A trigger for an "el cheapo" disposable camera?

Taterbug

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We're trying to prove the existance of cougars and "black panthers" here in Louisiana. I need a cheap camera or device to trigger a cheap camera to be used as a "trail cam". A disposable $5.00 camera is the goal I'm shooting for. Any ideas?
 

ArkansasElkHunter

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Most disposable cameras have a manual rewind so even with a soleniod to fire it, you would only get one pic.  Do you need a time stamp, if not there are probably some cameras that will work for less than $10.
 

Jaggermax

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Taterbug, one game cam company made a one shot game camera like you are referring to.  I believe it was called the Cricket and was made by buckshot.  They basically used cheapo camera with a wire attached to a lever that fired the trigger.  It had to be manually set for each picture.  Unless you can find a neat way to wind the camera, thats all I can think of.  

(Edited by Jaggermax at 10:03 pm on Aug. 11, 2002)
 

Taterbug

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Evidence shows that black panthers like to hunt (or move) during daylight hours many times. The one I saw in this area was out before sundown and crossed a dirt road directly in front of me as I rode an A.T.V. These cats are rumored to be a South American cat and used to be quite common. These and cougars are said to be extinct here but people still see them. I have some experience with electronics and many books on the subject, and I used to build crystal radios and repair simple things that broke. I wish the state would help fund this, but if possible I'd rather just do it myself but money is tight. Just two cameras (electronically triggered if possible) with at least one that will take a daytime picture would be a huge start. It wouldn't matter much if it was limited to one pic at a time. Getting around using a disposable camera would be a good idea, since it would be more "user friendly" as far as modifying it to suit your needs goes, and the ones I've seen do have a flash, but I think it requires the flash to be "on" to work and would drain the battery I suppose (just remembered that). Gonna go surfing for more info on this, but thought I'd drop y'all a line first. Thanks for your replies. I'll check back later...
 

davered1

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If you check out these cameras here and use your imagination for a enclosure(like tinhorns nestle quick container, or a ammo can $3),
the MS20 sensor runs 10$,
a camera you can get for $10(SNAPPY LX) I have a snappy lX that I will donate if you need one! I will even wire it!
battery holder $3,
relay $4 each,
switch and cover $2 from ******,
few pieces of plain old glass
a old printer cable for wires
a roll of film and a few batteries.

This came will cost way less than $40. The flash being on all the time on a snappy LX or any other camera really doesn't affect it much that camera will still take a pic 3 months later just sitting there turned on.It is easy to do and very cheap if you want. Why have a camera that will only fire one pic of a animal you are desperately trying to get a picture of? A deer  could  walk by camera and use up the only picture available ten minutes before your black panther goes by, what a downer that would be.

It took me 4 months to convince a wolf to get his picture taken. would have taken 10 years if I could only fire one pic at a time.Remember you may only get 1 picture of that animal, you will want it to be a good one.

Just my 2 cents but the camera can be put together in about 3 hours if it's your first.I would never go with a disposable camera, photo quality will probably be crappy as well.
 

Taterbug

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Here's some links about what we may be looking for. I'll gladly repay you your costs for a wired camera and shipping costs to get it here. Ive never went inside a camera before. Thanks! I'll try to find a similar camera here and the proper tools to learn to build these.  I'll try to contact you through one of your sites. (dang spammers)




http://www.wtblock.com/wtblockjr/black.htm

http://www.anomalist.com/features/jag.html

http://www.cryptokeeper.com/fieldresearch.htm

http://www.rootsweb.com/~ladesoto/desoto11.htm

KEATCHIE            The name is believed to have originated with the Indian word 'Kichai' meaning 'big cat' or 'black panthers'.  The panthers were likely common in the area because one or more are still seen from time to time.

http://www.fl-panther.com/facts.htm

http://www.pibburns.com/cryptost/ecougar.htm

http://www.100megsfree4.com/farshores/abc_us03.htm

http://www.100megsfree4.com/farshores/abc_us01.htm

http://www.greatcatsoftexas.org/jaguar

http://www.biggamehunt.net/sections/Arizon...d_02100212.html

http://fwie.fw.vt.edu/rhgiles/speciesssm/Cougar.htm

http://environment.about.com/library/weekly/bles22.htm
 

ArkansasElkHunter

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I have founf the Fuji Date AF60 at circuit city for $14.96 and a $5 rebate.  Are you wanting a date camera or just a picture.

Are you planning to bait for the cats or just take pot luck on the trails.  either way Davred1 is right.  You'll get pics of everything but your cat if you only have one shot.
 

Taterbug

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I believe I can catch it on a trail without bait and I know of several places where it would almost certainly walk if it came through the area.  A bounty hunter that used to hunt predators in Texas says all cats are the same. They're very visual and will be attracted to something as simple as a feather twisting in the breeze on the end of a piece of string. I used to trap but mainly water trapping for coons and mink. Too many dogs and birds on land. A dated picture with the time would be best and help "prove" where and when it was taken (and hopefully help verify what area too). I haven't been back to this area in a few years, but I used to see the tracks all the time in the woods and thickets in the clay and along the waters edge. I'm taking plaster with me next time and hopefully can still find tracks. There's a circuit city about an hour from here. Other than that I'm stuck with Wal-Mart and some dollar stores here. I've been checking the meteor shower tonight. Starting to see a few more. Anyone still up can go out and look toward the north/northeast and eventually see some, but you might see them anywhere in the sky because there's more than one shower going on at the time. I'm going back out there!
 

Taterbug

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My dad told me that my uncle shot a cat on his property (near here) one night when his hunting dogs started barking a lot. He went out with a 22 to investigate and came face to face with a large cat sitting on a lower limb in a tree. It was a dark cat with some markings that looked sorta like stripes. He said it weighed about 40 pounds and had a long tail (I think this was in the 70's). The old timers called them "wildcats". Another guy back around 1900 beat a black panther to death in his hog pen, but later died from his injuries sustained from fighting it.  In the links there are reports of very large black cats and also a smaller kind so it seems we have more than one breed here. (my sighting was in about 88 or 89)
 

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