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Mark Christianson

Homebrew trail cameras

12 posts in this topic

I finally took the plunge.

And what a plunge it was! Why didnt I do this sooner?

I should say that I dont have field time on it yet, so there may be some quirks I need to work out of it, but so far the little testing I have done has been awesome.

I got all the parts from Snapshotsniper, and the camera I already owned.

I have $220 in the unit. Not cheap, but comparing to commercial cameras, its a bargain.

Its 4 mp, trigger times are about 2 seconds, flash is very good, able to remove the camera to use it for taking pics, has the screen built in to view in the field, etc, etc.

Everything and more than commercially made cameras have.

At least, if I did everything correctly, I should have all the features of a Mercedes in this. ooo.gif

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looks pretty sweet. Where did you get the casing for it? It looks exactly like the casing I have on my minaska M1 predator caller

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Looks good, now if you could get some pics to post. I have been thinking about these home-brews for awhile. Is there an IR that can be done,,,,,,,,,,,maybe you would want to make a few bucks and make me one???? Im sure you don,t know yet but what about battery life.

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Picks

Its a Pelican 1040 case. I got it from Snapshotsniper with all the other parts.

gofish,

yes, you can modify some cams to IR. I have not researched that at all, so I dont know what cameras can be used, or how tough it is. I dont plan to go with any IR's myself.

Having used cams for a few years now, I dont think the IR is needed. Just my opinion. I have pics of the same bucks from the first stages of antler growth, all the way through deer season. Sadly, no pics of me holding the rack though.

frown.gif

The 9v battery is just for the control board, and the reports are that it will last 2 to 3 months. The camera takes AA batteries, and they are good for a few hundred pics according to the experts that use this model. I use rechargeable NiMH for the camera.

I dont have a personal view on the battery life, but if its even half of what reports say, it beats the pants off a lot of the commercially made cameras.

I would entertain the thought of making some extra cameras, but I should get a few more under my belt.

I will get pics up by tomorrow. That is if the deer walk by it tonight. Might have to go get some corn. laugh.gif

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Here are pics from it tonight.

A bit of flash bleed in the upper right on all the pics. Not certain why, but not a big deal. The flash is incredible. About as good as you could ever ask for. My house is 40+ feet away and the siding is lit up.

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Good photos. The flash is really impressive, my home-brew digitals do not have that good of flashes on them.

Get some self-adhesive weather stripping - the foam kind like you'd use on doors and windows - and put it on the case between the camera flash and the camera lens. The flash is reflecting off the inside of the case and the lens is picking it up.

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biglake, nice pics, check the foam liner in your camera case looks like it's hanging over the lenz. Looking at the pics of your camera that should takecare of it.

Good job on the camera. Hope this helps.

Dan

huntmup

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Most cameras apparently come with IR standard. Manufacturers (cameras) actually put a IR lens in to eliminate it.

I was just checking out a site that's devoted to hacking disposable video cameras about 2 weeks ago that talked about converting them into ir cams. CVS, CSV something like that.

Do a google on 'camera hacks' and you should get more info than your brain can handle. (need an icon with swirling eyes and drooling lips to go here) crazy.gif

I've been looking at some of the camera boards.

These wouldn't be using an existing camera - think video surveilance. Basically creating the camera from scratch... camera board soldered with an LED light array, motion detector, power source, and memory/storage, etc. all mounted into a homemade casing or something like BLB is using. The lower the LUX on a camera the better it'll perform in low light.

Think that method is probably just self inflicted pain though since to get one with anything near the same megapixels would come close to the cost of just getting a good cam.

I actually started looking into it when researching homemade night vision - the homebrew trail cam concept sidetracked me from the NV and some sonic range finder possibilities side tracked me from that.

It's rotten being easily distracted! grin.gif

Great job and pics biglake!!!! What info actually gets displayed on that little LCD screen?

Also does your set up have the ability to adjust motion sensitivity? Any idea how far will it detect?

The more I see peoples pics and how calm the animals are the more I question the benefit of IR (like you'd said). I kept reading how animals theoretically couldn't see that light spectrum. Your deer don't seem to be reacting much or at all so not sure that what I'd read really had merit.

Sorry for the rant.

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Wood

The LCD screen is the programming screen. Talk about simple to set up.

It goes through a menu of things:

Sensitivity - low, med, high

Day, night, or 24 hour

set up double pics on one trigger

and several other things. Super easy to use.

Not sure on the distance, but I have seen reports of up to 50 ft away for sensing.

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whats that in the first picture?

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Possum. Dang things are spreading like wildfire up here.

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How was the possum soup??? smile.gif

What we need is a good old fashioned cold hard winter to kill off a bunch of them!!!

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