After building the iSight Tripod Adapter for my Apple iSight I wanted a way to mount it in my car. After playing with the idea of some sort of in-grill or under-car mount (including building a housing which fit in place of a fog light) I ended up building this car mount.
It is assembled very similarly to the iSight Tripod Adapter, with a PVC end cap used to hold the FireWire connector and hot melt glue in the body for stability. I then built a loop of PVC pipe, with a screw-type pipe clamp at the top, to allow the adapter to be hung from the rear view mirror of a car.
Wide slots were cut so the adapter could be pivoted forward and backward prior to tightening the clamp, allowing for variances in rear view mirror mounting / adjustment.
Small, built-up mounts of hot-melt glue were applied to the top of the mount beneath the band clamp to keep the mount from slipping on or scratching the rear view mirror or its mounting hardware.
As a 5m FireWire cable was used, the cable could then be run along the front edge of the head liner, down the A column, and fitted to a laptop securely fastened to the passenger seat.
Using a copy of EvoCam I was able to easily record time-lapse video while driving. For full-speed recordings I would typically use Apple's QuickTime Pro. Click to play each of these videos, which were transcoded from H.264 file created with QuickTime Pro with Riva FLV Encoder.
Tests 1 & 2
Immediately upon finishing the iSight Car Mount I installed it in my car and went for a test drive to see how much camera shake there would be, how the audio sounded, etc. Both of these recordings were made at night using QuickTime Pro, recording at full frame rate. It was determined that the mounting is solid, although it does somewhat interfere with the day/night function of the rear view mirror. As the mount is not regularly used, this isn't a huge problem.
Test 1 Full-speed video test #1, starting on M-59 westbound near Van Dyke Road, ending on M-59 westbound just past Mound Rd: (Download as H.264) <galleryflash>640 480 http://nuxx.net/gallery/d/50605-3/isight_carmount_test1.flv</galleryflash>
Test 2 Full-speed video test #2, starting on eastbound M-59 just west of Schoenherr, ending on northbound Schoenherr just north of M-59: (Download as H.264) <galleryflash>640 480 http://nuxx.net/gallery/d/50610-4/isight_carmount_test2.flv</galleryflash>
A few days after finishing up the iSight Car Mount I decided to make a stop-motion video of my drive to work. This was recorded by using EvoCam set to record at .5 fps, or one frame every two seconds. This was then reassembled into a QuickTime movie at 30 fps. I'm quite happy with the resulting video: (Download as H.264) <galleryflash>640 480 http://nuxx.net/gallery/d/50600-2/isight_carmount_stopmotiontest1.flv</galleryflash>