DSLR KAP: farewell to the picavet

A single sentence in Tom Benedicts piece on KAP rig stabilisation metrics jumped out at me and had me running to the workshop (well shed actually)

“Picavet rigs like to yaw back and forth. Pendulum rigs like to pitch fore and aft around an axis perpendicular to the kite line”

Don’t I know it! I use a gyro servo on the tilt axis and have noticed that if the camera is at right angles to the kite line I get fewer rejects than otherwise.  I have also noticed the apallling backlash on the picavet, it can take a good 3 to 5 seconds for the reaction to pan movements to settle down as the whole thing to twists and untwists. I’d promised myself I’d revert to pendulum after my last tiresome batch of blurred shots with the D5100.

So now the swap’s done and the rig (+ pendulum and bar) weighs in at an awful 1.35Kg.

What I have gained in weight I have lost in set-up tangles and, I hope, instability.This is the method of suspension that has served me well so far, the connector is cut from a square section ( 27mm x 27mm) aluminum extrusion and the post from 6mm dia aluminum bar.  All nuts are nylock and counter tightened.

The extra height to the rig means I have to re-jig the box layout:  

Still it all gets in ok; the split lens and body is a shame but a bit of field discipline should keep the dirt out.

So now I have to play ‘wait for the weather’ to see if I can improve the hit rate. To up my chances I’ll be experimenting with ‘hyperfocal’ fixed focusing to see if I can get sharp images from 2m to infinity and avoid the autofocus gaffes caused by the ‘live view’ method.

About billboyheritagesurvey

Heritage worker
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