Shetland Attack Pony
"It's only the name that's stupid"

Frequently Asked Questions

When will your next stable of ponies be available for purchase?

Towards the end of march/early april, with luck. I also work as a GP (family physician), so I have limited time to work on this project.

How much memory does it have for storing results?

It can hold 2000 legs in normal recording mode, and 1000 in high resolution. If you are storing the raw sensor data, then there is room for 166 legs.

I don't live in the UK, will it cost extra for international shipping?

It costs me extra to receive funds from outside the UK, and also the internationl shipping is more expensive, so the cost is £250 for UK delivery, and £275 for overseas. If you are buying more than one pony, contact me, and I may be able to do a bulk discount.

How does the inclination affect the accuracy of the device?

The inclination reading is equally accurate at all angles. The compass accuracy decreases with increasing inclination [as a function of cos(inclination)]. However, this does not affect the positional accuracy of the instrument (as the inclination increases, so the importance of compass accuracy decreases, again as a function of cos(inclination).

How is the pony affected by nearby iron, other batteries etc?

The pony determines the compass reading by measuring the earth's magnetic field, and so is affected by these to exactly the same extent as a normal compass

Does it measure distance?

No. Laser range-finding is a hard problem. You need to manipulate electrical signals in GHz, and special optics is also needed. I am looking at incorporating a OEM disto, but there are a number of technical difficulties

The features state that the battery life is 6 hours, but some of my surveying trips last 11-12 hours or more.

The 6 hours refers to the battery life when it is permanently on. As you typically take much less than a minute to make a reading, this translates to at least 360 readings on one battery charge. It was used on an expedition to Austria where it was used most days for 3 weeks, and came back with 50% charge remaining

How do I recharge the battery?

Simply attach it to a your computers USB port

How impervious is it to water and shock?

The unit is sealed to IP54. This means that it will withstand dust, and water splashes. It has been used in The Grind, a very muddy, tight cave passage in Yorkshire, and survived quite happily. It is not fully waterproof - if that is required then a simple zip-lock bag will be quite effective, and it will still work inside it. I have not formally tested it's resilience to shock. The case is ABS plastic, which is quite rugged. The only moving part is actually the switch. The components are all rated to 10000g. I have dropped a couple of tehm small distances (~1m) without any problems. They are probably as rugged, if not more so than traditional instruments. I would still recommend handling them with care.

How big is the device?

130x65x25mm. This is the body of the instrument. The laser, brass eye, and switch all protrude 10mm from their respective surfaces

Does the software work with Vista?

Not currently - I am working on this, and hope to have the drviers and software for Vista working in the next month or so