Any experience with chest mounted phone bicycle capturing?

Continuing the discussion from Mapillary mount useless:

I came to the same conclusion but for other reasons. In addition to the vibration issue, pictures made with a handlebar mounted camera are not made in the driving direction but in the front wheel direction. As the front wheel is advancing on a sinuous line most of the pictures are taken to the left or right of the general driving direction, in particular when you drive uphills. This results in a vertiginous effect when viewing a sequence of such pictures.

To avoid this effect, I am looking for ideas for a chest mounted solution, either ready to use or requiring some bricolage.

1 Like

I’m pretty sure there is chest/body straps for action cameras which could be used.

Maybe look online for “camera body strap”, “camera chest harness” or something along those lines and see what comes up.

I’m using 360° cameras.
I’ve tried a helmet mount and mounting the camera to a long vertical pole attached to the frame of the bike. Both solutions work well, with the helmet mount you obviously look silly and have to hold your head as still as possible.

I’ve also recently discovered a shoulder mount for GoPro cameras (not so great for 360° images).

I don’t know but my concern would be you spend $40 on a chest strap only to discover how uncomfortable it is to bike with it on. Not so much because of the strap but having the camera attached to your body is going to require you to be extremely upright and very, very, very, very still.

Next time when out riding, give trying to stay in the same position a try. If you can do it, do it for an hour, and are happy with it, go for it. If not, I suspect you’ll end up with the same sort of results as mounting the camera to the handle bars.

Either way, let us know what you think and if you do something different. What matters is how things really work, not how speculators like me think they may.

In order to get an idea of the pictures made with a chest mount I made two “prototypes”:

In both cases the phone is mounted tightly in a stiff envelope. In the first setting the envelope is fixed tightly with a belt, in the second setting it is attached to a backpack harness, rather tight but a bit less than in the other setting. I made a ride with both prototypes without taking particular attention to my position on the bike. This are my observations:

  • The belt solution is very uncomfortable as you have to fix the belt rather tightly around the chest.
  • In both cases the camera is pointing too low so that the handle bar is visible. This is specific to the prototypes and should not be the case with the real harness.
  • In both cases the swaying effect that makes each picture point in a different direction is no longer present or at least so slight that playing a sequence does not nauseate you.
  • the quality of the pictures is very good with the first mount.
  • The second one produced about 20 to 30% of blurry pictures. I think that this is due to the fact that the camera is not fixed tightly to the chest

The last point confirms my experience with different mounts on the handlebar and the frame. Pictures get blurry when the phone is not fixed tightly to the bike. I am sure that with an action cam chest harness like the one presented in the below video the phone is swinging and vibrating a lot. All the harnesses I found are clones of this one. The best solution would be this kind of harness with the phone not mounted on an arm but fixed tightly to the harness.

1 Like

Just tried capturing using this chest mount while running. 60%- 80% of my photos are blurry and some upside down. Not sure how to find out if its worth contonuing to try capturing images during my runs or not. Id welcome some feedback on this