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Thread: borescope

  1. #1
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    Default borescope

    Does anyone own or have experience with using a borescope for inspecting crawlspaces that are to small to enter. I'm looking at purchasing one & using a telescopic pole to look at piers, beams,subfloor etc. in crawlspaces with very little clearance

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by stanley frost View Post
    Does anyone own or have experience with using a borescope for inspecting crawlspaces that are to small to enter. I'm looking at purchasing one & using a telescopic pole to look at piers, beams,subfloor etc. in crawlspaces with very little clearance
    Not enough distance. Try this.

    Amazon.com: Spy Gear Spy Video Car VX-6: Toys & Games

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    http://www.FullCircleInspect.com/

  3. #3
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    Default Re: borescope

    The one i'm looking at has 60' of cable (should be more than enough) and can produce a video and still pictures. If anyone has one I would also like to know if you have used it for other inspection items duct work, plumbing etc..


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    Default Re: borescope

    Stanley

    That sounds like a very good use for a borescope and crawlspaces, that are not accessible and in most cases only a small opening exist in which to peer into the space.

    I don't know if you checked this out, the prices are steep.

    Gardco :: SnakeEye II and III


  5. #5
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    Default Re: borescope

    Thanks Raymond, The one I'm looking at cost appox. 1,200.00. I have alot of pier and beam homes that I inspect and think I can charge extra we it's needed.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: borescope

    I'm sure you'd agree that if the opening is that small and an inspector (or other contractor) can't enter the crawl, you have a huge problem.

    No borescope on Earth will reveal the whole truth, and even if you observed some defect with it, you'd still be calling for remediation due to lack of clearance.

    I admire your creative thinking, but I doubt you be happy with the results.

    Dom.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: borescope

    I have a small boroscope that I could use for a small peek in a pinch but never do.

    If I had a snake like you are describing I would use it to check drainage systems. We have old perimeter drains here that fill with dirt and collapse, which leads to wet basements and crawlspaces. Drain contractors charge about $200 for an inspection.

    I think you could use it on the end of a pole. It would still have limitations but would give a heads-up if there was real trouble under the house. You won't be able to go around a corner with a pole.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  8. #8
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    Default Re: borescope

    Dom Thanks for the input. My thinking is that if there is a problem i could narrow it down to a specific area. Around here it's common for plumbers and other trades to tunnel a house (we're on sand ) If I could point them in the right direction i think that would be a big help and have value. I would also be able to confirm repairs have been made (they would give me a specific area to look) This seams like a better approach than just guessing or telling the buyer I can only report what I see and you will have to take a risk or not. I can't believe this is the first time someone has thought about this...Doesn't anyone have any experience with this type of tool?


  9. #9
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    Default Re: borescope

    I know the reason that I have never considered using such a tool is the liability I could be exposing myself to. If I can't enter a space to inspect it, I document it in the report.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by stanley frost View Post
    My thinking is that if there is a problem i could narrow it down to a specific area.
    My thinking is that you could be narrowing out just what you want to see ... best to say you could not inspect it and not buy into all that you cannot see but think you are narrowing it down ...

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    My thinking is that you could be narrowing out just what you want to see ... best to say you could not inspect it and not buy into all that you cannot see but think you are narrowing it down ...
    You would need to clarify the limitations of the camera inspection. Drain inspection cameras show every little root and pebble in the pipe. I'm fairly sure that that snake shoved under a house would show if there were problems with piers, rodents, puddles, stains, piles of frass and so on. The pole would have limitations, but if you could get in from several sides, it could be done fairly well.

    If I can't get into a spot I say so, but I will try to get a camera in there if I can. It all helps.

    I once got a call to do a pre-sale inspection. A deal had fallen thru because there was an inaccessible crawlspace. The sellers had subsequently cut a hole in the closet floor. Now they wanted me to inspect down there. I went in feet first because I didn't want to get stuck head first. It was like exploring a cave, but at least it was a warm, dry cave. I couldn't crawl into every corner because there were places too narrow even for me. I took about a dozen pictures. The pictures told the tale. A snake camera would have been more elegant.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  12. #12
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    You would need to clarify the limitations of the camera inspection. Drain inspection cameras show every little root and pebble in the pipe.
    The camera snake down the pipe is in a controlled situation - it can ONLY go in the direction the pipe goes and it can ONLY view as wide as the pipe is.

    There is no comparison, in my opinion, with a camera snake in a pipe and a camera snake in a crawlspace.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  13. #13
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    Default Re: borescope

    I've been thinking about a boroscope for some time now and have looked at whats around.

    This is one of my favorites: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOieU5zz_T8

    I think this is a great tool and at times can be very useful.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNKUG1dCh40

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
    eifsinspectionsnewyork.com

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    Default Re: borescope

    Stanley, which system are you considering?

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
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    Default Re: borescope

    The borescope or snake cameras have a very limited field of view. if your going to inspect it needs to be accessible and you need to do it with your eyes. If the crawlspace is part of a whole house inspection then you either inspect it or declare it inaccessible. If you don't I can just hear that contractor saying well if your HI inspected it, he should have seen this.

    The exception is a forensic type inspection. There is a specific issue and your attempting to locate the cause. Then you can bring in the special tools.

    //Rick

    Rick Bunzel
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Bunzel View Post
    The borescope or snake cameras have a very limited field of view. if your going to inspect it needs to be accessible and you need to do it with your eyes. If the crawlspace is part of a whole house inspection then you either inspect it or declare it inaccessible. If you don't I can just hear that contractor saying well if your HI inspected it, he should have seen this.

    The exception is a forensic type inspection. There is a specific issue and your attempting to locate the cause. Then you can bring in the special tools.

    //Rick
    If the inspector can't get in, he should say so. (The contractor can't get in either, until he cuts an access hole.)
    That is why I said you would need to clarify the scope of the snake camera inspection. Number one - no access, no inspection. Number two - there are some problems that need repair, as shown by these pictures I took with my snake.
    If you can't get into an attic, do you still try to get a picture through a gable vent? Same thing.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  17. #17
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    Default Re: borescope

    I have used one for years and they are handy to have. I wouldn't use it for a crawl space though, the field of vision is too small, like looking at an elephant with a microscope. They are good for checking inside a wall for mold, no insulation, no fire blocks, etc and for finding that damned furnace nameplate upside down in the back of the case behind some tin box.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by David Edenburn View Post
    I have used one for years and they are handy to have. I wouldn't use it for a crawl space though, the field of vision is too small, like looking at an elephant with a microscope. They are good for checking inside a wall for mold, no insulation, no fire blocks, etc and for finding that damned furnace nameplate upside down in the back of the case behind some tin box.
    I agree, but if you wanted to check the inside of his trunk, or possibly the other end, it would be helpful.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: borescope

    Steven interesting video, I have looked at alot of scopes on the internet and the Extech looks like it will work. I have a job Mon. morning and have contracted a company with a tractor-cam to scope the crawlspace. I hope to have pictures to post. The tracor cam seams like the way to go if not to expensive. I do have a well defined/limited scope of work for the crawlspace and have explained to the client the limitations of the equipment and the cost of the inspection. I will be researching the tractor cams more. The first company I contacted quoted me a price of $65,000. I hung up. I do have a friend that has a company that builds ROV's and he said if I will supply the camera he can build me a tractor to mount it on for a few thousand depending on what i want it to do. I'll post more on this later.


  20. #20
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by stanley frost View Post
    Steven interesting video, I have looked at alot of scopes on the internet and the Extech looks like it will work. I have a job Mon. morning and have contracted a company with a tractor-cam to scope the crawlspace. I hope to have pictures to post. The tracor cam seams like the way to go if not to expensive. I do have a well defined/limited scope of work for the crawlspace and have explained to the client the limitations of the equipment and the cost of the inspection. I will be researching the tractor cams more. The first company I contacted quoted me a price of $65,000. I hung up. I do have a friend that has a company that builds ROV's and he said if I will supply the camera he can build me a tractor to mount it on for a few thousand depending on what i want it to do. I'll post more on this later.
    By all means please keep me (us) posted. The Extech is very good, the only thing I don't like about it is that it only articulates 180 degrees. There are some that can do 360 degrees.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by Dom D'Agostino View Post
    I'm sure you'd agree that if the opening is that small and an inspector (or other contractor) can't enter the crawl, you have a huge problem.

    No borescope on Earth will reveal the whole truth, and even if you observed some defect with it, you'd still be calling for remediation due to lack of clearance.

    I admire your creative thinking, but I doubt you be happy with the results.

    Dom.
    I agree with this comment, plus once you pull out that camera, you better find every problem because your client's expectations will be increased.

    I have a little Rigid SeeSnake which I use occasionally, It's a useful tool at times, but the view is very limited.


  22. #22
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    Default Re: borescope

    Don't condemn a screwdriver because it is not a good hammer.

    While I agree that the use is limited, there are times that it would be helpful to have. An inexpensive model would be nice to have for the few times it may come in handy.

    Whether or not someone should invest in an expensive model really depends on what you are doing and how often you are doing it.

    There are basically 2 tools on the top of my wish list. One is a good boroscope. The other is Genie TZ50 Road Towable Access Platform - Demonstration Video - YouTube

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
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  23. #23
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    Don't condemn a screwdriver because it is not a good hammer.

    While I agree that the use is limited, there are times that it would be helpful to have. An inexpensive model would be nice to have for the few times it may come in handy.

    Whether or not someone should invest in an expensive model really depends on what you are doing and how often you are doing it.

    There are basically 2 tools on the top of my wish list. One is a good boroscope. The other is Genie TZ50 Road Towable Access Platform - Demonstration Video - YouTube
    Won't work for me. I have to drive faster than 60.


  24. #24
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    Default Re: borescope

    I cannot imagine how you would control where the camera goes. I have enough trouble with a 3-foot long model. It would also take hours to cover the entire crawl space. I often take photos through openings I cannot get through. Sometimes they are useful, but typically for general conditions, not details.


  25. #25
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    Default Re: borescope


    I do not own a bore scope. On the inexpensive side, something that might payfor itself in one or two inspections, you could attach a few of these to a non-metallicfish tape or chimney cleaning rod.

    http://www.amazon.com/Waterproof-Snake-Inspection-Camera-Endoscope/dp/B007UZ6S6S

    My other choice would be this; it's a little thick but one should be able totwist it to make it maneuver in different directions. This might last longer aswell. http://www.pipecameras.info/100footcable.html

    Or this setup. I seem to recall others like this one, but with a longerreach for not too much more.

    http://compare.ebay.com/like/230698932114?var=lv&var=sbar

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/50M-Inspection-Sewer-Drain-Pipe-Tube-Camera-Video-Snake-System-7-TFT-Monitor-/330819175335?_trksid=p3284.m263&_trkparms=algo%3DS IC%26its%3DI%26itu%3DUCI%252BIA%252BUA%252BFICS%25 2BUFI%26otn%3D21%26pmod%3D230698932114%26ps%3D54

    http://compare.ebay.com/like/230698932114?var=lv&var=sbar


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  26. #26
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    Default Re: borescope

    I agree with your statement "The exception is a forensic
    type inspection. There is a specific issue and your attempting
    to locate the cause. Then you can bring in the special tools."
    There are always exceptions, pros and cons, etc. I do not know that
    I would invest that kind of money on equipment until the liability
    has been reduced.

    Kent (Homexaman) Hendrickson, Owner
    Hendricksonhouse LLC
    Inspections, Investigations and Consultations

  27. #27
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    Default Re: borescope

    What happens when the tractor cam gets high-centered on a rock in the back of the crawlspace? Send in the RC tow truck?

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  28. #28
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    What happens when the tractor cam gets high-centered on a rock in the back of the crawlspace? Send in the RC tow truck?
    That is easy, by that time there will be little tow trucks roaming all crawlspaces and will automatically find the stuck tractor cam, then the owner of the tow truck will demand a ransom fee for retrieving your stuck tractor cam, and if you don't pay they will put it their storage lot where the ransom fee goes up daily.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  29. #29
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    That is easy, by that time there will be little tow trucks roaming all crawlspaces and will automatically find the stuck tractor cam, then the owner of the tow truck will demand a ransom fee for retrieving your stuck tractor cam, and if you don't pay they will put it their storage lot where the ransom fee goes up daily.
    Actually that would not be so bad. The problem is when you pay the ransome and storage, only to find out all of your valuables are missing.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
    eifsinspectionsnewyork.com

  30. #30
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    Default Re: borescope

    If you can't get up-close and personal with a component, then you cannot inspect it thoroughly - think of HVAC techs using their Snake-cam on a heat exchanger - it's impossible to see 100% without removing the heat exchanger - period. JMO.


  31. #31
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    Default Re: borescope

    OK I did the inspection today. Well defind expatations for the buyer. IT WAS AMAZING. There are some quirks that need to be worked out with the tractor cam, but my friend that builds ROV's was there and he said they will be easy to overcome. The detail in the pictures was spot on. As of tonight i can't post pictures but hope to tomorrow. I'll also try to include the Video. It truly is AMAZING.


  32. #32
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    Default Re: borescope

    I look forward to your presentation

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
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  33. #33
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    Default Re: borescope

    Quote Originally Posted by stanley frost View Post
    Does anyone own or have experience with using a borescope for inspecting crawlspaces that are to small to enter. I'm looking at purchasing one & using a telescopic pole to look at piers, beams,subfloor etc. in crawlspaces with very little clearance
    You could always mount a cam on one of these:
    PhantomX running Phoenix code - YouTube

    Looks like the kit is about $1000.

    Hexapod Robot Kits, Interbotix Hexapods, Dynamixel Hexapods, Hobby Hexapod, Robotis Hexapod, Research Hexapod, hobby Hexapod


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