Action video from an airplane

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Action video from an airplane

  • Hi,


    How can I record video from the wingtip of my full-size airplane (sailplane/glider)? With me sitting in the cockpit, I'd like to be able to turn on/off THREE cameras (all at once): on the wingtip, outside the plane on the vertical tail, and in the cockpit videoing the pilot (me). There's the issue of how small the wires would be (taped to the outside of the airplane? Wireless?) and how I could record three tracks (wingtip, tail, cockpit) simultaneously.





  • Not totally my area, but -

    • You would need three recorders and three cameras to record three inputs simultaneously.
    • I would be very worried about aerodynamic effects on the aircraft with taped wires (and also about the tape coming loose at speed).  I can't say it would be a guaranteed problem, but I would contact the aircraft manufacturer before I tried it.  (Keep in mind that they might not know either and would tell you not to do it to avoid liability.
    • There could also be aerodynamic effects from the cameras themselves - as well as weight/balance effects, but those should be minimal.
    • Wireless (if they make wireless transmitting cameras) would be less of a problem, but you would need to ensure that the wireless frequencies didn't interfere with any of the avionics/navigation/radio equipment (if any on the plane).
    • What you really probably should do is run the wiring inside the skin of the airplane, but I don't know what is involved in pulling and replacing the skin panels.

    Hope This Helps!!!

    Anyone else have suggestions?

    2002 Ford Focus JVC KD-A815 Sony CDX-GT410u Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner Stock speakers, no amp, no subs

  • I don't know that I would use standard consumer cameras.  I don't know where skateboarders, skydivers, etc. get their gear but I'd go find and ask them.

    While looking around for wireless cameras, keep in mind that each camera might need it's own dedicated frequency.  Like R/C cars, they could interfere with one another.

    As for the avionics and weight - definitely get expert advice on us.  Take airplane advice from a stereo guy and you might end up in the paper.

  • Talked this over with a co-worker whom I trust (but still verify this and don't take this as authorization to modify it), but his thoughts are:

    • Weight and balance likely is not an issue.
    • Wireless likely is not an issue.
    • Taping wires to the wing IS A BIG ISSUE, and to the fuselage going back to the tail could be an issue.  You are modifying the airfoil and could cause that wing to stall before the other wing does.  It might be okay, but it's not worth finding out ....
    • The glider probably has provisions at least for navigation lights and cockpit lighting.  Assuming these are powered by the main battery (assuming it has a battery), you could likely follow the wiring (internal to the wing) that the lighting circuits use, but I don't know what would be involved in removing the skin panels and accessing this.

    Again, recommend you get more opinions before doing anything - I mainly wanted to pass along the warning on what NOT to do.

    Hope This Helps!!! 

    2002 Ford Focus JVC KD-A815 Sony CDX-GT410u Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner Stock speakers, no amp, no subs