I may have an oppty to photograph some time lapses over the next few days. However, the location's temperature will be about 25F / -4C. I'm looking for clever/creative ways to warm my gear while it photographs over a 2 to 4 hour period. Additionally, I fully welcome Rube Goldberg machines or other humorous techniques to keeping my camera warm while it steadfastly clicks away. I will be close to the car I'll be using so, I could use a converter and run some power from the car to a local heater if necessary.
I'm shooting from just before sunset to a bit after sunset. Here is the set up: Sony A7s, Nikon 14-24, eMotimo TB3 Controller, 4 Ft Rhino Slider, Anker battery. This means camera will be moving slightly between shots.
So, I figure someone did this before. I'm sure someone must have wanted to photograph in the cold over an extended period, this can't be the first time. I've seen astrophotographers use cooling boxes for the opposite requirement; for this requirement has someone made a heating box? Or some other clever way to warm up my camera? What about those chemical heating pouches? I'm not opposed to setting something on fire, or perhaps using a hairdryer connected to my car, or perhaps covering my equipment in fur to keep it warm. Or perhaps using the hairdryer connected to my car, to set the fur on fire, hmmm .... that might work. Ok, maybe not. So, what are your ideas ?
UPDATE: This morning, 11/25, I landed on the Frozen Tundra (Go Pack!) and have decided to try simple time lapses with only the camera, no robot or rails during this trip. However, based on the answers so far, I'll be ready to run the camera and the robot (TB3) in the cold during the next trip which is about a month and a half from now.
During that trip, I may try to run power for the TB3 and camera from the car - I'll explore two aspects to ensure this is possible
The first aspect is to determine if the potential locations allow me to park close enough. If not, I need to find an alternative way to power the camera and robot.
The second aspect is to determine if I know enough to preclude electrocuting myself. My wife tells me that's my goal for the experiment- not electrocuting myself. She says that in the same tone that she uses to tell me my personal goal during tax season - which is 'don't go to jail'.
Anyway, keep the answers coming and don't forget about powering the robot (TB3) in the cold weather, too.
UPDATE 2: Dec 3rd. I just returned from my trip and learned a couple of items - Those chemical heat packs list a fairly high average temp and max temp. So much so, that it would be beyond the spec. of the camera. So, I opted to build a temporary heat box around the camera and mount, and use the chemical heat packs just as sources of heat, but not touching the camera. I used a plastic popcorn bucket as the heat box. I looked fairly goofy. However, it kinda' worked, and I'm still working on it - I was able to elevate the temp by about 8F, from 25F to just above freezing ~ 33F.