Everyone and their dog seems to have a linear camera slider these days, and for good reason. It’s a simple way to get some great shots – especially of fairly static scenes with depth. And once you add a fluid head to the mix, you can do fake crane shots and so much more.
But for how simple these things are, I’m a bit disappointed with how expensive these things can be. So I took a chance on Igus’s $100 3 foot slider a while a back on a research project for NDSU, and it was worth it. Recently I purchased one for my kit, and it’s been a solid performer (especially since I bought a proper fluid head instead of the one pictured). This setup only cost me $200 (not counting the tripod).
Here’s a short collection of timelapses I shot on the slider (the last one is static). I used my D7000’s intervalometer, and moved the carriage by hand very, very slowly. The footage was sped up in post.
Tip: the trick for great slides is to have dynamic friction for resistance, but to not get much static friction so your starts and stops are smooth. Take some time to adjust the alignment bolts vs drag control. Then don’t take the carriage off the track if possible. Happy sliding.