May 12, 2009 at 8:21 pm #1236274
Companion forum thread to:May 12, 2009 at 8:28 pm #1500927
Nice work Sam. Will definitely give it a go before my next trip.
One thing though… did I miss it or did you forget to mention the finished weight? Shock horror!
Anyone got something similar (but more robust) for their SLR?May 12, 2009 at 9:09 pm #1500931
Why not just use this:May 12, 2009 at 9:40 pm #1500934
Because I have bubble wrap and duct tape (and I live in Australia!). ;-)
And this way you can get a perfect fit for your camera.May 12, 2009 at 9:59 pm #1500941
Ashley – I see your point!May 12, 2009 at 11:45 pm #1500956
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
I did something similar, albeit a little heavier, with 1/8" closed cell foam and packaging tape and a made-to-fit stuff sack of heavy Goretex fabric. The foam was in reaction to dropping my camera in a commercial camera pouch once and finding that the camera housing had cracked open. The stuff sack hangs off my pack shoulder strap, and the top rolls down to make a seal.
Actually, I have made several over the years: like yours mine get a little tired after a while. But yours is lighter.
CheersMay 13, 2009 at 3:57 am #1500969
I love the photo of you on the Pacific Northwest Trail. The photo is fuzzy on the details but it is wonderfully atmospheric, Ron StricklandMay 13, 2009 at 6:30 am #1500979
Love it – fantastically simple.May 13, 2009 at 6:31 am #1500981
Think I might try to make one out of windshield sun blocker (thin reflectix), black duct tape to form a loop for attaching to sternum strap or belt, and have a lid that closes with a patch of hook and loop.May 13, 2009 at 6:46 am #1500987
Yep, I also just made one from an old closed cell sleeping pad – sewn together on 3 sides with dental floss. In fact, I made two, one for my cell/mobile (= phone, GPS, FM radio, mp3 audio & mp4 movie player, & pdf library) and the other for my camera. Weight was 8g (0.3 oz) each. Plus they fit nicely into the belt pockets on my ULA Catalyst. You can leave either a long or short side un-sewn, if you need to do stuff like connect a solar charger or some earphones at a particular side of the device (but don't step on a rattler listening to your tunes!). They're not field tested yet, but I can always duck(UK)/duct(US) tape them if they start coming apart.May 13, 2009 at 10:24 am #1501021
* Gasp * I did forget to include the weight! The finished product weighs in at a scant 5.47 grams.
If someone already has a BubblePackit bag it could easily be beefed up with some duct tape for use as a camera bag. The beauty in this MYOG project however is the precision fit it will have to your camera.
Ron, I don't particularly remember where that photo was taken otherwise I'd be more specific. If I had to venture a guess I'd say it was taken a day or two's walk West of Baker Lake.
In terms of the use of foam instead of bubble wrap, that would be an obvious step up in terms of strength, safety and durability. The bubble wrap was chosen for mostly two reasons – its light weight and to reuse an otherwise throw-away resource.
Post photos of your own creations here. And if anyone makes one for an SLR, contact BPL to possibly do a Part II of this article covering the project.May 13, 2009 at 11:17 am #1501043
Here are my two. The phone is on the left, in a silk pouch as well to protect the screen, and shown connected to a fold-out solar charger.
You can put a fair amount of force on the floss stiching, and it seems pretty stable. But as I say, they're still untested on any trip of any length. Fingers crossed!May 13, 2009 at 12:43 pm #1501060
@retropumpLocale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
I too use the MYOG closed cell foam, but then I put THAT into a ziploc bag, and then into a hipbelt pocket. I never know when I might fall in a river or get caught in an unanticipated downpour, so water proofing is at least as important to me as shock absorption.May 14, 2009 at 4:39 am #1501192
@einsteinxLocale: The Netherlands
To me it seems this would drastically reduce image quality. And I like my pictures to amaze people: "wow how did you make that picture???" "Uhm, with my cell phone" "really???" that kinda stuff.
Could you post some with and without pictures (preferably of the similar view/object) to see the difference?
EinsMay 14, 2009 at 7:42 am #1501214
@nonbeingLocale: Fjäll, Himalayas
slightly off-topic, but hey…hello everybody.
@James…could you say more about that solar charger? Did you make it yourself, or is it a commercial product? Do you buffer the energy in lith. battery or you just connect to the phone directly? have you come up with solutions to power different devices with the same charger – like a camera, an ipod nano, a phone?
I'm very interested in your solution… I have the solio, the freeloader and a DIY solution – which suffers a bit from the lack of a buffering battery as devices tend to expect constant mA currents. The solio has functioned very reliably on a 500mi arctic trek, but it's heavy…May 14, 2009 at 7:54 am #1501220
I'm not sure if your comment was directed at me or someone else. The case that I designed is only for storing the camera. When it comes time to take a photo I slide the camera out of the case.
– SamMay 14, 2009 at 10:15 am #1501252
@michaelreaganLocale: Southern California
Thanks for a great idea! I had a camera that needed a pocket case, and some spare bubble wrap and duct tape lying around, so this article couldn't have been better timed for me. I really like the case and have already tested it on a couple of short walks.
Here's a pic of the result:
MichaelMay 14, 2009 at 11:16 am #1501264
Nice job, Michael. Good clean lines and quality craftsmanship.May 14, 2009 at 5:43 pm #1501365
Here's a two year old version of the same idea plus a made to fit stuff sack cover … had reflectix left over from insulating ductwork at home.
Haven't had it on trail though … the camera was a present for my wife and she likes it too much to let it out of sight:-)May 14, 2009 at 6:06 pm #1501372
@einsteinxLocale: The Netherlands
Yes Sam, my comment was directed at you. Since the picture of you sham shows the lens not having ducktape in front of it I assumed you were making pictures trough the ducktape. And as I said that would I think seriously effect image quality, but indeed if you slide it out there's no prob.
Can you tell me tho, why the lens is not covered with ducktape? Coincidence?
EinsMay 15, 2009 at 8:15 am #1501459
I go into that a bit in the article. It's simply an aesthetic I was aiming for.
Jim, the reflectix material works well for that I see.May 15, 2009 at 12:25 pm #1501523
Interesting article. Sometimes the lightest solution is just packaging material and you don't always need super durability either. This one seems really easy to make too.
Another example of a lightweight camera-case is this:
It's supposed to protect against water too. A lot more effort to construct though.
Colin Ibbotson has quite a lot of other interesting gear as well.May 18, 2009 at 6:24 am #1501908
Hi Johannes – you were asking about my solar charger. It's a commercial product, the Global Solar Sunlinq 6.5W (ME² Solar in Europe). It's a folding design, with 4 solar panels mounted on a rubber-like pad. It doesn't have a weight saving over your Solio – mine is 255g (9.0 Oz), but it has the advantage of having a 12V car charger (cigarette lighter-type) connection so it's suitable for many devices, as well as having a fairly hefty 6.5 W output (I think the Solio is less than a Watt). It doesn't have a built-in battery, but I believe Global Solar do have equivalent models with one – my phone's battery was of too high a capacity to make use of the battery though, so I got the basic (lighter) model without a storage battery, and connect it straight to my phone. It works very well, taking my phone's 1350mAh battery right up to 100% charge.
I combine this with the Hama Piccolino USB charger, which is another 11g (0.4 Oz):
USB cables are then another 30g or so, in long lengths, or less if you can find shorter ones. Another lightweight & inexpensive option are these USB chargers from Hong Kong on eBay at around 12g. There are a few different sellers, including this one:
This combination caters for both my phone and my digital camera.May 18, 2009 at 2:36 pm #1501992
I prefer a more waterproof solution. I place my camera in a folded bandanna then simply put that in a zip-loc bag. The loosely folded bandanna tends to give enough shock protection and affords me an extra bandanna if I need it.May 29, 2009 at 7:57 am #1504319
I've just realised another quality of these lightweight cases – both the bubble wrap & closed cell foam are very insulating. Most electronic devices will have an acceptable operating temperature range, and my phone even stops charging if it gets too warm – but inside its case it stays relatively cool.
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