Reading time:

IoT Anamorphic Lens

IoT = Internet of Things

Everything is Internet of Things? Well, right now not everything. In the optical world, everything is so contained and can just communicate with the things made to communicate with. A lot of things exist to circumvent certain limitations of products or to interact in a different, not wanted way by the manufacturers. So...

Why not see the current focal length, aperture and distance on the Internet? Well... actually I will start with wireless LAN, but the platform should support even more. Why not control all focal length, aperture and distance through the web?

To accomplish this in the first place, a platform for the actual things is needed. Here we want to control real world object and benefit form computer support in calculations and mechanical accuracy.

Linear anamorphic freelensing(sony a6300) + (Minolta 50mm @f1.4 + SK Super Cinelux 2x back glass) + (SK Super Cinelux 2x front glass)
manually floating on linear rails - shot in 1080p & upscaled to 4k, cropped to fit.

As many things, this idea was born while doing something stupid: watching my 3d printer going to an forth with such exact repositioning, that I thought: Could this be used for lenses?

And because I like to share, lets open source this! You can download & use and also sell commercially. But if you use my work, please mention my name. No harm taken.

Lets start with linear rails. They provide the base. The base gets mounted on 15mm rods - the standard in Cinema camera and available to most people. The mounting base should adapt easy to 19mm rail systems with slight modifications in the CAD Files.

On the rail blocks are lens holder seated. Like this the optical element or element groups can slide on one axis easy and precise. Helicoid contol is not the scope and so it gets eliminated (they translate rotational movement into horizontal movement).

CAD designs are done in FreeCAD 0.16. These following pictured designs are not online, but you can reproduce better. Exactly for your needs:

  • Download the CAD files from Gitlab
  • fire up freecad (yes - its free for PC, MAC & Linux)
  • find the sketch that defines the form
  • change the sketch by modifying the constraints or adding more lines (make sure lines are closed!) 
  • your solid should update on the fly
  • Mark the result and export as STL. 
  • Import in your 3d printer slicing software or upload to a online printing service. 
  • Don't forget to print the lens holders twice. One mirrored, otherwise you end up with 2 leftties.

I slice in Cure and print in PLA with 30% Tetrahedral infill, so I better don't leave it under the sun for too long. 

Part list, CAD files and description are on gitlab:

Later on you will find motor mounts, software and more instructions on how things get controlled.

As a sneak peak on the upcoming stuff you can google for the linear rail version of the Kossel 3d printer which can be picked up for around 200$ and think about its role in here...

thanks for reading!