Tuesday, January 19, 2016

GoPro Power Resolved

It seems as if the GoPro issue I was having is resolved. I had broken the first rule of debugging by making two changes at the same time. I reformatted the SD card AND reloaded the firmware on the GoPro at the same time. I believe that the actual fix for my power problem was reformatting the SD card. Just to review, my problem was the the GoPro would re-boot after recording for a couple of minutes and when it rebooted, it would not reconnect to the GoPro remote. And there was some message on the LCD screen that I couldn't read due to the frost.

I think that I can now recommend the Switronix DVGP3USB battery eliminator as my latest way to power the GoPro. As it comes, it has a 10' long USB cable allowing it to reach from just about any mounting point on the bike to the USB outlet in the sidecar. It completely replaces the battery so it cannot be used to recharge the GoPro batteries as plugging into the GoPro USB port. The manufacturer's recommendation for use is to have the non-waterproof back to feed the cable through. Since I had the waterproof back with a gland fitting, i..e. waterproof cable pass through, I used that. To do that, I had to cut the 10' cable, run it through the gland fitting and solder the cable back together. Not a problem. I left a service loop coiled up inside of the waterproof back to simplify removing the camera.

PBC #36 and #37 were recorded on the same day. Shortly after starting, I noticed that the time/temp signs in town were showing a much lower temperature than I had measured at the start of the ride. So, naturally,  I stopped and started a new recording. How's that for evidence of being obsessed. Besides getting more points (as if that mattered), it does allow me to have a video uploaded in advance. BTW, I am far from being the points leader this year. A dual sport rider in Utah took his GS on a couple of 300 mile rides and has almost double the points.

PBC #35

PBC #36

PBC #37

Also a maintenance note.

  • 42,750 km
  • Torqued the heads (34 ft-lbs)
  • Adjusted the valves
  • Topped off engine oil 10w40 full synthetic
  • Checked transmission and final drive fluids (both full)
  • Adjusted drum brakes
  • Oiled speedometer cable
  • Checked plugs (OK)
  • Checked timing (OK)
  • Balanced carbs (minimal change)
  • Repaired right heated grip (broken wire)


    1. ....and my Wife complains about the cold at 50*....You Rock!

      1. An acquaintance rode in a sidecar from Ketchikan to Fairbanks last January in really cold weather and I believe that he had a much harder time staying warm than the driver. We think it's because you can't move around as much when in the sidecar.

    2. Nice job fixing the power issue for the GoPro...I've not used my old GoPro for so long....should dig it out.

      1. These PBC videos are a decent enough reason to get me it and about everyday. I guess it's time for new heated grips. My repair didn't work. Today was -5°F, cold enough to feel the grips getting colder and colder.

    3. Richard I want to try your solution. I may e-mail you for more detail. Very impressive.

      1. Anytime. During my trip last summer, the GoPro was turned on continuously (24 hours per day) and I just used the remote, which was also powered on continuously, to start and stop recordings.

    4. Richard - or should I call you the Go-Pro guru? I had my Go-Pro plugged in to USB power continually last summer but found I was still running the battery down. I assumed (perhaps incorrectly) that the USB power would charge the battery only, and not be sufficient to operate the camera by itself. Thoughts?

      1. The USB standard is only .5 amps at 5 volts or 2.5 watts. The USB ports on that I have on the bike are 1 amp and 2.1 amps. Most of the aftermarket automotive style chargers are the same as they want them to be useable with the Apple iPad which requires at least 10 watts (or 2 amps). A friend of mine bought a charger with an SAE plug at a well known BMW dealer at an MOA rally and his iPhone wouldn't even indicate that it being charged. Closer inspection revealed the 2.5 watt label. I have the GoPro plugged into the 12 watt port and the GoPro remote plugged into the 5 watt port and they ran continuously for several weeks at a time. So you may want to see what the ports are rated for.