Two-Dollar DIY Sling Strap

Sling style camera straps are a good alternative for people who don’t like a camera strap hanging around their neck (they can also help you look slightly less touristy). In this tutorial learn how to make your own on the cheap. With a sling strap the camera hangs to your side with the strap over your shoulder, similar to a messenger bag. When you are ready to take a picture the camera is right at your side ready to aim and shoot (BANG!).

I found the BlackRapid strap and liked the idea of the design but at around $50 dollars it was hard to justify the expense when I already had several straps laying about staring at me longly waiting to be used.

Here is how I made a DIY version for $2.21 + tax by using some parts already in my camera bag (and probably yours too!)

Here’s what you need:

  • Swivel-Eye Trigger-Snap Hook – $2.21 at good ol’ Home Depot
    Trigger-Snap Hook
  • A camera strap (I have the Tamrac N-25 but my stock Nikon strap works also.)
    Tamrac N-25 Camera Strap
  • A tripod quick release plate (sold with most Tripod ball heads). This one is from a Manfrotto 486 RC2.
    Manfrotto Mini Ball Head 494 with RC2 Rapid Connect Plate

Putting it all together is a piece of cake. Just connect the strap to the end of the snap hook then connect the snap hook to the loop on the quick release plate. Easy!

PROS:

  • Cheep! (Assuming you already have a strap and a quick release tripod mount). Note: Replacement RC-2 plates sell for about ~$16.
  • Customizable, works with pretty much any strap.
  • Do not have to remove tripod mounting plate.

CONS:

  • Does not look as nice as the BlackRapid straps.
DIY Sling Strap Assembled

Well there you have it. This particular snap hook works great because it’s small and closes securely. I have lugged my D300s around for years without incident.

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