On The Road Again – Field Gear

Here’s a quick look at some of our road gear.

The star of the show is the Trimble TX-5 3D Laser Scanner (formerly the Faro Focus 3D). Weighing in at only 5 kg, it’s incredibly lightweight for such a powerful piece of equipment. Big thanks to Cansel in Burnaby, BC – can’t recommend them enough for all their help.

We have a wide variety of tripods that we travel with, mostly Manfrotto. The scanner is sometimes mounted on one of these, but we also use them to mount our spheres.

And speaking of spheres, we purchased ours from Koppa Targets. Great quality spheres at a great price from a small California company with excellent customer service. We have 150mm spheres, as well as 250mm.

The scanner is usually mounted on our “Big Tripod” – a huge 12-foot tripod with elevating centre column from Agatec. Fully extended, it’s a real attention getter – sometimes moreso than the scanner!

So how do we control the TX-5 when it’s 12 feet in the air? Remotely. The scanner is wifi-enabled, but has a Flash interface, so we leave the Apple gear behind and control the scanner wirelessly with a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2.

And finally, we usually bring a Canon 5DM2 along with us. The TX-5 does have an integrated camera which provides panoramic photos as well as color values to the point cloud. However, while at the scene we often take additional high-resolution photos, as well as video.