Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Moving pictures

Since Christmas I've been trying out different ways of mounting my new helmet camera. I'm not happy with it stuck on top of the helmet. It makes me feel like a Teletubby, and my first attempts always ended up capturing either too much sky or too much tarmac.

So I've been trying some different ways of mounting the camera on the bike - with varying degrees of success.

The challenge is to achieve a decent line of sight, with a reasonable amount of stability. I want the mount to be easily attached and detached (without harming the bike). For now I'm happy just to have the camera  pointing forwards, but in future it could be interesting to try some variations.

The camera came with a choice of different attachments, but none of them quite cuts it. I'm not sure how others do this, so to start with I tried bodging alternatives from various odds and ends. Then during the great sort-out of the office and attic last week I re-discovered my old Meccano set. The Magic of Meccano is that it makes it easy to try out all sort of different ideas.

My Mark-I custom camera mount hangs from one of the handlebar drops. After clearing a bit of paperwork this afternoon I treated myself to an hour on the bike to try it out. I  looped over Winter Hill as the afternoon came to an end. Here is the result.

Hanging the camera from the handlebar drops seems to work reasonably well. It's out of the way of the bar bag, brake cables, and other gizmos, so the camera has a reasonable line of sight. The mount is easy to attach and detach. I can see whether the little "recording" LED on the camera is flashing, and I can reach to turn recording on and off while I ride. It would be nice if it was easier to vary the direction that the camera points in, but that can wait for now. Although it doesn't bounce around as badly as I feared, I think the first priority is to work on making the attachment more rigid.


!i! said...

HI Peter, I'm still working on the JOSM Video extension (but still busy due to university stuff)

I've got currently a GoPro Helmet Cam with a wide angle lense. Normaly I think helmet cams aren't that good cause you have to mave your head away from the traffic on the road (damgerous) but with wide angle your luckyly recording the most stuff anyway.

What about mounting it on the side of your shoulders? Worked fine for me with a test pocket camcorder.

townmouse said...

That took me back!

gom1 said...

Thought it might from your earlier comments.

Ed said...

It would be interesting to know the make and model of camera you're using -- and to see how you rigged your Meccano mount.

gom1 said...

Thanks Ed - its a Veho Muvi.

I'll put up a picture of the mount shortly.

Thanks to !i! as well for the suggestion about shoulder mounting. I'' give that a try as well. Apart from anything else, every excuse for another outing!

Ed said...

Thought it might be a Muvi, Peter. I've been thinking of getting one myself, and your videos have just about clinched the deal.

Winter Hill looks like a delightful ride, by the way.