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Old 10-16-2009, 07:49 PM   #1
 
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Default Camera Snakes

There are a few different choices for camera snakes these days, many of them pretty inexpensive. For the people who have one, what have you used yours for? How has it helped you? Any special tricks?
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Old 10-16-2009, 08:37 PM   #2
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I had a bunch of splice boxes up in the ceiling I had to find, so I bought one to make the job easier.

That was a waste of time and I returned it the next day

I went back to the low tech method of a mirror and flashlight
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Old 10-16-2009, 09:09 PM   #3
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There are a few different choices for camera snakes these days, many of them pretty inexpensive. For the people who have one, what have you used yours for? How has it helped you? Any special tricks?

I have the milwuakee, and the rigid. I find them very handy, and have saved me many times.
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Old 10-16-2009, 09:17 PM   #4
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I currently have the Ridgid SeeSnake.




As soon as I start hiring employees and become a 'real' contractor, I'm gonna get a microExplorer.


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Old 10-16-2009, 09:46 PM   #5
 
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I also have the Ridgid, I bought the original one, I see that the newer one has a video output as well as the option for a smaller head.

I only used mine once, it helped out but it also got stuck. It took about 20 minutes to get it out, the rubber around the snake got ripped up so it is no longer water proof. I was at the point in which I wasted a lot of time and I was about to just rip it out and loose the camera head in the wall. Luckily it came out before my "breaking point".

Other than that one time I haven't found any other use for it that I can't do the old fashion way. That's why I came to you professionals, I'm curious about how you use yours. In what ways have you used yours?


480sparky, the Explorer is nice, I especially like the auto-leveling head. However, it is pretty expensive, I'm not sure if the extra cost is worth it for me. One option which I could really use is some type of servo to tilt the head around, that would be tits.


Black4Truck, the flashlight and mirror method is classic, it will never be replaced. Especially when you use this: http://www.techtoolsupply.com/Produc...tCode=55%2D400

It was the best $25 I ever spent, I use this ALL the time.
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Old 10-16-2009, 09:50 PM   #6
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.........480sparky, the Explorer is nice, I especially like the auto-leveling head. However, it is pretty expensive, I'm not sure if the extra cost is worth it for me. One option which I could really use is some type of servo to tilt the head around, that would be tits. ..........
It's worth it to me, as I could use the recording features (both still and video) to pay for it.
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Old 10-16-2009, 10:54 PM   #7
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It was the best $25 I ever spent, I use this ALL the time.

That "gizmo" is fine till you as insulation to the mix.. then you are back to mirror and flashlight
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Old 10-16-2009, 10:59 PM   #8
 
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That "gizmo" is fine till you as insulation to the mix.. then you are back to mirror and flashlight
That gizmo IS a mirror and flashlight, just rolled up in one convenient package to make it easier to use.

So no one wants to share camera snake uses with me? Fine, I'll take my ball and leave
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:18 PM   #9
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I have the Millwukee one and at best I would say that it has been "Handy". I cant say its really bailed me out of any tough situations. I find myself reaching for my mirror and a bright flashlight first.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:23 PM   #10
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That gizmo IS a mirror and flashlight, just rolled up in one convenient package to make it easier to use.

So no one wants to share camera snake uses with me? Fine, I'll take my ball and leave
As I said before, add insulation to the mix and you can't see chit
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:27 PM   #11
 
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As I said before, add insulation to the mix and you can't see chit
Yeah, I'm not following.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:30 PM   #12
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Yeah, I'm not following.
Look at the demo tape.. he sticks the mirror up 2 inches into an uninsulated ceiling
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:33 PM   #13
 
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Look at the demo tape.. he sticks the mirror up 2 inches into an uninsulated ceiling
I've used that device for years, in all conditions.

I'm just not understanding what you mean about going back to a mirror and flashlight. This device IS a mirror and flashlight, only built together so it's easier to use. I'm not following how insulation will effect it.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:34 PM   #14
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Yeah, I'm not following.
Frank most of them are only about three feet long so if your trying to look beyond that your pretty much SOL....... Dont get me wrong they do have a purpose but I havent come to one yet.....Many times when you insert them into the wall the camera never seems to look in the direction you need it to.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:35 PM   #15
 
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Frank most of them are only about three feet long so if your trying to look beyond that your pretty much SOL....... Dont get me wrong they do have a purpose but I havent come to one yet.....Many times when you insert them into the wall the camera never seems to look in the direction you need it to.
We were talking about the mirror device I linked to in an earlier post. Not the snake.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:39 PM   #16
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............So no one wants to share camera snake uses with me? Fine, I'll take my ball and leave
OK, true stories.

I bought the SeeSnake. No particular reason, just thought it would come in handy. A week later, I got to trim out a house. When I had roughed it in, the fireplace was not set, so I left the wires in place for the fp installers to deal with. All they did was push them out of their way, slam the fp in, vent it and beat feet out the door.

Along comes good old me, and I open the bottom of the fp. No wires. I get out the SeeSnake, and I can see them through the opening for the gas line. So I take a scrap piece of #12 solid with a hook on the end, run it back there and within 5 minutes, I'm done.

SeeSnake is now paid for in first use.



Story # 2.

Another house had a gas fireplace, but during a previous remodel of the basement, the gas shutoff got turned off, and the ceiling was rocked. Plumber was lamenting about ripping the ceiling down to find it. I pop out a couple of recessed cans, run the camera up, and show him exactly where the shutoff is.


Story #3.

Two rooms in a basement have lost power. I cannot find any bad connections, but determine it must be between two boxes. I cut a small hole next to a receptacle box, run the camera up, and there in the wall is a buried switch box. Drywall saw comes out, and lo and behold..... bad connection in the buried switch box.



Quote:
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Frank most of them are only about three feet long so if your trying to look beyond that your pretty much SOL....... Dont get me wrong they do have a purpose but I havent come to one yet.....Many times when you insert them into the wall the camera never seems to look in the direction you need it to.

You can get 36" extension for the SeeSnake, and couple them up to 30'.
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:50 PM   #17
 
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Great stories! Those are the exact things I was looking for, keep them coming guys!


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Two rooms in a basement have lost power. I cannot find any bad connections, but determine it must be between two boxes. I cut a small hole next to a receptacle box, run the camera up, and there in the wall is a buried switch box. Drywall saw comes out, and lo and behold..... bad connection in the buried switch box.
That's pretty crazy that you found it right there, what made you cut the hole next to the receptacle and look up? What made you think there was something up there in that position?
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Old 10-17-2009, 12:02 AM   #18
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............That's pretty crazy that you found it right there, what made you cut the hole next to the receptacle and look up? What made you think there was something up there in that position?
It was all in " EMT, and this was the closest box to the panel, but I couldn't find the other end of it, so I thought I'd run a fish tape up. It went about 3 feet up and stopped dead. I suspected a buried box at that point, but I used the camera to 1. confirm it and 2. determine which side of the wall was going to get a blank cover.
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Old 10-17-2009, 07:40 PM   #19
 
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theyre great when installing old work can lights just drill a 3/4 inch hole and u can see where your joist is. its pretty easy to patch a hole like that then the hole for your mirror
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Old 10-17-2009, 08:17 PM   #20
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theyre great when installing old work can lights just drill a 3/4 inch hole and u can see where your joist is. its pretty easy to patch a hole like that then the hole for your mirror
im a fan of drilling a hole big enough to slip a piece of # 12 wire through and feeling around with that. Now thats even easier to patch......
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