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S2000.org Mods - Camera Mount

Author: Todd Marcucci
 


Why?
People install cameras for different reasons (maybe you are an amateur film student) but most do it primarily to record and review runs or competitive events. With the cost of digital camcorders and video capture equipment, it's feasible to make and share videos with other drivers. For large events or events within a club or other organization, it's an easy way to time and critique performance of different people on the same circuit.

Most people mount their camera to a roll cage. In many cars, without a roll cage, you can find or make a mount for the rear child seat bolts, or span the headrests with a tripod. In the S2000 you can do neither. This installation involves a single hole in the center console that can either be plugged with a trim plug or covered with the Honda windscreen (standard on 2001 models and up).

What You Need
- Phillips and flathead screwdrivers (if you have the windscreen)
- Drill and 1/4" drill bit
- Sheet of neoprene or another "sticky" material (see below)
- Standard camera mount bolt, or quick-release mount (see below)
- Trim plug, Honda windscreen, or neither (if you don't care about the hole)

Remvoing the Windscreen
If you have a 2001 or newer model, or added the windscreen to your 2000, you will need to remove it. You can do this by removing the two circular trim plugs (gently pry them out), then removing the two phillips-head screws they cover up. These are located on the backside of the windscreen.

If you have the windscreen, once you remove it, you're left with the two holes. Using those two holes as a reference, drill one 1/4'hole exactly in the center of the two along their centerlines. If you don't have the windscreen, you will need to drill the hole out from the inside using the two "dimples" as a reference point. The finished hole should look like this:

I had some neoprene sheet from another project. You could also use a jar "opener" (those thin tacky rubber sheets), no-skid mat for a rug, or other thin rubber material. The idea is to protect the console from scrathes by rubbing the camera against it, as well as insuring that the camera doesn't rotate once installed. Cut a piece to match the footprint of your camera, and cut a hole in it for the camera mount:

You can also see in that picture the bolt used to secure the camera. I went to a local Wolf Camera and Video and purchase a $6 quick-release for a generic tripod they sold. I couldn't find just a replacement bolt, so I bought the entire release instead. I removed the bolt and am using it. This one happened to be just long enough to fit through the console lid and into the camera. Keep in mind the lid will compress somewhat, giving you a little more length than is first apparent.

The final product:

If you plan to go for long periods without using the camera, you may want to plug the hole. Alternatively, if your car did not come with the windscreen you can now install it to cover the new hole. If you decide to go with a trim plug, you can find these at your local auto parts store- look for a 1/4" plug that will match the interior (most auto stores sell them in a variety of colors and textures).

As a final note, you may also want to consider external microphones and a wide angle lens. The placement of the camera is such that there will be a fair bit of wind noise. If your camera supports external microphones, you may want to buy them and wire them inside the cabin (preferably out of the path of wind). This will help you hear you, and instructor, and what's going on with or around the car. A wide angle lens is helpful since the camera is so far forward. The Sony camcorder I use can just barely get the field of the windsheld in the screen- it cuts off just before the pillars. A wide-angle lens would aid in being able to see the dash, steering, shifting, and other cars off to the side.

We hope you enjoy your new toy!

As always, feel free to email the author with comments, critiques, etc.



This page last updated 10/9/01.
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