Jul 22, 2013, 2:57 AM
Post #1 of 35
AFF - handycam
I'm interested in the experience out there and thoughts on the use of handycam by AFF instructors.
I currently use helmet mounted gopro to provide debrief feedback to students and I am thinking of changing. Questions I have are: - general experience using the system and the quality of the debrief footage? - can a single glove / mount be used on both R and L hands? - possible interference with canopy management, esp high speed landings.
Not used one, and do not think/cannot envision that for any reason - when conducting AFF jumps, I EVER would. Apparently, you've never (yet) been in the situation where you've had to get your hand(s) involved in say assisting a bag extraction from the pack-tray, b/c the student held, then "half-hitched" his PC?
I can think of way too many instances, exposure to nothing but pure TROUBLE, having a "Handi-Cam" set up perched on my hand, during AFF could cause, or become a part of / cause further problems/difficulty for.
IMO - the potential benefit "reward", is not worth its respective trade-off of exposure to added risk (and in my mind/experience anyway very - real, to consider) potential.
I use hand cam for tandems but not for AFF. For AFF there's just too much shit you need your hands for. Hell, I can't even take off a seatbelt while wearing a camera glove - it's just too tight a fit.
Imagine trying to dump a student that surprises you and pulls before you get there. Bridle around your hand cam and now what... I don't do it and wouldn't recommend it. And I would have concerns if you we're opposite me wearing one. Just my 2 cents.
I can't for the life of me figure out why ANYONE would consider using handcam on an AFF jump (on either side). I jump a contour roam side-mounted on all of my AFF jumps and it's 170 degree field of view gives me fantastic footage without me having to work for it at all, even when I'm doing CAT A/B "no-release" dives.
I've not actually seen a hand-cam glove in real life. I'd figured that, looking at the size of my gopro, there was likely some smart dude who'd made a slick, unobstructive design. But perhaps I'm ahead of the curve there
[Perhaps an opp for some smart inventor / rigger type]
I made a mount pillow for my Go Pro (like and old belly altimeter mount) that snaps on some covered clips on my jumpsuit on my belly. Nothing on my head to catch or bump anything. I snap it on a couple of minutes before exit. I can turn it on and see that its on and in the right mode. It gets a full shot of the student (see attached still capture) and I get to watch my canopy opening. Just turn it on right before exit and forget about it. Mindless, just like me.
if you want to change it up use a gopro chest mount, the only thing it won't capture is when you turn your head to do full body scans, personally I would leave it on your head, why fix something that isn't broken?
I need and want my hands free for the student and would never think of using a handycam - what I am using is either the the headstrap or mostly the breastmount GoPro have - gives a great pic of the student and free hands for the student :)
I've been using my gopro3 mounted on the front of my helmet. The 3 is pretty low profile and I have a thin helmet that keeps it close to my head, but I am probably still going to kill myself.
Since video on a student jump is extremely beneficial to the learning process I will try out the 1 3/4" chest strap mount that Para Gear sells. That should get a decent shot and be as snag free as you can get.
I'll bite. I've tried a wrist mount go-pro for AFF and I've jumped with a much more experienced AFFI who also tried the wrist-mount go-pro. Neither video was even close to being usable for instructional debrief. Too much shaking and hard to keep in frame. Add that the the snag-fest and it's a loser as far as I'm concerned.
That said, +1 to the side-mount contour for AFF jumps. And the 170 degree versions are better than the 135 degree versions.
there is a 1" mount as well. Be aware that if you have a thick chest strap you may need to have the folded ends disassembled to get it mounted. The slots for the strap are very thin. Some assembly required...
Here's what I did; turned out real easy: 1. Bought a Gopro wrist mount at Paragear. 2. Pulled out my old foam triangle alti mount from about 1988 (hardly used so still in great shape) 3. Inside about 4 min wrapped the wrist mount around the old alti mount 4. Onto chest strap and good to go
Results are superb on my first try out, best I could have hoped for - real chuffed :)
If you're interested I have a photo attached of the setup and a couple screen grabs of the resulting debrief visuals.
(Only double levels today, so not sure yet how release dives will look)
Thks to everyone that gave input and advice. Great forum!