Did you get a lovely GoPro Hero action camera for Christmas? Want to somehow mount it to your Burton snowboard? Don’t want to drill nasty holes and use strange, bulky home-made contraptions to attach it?
Just over a year ago I bought a GoPro Hero Black 3+ and also a new Burton Snowboard. It came with the usual array of mounts, so the usual curved mount for the helmet was a very easy choice. I also bought a cheap stick for those selfies, which took a bit of time getting used to, I was still pretty fresh to boarding and having to concentrate on technique, the snow, people and the stick was tough…
I was pretty sure there must also be a host of accessories available to mount the GoPro on a snowboard. To my surprise the usual way was to either use a sticky mount or a suction cup or surf board mount with tethers, but the issue seemed to be that they ALWAYS fell off or the image was horrible and shaky, esp with the suction mount which has a certain amount of play on it anyway due to the rubber.
The newer Burton snowboards feature a different mounting system, called the Infinite Channel System (ICS). This basically allows a much more flexible mounting system but since this channel was fairly long I figures I could make use of this somehow instead of making my own cuts and drill holes.
I like to DIY tinker a fair bit, so I bought a bunch of things which I thought I could use to make a mount of my own (I ended up with a WHOLE BUNCH of weird and wonderful parts), but I was still sure exactly how to make this thing until I bought a few random things and it hit me. Everything came together and I ended up with this recipe.
What you need:
- 1 x Aluminium Headset Mount Adapter
- 1 x 10mm Headset Spacer – available from any bike store
- 1 x Burton M6 ICS Female mounting bolt/slider
- 1 x Aluminium Extension arm – either FatCat M-HEA or DX G075
- 1 x GoPro Bolt Wrench
As with all good things, it ended up being much simpler than I imagined! This method will only work with Burton ICS channel snowboards. You could use a different type of mount if you don’t mind drilling into your board… but be sure to seal the hole to stop water penetration damaging your board (maybe stuff it with silicon sealant before putting it all together).
- Remove your bindings and slide in an additional female ICS M6 bolt. This is the same ones that you get with your snowboard when buy a new one. You could also try to source one of these from your local snowboard shop (but none of the stored I tried had spare ones) or look on ebay. Slide the bolt all the way to the front of the ICS channel
- Place the 10mm headset spacer over the bolt. You need this because the female M6 bolt protrudes from the board by a few milimeters and the headset mount I used is also convex so this provides enough space between the two.
- Cut the bolt that comes with the headset mount, the thread length needs to be approx 15mm (double check this, I am going from memory)
- Put it all together. Place the headset mount on the spacer and tighten the bolt with the supplied allen key
- Mount the extension arm and your GoPro, tighten it with the wrench (it needs to be very tight to stop falling over due to vibration)
And that’s pretty much it. The arm is useful to give a better point of view, you could mount the GoPro camera directly on the board but it sits very low. I guess in theory you could use a couple of extension arms to raise it further, but I haven’t tried this and don’t know how well this will work or if there will be any flex due to the linkage.
One issue I initially had was that there was waaaaaaaaay too much vibration, such a crazy amount that the video was unusable. Initially I had used a GoPole Curved Extension Arm, but due to this being plastic it wobbled like mad. The problem was solved by using the aluminium extension arm which is much more rigid.
Here are some pictures and videos. Bear in mind I am not actually that good! lol. And for some reason I never tried pointing the camera backward towards myself. I think the camera was too close though, you would really want it much further forward, towards the nose of the board. The video is not perfect, still shaky in parts, but much improved over the first version. Someone who is a better boarder and esp around the park should be able to capture much better footage. A slight higher vantage point would be better I think – I’ve now also ordered curved alloy helmet extension but don’t know when I will next be able to try it out (I no longer live near mountains). I did also see a longer extension bar (about 50cm) but that was out of my price range and I can’t seem to locate it any more.
If any one tries this then please post a comment, I would love to see what you are able to capture.
With the original plastic GoPole Extension arm – wobbles like crazy!
GoPro attached directly to the mount – sits very low down
GoPro attached on 15cm aluminium extension arm (similar to G075)