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FlyingMonkey

GoPro Mounting & Power

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Hey all...

 

I like taking GoPro video, but the darned camera doesn't always make it easy.  My Hero3 Black edition camera has about as much stamina as John Goodman running a marathon.  From a full charge I get *maybe* an hour shooting 1080p video, and that drops to 30-45min when the WiFi is turned on.  In other words, it's got about as much endurance as John Goodman in a marathon.  

 

This is not too much of a problem when shooting footage from inside the cockpit, as I can reach the camera to change batteries, turn it off when not in use, etc. It becomes a real headache when mounting the camera externally; I'm stuck with either using WiFi to control it and having the camera running out of juice very quickly, or turning the camera on before takeoff and the camera usually running out of juice in an hour and not making it to the end of the flight or the destination.  No way to win!

 

I think I have a solution.  What I really need is a way to power the camera externally when it's mounted externally.  I have this external USB battery:

 

http://www.amazon.com/External-New-Trent-Smartphones-Micro-USB/dp/B003ZBZ64Q/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1443191310&sr=8-4&keywords=new+trent+usb+battery

 

Which I have confirmed works well to charge the camera while running...for many hours (it's a 12000MAh battery, the internal GoPro battery is 2000MAh) with both WiFi and the camera running.

 

My normal external mount point is a suction mount next to the tie down ring & inspection cover on the left wing.  What I am proposing is the following:

 

1) Drill a smallish  (probably 1/4" to 1/2" is plenty) hole in the plexi inspection cover.

 

2) Mount the USB battery in the wing, using adhesive velcro strips (temporary, so no LOA/MRA required)

 

3) Run a USB charge cable from the GoPro to the USB battery, through/around the tie down ring, and through the hole in the inspection cover.

 

4) Secure everything as necessary with rubber bands and/or zip ties.  I normally don't secure my camera to the the tie down ring, but in this setup I probably will, tight enough that that it won't flop and bang around too much if it comes loose.  

 

Does anybody see any problems or safety concerns with this?  When the camera is not mounted the hole in the cover will be covered with a plastic cap or Bolus tape.

 

 

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Hi Andy,

 

You can do it a few ways. One way is to just record at a lower dpi.

You can also use a battery in the wing at the inspection port and plug into that. It can be a fairly good sized battery without any issues.

Then I have seen a few run a long wire through the wing into the cockpit for the 12V supply. 

I like the battery in the wing. Use some good industrial strength velcro and run the wire through a small hole out the clear inspection port and plug the camera in. That will pretty much give you an unlimited power supply. With the camera plugged into a good power supply then you could use your Ipad (plug the Ipad into your 12V power in the plane) to turn it on or off or take pictures whenever you wanted.

 

When I'm in my side by side Polaris Razor I put the camera by suction cup on the roof and run the wire down to a double USB plug and then plug my Ipad into that too. Now I can control the camera, see what the camera sees and all with unlimited power. Then I'm only relegated in my recordings to the size of the micro SD card.

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Great Roger, sounds like we're on the same page.  

 

I have the GoPro WiFi remote, I'm not sure if I'll use that or the iPad app for control.  The iPad app gives a preview and more control, but since I do a lot of nav on my iPad I don't know how switching between Garmin Pilot and the GoPro app will work.  I tested it on my desk and it works okay, but I need to flight test.

 

I have a USB charger for the WiFi remote, I might just plug that in and velcro the remote to the dash.  Less control, but one button simplicity.  Sometimes simple is better for my caveman brain.  :)

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I use the Gopro app and another nav map on my Ipad at the same time. I switch back and forth and there are no issues. I use the nav app most of the time, but swap to the Gopro occasionally to turn it off and on. I did it this way this morning and recorded 2 hours of trail riding. 

 

Got out of the Polaris Razor to let the dogs have a break. Forgot I had the camera on facing forward and took a pee out in the woods. I guess I should edit that part.  :bad_day-3329:  :laughter-3293:

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Andy,

 

I use RAVPOWER portable batteries to power all 5VDC equipment, iphone, ipad, GoPro's, GPS, etc.  Everyone of those devices get's external power inflight from the RAVPOWER batteries.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Powerful-Portable-RAVPower-Technology-Lightning/dp/B00MQSMEEE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1443524353&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=ravpower+usb+battery&psc=1

 

I like the pricing - $29.99, capacity -16000mAh, and size.  Running two (2) GoPro's Black 3+ w/32g sd cards simultaneously, controlled by iPad Mini running Foreflight at the same time. Never depleated battery, not even close.  Typical trip was 3 to 4 hours twice weekly. 

 

Only drawback was purchasing the 4T external hard drives ($$) to accommodate all the recordings, lots.

 

I recorded video's (GoPro Black 3+) and audiio (Sony ICD-PX312) of all flights. Don't ask, I am anal engineer!

 

Tunny

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Thanks Tunny.  I charge my phone & tablet from a USB charger in the 12V socket.  One thing I noticed with the GoPro 3, if you charge it from a 2.1A+ socket, it will eventually overheat and shutdown.  It does fine from a 1A charger.  

 

This would probably not be a problem when hanging out is 100kt+ airflow, but it's something to consider.  Not sure if the GoPro 3+ accepts higher amperage more gracefully.

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Andy,

 

Interesting you shoud mention overheating.  I've owned 3's and 3+'s and yes they got extremely hot with external charging and recording simultaneously, but never gave much thought about the power source creating the heat. 

 

Usually I shut down the camera's, and changed SD cards when landing at KFFC (half way point).  Pit stopped and resumed the flight, after getting grandchildren, home.

 

In addition to using GoPro's I've also used a Casio EXILIM Hi-Zoom for recording.  Now that camera would get hot and shut down, changed to GoPro's and never had a heat shut down happen with a GoPro.

 

And you are probably correct leaving the camera out in the wind stream will result in lower temperatures.

 

The engineer will have to try with a lower charge rate and see what happens, both to the GoPro 3 and 3+, will keep you advised.

 

Tunny

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Andy,

 

Unfortunately I am planeless at the moment, we got too good a deal on the 182 to keep it, and the mission changed.  Looking at LSA's ever since the 182 was sold.

 

Flying a friends Sport Cruiser, sure is easy on the pocketbook.

 

Certain criteria has to be met:

 

1 - Payload

2- Wife appeal.  Maybe I should put that 1st.  She's looked and touched but still hasn't taken the bait.  Going to Seebring in January to look again.

 

I was standing in the yard when a friend flew over, her comment was "I can see you really miss it".  Yep I do!

 

So until I acquire another plane I can dream.

 

I was based out of KSSI, not really in your neck of the woods.  Just flew near there twice every weekend

 

Tunny

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Interesting you should mention that.  We had a BRS chute installed, in the 182, at time of purchase.  Didn't take much room in the rear, less than 1 ft. square, by 3 or so ft tall.  If activated it would blow out the back window.  I will take BRS's word that it would work.  But as I said I am now plane less and someone else has that additional protection.

 

A couple of the guys called me a wuss, said you should be able to get down without the need of a chute.  Flying over the woods at night with no ground reference created a need for additional security.

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People who say that crap are decrepit old fools (even if they aren't actually old). Yes, you should be able to come down without a chute, as in have the skill to do it in case the chute fails to deploy, but that doesn't mean you should be forced to as an only option.

 

I was one of the chute haters for a while (despite having one) before reading a couple of FastEddieB's posts a while back and realized pride is one hell of a hidden enemy.

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What is sucked in when rocker arm breaks

Broken Rocker Arm

Hole in Valve Cover

 

Just before acquiring the 182 this happened to our other aircraft.  When you are going along and a loud "bang" and the prop stops, all the training regarding engine out better take over.

 

Good training and practice, practice, practice paid off.  No injuries, no lost aircraft.  Happened during daylight and found an airfield close enough.  Didn't land on the numbers, but still landed on the runway.

 

So I am definitely a believer in BSR, even though we didn't have one at the time.

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Sure you should be able to get the airplane down with pilot skill.  But a frighteningly large percentage of off-airport landings end in fatalities.  So far for BRS deployments within the design envelope, it's zero.  If this happens to me and there is any doubt of the outcome, I'll hit the silk.

 

Besides, engine failure is only one type of emergency.  What about a midair?  Or disorientation due to VFR into IMC?  Structural failure?

 

And to a non-pilot like my wife, none of the skill arguments hold much weight.  If you have a heart attack and keel over, the chute is their only chance of survival.

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That's one speculation.  A & P said he saw something like that before.  Sure was comforting.

 

The engine was a Lycoming IO-540 with 450 hours, regular oil change's (50 hours) flown ROP.  Had some plug problems, didn't meet resistance specifications, 40 or so hours before.  Changed all plugs.

 

The interesting thing was how the rocker arm broke.  New engine took care of that little mishap. 

 

Sure gets quiet when the prop stops; then you declare an emergency.  Got everyone's attention quickly.

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Andy,

 

Your are correct, too many other things can happen up in the air and you can't just pull over to the side of the road.

 

So I, like you, am a firm believer in a chute. 

 

The next plane also has to have a chute.

 

Both time my wife looked at a CT, they were SW's, she looked back at me with disbelief in her eyes.  Her comment was "how do people get in that plane and where do they sit?"

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Lycoming engines are known for valve stem and camshaft problems. It's their Achilles's heel.

 

By the way, lycoming did change rocker design a few years back. Maybe it was to address problems like this?

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Both time my wife looked at a CT, they were SW's, she looked back at me with disbelief in her eyes.  Her comment was "how do people get in that plane and where do they sit?"

 

Ha!  It's a small plane for sure, but it has a big cockpit...as wide as a Cessna 210.  I admit I don't like the laid out leg position though, it makes it hard to keep your feet off the pedals when cruising long distances.  

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