Geared Panner

For a few years I've been using a continuous servo, triggered every :10, with a Brooxes gear set. It does a complete rotation every 9 minutes. A couple times lately I've checked it before launch, only to have no movement in the air. I suspect that the wind is overpowering the servo on some flights. Last session I ended up with 233 almost identical shots of Smith Rock State Park here in central Oregon. Thanks to a 2 axis gimbal, I was able to stitch two consecutive shots together for this panoramic.


  • edited May 2019
    Maybe your rig isn't balanced well. Or maybe the gears aren't meshing when in the air due to looseness. Just guessing. Beautiful picture, though!
  • Hi Larry-
    9 minutes is a long time to wait for a Revolution! Most of my rigs seem to run about 18-20 degrees per exposure
    at 10 seconds, for a complete pan in about 3 minutes. I can see how more exposures might aid stitching... at the
    cost of changing scenery... clouds etc.

    I had problem similar to yours way back. As I recall the cause was loose nuts holding the gear on the pan axle.
    Proper tightening was a simple fix. I reckon the wind would need to be mighty to consistently hold your rig
    from panning.
  • Before my last session I shimmed a gear for a better mesh and tightened the locking nut holding everything to the pendulum. I recently had an intermittent electrical issue somewhere between the battery box, the Gentle "peanut" and the servo, so I'll look into that. I've jiggled it on the ground, but something may jar loose in the air. I fly for around 20 minutes, which gives me 2 revolutions and a little over 300 exposures. With the gimbal, my usable to worthless shot ratio has flipped and stitching shots is more feasible.
  • edited May 2019
    To loosely quote James Gentles: " Corrosion Kills ". known cause of intermittency ....

    When I first started using the "machine gun " approach that auto-kap can lead to ... many many
    shots to choose from. Great .... Of virtually the same thing....hmm.... lot of time, lot of battery capacity...

    More recently I am considering the possible excess of redundant photos vs the burn-out of the camera, hastening
    when it hits the bulk-head-- because something wore out ... or exceeded it's anticipated duty-cycle.
  • I hadn't thought about the camera duty-cycle, but I use cheap Chinese "actioncams" so I wouldn't be out much money. With the gimbal I could lengthen my interval time and reduce the number of shots I have to look at. I replaced my battery box once after a salt water bath, but it may be time for another.
  • The pick above is really amazing
    Smooth winds for you

  • I fully agree with KomiKite (as always...)

    wish all the best possible for today and future life

    SMAC from Italy
  • @ Larycole
    You can generally change the pan rotation using the little screw in a hole at the side of the servo. Hope this helps.

    Fly High

  • Sue-
    I hadn't thought of the servo adjustment, but I'm OK with the current pan time. Seems to be about 1 revolution every 12 minutes. After 2 rotations I have plenty of shots and the camera battery is about exhausted. I also have another programmable panner, but it's too bulky to use with the gimbal.
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