Lessons Learned

Had an epiphany? Stepped in a metaphorical cow pie? Share the experience here.

Salted - Cold Wet Facts

The kite slowly dove to the horizon….steadied…..held position…..and recovered to the dark skies above Boston Harbor on a cold and windy December night.

The KAP rig with my Sony A6000 did not fare as well. The KAP rig disappeared below the cold, dark and icy waves in Boston Harbor….. Kiss of death in the salt water. My three plus year run with my favorite KAP camera the Sony A6000 fitted with the Sony 20mm prime lens came to a cold and dark end.

Boston Night KAP


Kite Aerial Photography (KAP) is fun, enjoyable, relaxing, focused, tension at times and risky.

The risk are real and I look back with a bit of wonder that the Sony A6000 survived hundreds of KAP flights spanning over 3 1/2 years.

Silver lining.... I did remove my Hero 3+ from my dual camera KAP rig just prior to the flight due to lighter wind.....a small savings....

Next steps….I have placed an order for a used Sony a5100 fitted with a new Sony 20mm prime lens. I have also purchased a replacement CamRemote KAP controller. Why …. A bit lighter (and cheaper) than the Sony A6000. The current models Sony a6500 all cost more and also weigh more.

I am will also be exploring some experimental “desalting” and water removal over the next few days. I will also be trying to recover the Sony lens, CamRemote and servos.

I was able to recover the KAP pictures off the SD card.......Enjoy a few photos from the last KAP flight of my Sony A6000.


Boston Night KAP




  • Jim, considering all the adventures you have in your KAPping, which must be unequaled anywhere, it's almost a miracle that your kit survived so long. Have you worked out the cost per shot taken? I think you will have had very good value from your purchase.
    I hope you have equal service from your next camera.
  • Jim,
    I agree.
    You and that rig have likely had many " got away with it again " moments. To the credit
    of you both.
    Every scheme works only for so long. Good news is, it's not stopping you !

    Press on !

    Sometimes you eat the bear. Sometimes, the bear eats you !

    Keep flying,

    PS: Boston looks good at night. Even Old Ironsides with the Christmas tree
    on deck !
  • Hey Jim. It's been a while since a 'mishap' posting!!

    Having had a bad experience with the focus of the A5100, I would have invested in another A6000. Hopefully you have better luck with yours when it arrives.
  • Making progress...

    Salted KAP rig from night KAP session above Boston Harbor has been repaired. Net outcome:
    - Sony A6000 - total loss - replaced with used Sony TI5100 - was not satisfied with this camera - main drawback was no IR trigger....so...returned and purchased a new Sony A6000 - much better!
    - Sony 20mm prime lens - total loss - replaced with new Sony 20mm lens
    - CAMRemote 2.0 KAP controller - partial loss - decided to replace with new CAMRemote 3.0 KAP controller
    - IR trigger cable - workable but a few of the wires were exposed (due to hundreds of KAP flights) - decided to replace with new
    - Micro pan servo - was successful in desalting and bringing this unit back to life - I did get a couple of replacement micro servos but I am holding off till I get a failure
    - Standard Hitec HS-625MG (metal gears) - was able to desalt and bring back to life this servo also. Did pick up a replacement but decied to keep the working servo in place for now.

    While I was at it - I reprogrammed my auto KAP 360 bracket pattern to cut the time to complete one 360 pan with three pan angles from about 8 minutes down to 3 minutes. This should help with the many short popup KAP sessions that I typically fly.

    Re-positioned the location of the CAMRemote KAP controller to be opposite the battery location vs. directly under the battery location. Should help speed battery swaps and place less stress on the CAMRemote connector pins.

    Added in my GoPro Hero 3 black to my dual camera KAP rig - mostly shoot Kite Aerial Video (KAV) with the Hero 3. Lucky for me the Hero 3 was not on the rig when it took a dip in the salt water!

    Heading back to Japan in a few days....will be bringing my kites and updated KAP rig in hopes of squeezing in some flying time in between a very busy work schedule.

    See pictures of updated KAP rig below.


    Updated KAP rig.
    Updated KAP rig.
    Updated KAP rig.

    Updated KAP rig.

  • CRC 6-66 Marine ; CRC 6-66 Marine ; CRC 6-66 Marine ; CRC 6-66 Marine ; CRC 6-66 Marine ;

    Smac from Italy
  • Le roi est mort, vive le roi!

    Sorry for your loss, Jim. Good to see you quick revival!

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