ORTAK Skate 3D: 3D print your own tabletop dolly and tripod head

The universe of 3D printable products opens new options for videographers on a budget, allowing them to print equipment like a tabletop dolly or a tripod head at greatly reduced prices. Discover ORTAK!

ORTAK Skate 3D: 3D print your own tabletop dolly

3D print your tabletop dolly for your DSLR or mirrorless, add a FlexTILT Head 3D, and you’ve a solution for product shots and interviews. The idea comes from edelkrone, and the two first products are now available.

The FlexTILT Head from edelkrone is one of the most popular pieces of equipment made by the company. It costs $149 in its most recent version, FlexTILT Head 2, presented as the ultimate pan & tilt solution to frame your shots easily and freely. If you’ve  a 3D printer at home, or access to one, though, you only need to spend $29 to buy the CNC machined aluminum parts needed for a flawless experience. Then you download the file used to print the different parts and you’ve a FlexTILT Head 3D, which is, according to edelkrone, “the 3D printable version of our best-selling tripod head.”

It should be clear by now that the 3D printing will also cost you some money, but there are, no doubt, advantages to the process: you can print the pieces in different colors, and in case one breaks, you just need to print it again, as long as the key parts delivered by edelkrone are functional. A company known for its unique solutions, edelkrone used the FlexTILT Head 3D to introduce ORTAK, a new co-manufacturing approach that, says the company, “allows anyone to own fully-functional, high-tech products at greatly reduced prices.”

ISS astronauts use 3D printing

Since 2014, when NASA experimented with 3D printing at the International Space Station, that astronauts have understood the potential of the machinery. In fact, after the tests on Earth confirmed the viability of tools and parts 3D printed on orbit, the 3D printers available on the ISS are used to create everything from tools that astronauts need for different tasks to pieces of equipment. There is no need to wait for a specific object to be delivered when a new shipment from Earth is sent up: if an object can be 3D printed, it will be available as soon as the operation finishes.

If it works up there, it will also work down here on Earth. Edelkrone says that soon, 3D printers will be in every house, and “if you don’t already have access to a 3D printer, it may be time to invest in one to make ORTAK products even more feasible and see the time it takes for a return on investment drop drastically.”

The company foresees ”a future in which visionary companies will use ORTAK co-manufacturing method to decrease costs for both the company and the customer while enabling highly customizable and more personal products. With the ORTAK method, says the company, “products are manufactured by you and edelkrone together. edelkrone will manufacture the critical parts, such as CNC machined aluminum joints (or possibly electronic components in the future) to minimize cost, while making sure the end product works flawlessly. While we ship the critical parts, you will 3D print the rest of the product and have the ability to customize the design, form, and color to your needs.”

The two first ORTAK products

The idea sounds really interesting, and edelkrone says that this is “a never-before-experienced product development world” that was here all along and, they add, “we’ve seen it. Let’s do this together, partner.”

The first example of the new line of ORTAK products is the FlexTILT Head 3D, but edelkrone was quick to add a second product, the Skater 3D, an easy-to-use, 3D printable, tabletop dolly for DSLR and mirrorless cameras that will instantly add fun, curvy camera motion into your shots.

Perfect for product shots and interviews, you may easily achieve the parallax effect by adjusting the two front wheels of Skater 3D so that your camera moves on the desired curve around your subject. The two front wheels of Skater 3D are bound and rotate together which enables you to set your motion curve in seconds without having to adjust separate wheels. Achieving slider-like, linear camera motion and dolly in/out shots is also effortless, says edelkrone. Simply rotate the wheels by aligning the indents and you are good to go!

ORTAK Skate 3D: 3D print your own tabletop dolly

Skater 3D, a tabletop dolly

The Skater 3D can be used in combination with the FlexTILT Head 3D, which is, says edelkrone, “highly recommended to unlock the full potential of Skater 3D”. The Skater 3D and FlexTILT Head 3D area a nice pair that will comfortably fit in your pocket making this duo the perfect travel companions. The Skater 3D works with all tripod heads, magic arms, and FlexTILT Head 3D (1/4″ – 20 to 3/8″ – 16 mounting screw adaptor is included). Recommended camera load is 5.5 lb (2.5 kg) or less. Works only on flat surfaces.

To 3D print these first products from the ORTAK line, there is a list of tested and approved 3D printers to check before you go ahead with production. You should read the information available on edelkrone’s website, and also read all the info on the assembly guide pdf provided.

This is the beginning, says edelkrone, adding that there are “more ORTAK products to come!”

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Journalist, writer and photographer since 1979, both print and online, with a vast experience in the fields of photography, software, hardware, web, aviation, History, video games, technology, having published content in almost all Portuguese newspapers…