At the end of the last year it happened when I started with my camera trap photography. It began when Kätu and I found a badger’s den. That’s when I set up my trail camera. Despite the winter Estonia didn’t had almost no snow, that’s why the badgers where surprisingly active. In addition to badger my trail camera captured lynx, raccoon dog and a red fox. The reason why I setup the trail camera was because I wanted to get to no better animals’ activity, therefore I could eventually start building the camera trap and set it up in the future. Hey, today I’m starting with the second part of the camera trap vlog. The reason why I devided this vlog in separaate parts was because I saw that the whole process is quite time-consuming, therefore I’d like to give you already some sort of story while I’m still cathering the last pieces of the whole outcome. The purpose of this second part is to build the camera trap. Most of the things I’m needing to build the camera trap is already arrived.This is the thing I wanted to share with you. Let’s start from the beginning. Here are two flashes. I’m going to build this camera trap with 2 flashes. Here are 2 specific flashes – Nikon SB-28. Which are actually old film camera flashes. The reason why I needed these specific flashes was that these are really good for camera trapping. One of the reason is that these are with a very fast wake-up time. When these are in sleep mode, they are able to flash already at the first photo. A lot of regular flashes are not capable to wake up so quickly. Usually the first photo is a black photo and not before the second photo it won’t flash. In camera trap photography it is super important that the flash would wake up already on the first photo. In addition the flash capacitor doesn’t discharge the charge that often, which means it stays charged for a longer time and it charges less often. Which means the battery life is better. As I said, these are film camera flashes and no store is selling these. One I bought from Japan, through Ebay. And the second one I found in Estonia, someone still had this flash. So much about the flashes. Today I also received another package. As I mentioned, these are Nikon flashes, but I’m going to use Canon’s 60d camera so, Nikon and Canon are not capable to work together, therefore I needed a transmitter and receiver which is custom built. Camtraption is the company who is selling those custom built widgets. As I said, costom built so they would work with Nikon flashes and Canon body. Here I have one 1 transmitter and 2 receivers. The third good new was, that when I was today at the post office I found out that I have a third package waiting for me. Here are those sensors, which I’m going to use to built my DIY motion sensor. Why I’m so surprised is because I knew that these will be delivered not before the end of February. I have no idea why these arrived month before they were actually supposed to arrive. This is a super news, because now we are able to start building the whole thing! So much about the packages that arrived. Now I’m going to Overall, which is the main reseller of Canon products. There is one friend of mine, whose name is Martin. He is a technician there and I asked, if he could help me with building the sensor. Because I’m not competent enough to build a sensor by myself. He has also pointed out some other topics regarding the whole camera trap process. I think that involving him to the project will only be beneficial and will result in the final product. See you in a bit, when I’m already in Overall. We are here in the Overall. In the background you can see Martin is already doing some stuff. At the moment we are going to experiment with different things and hopefully we will start building the sensor. Basically, you have to… if we are looking exactly at the diagram. One will be connected with the red one, and the other one with the white one. It will start melting in a seconds. Let’s put quite a lot of tin. Hold the red cord against it. You can also blow some air, then it dries faster. – It seems like sort of a type of art, who’s able to tin more beautifully. We have spent some time building the sensor. Now it is the moment of truth. Did we do everything correctly or the sensor is not working. – It should be taking photos by now. – Seems like we failed our first try, there seems to be some sort of a problem. It isn’t working as it is supposed to. We spent 2 days building it but with no luck, the sensor didn’t start working. Seems to be another problem. Now it is getting signal constantly. A little update. We have done everything like it is on the paper, but somehow it isn’t working. We have run out of ideas. At the same weekend I headed again to Luhamaa, therefore I took the sensor with me and gave it to my another friend Ats, who kindly suggested that he can also try to fix the problem. Unfortunately he wasn’t also able to find the solution during the weekend. Despite the problem with the sensor I was dealing with some other topics regarding the camera trap. I spent multiple days looking for specific food containers which would fit the flashes. Also I found a perfect case for my camera. Also the finally product that was missing from the whole arrived with the post. I received another package. Now I can say that I have everything I need to build the camera trap. Let’s open it. Let’s have a look what’s inside here. Here is one Magic Arm from Manfrotto. Here are two Super Clamps. And here are two flash sockets. This is the setup I’m using to secure the flashes. I’m needing 2 pair of these, because I have 2 flashes. This is how the setup looks like. Yes, it is possible to do with the easier solution. But I decided that if I’m doing the project then I’m going to do it properly. I didn’t want to start using the Macgyver tape to attach the flashes to the trees. I wanted to use the solution that is able to hold the flashes in position for multiple months. Today is the third time here at Overall. Before we start building everything, I wanted to tell you some good news. Martin told me today that he was finally able to make the sensor work. I’m going to test it in a second. But before I wanted to show you 2 things. when I started with this project I really didn’t had anything, I had to get all the stuff. A new camera, new flashes etc. As funny as it seems, the small things are the ones that have made me the most excited. First thing is a normal food container. I’m going to put the flash inside here. The reason why I’m so happy about the find is because I spent quite a lot of time looking for this specific container, from different stores. I wasn’t able to find this kind of large container with the locking system There were a lot of these kind of food boxes, but they were too small for the flashes to fit inside. Also they were on a sale, so I got these 2 with only 7€. The second thing that makes me really happy is this toolbox. A lot of camera trap photographers are usin similiar box for camera, it is called pelican case, but this costs around 150€. I found this with only 18€. Another magnificent find. If you open it, then you find a foam hidden inside the box. Let’s have a look at this sensor now, because I understood that it is working perfectly. The sensor is really working! If I’m passing the sensor, then the camera is triggered. I’ll turn on the flashes too, then you’ll see how it is really supposed to work. As you can see, it already took a photo. Super awesome! It is working perfectly. Right now we are going to imitate the situation. – Very cool! Maybe you could take on step behind. As you can see, it took the photo immediately. Maybe you could sneak closed like some sort of an animal. As you can see, it still took the photos. So cool! Very cool! Let’s say that our test runs have been successful. It is so cool to see, how all this project is slowly coming together. Now we are going to set this setup in a cold room to test how well are the batteries functioning in the cold. This way we can estimate how long the batteries would last in the field. Therefore we can evaluate if we need some additional power supply or not. Flash boxes are pretty much ready. There isn’t much to do to bee honest. Just made a hole in the cover. I’ll show you the other flash, it is already in the box. That’s how the flashes will be. They are easily accessible this way. The only thing we have to do with flash boxes is to paint these, with a camouflage paint. One week has passed. We are again here in Overall. And now we are going to build the boxes, cut the holes that are necessary and paint everything over. We also made a more interesting light setup today. In order to make a Daniel Schiffer-like b-roll. But let’s get started! This is definitely not the best news. I was able to cut myself pretty bad. This specific knife is very sharp. Martin took over. My school woodwork teacher Kaupo loan it to me and he also mentioned thet be extra careful with it, because it is extremely sharp. And I at least tried to be very careful. It cut quite deep. So I was lucky I didn’t hurt myself to bad. We just cut a hole for the lens. And now we will start setting the rivets. We are going to attach the stainless steel
with rivets underneath the box. This should make the box a little more sturdy. This is the rivet gun. We have trilled all the holes and attached rivets. The outcome looks very dope. And we also cut the proper shape for the lens hood. This is the outcome of the rivets. This is how the lens hood looks like. With a correct shape. No we are going to spray these boxes with the camouflage spray. It is finally March. This is our last time together here, because we’ve finished with most of the stuff. Right now Martin is fixing the issue with the transmitter. It doesn’t really fit into the box. And we are going to build the sensor into this little box. I spent more than an hour cutting the whole into it. It took me quite some time. But now it is perfect. As you can see, behind me is fully finished camera trap. First time I met with Martin and told my crazy idea, it was 8th of January. Today is 6th of March. Which means that the whole building process took us exactly 2 months. We met 7-8 times, I haven’t really counted. I didn’t film every time I came here. It doesn’t even matter to be honest. The most important is that the camera trap is ready Let’s have a look what it looks like! In the next episode I’m going to talk about the value of the camera trap. And I will describe a few mistakes that we made.