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r/c aerial cam

I was fortunate enough to be bought a "real" radio controlled airplane from my grandparents before I had even entered high school. At this time, I was envying similarly aged youth who I read about in magazines flying aircraft wildly more expensive and complex aircraft, instead of asking myself what I could do to set myself apart from the rest of the me-too hobbyists.

Once I had obtained my first job in high school and was earning some disposable income, I decided to buy myself what was essentially just a larger, more powerful version of the airplane my grandparents had first bought me. It occurred to me one day that I not only owned a camera which was not only extremely thin in profile, but that also matched the color scheme of my aircraft. Without much thought to weight, balance or even the safety of my own equipment, I haphazardly taped this camera to the fuselage of the plane and ran out to the local field to see if it worked.

While it did work, the camera itself didn't work as intended. The timer setting did not work very well and video, while still captivating to watch, was low resolution and lacking any sound. My solution to this was, naturally, to realize that my phone recorded video with sound, and that I should simply tape that to my airplane the next time I went out on a sunny day.

Fast forward through some history involving one camera falling a few hundred yards onto concrete, an airplane and my phone being stuck in a tree for a week and the unavoidable attempt with a friend's camera that was simply too big and heavy to fly, and I finally had a formula that worked. Due to a terrible crash involving one of my other planes, I had a much more powerful motor sitting around that I bolted onto the front of the plane I used to haul my camera. My camera itself was upgraded to another similarly thin-profile unit that had superior optics, higher resolution and, most importantly, sound recording.

The below videos show the result of this combination, filmed in 2007. Since then I have acquired yet better equipment but due to university, I haven't been able to get everything set up.