Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-07-2012, 06:30 AM   #1
3 Rivet Member
 
Airstream Dad's Avatar
 
2005 28' International CCD
Arlington , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 163
Images: 1
Backup Cameras - constraints, range, ideas

All -

We have a thread going on towing dollies, but the topic of backup cameras has come up, which I thought might make an interesting new thread. The need is for something that will make maneuvering down 50' of narrow driveway to my backyard with 1-2' of clearance on each side (house on one side, trees on the other) and, being portable, could be helpful in campgrounds and other tight maneuvering spots.

But there seem to be quite a few options out there, many of which are built for cars or SUVs:

- WIRED cameras that seem to be for single vehicles like cars, SUVs and RVs. But it seems wireless would be preferred given the long stretch to the hind end of a trailer, plus no need for long cabling and connections at the hitch;

- WIRELESS cameras of various kinds, but many seem to be made with transmission strengths and qualities to be mounted on the back of an SUV, car, or even RV, so perhaps 30-40' range maximum;

- LONG-RANGE WIRELESS CAMERAS? So perhaps the ideal is a wireless camera with decent range, as much as 50'. I couldn't find reviews of wireless transmission quality on the usual sites (Amazon listings and such), so now of course I turn to the experts on the Airstream Forums.

- BONUS. Imagine a two-camera system that not only had good quality transmission from the tail end of the trailer, but could also mount over the hitch ball. You could then switch cameras on the LCD display receiver inside the car on the fly.

- SUPERBONUS. When is someone going to come up with a bluetooth backup camera that can pair up with a smartphone? The you have no need for a separate display and you can run your phone, GPS, and backup cameras off the same dashboard device.

Thoughts? Recommendation?

Cheers

Jim
__________________

__________________
Airstream Dad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 07:41 AM   #2
Rivet Master
 
dznf0g's Avatar

 
2007 30' Classic
Oswego , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 9,410
Images: 5
Here's my install and take on the wireless avenue. Unfortunately I finished it up right at the end of the towing season last fall and don't hve more than about 400 miles (all daylight travel) to give a final review. That'll happen soon...it's getting warm here all of a sudden and I'm gettin' the fever!

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f450...ras-83497.html

RE:

Long range wireless: You are limited by the FCC approved frequency. Technology is getting better and they advertise 300' or more....but that won't happen through aluminum. The RC pilots I refer to in my thread are gettin a mile(ish), but that's clear line of sight from air to ground.

Bonus: My setup is a four channel and can handle 4 cameras.

Super bonus: It's already on the same frequency (and actually causes interference with wireless cameras) as bluetooth. Just need an app for that, I believe.
__________________

__________________
-Rich-

"If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." - Red Green
dznf0g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 08:23 AM   #3
3 Rivet Member
 
Airstream Dad's Avatar
 
2005 28' International CCD
Arlington , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 163
Images: 1
Swift Hitch

Very interesting!

I did take a closer look at online descriptions of the Swift Hitch system. Some definite possible advantages:

- Battery operated camera and reception unit, so no need to connect power cords to a trailer DC circuit or the unit to the dashboard

- Magnetic mounting of the camera. This has two advantages: no permanent mount on the TV so no worries of breakage/ ruining on a permanent install (I have young kids, and the TV will also be our everyday SUV family hauler). Secondly I can easily switch it to the back of the trailer for backup usage in tricky situations. The rest of the time the camera and reception unit stay in the case in the trailer. With 300' of claimed range, 50' should hopefully not be an issue

Interesting...
__________________
Airstream Dad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 08:41 AM   #4
Rivet Master
 
dznf0g's Avatar

 
2007 30' Classic
Oswego , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 9,410
Images: 5
Keep in mind the hitch camera's battery life per charge is only about 2 hours. You could, however get a hard wired one and run a power line to the gate with a simple plug at the umbilical connector.

Just curious, why do you want to watch the hitch while running down the road? Are you worried about it coming loose? I only use mine for backing up to hitch the AS.
__________________
-Rich-

"If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." - Red Green
dznf0g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 09:08 AM   #5
Rivet Master
 
rodsterinfl's Avatar

 
2006 25' Safari
Fort Myers , Florida
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 2,433
Images: 8
Yesterday I ordered the 4Ucam kit for both the truck hitch and the rear of the AS. I was advised to stay with the CMOS camera and purchase the antenna extension. I will post my data when I get it installed and working.
__________________
rodsterinfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 09:20 AM   #6
Rivet Master
 
dznf0g's Avatar

 
2007 30' Classic
Oswego , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 9,410
Images: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
Yesterday I ordered the 4Ucam kit for both the truck hitch and the rear of the AS. I was advised to stay with the CMOS camera and purchase the antenna extension. I will post my data when I get it installed and working.
Yes CMOS is much more clear than CCD chipped cameras. My magnet mount hitch cam is a CCD, but I only use it for a few minutes while hitching...so it's fine (they are cheaper). The camera mounted at the rear of the AS is a Sonly CMOS chipped camera and is is much sharper and the color is more realistic than the CCD one.
I tried the antenna extension and the larger "super dooper" omni-directional antenna available through 4Ucam, and was not pleased. However my AS is 5' longer than yours...who knows. Read my thread linked above for my antenna experience detail.
__________________
-Rich-

"If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." - Red Green
dznf0g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 09:24 AM   #7
3 Rivet Member
 
Airstream Dad's Avatar
 
2005 28' International CCD
Arlington , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 163
Images: 1
I'd only have it on the TV temporarily for hitching, correct, which wouldn't take long, so when done I could just stow it.

I like the magnetic mount concept as i can use it either for hitching or for backing up, simply popping it on the AS rear bumper storage door, a level surface, which I believe is steel, not aluminum. Or I could find another good mount point using the new suction cup mount, included in the kit.

Two hours of battery life seems plenty, as I'd only be using it for a short period before recharging it and stowing it.

- Jim
__________________
Airstream Dad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 09:25 AM   #8
3 Rivet Member
 
Airstream Dad's Avatar
 
2005 28' International CCD
Arlington , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 163
Images: 1
I'd only have it on the TV temporarily for hitching, correct, which wouldn't take long, so when done I could just stow it.

I like the magnetic mount concept as i can use it either for hitching or for backing up, simply popping it on the AS rear bumper storage door, a level surface, which I believe is steel, not aluminum. Or I could find another good mount point using the new suction cup mount, included in the kit.

Two hours of battery life seems plenty, as I'd only be using it for a short period before recharging it and stowing it.

- Jim
__________________
Airstream Dad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 09:28 AM   #9
Rivet Master
 
dznf0g's Avatar

 
2007 30' Classic
Oswego , Illinois
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 9,410
Images: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by JBSVirginia View Post
I'd only have it on the TV temporarily for hitching, correct, which wouldn't take long, so when done I could just stow it.

I like the magnetic mount concept as i can use it either for hitching or for backing up, simply popping it on the AS rear bumper storage door, a level surface, which I believe is steel, not aluminum. Or I could find another good mount point using the new suction cup mount, included in the kit.

Two hours of battery life seems plenty, as I'd only be using it for a short period before recharging it and stowing it.

- Jim
It's worth a try on the back of your AS. I think you may find you're trying to pass through too much metal with the little teeeny antenna to get an adequate picture, but why not try it. As I found out from the experts on the RC forum, EVERY setup behaves differently and you just gotta experiment.
__________________
-Rich-

"If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." - Red Green
dznf0g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2012, 08:31 PM   #10
Rivet Master
 
SuperTrouper's Avatar
 
2008 27' International CCD FB
Petaluma , California
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 608
Images: 5
Haulsafe Camera w/27FB

I knew I was going to be hitching and unhitching alone some of the time and I didn’t want to go crazy on budget so I bought the HaulSafe FT0800 2.4G Portable Wireless Backup Camera System with Color Monitor and a Haulsafe License plate camera as well. The system is portable, wireless and rechargeable. The License plate camera must have 12v source (no battery). The Monitor has 4 channels. The license plate camera came programmed for channel 3. The portable magnet mounted camera can be set to any channel. I only use the cameras for backing and hitching although the portable camera has a mic so I used it attached to the stove hood in the trailer a few times to see how things were “shakin” in back (they weren’t). I use the portable camera attached to the jack motor to hitch up and attached to the furnace door to see the blind side of the trailer or curb distance when backing or parking on the street. I mounted the license plate camera on the back of the trailer (no mic) to see what’s behind me. It’s a fisheye so its hard to see things far away but up close is what counts. I find that the system works as advertised for the most part. There is some interference with the cameras so they are not well suited for constant viewing while travelling but I have left the monitor on in dense traffic to keep an eye on what’s behind me. The rear camera takes a few minutes to come up when the running lights are turned on on the trailer and power is applied. I simply cut the cord on the camera (a running theme for me it seems) and soldered the power wires to the pins of the license plate bulb paying close attention to polarity. Both cameras have IR LEDS for night vision but I find the license plate camera is overwhelmed by the IR coming off the License Plate light at night. A piece of gaffers tape would solve this while backing but I always try to dock the trailer before dark. See the pictures for details.
Summing up: Pros: Worth the price, works for backing and hitching. Portable camera has mic, monitor has speaker. Can be used for other things (wireless, rechargeable and portable). Cons: Spotty interference, need to remember to pull camera off trailer before leaving. Can’t be used for constant viewing behind trailer (some interference). -Brad
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Haulsafe1.JPG
Views:	110
Size:	35.1 KB
ID:	152792   Click image for larger version

Name:	Haulsafe2.JPG
Views:	117
Size:	52.7 KB
ID:	152793  

Click image for larger version

Name:	Haulsafe3.JPG
Views:	115
Size:	36.9 KB
ID:	152794   Click image for larger version

Name:	Haulsafe4.JPG
Views:	104
Size:	35.2 KB
ID:	152795  

Click image for larger version

Name:	Haulsafe5.JPG
Views:	93
Size:	32.3 KB
ID:	152796  
__________________
SuperTrouper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-10-2012, 09:32 AM   #11
1 Rivet Member
 
cutty's Avatar
 
1972 29' Ambassador
1954 25' Cruiser
Allentown , Pennsylvania
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 9
You must be a theatre guy, SuperTrouper. Very few have gaffer's tape lying around. IA local 200 here in PA.
__________________
cutty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-10-2012, 10:13 AM   #12
CLOUDSPLITTER "Tahawas"
 
ROBERT CROSS's Avatar

 
2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , WNY
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 11,153
Images: 1
Thumbs up VR system...

ST

Your set-up looks an awful lot like the "Swift Hitch" I got several years ago.
Very spotty reception at times, poor color.

Ended up getting a $99 VR that is wired permanently with the camera mounted above the license plate.

Bob
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	CAMERA TEST 028.jpg
Views:	118
Size:	432.4 KB
ID:	152964   Click image for larger version

Name:	CAMERA TEST 031.jpg
Views:	103
Size:	246.2 KB
ID:	152965  

__________________
PFC.....

“After all these years the reason I continue to love Thanksgiving.....I still sit at the kids table.”
RLC

Sandra wanted to go to Cleveland on vacation,
but I’m the Husband, so we went to Cleveland.
RLC
ROBERT CROSS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-10-2012, 12:31 PM   #13
Rivet Master
 
SuperTrouper's Avatar
 
2008 27' International CCD FB
Petaluma , California
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 608
Images: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by cutty
You must be a theatre guy, SuperTrouper. Very few have gaffer's tape lying around. IA local 200 here in PA.
Local 636 since 1980! Local 306 in NYC (withdrawn). Should have said duct tape but it's so sticky!

Brad
__________________
SuperTrouper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-11-2012, 10:35 AM   #14
1 Rivet Member
 
cutty's Avatar
 
1972 29' Ambassador
1954 25' Cruiser
Allentown , Pennsylvania
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperTrouper View Post
Local 636 since 1980! Local 306 in NYC (withdrawn). Should have said duct tape but it's so sticky!

Brad
No kidding? I used to work with lots of 636 guys at Eisenhower when I went to Penn State. Sure is a small world.

Tony
__________________

__________________
cutty is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
1963 Globetrotter black holding tank ideas? dgreene72 1960 - 1964 Globetrotter 7 08-29-2012 11:31 AM
Shower backup in my Mini ffrick All Argosy Trailers 6 03-04-2012 01:40 PM
Knobs for a Magic Chef range-'92 Excella excellanancy Stoves, Ovens & Microwaves 19 02-07-2012 12:35 AM
Heading to Folly Beach, SC...Any Ideas? gsm206 On The Road... 2 01-29-2012 02:37 PM
Organizing/Decorating Ideas UtahChic General Interior Topics 4 01-23-2012 12:04 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:05 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.