A few weeks ago I posted that I was searching for a 3/8-16 (versus smaller 1/4-20) female tripod stud receptacle. My 1920's vintage 7x17 FS had only the 1/4-20.
I received some rather ingenious and resourceful suggestions. Bottom line, however, was that what I wanted had to be made. One guy stated he'd had Grimes make him one for $65.00. That was too steep for me.
Dan Jolicoeur, a photographer and infrequent contributor to the forum, emailed me from Maine.
He said he could do the same thing for half what the 65-dollar guy got it for. He said he knew what it was like to need a part and yet be stuck with very high pricing for it.
I assumed brass. Dan said either brass, or the harder "bronze" to more or less match wood, etc. or better yet, stainless steel for max hardness. A few days later I had the part. Installed it myself.
For you DIY guys (I possess minimum talents here): I had to borrow a tap and purchase the forstner bits to do the installation. But it went well and it was a sweet job, if I do say so, myself.
Dan said he could have made me an insert which didn't have outside threads. Just screw holes and screws thru the flange. My camera is fairly heavy, I may play with vertical shooting, and I was limited at the size of the base area (to allow a wider flange and therefore more screws to secure - imagine the base plate for the Deardorf, for example). I needed a threaded insert. Dan recommended a good coating of Lok-Tite for extra holding power.
I asked Dan about making parts. He said he wanted "some" extra side-work. He said he'd been a machinist since the 70's.
I must say. Dan was a great guy, very knowledgeable and practical, and extremely helpful. I made a friend! (Grimes' staff are, I am sure, nice folks, too. They serve a different market.)