Photo Mast tests 15/11/2008

Have you ever been urbexing and wondered "What is behind that wall?"

The answer is "mo's magic monopod"

I am a photographer and urbexer second, that is how I got into urbexing, shooting in derelict places.

I have for some time wanted to try out mast photography but the equipment is so expensive. Recently at a radio equipment supplier I saw a manual aluminium mast and it gave me an idea. A mobile mast that fits in the boot of my car.

Today I took MMM Mk1 out for a test.

Here is the mast fully retracted and fitted to my car.

The Mk 1 mast fits into the towing point on the bumper and into a hurriedly made base consisting of an old enlarger case filled with stones. These trials were to test the stability and no camera was fitted. The camera fits to a motorised electric pan and tilt unit which you can see in this photograph fitted to the top of the mast.

Time to test the elevation.

This is the mast extended to about 1/3 of its full height. It was very stable at that height.

It was raised to 1/2 height and it started to be a but unstable a little as it was quite windy and it was an exposed area. The base was also not as intended for the final design so will stick at this limit.

Time to risk the camera....

This was only a trial and I didn't have the right cables for full remote control so I had to work round it for these tests.

I had a Netbook with Nikon Camera control software which controls the camera via a usb cable. Because I didn't have a long usb control cable I had to send the netbook up with the camera to the top of the mast, with another laptop at the bottom of the mast I made a remote desktop connection to the netbook at the top of the pole,. I don't have a picture of this daring do as I only had one camera with me.

Because of the extra weight of the computer at the top I restricted the height to about 15 ft but it proved the concept.

Here is a test picture which shows the concept works as from treetop height you can see over the walls giving an aerial view of the field and the abandoned church in the right of the picture which can not be seen from the road.

Click on any picture to see a bigger one.

Tomorrow I hope to test the new improved base and get some full height pictures if the weather allows.