Control Systems

Camera control technologies range from Silly Putty to radio systems -- gather your notes on how to set up the cradle here

My new KAP Rig December 2021

I've just had the good news from Bill Blake that my new manual/auto rig is ready. He describes it as the "Mitchel/Wheeler KAP outfit" and has had advice from both of them to get it working.
It has a small video downlink built in but I expect and hope I can receive the video on my larger monitor screen too. (note to self... charge it up as well as the camera and lipo batteries)
He's bringing it up to York, UK on Monday 20th December 2021 so that's a good Christmas present to myself :) Not much wind is forecast so it may be an indoor KAP session. He needs to induct me into the details of how it works. It looks easy to operate but I think that there's more involved than it seems. Hope not!!
More about it after Monday.
Fly High


  • Sue, this looks like a great rig. I like the tilt slider and pan adjustment. And the live video is an awesome bonus. My Panasonic G6 has wifi video which Ive used for pole photography. Though I can't say if it would be usable for the kinds of distances that we fly our kites at.

  • edited December 2021

    Looks like a good and tidy system. Post some KAP pictures with it when you get them! I've been bitten by the R/C bug again and am working on a rig with pitch/pan/shutter/downlink for my Sony RX0 camera. I'm shooting for less than 400 grams total weight with the camera. Part of the design will be the ability to orient the camera in either landscape or portrait mode prior to launching. I do envy Bill Blake's electronics skills to be able to make a nice little controller like that. I will be using a standard R/C transmitter.

  • @ Dragon blade. The only way to find out how far your WiFi will work is to try it !!

  • edited December 2021

    Bill's construction skills are much better than mine, but the basic design of the transmitter (and some construction help) is described here
    The TX design includes a HoVer switch, but this is entirely optional.

  • Sue yes, I'll definitely try it! It will be a while before I attach an M4/3 camera to a kite line. I'm starting KAP with more simple, light weight cameras.

  • Looks great, Sue. I'm sure you'll soon master the operation - not sure that I could, but I'm way behind in matters technological.

  • There are some clever folks around - admin Dave is one of them, Bill Blake is another. Thanks both of you.
    @NZ flier it's not the operation of it, it's the design & construction that's the tricky part of this rig
    Fly High

  • We met up in the pub on York (UK) railway station and had an indoor KAP session. It was good to have first hand tuition from Bill. (Thanks for coming up Bill.)
    After a drink and a bite to eat we got the rig out and Bill showed me how to turn both the rig and the controller on. The controller needed the green shooting button while being switched on. The fast flashing LED on the rig slowed and then went off. That meant they were connected. The turn and the tilt operated as they should then and I took pictures of us both. Then when the switch on the top of the controller was flicked to the left it started it's autoKAP, so it took photos of the floor, the other folk in the pub, the windows and our drinks as well as more of us when we weren't looking.
    Here's some especially asked for by Montgdude!!

    Proper KAP photos when the wind picks up - but not too much as is forcast for Christmas Day & Boxing Day.

    Fly High

  • Glad to see it all worked as it should - congratulations to Bill on his persistence and determination!

  • Looking good. Get that rig up in the air!
    I am working on a new KAP rig / camera combinations....details coming soon ;-)

  • SueSue
    edited January 5

    I tried to fly the rig while I was in Edinburgh after Christmas, I used the Yorkshire flowform but the wind above the surrounding was too strong and unstable. I had to get Ken to help me put the ratchet on the "Camkite" reel. He then held the reel while I attempted to attach the rig and send it into the sky. It bounced too much so it was quickly taken down. No photos at all.
    Today 4 January 2022 after the frost melted, the sky was blue and the wind was OK so a trip to our usual park flying field was in order. I used the Yorkshire flowform again. The wind was strong enough above the surroundings but changed direction by 90 degrees and kept dropping off so the rig landed a few times. Good job I used the legs!
    When I was close enough to the rig it worked as it should but as the kite went higher, the rig stopped responding. The handset batteries needed charging!!! Still, I know it works on auto and manual but needs a steadier wind as the rig swung about too much.
    The little Boscam screen had failed already. It didn't hold it's charge when Bill handed it over. I have a bigger screen and the picture on that was great. When I arrived home, the new one I'd ordered had arrived. I just needs the strong Velcro attaching and we'll be in business again.
    First photos 4 January 2022 Unedited screenshot

    First photos edited screenshot

    The white structure on the RHSide is the Sutton Road lifting Bridge

    Ken flying his Airdynamics Standard Sport Kite.

    Dog walkers - cropped

    Selfie - Ken came to have a look.
    Our wind vane is in this photo. Very useful tool until they turn it off.

    Fly High

  • Good work Sue.

    Glad to see Ken is still in the picture!


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