AS355/350 Nose Mount HD
The current standard for aerial HD shooting, the Eurocopter AS355 Twinstar and the AS350 Astar share the same airframe and therefore the same mounting bracket. A light weight design, this single pole bracket provides the best of both worlds - a clear nose point of view and a wide range angle of view from the side of the aircraft. The combination of the lightweight Cineflex camera system and this bracket gives the operator great range to operate with with little compromise to helicopter performance. This shot is Blackcomb Aviation's AS355 Twinstar with the Cineflex HD system that was used for the Vancouver Olympic promotional footage shot in and around Whistler and Vancouver, BC.
Bell 206B Jetranger Nosemount
The venerable Jetranger is once again a viable camera ship with the advent of the Airfilm G1 utility bracket. This nosemount which can carry a variety of camera types is an ideal position for the forward POV shoot for the camera. This installation also includes the optional counterweight arm which is installed under the aft cargo hold. It's ideal for a cameraman and pilot, as any extra bodies tend to compromise available fuel load and performance. This helicopter and mount were used for aerials on the 2008 Xterra US Championships in Lake Tahoe. Using the cool air in the morning and keeping minimal crew on board helps the helicopter's performance, especially when operating at 7000-8000'.
AS350/355 Nose Mount for Film
The airfilm 100/200 series bracket can carry a variety of camera systems on the nose of the Eurocopter 355/350 helicopter. The bracket design is larger and more complex than the Single Pole version but allows for heavier and larger camera systems to be installed such as this Pictorvision Eclipse system with Red One Camera package. This bracket is also compatible with low and high skid gear. This installation on Four Seasons Twinstar was the debut of Eclipse #4 on its first flight in Toronto in 2010.
Bell 206L Longranger Sidemount
The Longranger is the stretched version of the Jetranger with the option of stronger engines and more available payload. This sidemount installation featuring the Wescam 24DB camera system uses a combination of existing hardpoints as well as additional upper fuselage hardpoints. The sidemount bracket is certified to carry the small Wescam 16" system right up to the larger 36" Film systems. This Wescam 24DB installation was on the Survivor Vanuatu show and that's not a cloud but an erupting volcano in the background!
An original Wescam design, the Gullwing bracket was a standard for installation of the larger Wescam ball systems. It works with existing hardpoints requiring no aircraft modifications. The aftermarket extended sidepods do however create an obstruction. This installation of the Wescam HD Camera ball is on Four Seasons Aviation AS355 Twinstar for a documentary.
Bell 407 Nosemount
The Airfilm G1 utility mount has certification for the Bell 407 as well as the Bell 206 series of helicopters. The 407 is an ideal platform for aerial shooting as it combines a very powerful motor with a very smooth rotor system. The result is a helicopter that you can fly with extra people onboard and a full tank of fuel and still have the maneuvering power to get the shot. This particular installation was for the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii - it's nice when the pilot, producer, and cameraman can travel with a full tank of gas in air conditioned comfort. Yah - I like this bird!
Camera Truck A
A custom-built mount for the Gyron camera system allowed for two complete camera systems to be installed on top of this SUV for the Belmont Stakes. Electrical power for the camera system was provided from the vehicle directly with a battery backup. The truck ran the inside Turf track at Belmont to follow the horse race from the backstretch through to the finish. The Gyron is uniquely adept at the rougher conditions onboard a camera truck.
Camera Truck B
Another custom built bracket for a standard pickup truck was built for the feature Documentary "Crimes Against Nature" in 2007. This installation was built for the Cineflex camera system and was ideal for shooting highway sequences or making slow tracking shoots. The ability to use local vehicles and a bracket system that can be easily assembled makes it a low cost alternative for tracking shots. Power for the camera system and onboard recorders was provided via the truck's electrical system.
A unique application designed by Aerial Camera Operations, Snowcam utilizes the stabilized camera systems (Wescam/Cineflex) onboard a snowmobile. All camera operations are remoted to a separate location allowing just the snowmobile driver to be aboard during operations. This particular configuration was used for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Whistler BC to track skiers along various portions of the competition venue.
On-water tracking shoots were required for the World Canoe and Kayak Championships in Dartmouth, NS in 2009. This setup allowed the boat to track alongside the racers and provide precise coverage of the leaders as they jockeyed back and forth for the lead during the race. The setup mitigated the movement caused by wake or wave.