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best location for camera

Old 10-08-2004, 08:17 AM
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Default best location for camera

What would be the best location for the camera, either still or video, to minimize exhaust buildup on the lens, but allowing good panorama and field of view? Obvoiusly not directly in line with the exhaust, but there is "overspray" almost anywhere forward from the propwash that would eventually mist over the lens and blur your images. This is my plan:

I'm going to use a SIG Kadet Senior ARF as my platform, big interior, slow, light wing loading, stable flight characteristics, etc. I want to put a still camera, probably a smallish digital aimed either out the side under the wing or out the bottom, and a video,one of those that use a CCD and downlinks the images, somewhere that it will give me the "pilot's view" forward. This is the one that worries me about misting up the lens. I don't know much about these, are they light enough that I could mount it in a pod under the wiing opposite the exhaust side and outboard of the prop arc (strobe effect)? What is the best method to trigger the shutter on the still camera?

Your thoughts, observations, recommendations, insults and invective are hereby solicited. thankyewvarymuch.
Old 10-08-2004, 08:24 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

i had the exact same deal and put a very small camcorder inside pointing out the left window and my exhaust was out the right side, worked great got some great stuff

if you really want to hack a little i suggest mounting the engine sideways and getting a pitts muffler and running it down, now if you do this then putting the camera facing down is kinda out but its just a thought

to be honest with you i think you might be better off with another plane - yes this plane works ok, flies great - its by far my favorite plane so far ever but i was disapointed is that the servo tray is up so high and kinda blocks everything up, i think a super cub would be a great platform for that kind of thing, tons of room in that thing, if you get a big one.
Old 10-08-2004, 08:33 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

This has worked best for me. Just a little rework of the fuse front.....
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Old 10-08-2004, 08:44 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

WOW nice job A10FLYER[sm=thumbup.gif]
Old 10-08-2004, 09:36 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

My ccd camera for video is four bays out on the wing from the fuselage. It creates a bit of drag on that side so I have to trim the rudder a little in the opposite direction to counteract that. It also has the benefit of not showing the prop arc. As much lift as the kadet has, you could mount the tail feather servos in the rear of the fuse and move your battery and other stuff as far forward as you can and balance accordingly. The kadet will basically lift a brick so you can do just about anything to these amazing planes.
Old 10-08-2004, 09:45 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

wow! i like it a10flyr

i must say how does your engine stay on? it look like it would break right off?? unless im not seeing it correctly? could you post more pix of that at different angles? man i just might have to try that
Old 10-08-2004, 09:49 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Thanks Gunner....The engine is double soft mounted.....DuBro soft mount plus lords mounts. 60 size motor and the airframe hardly viberates. I also have a 1 watt (?) downlink that I plan to use. If it works I will put the throttle on a dial, couple rudder with aileron, and pan a video camera with with the left stick while flying the right stick and watching the downlink with I-Glasses!
Old 10-08-2004, 09:52 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Brian, it's just a ΒΌ" piece of ply going from the floor of the fuse to the top of the motor mount with the fuel tank mounted in the pod above the wing.
Old 10-08-2004, 09:56 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

I am using a TINY CAM, a little combined camera and transmitter. I have made a light housing which looks like an engine of a two engined plane. This houses the camera with its wire arial and the 9 volt PP9 battery for the camera/transmitter. I fit this over the leading edge of my 72" Mystic, laser 150 powered it flies superbly. The camera points slightly down and transmits reasonable shots back to earth, where the receiver sits on top of my car, feeding the video input of my Sony Mini Cam, set to record. This works very well. I film the plane on the ground, starting up and taxying on to our patch, then switch over to record the Tiny Cam output while I fly. This plane is very smooth and will fly very slowly, so i am able to aim it at the patch, others in flight and over the countryside. Approach for landing gives a very good picture. By putting the housing on the leading edge, it can be away from the engine.
Old 10-08-2004, 11:43 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

ORIGINAL: A10FLYR

Brian, it's just a ΒΌ" piece of ply going from the floor of the fuse to the top of the motor mount with the fuel tank mounted in the pod above the wing.

wow, i didnt think that would be good enough to do it, looks like im going to have to get building and try something like that out
thanks
Old 10-08-2004, 07:00 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Looking out of the left side should work fine for a still camera. I carry various wireless video systems on my Kadet ARF and I built a lite ply hard mount under the left wing between the innermost ribs. Originally I had a servo installed there with the CCD camera mounted on that to allow for fore and aft rotation. Finally just screwed an L shaped ply bracket there instead to cut down in the bad vibes. At half throttle (Super Tigre .51 ringed engine) the video is smooth as glass now.
If you can, mount the engine using some sort of soft mount.
Oh, the only crap I have ever gotten on the lens was from weed whipping the tall weeds during landing.
Old 10-08-2004, 09:07 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Thanks, FUBAR and all others. Some great ideas, kind of what I had in mind was the pod on outboard wing, I'll probably copy it on the other side to balance the drag.
Old 10-08-2004, 09:42 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

I have been using this method for about 3 years now with great success. I go to ratshack (radioshack) and buy one of their smaller project enclosures. About 1.5" wide, 2.5" long, and a little over an inch tall. I drill a hole out in one end big enough for lens of a CX-161 or similar board CCD camera to fit out. I then hot melt glue the heck out of it to the front wall as well as a couple bolts if the tabs on the side of the lens are present.

The advantage to this big box is I use foam double sided tape, about 3 pieces stacked in the back, and 10-12 in the front. Width wise across the box. I then put that on well attached monocote about 8-10 inches out under the left wing. I have little/no vibration problems and little prop arc, the taller tape in the front gives me some natural down angle. Flying with 10 degrees down angle on the camera looks pretty good and realistic in video. Trying to servo mount a camera is asking for troubles. Not saying it can't be done, just I opt to use multiple cameras and a video switch if I want to look in more then 1 direction.

BTW, blackwidowav.com is beta testing some r/c receiver controlled video camera switches. He is looking for people to purchase a 3 camera switch at a very very cheap price and test it out and report back your feelings. See thread furthur down in aerial photography.

Good luck, happy flying.

Matt Klarich
Old 10-08-2004, 09:51 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

wow, i didnt think that would be good enough to do it, looks like im going to have to get building and try something like that out
thanks
[/quote]

Brian,
It is a converted Frontier Senior ARF from World Models. Here are a few more shots....
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Old 10-09-2004, 01:19 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

My camera doesn't tilt but it does pan. I use a standard servo under the wing, and a mount is bolted to a servo horn. It's plugged into my flap channel and will point straight ahead, ninety degrees out and straight back. Although having more than one camera will do the same thing, this is a very simple and light setup. So far I've had no problems at all with it and it works very well for me.
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Old 10-16-2004, 05:29 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

I have just ordered my second camera and transmitter from Hong Kong. This time it is 800mw, to replace the 200mw, which I have now. The 200mw was interesting and proved the set-up, but was not very good in certain attitudes and ranges, although it did give some good video when far away at times, but dropped out at lower altitude. I hope the 8oomw, which has a separate transmiter will prove better. I will set the camera on the top of the tail fin, so that it looks past the plane, showing the engine etc. I plan to use a 600ma X 8 cell nicad mounted to compensate for the extra tail weight.

The problem with the flying camera is that I can not take my eyes off the plane to look at the pictures. It is not until I can re-wind the HandyCam and review, that I know if they are any good. How about TV spectacles, I wonder if I could fly this way. Anyone know where one can get these things?
Old 10-16-2004, 08:10 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

I saw some on the net somewhere that have a tiny tv screen in the corner of one lense. I'll try to remember where I saw them. You'll like the 800mw tx. Mine worked very well till I pulled the wires outta the darned thing. [:@]
Old 10-16-2004, 08:12 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Here are the glasses............http://www.blackwidowav.com/eyetops.html
Old 10-16-2004, 04:30 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

ORIGINAL: randall1959
.... Mine worked very well till I pulled the wires outta the darned thing. [:@]
Gotta hate when that happens! One trick I use is to push some hot glue or silicon into the case where the wires come out. It helps keep from pulling them off the board and prevents the wires from being worn bare against the sharp case and shorting out something important [X(]

Bill
Old 10-16-2004, 06:38 PM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Unfortunately my soldering skills weren't up to the task either. I didn't know how precarious the wire connections were until I opened up the tin case after the damage had allready been done. Had I known, I would popped open the case and added some shoo goo to the circuit board. Oh well, live and learn.....
Old 10-28-2004, 04:42 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

Hi again,

Having tried out my new 800mw system from Hong Kong, I rewired the airborne side to get rid of the heavy and cumbersome video connectors and harness. Soldering new servo type wires to the camera was tricky, but using a maginfying head set, I managed. I also wired in an on/off switch and an 8 cell NiCad. Tested out it worked very well and allowed me to build a new housing from card tube, from inside a roll of Solartrim with a turned up front of 6mm ply. Shaped to fit my leading edge, hardly notices.
Unfortunately while messing about with other NiCads, I managed to reverse the polarity and banG! there went my transmitter and camera. I ordered a new set at an even lower price. I then ordered just the camera and transmitter at a special price direct from Hong Kong. Both have now arrived very quickly. However they both were complete sets. Both have microphones fitted to the camera and one has the receiver with audio output. I now have four receiver sets. All identical except for one having Audio! Now I have to rewire the airborne sets again and modify my camera pod to include the microphone. I will say that the service I have received from LAULING in HONGKONG has been superb. They told me that a separate camera and transmitter would cost more than the complete set, so they sent me the lot for less than my original. Only five days after payment.

My airoplane is a Galaxy Mystic. 73" low wing sportster, wieghing 9 lbs. It has a very reliable and powerful Laser 150, mounted on vibration mounts and with extra silencing. It flies on a whisper of throttle and is almost impossible to tip stall, making it an ideal camera ship. With the camera pointing down about 10 degrees, it is like being in the pilots seat. Landing approach gives good shots of the field. I have not noticed any vibration effects, but have up to now had some white flecking accross the screen. Probably made worse as the pp9 battery ran down. Should be better with a stable NiCad supply.
Old 10-28-2004, 08:18 AM
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Default RE: best location for camera

How about pics of yer setup? Sounds good.
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