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Bouyancy for Camera housing and Strobe

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My Ikelite housing and strobe is negatively bouyant. It is difficult to handle when trying to get macro shots that require a steady hand. Any advice on where to get buoyancy foam (cheap) and how to install?

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My Ikelite housing and strobe is negatively bouyant. It is difficult to handle when trying to get macro shots that require a steady hand. Any advice on where to get buoyancy foam (cheap) and how to install?

Here is one idea for you

IMG_9410.JPG

And more pictures of my Ikelite rig to make it about neutral underwater:

http://picasaweb.google.com/ianleiman/Ikel...CMfb5OLy0vT-aw#

 

I'm still fine tuning it for the perfect balance at all depths, but you can get started easily by just buying solid water or pool noodles. You pull pieces of the foam noodles through the flash arms.

One thick pool noodle is enough material to make the rig neutral below surface, and slighly buoyant on surface. At greater depths the foam gets squeezed so it looses buoyancy - so this part still needs some additional development.

With strong cord and garden hose you can build a nice handle to allow safe carrying of the rig and allow people to hand it to you from a boat to water & take it back to boat again.

The pool noodles are easy to find and cost very little (10 to 20 EUR/USD per piece).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pool_noodle

and google

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I use the Stix floats on my ULCS arms and like them alot.

 

Kirk

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I tried something similar to pool noodles. Unfortunately, after a small number of dives, the air cells in this foam rupture and the noodles flatten-giving no buoyancy.

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Has anyone got any suggestions on weighting of dome ports? When i have a long body on my dome port, its excessively bouyant, and i find it sometimes difficult to use (especially on snorkel playing with the macro end of a Sigma 17-70mm).

 

I'm hesitant to put any weighting on the shade or the body, because its design is prone to flood as it is. (again, especially on snorkel).

 

Anyone got a neat solution for adding weight without jeopardising the seal?

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Use a sheet of 1mm stainless steel to build a horizontal arm with the necessary weight on it's end where it's weight on the tip (under the dome) act as counterweigh pulling the dome down.Like a T-shape tray, but pointing forward and being under the dome.

I saw people using lead sheets wrapped around the tube of the dome, but as you wrote,this may lead to floodings as it put strain on the port.

Chris

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I use the Stix floats on my ULCS arms and like them alot.

Kirk

I use Stix as well and like them a lot. No problem with bubble compressing or collapsing over time.

They fit onto strobe arms easily.

Rather than guessing what to buy, you can use a fish scale to weigh your rig in a pool setting so you know the current negative wt. in water. The Stix floats have lift ratings so you can determine what you need in terms of positive lift and get the size/number you need. You can re-check in the pool and see the results.

Different ports/domes need different float additions so the testing helps you know how to set up once at the dive site with good results and less stress.

For me, one pkg of Large and one pkg of XLarge allows different setups that fit my equipment.

If you give your lift needs to your Stix retailer based on your testing, they should be able to tell you what you need.

 

With some setups, I need lift on the port to keep front/back in balance. I use shock cord from a camping store (the thicker variety cord), run the cord through the float and make a knotted loop then snap it all on the port front.

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Use a sheet of 1mm stainless steel to build a horizontal arm with the necessary weight on it's end where it's weight on the tip (under the dome) act as counterweigh pulling the dome down.Like a T-shape tray, but pointing forward and being under the dome.

I saw people using lead sheets wrapped around the tube of the dome, but as you wrote,this may lead to floodings as it put strain on the port.

Chris

 

Thanks for the idea Chris. I like it. You'd just have to make sure the stainless steal has enough strength so it doesn't bend and put pressure on the dome, possibly levering the dome upwards and reducing the pressure seal. A concept worth exploring.

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I use Stix as well and give them a big thumbs up. You can call 4th Gen, tell them your set up and they'll tell you exactly what you need.

 

Phil

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I use Stix as well and like them a lot. No problem with bubble compressing or collapsing over time.

They fit onto strobe arms easily.

Rather than guessing what to buy, you can use a fish scale to weigh your rig in a pool setting so you know the current negative wt. in water. The Stix floats have lift ratings so you can determine what you need in terms of positive lift and get the size/number you need. You can re-check in the pool and see the results.

Different ports/domes need different float additions so the testing helps you know how to set up once at the dive site with good results and less stress.

For me, one pkg of Large and one pkg of XLarge allows different setups that fit my equipment.

If you give your lift needs to your Stix retailer based on your testing, they should be able to tell you what you need.

 

With some setups, I need lift on the port to keep front/back in balance. I use shock cord from a camping store (the thicker variety cord), run the cord through the float and make a knotted loop then snap it all on the port front.

 

I use a fish scale as well. It work great. I forgot at first that I had done this. Takes the guess out. FYI. I take the fish scale with me on my trip to weigh luggage and move stuff around. They are really light weight and come in quite handy.

 

Kirk

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Here what i done for my camera and dome......

5325484325_4c4dab4f6c.jpg

photo by ckchong79, on Flickr

 

4915125150_140112120d.jpg

My Underwater Set by ckchong79, on Flickr

 

Looks like you've got a screw-in body attachment which would feel nice and safe. The problem with the older ikelite setup is there are only two port clips and a bit of wobble when not pressurised. Extra weight on the dome could jeopardise the compression seal. What are the weights you are using, and how did you glue them on? Any stray light issues bouncing from the metal? :dancing:

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Thanks for all the great suggestions and comments. I'm sure this will solve my problems with camera housing buoyancy. Great tips about the wide angle port weights which I've also had trouble with! Let's go diving!

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Looks like you've got a screw-in body attachment which would feel nice and safe. The problem with the older ikelite setup is there are only two port clips and a bit of wobble when not pressurised. Extra weight on the dome could jeopardise the compression seal. What are the weights you are using, and how did you glue them on? Any stray light issues bouncing from the metal? :dancing:

 

 

i get it from my local car wheel shop, they using it for balance the wheel.....

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