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Old 12-17-2010, 07:34 AM   #1
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Engine Room Cameras

I would like to set up an engine room camera (or two!) in my trawler for monitoring both while under way and, if I can figure out how, monitor while I am at home. *I am curious what inexpensive set up others are using? *When I am @ the boat I could just use a wireless webcam to run it to my laptop (which also works as my chartplotter) but that doesn't do much when I am not on the boat. *I've heard many say they bought their set up at costco or best buy. *Specific models and info on how you set it up/monitor it would be great!
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Old 12-17-2010, 08:23 AM   #2
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Woodsong, My only suggestion would be to be sure the camera you purchase will work in both a low light or no light situation and the lens is designed to do wide angle. Chuck
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Old 12-17-2010, 02:02 PM   #3
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

I purchased 2 low lux dome cameras for volunteer, and a 12v dc color monitor designed to fit into a car headrest, the monitor came with a flush mount kit and was mounted in the dash panel of the boat. the monitor had 2- input cables... if you want to go with even more cameras you can buy a multiplexer that will auto switch between cameras. I purchased all the stuff from Amazon and had great results... the cameras were about $50 ea. and the monitor was about $80. A great low cost system. I had better luck leaving the overhead light on in the engine room than relying on the cameras ir lighting... the previous system I did was black and white and less sensitive to light but the picture was not as good.
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Old 12-17-2010, 02:07 PM   #4
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Although the camera has IR capability, the engine room lights really improve the picture.
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Old 12-17-2010, 02:14 PM   #5
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

I use a small camera that is designed for a computer and it runs off a USB cable (you can buy long extensions) that I ran up the cable chase to the flybridge where I have my laptop chart plotter.* I simply open a window in the browser and can minimize it if I like.* I only monitor the engine room gauge set*but I could aim it anywhere.* I simply tie wrapped it to a convenient spot.* I guess you could set up more that one and switch around too.* I do have to leave the engine room 12v lights on to see anything.* I guess it would work over the internet as that's what*it was designed for, but it is not wirelss.* The brand is logitech and it was around $30 from the internet.
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Old 12-17-2010, 02:40 PM   #6
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Does anyone have a story of how using these monitoring systems saved the day?***I suppose *knowing everything looks normal is worth the small cost.* I kind of like to keep things simple if I can.***

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Old 12-17-2010, 02:58 PM   #7
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

I'd swear there is someone on here who saw smoke or liquid spraying out of a hose or something... does anyone remember what I am talking about / who it was??*

We haven't added camera but it is on the list.
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Old 12-17-2010, 03:36 PM   #8
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

I have several wireless IP cameras setup at various points on the boat. Four in the engine room (two for each engine, front and back). These feed back to my main PC at the helm. The software that came with the cameras allows me to see as many as 16 at a time (I don't have that many). When I am at home I can login to the boat using the free logmein.com software and view any of the cameras. Kind of fun watching people go by on the dock, looking at your boat.

The cameras can be configured for motion detection, and will start recording to the PC whenever there is motion in the field of view. Great for if someone is messing with the boat. It doesn't phone home, but at least I have something to give to the police if I have theft/vandalism.


The cameras were about $90 each, as I recall. I already had the wireless network setup on the boat to that did not cost anything extra. Oh, and I do need to leave the lights on in the engine room to get a usable image.
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Old 12-17-2010, 07:08 PM   #9
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

I am thinking I'd like 2 cameras...one facing the aft part of the engine and the transmission to watch for leaks, etc. and then one directed @ the low point in the bilge. Our Monk is set up such that if there is a leak anywhere on the boat it will all flow to one location in the bilge. If I have a camera there and there is a leak anywhere on the boat it will show up there and I could then investigate what is going on.
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Old 12-17-2010, 10:02 PM   #10
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Quote:
ktischler wrote:

I have several wireless IP cameras setup at various points on the boat. Four in the engine room (two for each engine, front and back). These feed back to my main PC at the helm. The software that came with the cameras allows me to see as many as 16 at a time (I don't have that many). When I am at home I can login to the boat using the free logmein.com software and view any of the cameras. Kind of fun watching people go by on the dock, looking at your boat.


The cameras can be configured for motion detection, and will start recording to the PC whenever there is motion in the field of view. Great for if someone is messing with the boat. It doesn't phone home, but at least I have something to give to the police if I have theft/vandalism.


The cameras were about $90 each, as I recall. I already had the wireless network setup on the boat to that did not cost anything extra. Oh, and I do need to leave the lights on in the engine room to get a usable image.

*
What brand/models did you go with?* Also...do you power these with an AC to DC adaptor?

*
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Old 12-18-2010, 07:24 AM   #11
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

This is a great thread. *The testimony here has me thinking about assembling a system from the on-line sales going on over the holidays. *It seems to me that this is one of those worthy, relatively inexpensive mods that bring peace of mind. And it could be a good excuse for updating to a central monitor for all the electronics. * "OH DEAR, have I got the perfect Christmas gift for you!"
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Old 12-18-2010, 07:58 AM   #12
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

At this point I am thinking of keeping it ultra stupid and simple....just run 2 basic webcams down to the engine room that are plugged into the laptop while underway...it won't be the best set up and can't monitor it while away from the boat but at least will let me monitor while underway and that will be good.
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Old 12-18-2010, 09:16 AM   #13
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Buy an extra one , as many folks have a hard time installing a Rear View Mirror , and what comes up astern IS of interest.
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Old 12-18-2010, 09:25 AM   #14
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Quote:
FF wrote:"Buy an extra one........* and what comes up astern IS of interest."
Although I use my radar for "rear viewing", I've had many instances where a rear
view camera would have been nice.

*
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Old 12-18-2010, 09:55 AM   #15
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

D-Link DCS-920 cameras. Just using the AC adapter that came with the cameras. I do wish the cameras were 12V so I could just use existing circuits.
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Old 12-18-2010, 01:03 PM   #16
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

Quote:
JohnP wrote:

Does anyone have a story of how using these monitoring systems saved the day?***I suppose *knowing everything looks normal is worth the small cost.* I kind of like to keep things simple if I can.***
I wonder if John P is correct. Do these systems really help? Is the fidelity of the image good enough to see a leak or is the camera pointed in the right direction?

Two points well made though:
<ul>[*]Woodsong points the camea at the bilge, so if it starts to fill, it's worth a look.[/list]<ul>[*]Marc points the camea at the vacuum gauges. I could never figure out why a racor guage would be built without some way of knowing what the high reading was. I've got 2 of these stupid gauges and might replicate Marc's setup.[/list]For you guys that have a flat screen on the bridge, what brand do you have? I would think you would have to store the flat screen monitor below when away from the boat.
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Old 12-18-2010, 10:17 PM   #17
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RE: Engine Room Cameras

My Garmin 4210 Chartplotter accepts 2 video feeds. as of now I have one camera facing aft from the flybridge so I can see whats is coming up from the rear. I will eventually install a camera in the engine room. The garmin can monitor 3 different things at the same time such as the chart, video and fishfinder or any other combination or just one if desired. When I back out of the slip I have the video on the large single screen and then change to the chart only or a combination on the way out of the marina. I think I will have to keep a light on in the engine room when that camera gets installed. I can't monitor at home with this setup but it would be nice to see if anyone was messing with the boat or if it springs a leak.
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