GoPro Chest Mount - DIY Style

      Anyone who has purchased a new GoPro video camera will recognize the item below - the plastic cube that houses new GoPros inside that "bear-proof" packaging the GoPro cameras come in. Most folks likely chucked this packaging, but my habit is to save packaging for at least a little while in the event I have to return an item to the store.

      In the case of this cube, I noted the black plastic base with the custom GoPro "clip" made into it. Being the do-it-yourselfer that I am, I wondered if it might come in handy at some point, so I made sure to hang onto this item. Eventually, the need arose for trying a chest mount with my GoPro, so I headed for the store and checked out GoPro's "Chesty" product. But after taking a look at their $40 mount, bells went off in my head. The bracket of their "Chesty" mount was essentially the same thing as this black plastic base from the cube, shown at right below.

     I could see that all I needed was about $3.00 worth of black web strapping and a couple of snap buckles for $5.00-$8.00 and I could turn this into a perfectly suitable chest mount. I already had on hand some snap buckles and ladder locks (for adjusting strap length) which I use often to make various straps.

     It was a simple matter to cut four slots in the mounting base with my Dremel roto-tool, and cut off the corners of the base so there would be nothing sharp to poke me. If you don't have a roto-tool, you can make the slots easily by drilling a string of 3/16 or 1/4 inch holes closely together. Then snip out between the holes and file the edges smooth to shape the slots. I smoothed the edges of the cutouts and corners with a cardboard fingernail file to avoid any abrasion of the webbing or clothing. A fine metal file will do nicely as well.

     Then I went about cutting the webbing, and sewing the webbing and buckles, and attaching them to the slots in the mounting base. I used a combination of 1 inch and 3/4 inch webbing and buckles, but you could use up to 1-1/2 inch webbing for the chest strap if you wished. You may be able to press into service some old straps or belts from unused bags, kids backpacks, etc., for part of your strapping. Make use of whatever you have. I get my buckles and webbing from REI outdoor outfitters, though I imagine the items can also be ordered online.

     I won't attempt to go into detail about the straps, buckles and ladder locks. You can take a look at the GoPro Chesty, and look over my photos below of the finished chest mount to decide how you wish to go about making the straps. Mine are not exactly like the GoPro product, as I had no molded "Y" connector for behind the neck, or other preformed connectors. I just made do with what I had, using a little common sense. Don't forget to take into account how the adjustments will work, allowing for the straps to slip through each other if necessary. I did allow for considerable sizing adjustment for use over a heavy coat.

     I would note that if you will be using yours for "extreme" activities, you might consider the manufactured GoPro Chesty product. I would assume it is designed for the considerable stresses that might be encountered with such activities as extreme sports. I have no plans to use mine for anything more demanding than hiking or paddling, so I feel confident it will be more than sufficiently sturdy for my needs.

     This project turned out to be easier than I expected, and was completed in a single day of on and off work - perhaps 4 hours total - some of which was spent more or less pondering how to go about its construction. For less than $10 invested in materials for a camera chest mount, I was very well pleased with the results.

You might also check out my article on making a Rotating GoPro Camera Mount for a kayak.