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Author Topic: Simple Pan/Tilt System  (Read 56 times)

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Online Deerslayer

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Simple Pan/Tilt System
« on: November 18, 2017, 09:34:36 AM »
Wilf and I obtained Foxeer cameras from Banggood. Wilf has used his quite a bit, mine awaits its first flight. I wanted a Pan/Tilt capability to play around with, something that was simple and cheap and compact.

I came up with the system depicted here, after some mockups in foamboard and old  hotel room plastic keys. This setup is made from thin plywood, hot glue and a patch of Velcro. I had some 5 gram servos lying around, which are ideal.

My idea is that this can simply be mounted on any of my planes, connected to a  5.8 GHz transmitter and probably with an OSD in between those two items.

As for how it can be used: On a flying wing, where there is no Rudder, that channel can be connected to the Pan servo. The Tilt servo, which is less likely to be used, can be connected to a knob or slider, or even to a 3-position switch.

On a plane which has a Rudder, there are several options for the Pan function: Use a separate channel and either control it via a knob or slider, or, mix that channel to the Rudder in whatever proportion is desired and then set up a Flight Mode to enable that function, possibly even disabling the Rudder itself during this Mode.

As for the Tilt function, if you were using a sailplane, then you could have the Throttle stick available to be mixed in to become the Tilt control, with or without the Motor enabled. I would likely do this with a Flight Mode that sets the aforementioned "Rudder" stick movement to control Pan and the "Throttle" movement for Tilt. This means that your Left stick is the camera controller while the Right stick remains as the aircraft flight controller.

If you think about it, when you fly in a real aircraft, your vision will tend to slightly lead any turn you initiate. (You do more extensive movement when performing a clearing turn prior to doing any aerobatics  or during flight in busy skies, such as thermalling in a gaggle with other sailplanes). During the resultant bank, you have already tilted this field of vision, even if you did not move your head up or down at all. At least in the case of my Mobius, with its original lens, it is already wide angle, so unless I wished to look back over the tail, I probably need very little movement in either the Pan or Tilt plane. What I can envision the Tilt  for is to perhaps have a fixed, slightly downward, setting that would be useful while setting up an approach - or possibly to help figure out where I am if I am FPVing and get lost!
« Last Edit: November 18, 2017, 11:13:08 AM by Deerslayer »
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Online Deerslayer

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Wilfs Simple Pan/Tilt System
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2017, 07:48:05 AM »
Wilf has taken a slightly different approach. Here is his very neat Pan/Tilt system, as mounted on his new Sky Mule (attached pictures).

Some of the differences between his and mine:

I use standard Turnigy 5g servos hot glued onto the camera platform. At least at this time, my system uses a base which can be Velcroed onto whatever plane I want. This is the most compact and adaptable arrangement I could come up with.

Wilf uses Turnigy 180 degree sweep servos, one being mounted into the camera platform for Pan while the other is mounted into the base, to Tilt the camera platform itself. The Pan servo may be useful for gazing around to extreme angles. Tilt would likely never require much movement but, hey, he had these servos itching to be put to use, so ...! His system is slightly less compact than mine in some ways. He solidly mounts most of the servo into a cut-out in the plane, so it is less versatile, i.e., more effort to change to a different plane. However, he gets a more solid mount and his Tilt mechanism, I think, works out to be better than mine.

The other difference is that Wilf's system has actually been flown, while mine is still "ridin' the pine" as the hockey players say.   :(

A long time ago, Flypaper gave me a couple of little solid state gyros from helicopters. I plane to set one in between the receiver and one of the two axes, probably Tilt to start with. My Fun Cub is one of my test vehicles and I will probably try my Pan/Tilt system on it first.
I already use 7 channels of the DX9, so that leaves me with 2 for this camera system. No stabilizer for the plane, so having one or both of my camera system's axes stabilized may be worthwhile.

Wilf also has a couple of these little gyros kicking around, so he will probably beat me to trying this out, too!
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