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My New Geo-Tool: The Ultimate Cache Finder

Read ‘em and weep, boys … My geo-toolkit now includes a swanky Video Cache Finder.

Officially, this device is known as a borescope but whenever I say that some smart aleck gets it confused with the endoscope that doctors use to look inside the human body. My non-medical version enables the inspection of an area that is inaccessible by other means.

Plumbers love them, and they frequently save mechanics from doing unnecessary maintenance on aircraft engines or steam turbines. Manufacturers employ borescopes to inspect their products for burrs, surface finish or holes, while gunsmiths and crime scene investigators have also been known to carry them.

Mine fits into the video or “inspection camera” category, with a miniature camera and two LED lights positioned at the end of its 1-metre flexible tube to capture video or still images deep within equipment, engines and other dark spaces. A 6cm colour display in the handle shows the camera view, while three buttons let you control the picture angle.

Prices for high-end models start at US$10,000 but, of course, I paid nowhere near that. My cheap-as-chips version ran a measly A$149.95 from Australian webstore 101Geo. According to its product page, this is “the ultimate cache finding tool”, with three attachments (a hook, a magnet and a mirror) that make it “perfect for investigating, then retrieving caches (especially nanos) from their sneaky hiding places. You can also avoid having to stick fingers where spiders live!”

I’d seen these “colour video probes” advertised a few months earlier and mentally added one to my post-Lotto win geo-wishlist (along with visiting the International Space Shuttle). However, a recent cache hunt with a friend – during which we took on hundreds of gigantic spiders and frequently felt too short to complete the task at hand – cemented my decision to treat myself on my birthday last month.

Without wishing to sound like a complete ponce (I leave that job to Cumbyrocks), I’m probably the only New Zealander using one to find Tupperware because she doesn’t want to get cobwebs on her hands – or I will be I can ever get the dang thing back off the blokes in my life.  Mr kjwx wants to use it while fixing cars, one workmate plans to borrow it to unclog his bathroom drain and another isn’t sure what he wants to do with it but told me “I’m sure I’ll think of something”.

Obviously, this isn’t going to be a geo-tool that appears to everyone. For some it will be too expensive, not manly enough, or just plain impractical. I’m already worried that the size of its protective case will make lugging it to GZ a chore (thus ending up amongst the other junk in the backseat of the car). But on the plus side, the screen resolution is exceptional and there is the option of recording your investigations.

But more on that soon … I’ll let you know how it goes once I’ve actually tested it out on the trail.

3 comments

1 ping

  1. Gerard Hyland on Facebook

    *Snigger* REAL caches don’t need TUCFs to be found. Just use a stick and listen for the ‘DOINK’. 😉

  2. kjwx

    I know, but a stick just wasn’t going to make Cumby jealous. Plus when you cache with a five-month-old puppy, you’re always playing tug-of-war for the dang stick and I got tired of losing.

  3. TeamElliottFamily

    I thought you were going to get a personal satellite subscription for April 1, I did… this special subscription means I can direct satellites over our part of the world when GPS signal is low, no more trouble with poor accuracy, my find rate is going to rocket!

  1. The Ultimate Cache Finder? « 101geo

    […] The Ultimate Cache Finder? April 3, 2012 Kylie, from the NotAboutTheNumbers blog posted a great review of our new Cache Finding Tool recently. Have a read […]

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