Gopro for flight training???

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by john745, Apr 24, 2021.

  1. john745

    john745 Filing Flight Plan

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    Unfortunately as a result of my work schedule I've got weeks (up to 3 weeks) between some flight lessons. I notice some people have used a gopro to record flights. What is the perspective on recording your lessons for watching and reviewing later for improvement? (of course if your instructor is ok with it)
     
  2. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    I think they can be a good tool, as long as they aren’t distracting you from the reason you are there. But I think they often are a distraction. I think it’d be better if the instructor was dealing with the cameras. A student should have other things on their mind, pre, during, and post flight.
     
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  3. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Likelihood of a scew-up is linear to the number of gopro's on board.
     
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  4. SixPapaCharlie

    SixPapaCharlie May the force be with you

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    Its a lot of overhead for reviewing a flight.

    If you just film a flight w/ 1 gopro, you really aren't going to get much data from that unless something major happens.
    Where is it looking, the instruments, you, a wing shot?

    So you would need at least 2 cameras. 1 that can see the outside (Attitude of the plane) and one that can see the instruments.

    What about audio? You need audio so you can hear the CFI say "Pull the power back and hold this attitude"
    Do you need another camera showing you where the controls are so you can review what you did right or wrong? "Not enough right rudder"

    I am not being a jerk, just thinking that if you want to review a flight and get valuable data from a camera, you are now talking about full on video editing to sync this all up.

    I am all about recording flights and during my training, I would throw a GoPro on the plane to record but most of the time the video was not helpful for a learning scenario. The sun would be glaring on the instruments or the opposite, it would expose for the outside and the instruments would be too underexposed to see. Film your flights if you want to watch them back. It can be a lot of fun and honestly, it is neat to capture some of those firsts but I don't expect without a lot of work that you could learn much about the flight from a single particular camera. My .02
     
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  5. john745

    john745 Filing Flight Plan

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    Appreciate the 2 cents.
    Agree with SixPapaCharlie I was thinking it would be great in theory but poor in practice.

    Anything you people would recommend to take the most away from each session? Take notes... I have my first flight this upcoming week. Thats how early in the process I am.
     
  6. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    Agreeing the posts already made. My experience has been it is very challenging to get a camera to capture all the things you need it to see. Just getting it to focus and include the outside image and the inside image (instrument and/or controls) is challenging. I believe professional and semi-professional videos you see use multiple cameras and quite a bit of post editing to make them work.

    Brian
    CFIIG/ASEL
     
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  7. Aviator305

    Aviator305 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    If you’re going to do it, I recommend a GoPro MAX mounted on the ceiling above and just behind the pilot/copilot head. The 360 files are truly 360, and using the GoPro Quik app you can pan right/left/up/down to examine your sight picture and the right half of your panel (can see attitude indicator, altimeter, VSI). With this camera, you only need to worry about hitting record at the beginning of the flight. In my short experience with it, it does not really matter how you angle it.

    Edit: PS Here is a video you can use to test if the Max will meet your needs. If you’re on an iOS device, make sure that you open the link using a non-Safari browser such as Google Chrome, or else you will not be able to use the 360 features.
     
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  8. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    The problem with the max is that it doesn’t record audio over the usb.
     
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  9. Aviator305

    Aviator305 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I had never tried to record audio on the Max. Apparently, this is not supported by GoPro because any wires will result in stitching artifacts. The Max can still be useful for the OP depending on what he wants to debrief. I would advise against using any camera system if setting up the angles and cables is going to take more than a very brief moment. IMHO, the potential for making a mistake during preflight or any time after the engine is powered should not be underestimated. PPL training is the right time to establish good habits without any distractions.
     
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  10. Jeff Szlauko

    Jeff Szlauko Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I used a GoPro on many of my lessons. You'll probably want to also record the audio from your headset though, and thus would need to get a cable that plugs into your GoPro and headset. Here's a site that discusses some options:
    How to record Aircraft ATC & Intercom audio to your GoPro HERO, iPhone/Android, Garmin VIRB, or ContourHD - CRAZEDpilot.com

    There's an app called CloudAhoy that I found interesting, as it basically maps your flight via a GPS, and provides some degree of analysis. This is something that has nothing to do with a GoPro, but just thought I'd mention it. Check it out here:
    CloudAhoy | Flight Debrief in the Age of Technology

    Comes in handy for looking back at a flight and seeing how well you did regarding your planned flight path, speeds, altitudes, and such.

    As for the GoPro being useful for improving your lessons, I can see it being a bit handy, as you can review what your instructor said, and can look over the things you did right and wrong.
     
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  11. sarangan

    sarangan Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    If you are using a rental airplane its probably more work than its worth because setting up the camera can be quite difficult. However, it is easy to record just the audio, and that should give you enough information to review the flight. I did this even as far back as 20 years ago with pretty good results. You can plug a tablet or phone into the backseat intercom and forget about it for the duration of the flight.
     
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  12. bluesideup

    bluesideup Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Hi.
    A camera, of any make, without sound, will not add much value to a flight analysis for the instructor, in my opinion. If you have it use it but set it and forget it do not play with it in flight. The problem is that most of the batteries will not last throughout the complete flight.
    I find that a Track log can have a lot more information for the pilot and instructor. I've used them with the students for a very long time, with Lap tops, Etrex, Palm pilot..., and now with the Tablet or phone. You can use apps like Avare (AOS) log the track, and at the end of the flight you can analyze the data with free programs like Trackmaker and get a lot more information than what you get from a video.
    Not as exiting I know.
     
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  13. vinlearns2fly

    vinlearns2fly Pre-Flight

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    I use a GoPro, three, in fact. Here's why:
    • I want to document this amazing journey and experience of learning how to fly. This is not something I thought I would ever do, not at 49 so I want to capture all the interest moments and sights. So far, I have recorded some really cool videos of flying in the PNW and also some very interesting situations including a couple situations with other plans where we had to take evasive action.
    • I have one of my GoPro's mounted on the tie down ring pointed at the landing gear - (mains and nosewheels). Watching how I touched down after every class is really useful. For example, did my mains touchdown before the nose? Did I bounce? Was I on centerline? Etc.
     
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  14. Will Kumley

    Will Kumley Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Where in the PNW are you? I fly out of KPWT and also used a gopro knockoff during my training. I suck at video editing so I primarily use the footage to critique myself after a flight. I bounce between multiple aircraft and finding the best vantage point to set up the cameras has been interesting. When I finally purchase my own airplane I'll probably put more effort into getting a good location set up and marking the mounts so its the same every time I fly and allows me to set them up quickly.
     
  15. vinlearns2fly

    vinlearns2fly Pre-Flight

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    I am in Beaverton, OR. I fly out of 7S3.
     
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  16. Vance Breese

    Vance Breese Line Up and Wait

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    2_Moment(2).jpg I use a GoPro Hero 7 to record lessons for my clients.

    I find it a great debriefing tool and particularly useful if they are learning to use the radio as we can review the call and see what they left out.

    Flying a gyroplane is about the sight picture and the instruments are basically used to calibrate the sight picture.

    The video helps to validate the slow response of the instruments because it captures the instruments and the sight picture. If a client is flying a gyroplane using the airspeed indicator trying to meet the practical test standards (plus or minus five knots on approach, plus or minus ten knots in most ground reference maneuvers) they will always be behind the aircraft.

    It is also useful for teaching landings where ballooning up in the round out and flare can be problematic.

    I have a big screen TV in the hangar that shows the instruments full size for the debrief.

    I give them a memory stick with the flights on it so they can review at home or show their friends how much fun they are having.

    When my clients get close to their proficiency check ride they can often make the instructor comments before I do.

    I am still on a steep learning curve and have not yet fully realized the value.


    2_Moment(2).jpg
     
  17. woodchucker

    woodchucker Pattern Altitude

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    When I was a student pilot I hooked an digital audio recorder to my headset via a pigtail. Didn’t need video, the audio was enough to remind me what happened during the flight. I would also re-create the lessons on my home flight sim while listening to the playback. Super helpful in cementing radio communications and procedural items. Video may or may not be helpful or instructional, and would be far less useful without attached audio.
     
  18. vinlearns2fly

    vinlearns2fly Pre-Flight

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    My Gopro's were worth their weight in gold yesterday. I had a close call (flying solo) when I incorrectly applied right rudder during after landing roll and almost caused a runway excursion (I was able to recover). The plane is fine, I am fine, the tower didn't get involved and I am just trying to get back my confidence. Before I saw the Gopro videos, I actually thought that I had completely and totally botched the entire landing including touchdown. I assumed the worst and my confidence and morale was below rock bottom. Because of how badly shaken up I was, my mind was unable to recollect what actually happened.

    It was only after I reviewed these videos that I realized that my landing wasn't too bad and that it was my after landing roll that was the problem. I know now that I landed 'OK' and that I did a few things that were wrong - right rudder and power addition, which I could hear that in the video. I always knew that I needed more landing roll practice (we were doing mostly touch and go's) and now I know that this is where I need to focus on.

    On that dame day, I was recorded a close encounter with a hawk.

    GoPro's are a great aid in training. If you can them, use them.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2021
  19. Stephen Peacock

    Stephen Peacock Filing Flight Plan

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    It can be very distracting
     
  20. vinlearns2fly

    vinlearns2fly Pre-Flight

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    I mount 3 Go-Pro’s in the plane I train in. They are not distracting at all. I mount them, hit record and then think about them again only AFTER the flight. Obviously, you want to mount them in locations that do not impede your vision. You also don’t want to be distracted by batteries running out etc. (I use external batteries).

    They have been an invaluable training aid and my CFI agrees.