WebCam Setup

Recently, Scott Manley discovered that he could use Skype’s ‘video call’ feature to simulate ‘instructor demonstrate’ and/or ‘student demonstrate’ functionality in Condor without having to fly with the student in an online server.  The technique involves positioning a webcam so that the viewer can see the caller’s PC screen, while the caller flies the demonstration in Condor.  This is quite handy for a number of reasons.

  • There’s no need for an online server – the demonstration is flown by the caller in ‘Free Flight’ mode. This means the viewer doesn’t simultaneously have to fly their own plane.
  • Because the flight is being flown in ‘Free Flight’ mode, the ‘P’ key freezes the action (instead of enabling ‘autopilot’) so the caller and viewer can discuss a particular part of the demonstration
  • If both participants have the appropriate webcam setups, they can switch ‘control’ back and forth, so the instructor can demonstrate a technique and then watch the student as they practice it, and so on


The trick to the webcam setup is getting it positioned so that it properly displays the caller’s Condor screen, while not interfering with the caller’s ability to fly.  This requires that the camera be positioned in front of the pilot, at about chest level.  The best way to do this is with a ‘flexible iPhone holder’ like the one shown in the following photos.  These can be purchased on Amazon or at other stores for about $15-20.  See for instance

IMG 0190 768x1024 WebCam Setup

Front view of webcam setup

IMG 0191 1024x768 WebCam Setup

Shows webcam positioning in front of pilot

IMG 0189 1024x768 WebCam Setup

Webcam setup viewed from the side

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