Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training: Advice for beginning camera jumping: Edit Log

Divalent  (C 40494)

Aug 1, 2012, 8:53 AM

Views: 3058
Advice for beginning camera jumping

[Edited to add: as I note in response to a comment below, my purpose for having a camera is for personal POV recordings, with no intention to move on to become a camera flyer.]

I am approaching the point were I think I will be strapping on a camera (got a few dozen more jump to go). Although one can find lots of admonishments here to wait until you get 200 jumps, I haven't run across a good concisely-packaged list of advice for how to safely integrate a camera into ones jumping routine once they have enough experience. (There was, however, several threads where low timers were asking for such advice, and it seems like the only answer they got was "just wait or you will kill yourself; and when you have enough jumps, then go talk to someone who knows.")

Anyway, after looking over the camera incidents thread, and talking to people I trust as thoughtful safety conscious folks, I thought I'd take a stab at coming up with something myself. Obviously I have no experience, so this is just a initial attempt, and might strike those of you with experience as either naive and/or downright dangerous.

Please treat this as a starting list for someone who has the jump numbers and presence of mind to not get overwhelmed by adding a camera, but needs some pointers/advice so that they go about in a safe (or safer) way.

Thus, your comments, additions, modifications, etc. would be appreciated. Additional things you might want to add are particular skill sets that should be mastered: IOW, things not directly related to jumping with a camera, but should be skills that someone with 200 jumps might not necessarily have picked up along the way before they consider jumping with a camera.

Jumping with a Camera: dos and don'ts:

- get a helmet cutaway chin strap. (and learn/practice how to use it).
- get advice on mounting in a way that minimizes snag potential.
- become thoroughly familiar with using the camera on the ground (on/off, image settings, mounting, charge, etc) well before taking it on that first jump.
- Until you have a lot of experience jumping a camera, and are very comfortable with it being part of your jump routine, don't be (or pretend to be) a "camera flyer" filming yourself or others. Just think of it as logging your own experience.
- Turn on the camera at the 2 minute warning on jump run; not later than that.
- Do a complete handle check sequence and leg chest helmet strap check immediately after turning the camera on in the plane. (The idea is that you will record that check, so that it becomes habit, just in case thinking about camera led you to overlook something.)
- If something isn't right by the time the door opens on jump run, just forget about recording that jump. (e.g., forgot/failed to power on, or adjust aim, etc)
- Although one should forget about the camera is recording during the jump, do be aware that physically it is there, and be cautious when climbing out and when bunching together for a linked exit, etc. (But once out the door, forget about what the camera is recording, although be mindful that it is there.)
- Do several solo jumps with it at the start so you can develop a routine without distraction. (Perhaps even a hop-n-pop to start if you jump at a busy DZ.)
- Consider opening 1K higher than usual until you get comfortable with the presence of the camera.
- Think about scenarios that might involve snags on the camera and how you should adjust your EPs to deal with them.

Comments additions criticisms welcome.

(This post was edited by Divalent on Aug 1, 2012, 11:02 AM)

Edit Log:
Post edited by Divalent () on Aug 1, 2012, 10:03 AM
Post edited by Divalent () on Aug 1, 2012, 11:02 AM

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