Flexifoil Camera Kite Package

We have recently finished working on Flexifoil's first autoKAP product (Camera Kite) to help grow the community of this great kiting activity. The package includes a complete range of the basic equipment which is 'plug in and play'. The setup works with action cameras and smartphones. We hope you like what we have come up with. Please feel free to share your comments and ideas with us so we can keep improving.

Peter

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Comments

  • edited January 29
    Looks great, tell us more Peter!

    Camera type, method of control, weights, kite size?

    Have you flown it?


    B
  • edited January 29
    Found a link:
    flexifoil.com/camera-kite/
    image

    camera is not supplied but a 60 page book is.

    B
  • Peter-

    I've been dying to see some activity on this forum .. been feeling lonely .... this idea is certainly interesting.
    Initial reaction - kite looks a little small, and I wonder how badly beaten-up the camera will get,
    " riding high ", on the kite, as it is.

    I like the presentation of the complete ensemble of gear, logos and all. I need to look at the site Bill found.
    As someone pointed-out here a while back, Kapers tend to be a "do-it-yourself " group. You might think about
    offering smaller parts of the package...

    That way someone who already had line and gear bags etc. might just want to buy the kite, with it's camera-affixing
    all worked-out, and ready-to-go.

    Keep after it ... ' one-stop-shop-and-you're-in-the-air ', is a nice, if lofty, approach.

    Paul
  • My 2c is that the large printed "camera on kite" might be a turn-off for people for the same reason people don't like drones flying over their heads. It's basically an advertisement that you're being spied on. That print would certainly be enough to keep me from buying that kite.
  • edited February 13
    I wonder if Ray Merry had a hand in this?
    Flexifoil is his brand. He gave us the ITW 'perfect for KAP' 'Ultrafoil' which falls over in Bft 4.

    It's an odd looking set up. Camera is fixed to kite, I thought this method was almost universally abandonned 100 years ago,

    I like the idea of an 'all in one' approach for those who are less DIY inclined.

    I look forward to seeing some results, I only hope they are not another rash of bug eyed plane crash perspectives...
  • Thank you Bill, Paul & hawkeye for the feedback and questions.

    I will try to provide you all as much details as possible about this new venture of us.
    We have been working on this project for almost a year now, tried different type of kites and camera attachment setups.
    I personally have flown and tweaked the kites & attachment setups until we got to this final model of our first KAP introduction package. This first product is general aimed to bring new people into the kite aerial photography and provide them a complete package (excl. the camera) to put them on the way, hopefully for a long time with many great memories.

    The kite has a wingspan of 180cm and a height of 90cm with a weight of close to 350gr.
    The stabiliser (gimbal) attached to the kite has a weight of 185gr.
    We recommend to use an action camera up to 200gr (battery & housing incl.) or a smartphone.
    The entire thought is based on a fixed autoKAP system, so you can simply launch your kite with a camera fixed in the base of the kite. The user picks a preferred angle setup (ground shot or landscape) before the kite is launched with the camera attached, in time-lapse mode.

    All spare parts will coming available by early April in our webstore, followed with the kite only option soon after: http://www.flexifoil.com/camera-kite-spares/

    The user manual is available through the following link: Camera Kite user manual
    As you will notice we have paid much attention to explain the basics of the kite flying, so we can teach the novice step by step to obtain the best result over time and practice.

    The following instagram gallery page will show you a few examples of the shots we took with our product.
    https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/flexifoilcamerakite/

    Bring on the windy blue sky days..

    Looking forward to share more details very soon.

    Peter

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  • intresting, Pretty good shots to begin with. The gopro effect is there and there is an 'apex' characterisation to the shots, it's a setup that makes low level cover difficult. I think the gimbal is a single axis device which, from my own experience with the GS1 stabilistaion can work well, as a fun device it might catch on.

    Nice to see the delta conyne make a comeback too!
  • edited January 30
    I enjoyed reading the instruction book, it strikes me as being comprehensive and high on safety which is great. There are some people for whom the graphics on the kite would be considered an advantage, but (per @hawkeye) as far as I'm concerned.
  • Maybe " less is more ". Pick one of the graphics, to keep on the kite. Might draw attention, " I wonder what it
    says... ". As is, it is a bit like a flying billboard, screaming a little too loud, " look at me ".
    Speaking likely for many Kapers, sometimes we don't really want ALL that much attention ....

    As I think more about it, I still like the package deal concept for those new to KAP. But since those who are flying it,
    have already " bought-in ", it's a bit like preaching to the choir....

    Then again I heard that Martin Luther King Jr. had said one MUST preach to the choir ... so they continue to sing !!

    Who knows ???
  • edited January 31
    In my experience a kite doesn't have to be very high in the sky for details on it to disappear. Often I have trouble seeing which way up it is, and that's at 200'

    I notice the manual doesn't cover:
    the legal height limits,
    the photography privacy & permissions issue
    nature reserve restrictions
    which are a big deal in the UK.

    As it's set up I think it's weird but I'm just an aerial photographer who flies a camera by kite! It is a bit disappointing to find it's all been put together without gleaning much knowledge from this forum, I have found this place to be something of an authoritative source as most ideas have been explored in detail here, with real-world data to confirm findings.

    Surprising too flexifoil didn't develop a soft kite along the lines of the stacker- Ralf's HQ KAPfoil shows soft kites can be mass-produced and stable.

    I say good luck to it- maybe it's a conversation started that leads to something new- a super light, super cheap RC gimbal is long overdue!


    B
  • Please warn users that all kinds of ground stakes, including this one become loose in sand and excape, even near rivers with grass on the ground. When free it can be a dangerous hazard.
    It's supposed to be a toy with camera total payload under 200g. However all kapers know that even a small kite can pull a lot.

    Manuals for beginners often look like explaining a nexby how to ride a bike. It's not easy.
    Experience kiting a while before kaping is prefered.
    I like guidance n°22, if in doubt, don't go out.
  • Thank you all for your feedback and suggestions, we will definitely use them with our next update of the user manual.

    Peter
  • Good luck with KAP kites. I'm much happier to see kites in the air rather than D--ns.
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