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Protection ideas for camera rigs

Just wondering if we could compile a list of ideas on ways to protect a camera rig in the event of a kite crash. I have seen some ideas on the forum in the past and I did a search but could not find them again. I do recall someone added some kind of padding to their cameras. Another idea could be something similar to a roll bar / roll cage as used on a dune buggy. Though obviously designed in such a way that it's outside of the field of view of the lens.


  • edited October 2020

    Although some rigs offer camera protection, it turns out that it’s not very popular. I think the reason is that there are really two sorts of ‘crash’. The most frequent (at least in my case) where the line breaks and the rig falls from a great height. In such cases the camera is almost certain to be badly damaged whatever protection the rig offers - a fall from over 100’ hits the ground really hard and protecting against it would add an awful lot of weight to the rig.
    The other sort of cash is where the kite loses altitude so quickly that the rig drops to ground level and then is dragged about as the kite veers across the sky. Here the most likely damage is to the zoom lens mechanics (Canon cameras are particularly prone to this) or water damage if rig was over water.
    Both of these scenarios are typically caused by human error - failure to check the line for wear, failure to check the camera or rig is securely attached in the first case or failure to watch for changes in the speed of the wind in the second. Better to take care and avoid the problem than spend time and money insuring against it.
    That said, some rigs do offer protection - for example this one of Hampshire Fenton’s:

  • The reason why I started this thread was because I only heard recently that delta shaped kites do have a tendency to dive. And I have a delta myself so this is a little concerning.

    Speaking of line failure, I notice that there are some KAPers who don't use carabiners on the line due to the sharp edge when you open them up. Ive actually decided to avoid them as well when it's my time to attach a camera rig. I have seen something else in a KAP video that makes a good substitute. I'm not exactly sure what it's called but I believe it's used in fishing and the line can be wrapped around it two or three times on each side (it has open ends for doing so.)

    Interesting cage design there by Hamish.

    I thought I recall seeing a photo showing rods protruding from a camera rig somewhere on this forum. Obviously, the rods extended past the camera so they would hit the ground instead of the camera.

  • Maybe in this Flickr album you will find the rig you are looking for

  • Dragonblade, if you buy the right carabiners there are no sharp edges. Try these, which I can recommend:

  • I found that this light weight aluminum offers some protection during dragging. This is just a cheap action cam but I also put tape over the camera's usb port. I fly a Levitation delta with a fuzzy tail and haven't had much trouble with diving when above 100'.

  • As an alternative to carabiners you can use KAP clips or Brooxes Hangups. The KAP clips hook securely on to the line and the line is wound round both sides of the hangups. Here's a KAPshop page.
    I also use legs secured to the frame on special Brooxes bolt on leg brackets. They come off for storage. I like to use them in long grass, over sand, concrete, mud etc so the rig and camera can land gently if the wind dies. They don't seem to be available on the KAPshop site. The site only ship to North America and cost $18 a pair. (talk nicely to Peter Bults at the KAPshop and he might be able to order some for you.)

    Fly High

  • Peter B is AWOL. I suggest you don't try contacting :-(

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