MD80 minicam

Gravitywerx Sunday, 8/1/2010

I've been playing with my ebay MD80 mini cam ($17) with the intention of getting some in-car footage. However, it isn't up to extreme high-speed lateral movement so it won't really be adequate for the turns but the straights should be okay. It is better suited for side-by-side straight racing. It is self contained with memory from a micro SD card (not included) and is in AVI format which imports to Windows Movie Maker to be slo-moed. Here is some footage from it clipped to the exit of turn 2.


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Gravitywerx 8/7/10 I scored a camera vehicle at a yard sale today. It's a pickup truck approx 1/32 scale with smooth plastic wheels. The MD80 is mounted just behind the cab and secured with a chunk of formed styrofoam. The alignment chute footage is good but the vehicle is a little squirrelly after that. Even on the straights. That truck keeps up with traffic! George

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redlinederby 8/7/10
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LOL! That is awesome! Now we all know what it's like to be a 1:64 driver. Very cool...three cheers for mini cameras. I always wanted a tiny camera for my model train when I was little. That's a lot of fun for $17! Hmmmm

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markkaz 8/7/10

I have future plans that include filming races so I had
considered mini-cams. As I suspected, they don't have
very good frame rate to catch any fast action.

Good high-speed cameras are between $600 to $1000
and thus, I don't have one yet.

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Gravitywerx 8/8/10

These 30fps cams are adequate for straight line racing. It's the lateral movement that can't keep up. I'm trying to figure out a way to keep the cam vehicle aligned to at least get good straightaway footage. George

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JDC442 8/8/10

I'd like to see what that cam could do on one of our downhill tracks. I think it would be like sitting in the driver's seat of one of our racers during a head-to-head match up. Cool huh?

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Gravitywerx 8/9/10

All you need is a slightly larger (and slower) vehicle to straddle both lanes and shoot footage from behind. I'm getting another cam for $12 so shop around ebay. They do not include the micro SD card, but you might have one from an old cellphone. A new 10GB costs about $10. This cam has a feature that starts filming when sound is heard, but I don't know if the plastic track would activate it. No problem with that at noisy Gravitywerx International! George

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Gravitywerx 8/9/10 Improved footage achieved by slowing lead car. Can only slow so much to prevent stalling at level spot before turn 2.

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Gravitywerx 8/15/10 Been working on this for a few weeks. I finally finished it Sat after scoring some suade-like material at a yard sale. Also installed some liftable wheels from an old lawn-mower. Frame must sit on ground to remain level and prevent shifting when ten cars hit a turn. Also cut up swing set in back yard and plan to use 2 inch riser tube that is still decent shape (galvanized) to launch 30-40 cars at once! George

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JDC442 8/15/10

Looks good George. Great looking shots of your race cars in their new "pit" area. So the larger white car must be the camera car?

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markkaz 8/15/10

It looks great!

Love your new overhead video!

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Gravitywerx 8/16/10

Yes, the out-of-scale pickup truck is the cam vehicle. The minicam slides down into the styrofoam holder in the bed and can be turned backwards. The truck crashes more often than not when it's in front. It's pretty fast but when it's behind the field it lags at the start and I have to give it a little shove to close up on the pack. The minicam fits right into a mic holder which I happen to have because I do music. The stand has a boom which I can put anywhere. If the cam is clipped to the track it vibrates and the shots are blurry. George

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