Setup is easy. Extend AirBuddy and center it between the wing and yourself. Use the quick connector to attach it near the middle of the trailing edge of your wing. Lay out the line and attach it to AirBuddy. When ready for takeoff, start the camera and launch as you would normally. With practice it only takes a few moments.
AirBuddy has been extensively tested on paragliders of all types and sizes, including monosurface, cross country and tandem wings.
The line is attached with a simple girth hitch (also called a lark's head) to the blue corded connection point. This is a very secure connection during flight, yet disconnects quickly and easily at the landing.
Attachment with a girth hitch
Yes, you can. Moderately steep takeoffs work best for this. On very shallow takeoffs or gentle hills your camera may be dragged on the ground. In these situations, we recommend an assisted takeoff or keeping AirBuddy in your harness and deploying it in the air when you are safely away from the hill.
Capturing takeoff handsfree
AirBuddy's connector includes an integrated safety release mechanism. Between the two titanium split rings is a “breakaway” stainless steel ring. This breakaway ring is designed to open when a force of 20N is applied to the elastic bridle. When this happens only the quick connector remains attached to the wing. As a result, the pilot is protected by preventing AirBuddy and/or the line from becoming irretrievably snagged.
Basic acrobatic maneuvers such as wingovers are perfectly fine. However for more advanced acro we recommend a camera fixed on the pilot.
On longer flights, you may want to start or stop your camera while it's deployed. There are two techniques for this. Many action cameras have a remote or support for voice control. In these cases, simply control your camera via the remote or give your camera a voice command. Alternatively, use a basic pitching maneuver to allow AirBuddy to swing close to you and retrieve it in the air (recommended for advanced pilots).