The Random Thoughts of a Geek heading for Banbury
The Random Thoughts of a Geek heading for Banbury

Automatic Panoramic Head

For a while I have wanted to make an Automatic Panoramic rig for fun; as a side it may be worth building an intervalometer into the control circuitry as well; for full automation, and repeatability.

The purpose of a pano head is to:

  • Enable the optical axis of a camera and lens system, mounted within the pano head, to be directed anywhere within the sphere of view – with a constant PoV.
  • Allow for the correction of potential parallax errors by enabling the camera to travel parallel and perpendicular to the optical axis – and make other adjustments, so that the camera/lens PoV, the panning axis and the pitch axis coincide to best practical effect.
  • Provide a reliable frame of reference and sufficient datum for setup and calibration.


While I still had my Nikon D70 I tried building a number of pan tilt head out of Lego; beyond the obvious difficulty of point adjustments to get the Point of View to remain in the same place for all the photos; Lego Technic is not really stable enough to hold a camera stable and allow for controlled motion. a Friend of mine Nathaniel Poate is likely to be an unsuspecting helper in this,