One of My Recent Projects - The "PerryScope"
Tuesday, July 6, 2010 at 10:01AM
Joe Perry in Cool Technology, Digital NV Ranger, GoLight, Lance Camper, PerryScope, Projects, Ramblings and Such, Technology

Despite the long weekend, we opted to stay home and keep the pets company during this year’s 4th of July celebrations. The downtime gave us an opportunity to do some maintenance and modifications to our vehicles. One project that I am proud of in particular, that we did this last weekend, was to finally install a remote searchlight and night vision gear on our “rig.”

Some time ago I had purchased a very cool searchlight from Magnalight.com called the “Golight Radioray.” This is a reasonably high-powered searchlight that can rotate 370 degrees and tilt about 140 degrees up and down - all with the use a remote control. The remote is radio-based (433MHz) so line-of-sight is not required to control the light. The base contains a 200-lb magnet to ensure the light stays in place yet remains removable. Way cool. Yukon Advanced Optics’ Digital NV Ranger 5x42

Another item that I have had for some time and used on occasion was a digital night vision device called the Digital NV Ranger 5x42, from Yukon Advanced Optics. This device is essentially a monocular with some impressive night vision capabilities. Two nice features of the device are its capability to run off of 12-volts DC and the ability to output what the device sees to a video device.

Considering we are often out  in the middle of nowhere with the complete darkness of a new moon night, I have sought to marry the two devices and find a viable mounting option that made use of the wireless capabilities. After many design considerations and testing I finally settled on a solution that should afford an effective and stable mount while still providing flexible deployment options.

Winegard RM-DM61We never watch broadcast television (or satellite TV for that matter) when we are on a road trip so I decided to leverage our Lance camper’s satellite and analog TV antenna system, which is the Winegard RM-DM61, as the mount for the scope and searchlight. By using the antenna as a mounting location it affords the searchlight to be manually elevated by a crank in order to clear rooftop obstacles and still be retracted and stowed for travel.

The antenna system had a large disc-shape analog TV antenna, which is now obsolete, that I removed to provide a location to mount the searchlight.  

Here’s What I Did… 

The chosen mounting location for the “PerryScope” was the location of the obsolete analog television antenna on our camper.

Here are the two main devices of the “PerryScope.” The Golight has the capability to display clear, amber, red, and Infra-red light through the use of lenses. Here, the Golight is shown with a red lense attached.

The night vision device is attached to the Golight through the use of a surplus tripod mounting head with a quick connect element that allows easy removal of the night vision monocular. The tripod mount allows the monocular to tilted and the whole assembly rotates 370 degrees with a remote control.

Here is the obligatory “action shot” with the red lense removed.

The night vision’s output is piped into the camper to be displayed on the television for all to see. It is cool to sit in the dinnete and control the unit with ease.

Prelimnary testing in our driveway suggests that there will many uses for the “PerryScope.” Obviously campsite security should benefit but also we are excited to watch the night wildlife from the “safety” our camper.

I’ll let you now how the field tests go.

Article originally appeared on railroad photography and blog by joe perry (http://www.chasingsteel.com/).
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