mounts in the treestand as an alternative to a tree arm mount but found that some trees were a little too tight for every shot angle. The part that came into contact with our shoulder hit the tree sometimes making it tough to get the correct shot angle. Then again, the Spider Brace worked quite well in other treestand set-ups that we have. The mount is designed so that you are rock steady while looking through the view finder so it’s really up to you as to what situation you think you could use it. This product is well worth the $70 for the steady footage it gives you. The PVC is durable and light and makes for easy transport attached to your pack.
The only recommendation that we can remotely make after testing these two models would be for the manufacturer to come up with a way to make the shoulder rest adjustable (maybe 4 or 5 inches of adjustability). We found ourselves with excess mount hanging off the back of our shoulders using the viewfinder. This excess is what hit the tree in some of our treestand set-ups. Other than that, they’ve got this product down!
Our Marks on Spider Brace:
Function: 4.5 out of 5: This product is pretty much an all purpose camera mount except for the fact that it’s a little clumsy in tight treestand spots.
Quality: 5 out of 5: The PVC holds up exceptionally well and we’ve had no issues thus far in terms of any malfunctions.
Overall Value: 5 out of 5: When you consider that a professional shoulder mount costs anywhere from $100 to $850, a price tag of $70 and $50 (respectively for the Spider Brace 1 and Mini Rig) is very attractive. Add to that the fact that these are durable and perform as expected, you’ve got yourself a winner!
For more information on the variety of mounts by Spider Brace, check out www.spiderbrace.com