Solar & Dry Enclosure Set-Up Guide

CamDo Solutions Solar & Dry Enclosure Setup Guide

Solar Pack Contents

This guide describes how to setup your CamDo solar enclosure. In addition to setting up your equipment, please make reference to our comprehensive time lapse guide, "How to Time Lapse" here. In particular, please make reference to Composition to make sure you are shooting what you want to shoot and the time lapse calculations and associated camera settings.

Package Contents

  1. Dry Enclosure
  2. Solar Panel*
  3. Double Ball Socket Mounting Arm
  4. CamDo Controller* such as Blink (Intervalometer pictured)
  5. GoPro Camera*
  1. UV Lens Filter
  2. Power Cable Adapters
  3. GoPro Charging Cable/Battery Eliminator*
  4. Battery Packs* (Single V15 pictured)
  5. USB Battery Charger* (to recharge the battery pack manually)

 * This item may differ depending on your package variant

Setup Instructions

1. Activate the battery pack’s Always On Mode

When the battery is disconnected, press and hold the power button for 6 seconds to change modes. If the charge indicator flashes 3 times and stays lit for a second or two, you are now in Always On mode. If the charge indicator flashes 3 times and then goes dark, you are now in Auto Off mode.

2. Connect the output of the battery pack to the GoPro camera using the USB to mini-USB cable (HERO4) or the H3 Battery Eliminator (HERO3/3+) if using our Programmable Scheduler (PS) or Time Lapse Intervalometer (TL) controller boards.
If using multiple V15 battery packs, see our Guide to Connecting Multiple V15 Battery Packs.
Solar Enclosure Internal Power Solution
3. Connect the CamDo Controller to the camera and follow the instructions here to program it to the desired settings. The CamDo Controller will be one of either the Blink, Time Lapse Intervalometer, Programmable Scheduler, or Motion Detector
4. Place the GoPro in the camera slot within the enclosure. Ensure that the velcro strap is fastened tightly to the back of the camera.
Securing GoPro Camera in CamDo Solutions' Solar Enclosure
5. Loosen the cable gland at the bottom of the enclosure to thread the solar panel cable through. Insert the desired length of cable before tightening the cable gland at the insert around the wire.
Threading Solar Enclosure Cable Wire
6. Plug the solar panel cable into the battery pack using the appropriate adapter. The V15 battery charges with the F3511 to mini-USB adapter. The V44 charges with the F3511 to M5521 adapter.

NOTE: If using multiple battery packs, see our Guide to Connecting Multiple V15 Battery Packs.
V15 and V44 External Batteries for GoPro Cameras
7. Close the front door of the enclosure and fasten the clips to ensure a water resistant seal.

NOTE: Special care should be taken to ensure that cables or debris do not get trapped in the door when it is closed. The power-claw latches can exert extreme force, resulting in damage to the cable and the O-ring seal.
Solar Enclosure Fastening Mechanism
8. Tighten the UV Lens Filter onto the 55mm threaded lens adapter on the front of the enclosure.

The enclosure is fitted with a standard 55mm filter adapter. Optionally, you can replace the lens with your 55mm filter of choice.
Solar Enclosure Lens
9. Use the double ball socket arm to attach the solar panel to the top of the enclosure.

Alternatively, use another 1" ball mount such as our Tough Claw (purchased separately) to attach the solar panel further away from the enclosure for better sun exposure.
Solar Enclosure Double Ball Socket Arm Attachment
Tough Claw Mount for Solar Panel Arm Attachment
10. Use the ¼"-20 threaded holes on the back and/or bottom of the mounting bracket to attach the enclosure using standard tripod screws. Alternatively, thread straps through the slots on the back of the mounting bracket to attach the enclosure to a post, whilst the tripod screw holes can be used to adjust the angle of the enclosure.

We also offer a high-quality swivel mount bracket (purchased separately) that matches the 2.75" hole spacing on the mounting bracket. The swivel arm allows for full 360-degree rotation and the ball and socket system allows a 360-degree rotation for fantastic aiming flexibility when attached to a flat or round surface.
Mounting the Solar Enclosure for GoPro CamerasMounting the Solar Enclosure for GoPro Cameras
11. Adjust the solar panel for optimal sun exposure and tighten the double ball socket arm to prevent the panel from moving.

Check the Solar Irradiance Calculator for determining the optimal angle for your solar panel. The average Solar Irradiance varies throughout the year depending on the seasons. If your project spans over a year and you will not be occationally adjusting the panel angle, we suggest using the "Best Winter Performance" angle as the winter months will require the most solar collection since there is less light available throughout the day.
CamDo Solutions Solar Enclosure

Frame the shoot

Using your smartphone or tablet with the GoPro App, Capture, allows for a live preview of the camera's view which can be helpful to frame the perfect shot.
i. Before deployment, download the GoPro App, Capture, and pair the GoPro camera with your smartphone or tablet.

Camera pairing instructions can be found on GoPro's website here.
Pair GoPro
ii. Open the Capture App on your smarphone or tablet and select "connect to your camera".
Connect You Camera with Capture
iii. Open the enclosure and turn on the GoPro camera's WiFi by holding the settings button on the side of the camera.

Within a few seconds of turning the GoPro's WiFi on, you should see your camera's WiFi network is available to connect to on the Capture App.
Activate GoPro WiFi
Camera Available with Capture
iv. Select your GoPro camera to view a live preview of the camera's view with the App.
Capture view
v. Close the enclosure lid, and loosely mount the enclosure to a fixed surface that will point close to the direction of the shot.
Loosely Mount1
Loosely Mount2
vi. Viewing the live preview on the GoPro App, make any fine adjustments to the enclosure angle as necessary to ensure the camera is capturing the correct frame. Fine adjustments to the enclosure angle are made easy using our Swivel Mount Kit.

Once the perfect shot has been framed, ensure all fasteners are tightened and the enclosure is secure.
Fine Adjustment1
Fine Adjustment2
vii. To conserve power, open the enclosure and turn off the GoPro camera's WiFi by holding the settings button on the side of the camera. Your GoPro App should lose connection to the camera to confirm the GoPro's WiFi has been turned off.
Open to turn off GoPro WiFi
Camera Unavailable with Capture
viii. Turn Blink's WiFi on to ensure the schedules are set, then turn Blink's WiFi off once confirmed. Reference here for more details regarding Blink setup.
Turn Blink WiFi on using remote
Check Blink shooting schedule
ix. Close the lid and make any final adjustments to the solar panel angle for optimal sun exposure.
Adjust solar panel angle
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