Public Lab Wiki documentation

Dual Camera Kit Guide

3 | 24 | | #1758

Dual camera kit

This page will host instructions on assembling and using the infrared/visible dual camera kit as distributed through the Balloon Mapping Kit Kickstarter project.

This page is under construction and will not be complete until mappers report their early experiences with the equipment. Please get in touch on the mailing list if you want to contribute your knowledge here.

If you have trouble, the best place to ask for help is the main mailing list



  • The dual camera rig: Assemble the camera bracket (this will be updated soon for the excellent new knurled bolts)
    • Putting the T rig inside a big soda bottle, or other techniques to protect the cameras. (we need to experiment and figure out the best way to do this)
    • Attaching the timer and batteries. (see this photo for an early attempt)
    • Use the camera strap as a safety landyard.
  • Protective enclosure: Build a case from a 1 gallon Tropicana juice jug, a variation on the PET-bottle rig.
  • Simple shutter release: Trigger both cameras separately with rubber bands; photos won't be matched but will likely overlap a lot (Example 1: IR & VIS)
  • Advanced "synchronous shutter" triggering - more work but good for getting matched IR and visible photos
    • Hardware for synchronous shutter release: Assemble the electronics
      • Assembling the 555 timer circuit
      • Preparing USB cables
      • Preparing batteries and battery holders
    • Enhanced firmware to enable USB triggering and synchronous shutter release

Using your kit

  • Someone should post a quick video runthrough of setting the cameras up "in the field", turning them on and closing the bottle enclosure. It could be simulated indoors on a hanging string?
  • Using the Canon A495 cameras: Configuring the camera menus
  • Do a test flight and post your results to share with others and help troubleshoot!

Processing the images


Attached is the "introduction" document which shipped with each kit (also editable in Google Docs). For help, please contact the mailing list -- either register on Public Laboratory or email