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Old August 4th, 2009, 08:42 AM   #1
deuce228
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Default Need input on Aerial Video

I am purchasing a weather balloon. The lift on said balloons is around 6lbs.

We are contemplating what we want to do to collect video of events from the air.

I see we have a few options but wanted some input.

I could get a cheap point and shoot camera with video capability and get a Eye-Fi SD card. I believe I can enable my laptop to collect the video and use my air card to upload it to YouTube.

I could also get a small video cam and do something similar.

I have done some reading and because the balloon will be tethered I wondered if perhaps a Firewire webcam would be a better route.

I have also looked at some micro cams at radio control supply vendors. They claim to produce very high quality and using 2.4ghz I can get about 1100 feet broadcast range. The small size is the upside because it may allow me to build a radio control mount for panning.


Any other suggestions or ideas?
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Old August 4th, 2009, 08:45 AM   #2
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Silly question, how do you plan to keep the weather balloon steady? Wouldn't it rotate like crazy in the wind?
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Old August 4th, 2009, 08:49 AM   #3
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Silly question, how do you plan to keep the weather balloon steady? Wouldn't it rotate like crazy in the wind?
The balloon will have a cotton sleeve on it. I plan to have tether mounts on four sides to minimize rotation.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 09:04 AM   #4
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Also does anyone know if I can take an oxygen or acetelyne tank that is empty and paint itto use for helium?
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Old August 4th, 2009, 10:14 AM   #5
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Also does anyone know if I can take an oxygen or acetelyne tank that is empty and paint itto use for helium?
maybe an o2 tank, but definatally not an acetelyne tank, they have acetone in them to steady the gas.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 10:16 AM   #6
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spying on the hot neighbor who tans topless?
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Old August 4th, 2009, 10:50 AM   #7
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spying on the hot neighbor who tans topless?
No, videos from Festivals for my news site.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 03:56 PM   #8
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Silly question, how do you plan to keep the weather balloon steady? Wouldn't it rotate like crazy in the wind?
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The balloon will have a cotton sleeve on it. I plan to have tether mounts on four sides to minimize rotation.
I would think that some properly weighted tampons would work nicely for this...it may take a few days to get it just right
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Old August 4th, 2009, 04:12 PM   #9
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6 pounds of lift would include your ropes, look at fishing line (braided pike line?)

Will you use 4 people to feed out the line?

I would do 2 upwind lines 45 degrees off wind direction and a third line due down wind.

I do this all the time, but my balloons are a little bigger, about 1400 pounds of lift.

Any winds over 6-8 knots will be a pain.

you will need top and bottom attachment points on the balloon or it will bob around.

Helium is easy to get, but no-one will fill anything but a helium bottle.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 04:40 PM   #10
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6 pounds of lift would include your ropes, look at fishing line (braided pike line?)

Will you use 4 people to feed out the line?

I would do 2 upwind lines 45 degrees off wind direction and a third line due down wind.

I do this all the time, but my balloons are a little bigger, about 1400 pounds of lift.

Any winds over 6-8 knots will be a pain.

you will need top and bottom attachment points on the balloon or it will bob around.

Helium is easy to get, but no-one will fill anything but a helium bottle.

Holy Christ?! 1400 lbs of lift, what is the diameter of those?

What is the difference between an oxygen tank and a helium tank? The color right?
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Old August 4th, 2009, 05:17 PM   #11
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Holy Christ?! 1400 lbs of lift, what is the diameter of those?

What is the difference between an oxygen tank and a helium tank? The color right?
55 feet in diameter, 80 feet tall

Helium is an inert gas, oxygen is not, I use AGA for small tanks, haven't bought one in 10 years, was about $100 then, $30-40 to fill it, lasts the equivelent of 2-300 12" balloons.

If you are doing this at festivals you will have issues with people grabbing lines and pulling on them unless you have staff on each line.

Most festivals will require some sort of insurance as well.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 05:29 PM   #12
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55 feet in diameter, 80 feet tall

Helium is an inert gas, oxygen is not, I use AGA for small tanks, haven't bought one in 10 years, was about $100 then, $30-40 to fill it, lasts the equivelent of 2-300 12" balloons.

If you are doing this at festivals you will have issues with people grabbing lines and pulling on them unless you have staff on each line.

Most festivals will require some sort of insurance as well.
We have insurance that should cover it but I will double check. The lines will be manned. The balloon will not be up long. More in the heat of the event that it will be launched for some short footage. Aiming for something a bit more unique than others are currently doing.
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