This is my second revision of my FPV pod. My first FPV pod looked liked the image below and was made from balsa that had been superglued together. This was not the most durable design as it was prone to breaking at the glue joints. In addition to this, the camera was mounted in the front and was exposed to damage from rocks and the ground in the event of a crash.
For more information about my original FPV pod, please see the build log on my website: $160 FPV Setup
So for my second version, I wanted an industrial design that was more durable than balsa. I wanted something that would be more robust and offer protection for the vital components. This is why I chose to use Aluminum for my FPV Pod V2. The Aluminum is 28 gauge sheet metal that I bought from Home Depot. I cut out a strip of the aluminum 39mm wide and bent it into a U-shape to form the pod. The front of the pod has a 5/8" hole drilled through it for the lens housing. In addition to this, I drilled two smaller holes on either side of the lens housing so that I could secure the camera to the aluminum.
On the back side of the pod, I followed the same method I used on my FPV Pod V1. I placed my 5.8GHz transmitter up against the aluminum with a layer of foam in between. I then used black PVC heat shrink to cinch the transmitter to the aluminum body. Lastly, I cut a small square in front of the transmitter heat sink to open it up to a little airflow.
The wires connecting the two components are custom made. One is a servo wire which connects to the proprietary camera connector. The other is a JST connector that connects into a servo lead to supply the pod with power.
A couple of things to note about this setup:
The AUW of this pod is 50 grams. I'm not sure if that's considered heavy or light in the world of FPV, but I do know that it is plenty light enough for all of my models - airplanes and quadcopters alike.
I have done range and orientation tests with this setup using multiple antennas and I have not had any issues with RF interference or any sort of strange EMI issues due to the aluminum body. The FPV Pod V2 is functionally identical to my original FPV Pod, just more durable.
The aluminum body of this pod seems to flex quite a bit. However, when I used the pod to fly FPV on my quadcopter, the footage was amazingly smooth. I'm not sure how this works or what is causing it, but I suspect it has something to do with the aluminum body and the velcro mounting system that isolate the camera from vibrations. A great plus!
If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me or post a comment in the comments section below. Hope you enjoyed!