Mustang Air to Air: The Sequel
/forum/topic/600984/3621

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JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

Dear Nick,

You took the high road, which I would have bet on. That's the state of photography everywhere, maybe not to the degree you see it there at home, but digital has ushered in a sloppiness to the capture phase of photography, much the way texting has murdered grammar and punctuation, only in our trade the thought is "I can fix it later."

I've never understood what wins in these competitions, but I just chalked it up to my limited artistic knowledge and vision. I'm sure I would walk through the most wonderful museums of art, scratching my head most of the time. Add to that the fact that people have caught on to paid competitions (the promoters), and figured out that they can make a wheel barrow full of money charging entry fees, and even per entry fees. The only expense they have in it is the promotion, I'm sure the prizes are gimme's from sponsors.

The fact that someone asked you about your skies indicates to me their complete lack of a grasp on our passion. No matter how well a sky is dropped in, most generally you can tell it has been. Continue to do what you do for the reasons you do it, you'll be much better off in the short and long run, as will we, because your images are beautiful.



JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

Thanks Zim, hope you are on the mend. I don't see much happening around here for a couple of days while all my clients clean up the mess and assess the damage. Glancing at the next few days, I think the ice and crud will be around well into mid week, possibly until the rain comes in late in the week.

I'm going to make an attempt to check on HQ tomorrow if the roads improve. McKinney had power outages (as a matter of fact the lights just went off twice here while I'm typing this), hope my Drobos weren't affected out there. I have them on battery back up and surge protection, but that would only last for an hour or two at best, and then they'd get shut down.

I certainly have bolstered my bird stock over the past few days! Tomorrow I'm going to clean sensors and repack gear.



JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

Hey Zim, do I need the RRS L55 Ball Head, or will the next one down be plenty for my needs?



JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

Hey Zim, do I need the RRS L55 Ball Head, or will the next one down be plenty for my needs?



Tim Adams
Registered: Jan 01, 2004
Total Posts: 2887
Country: United States

Pylon 4 again. Brant Seghetti owns the P-51 Sparky, he also raced this Thunder Mustang in Sport this year. He flew almost the exact same line in the Thunder and full size Mustang, and they actually flew at close to the same speeds.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
Hey Zim, do I need the RRS L55 Ball Head, or will the next one down be plenty for my needs?


I moved up to the larger L55 and a stouter RSS carbon-fiber tripod (without a center column) when I realized that my D800 was consistently producing slightly less sharp images than it was capable of, perched on the old setup, apparently due to vibrations induced by mirror slap. I have no complaints except for the amount of money I spent to upgrade. They do price their gear, ah, dearly, over there at RSS.

I don't know how much of the improvement in IQ is due to the new sticks and how much is due to the new ballhead. But the L55 is such a pleasure to use I don't really care.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
Thanks Zim, hope you are on the mend.


Coming along, Jim, thanks for asking. Still weak as a kitten but I haven't been back to bed all day and actually ate a little something this afternoon. Hey, if you're going to be sick and stuck inside, why not have it happen during a record cold snap?

Of course, a few thousand people in the next town have been without heat for three days. Now, that would have been a real trial.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

Tim Adams wrote:
Pylon 4 again. Brant Seghetti owns the P-51 Sparky, he also raced this Thunder Mustang in Sport this year. He flew almost the exact same line in the Thunder and full size Mustang, and they actually flew at close to the same speeds.



That Thunder Mustang is gorgeous, Tim!



Tim Adams
Registered: Jan 01, 2004
Total Posts: 2887
Country: United States

More ramp action.



JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

Yikes Steve, take care of yourself, glad you are feeling better. I kind of thought the 55 would be your recommendation, but I wanted to make sure before I bought a 500 dollar boat anchor. My Gitzo sticks should be stout enough. I just want something when I'm in tight quarters that will facilitate going vertical, and I want to have the correct components for multi shot pano's as well. I guess I need that nodal thingamajig too.



JWilsonphoto
Registered: Jan 16, 2002
Total Posts: 19276
Country: United States

You know Tim, RARA could just tell the rest of the photographers to stay home, there's no one who shoots Reno like you do.



Tim Adams
Registered: Jan 01, 2004
Total Posts: 2887
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
You know Tim, RARA could just tell the rest of the photographers to stay home, there's no one who shoots Reno like you do.


Thanks. We may all be staying home if things keep going like they are.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
One more question Steve, should I go ahead and get this model with the clamp and spirit level? I guess the advantage is the redundant azimuth and the level?


The main advantage of this setup is that you can level the ballhead clamp and rotate the camera on the leveled clamp without worrying about the ground your tripod stands on. It makes it easier to swing a one-row stitched pano (if your standards of stitching are relatively low, since it can't adjust the nodal point); I didn't get the panning clamp because I have a separate pano stage that goes between camera and ballhead (including a slider for nodal point adjustment). My ballhead clamp is the quick-release type (not the screw-type) and it does have a spirit level. The spirit level is great for using your T/S lenses: you just level the head and then frame the shot as desired using the shift stage in the lens. But if framing requires you to pan more than a degree or two, you'll wish you had the panning clamp, because the non-panning clamp won't be level any more unless the tripod post is level (which requires a lucky accident, in most cases). So we're back to square one: it all depends on your intended uses.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
The more I think about it, this is probably the one you meant........... Are those knobs easy to lock down?


Yes, that's the one I have. Both heads you've shown have the same knobs, except for the extra panning stage on the clamp of the first one. The only knob you use routinely is the big one: it locks down the ball completely. The first little knob sets the drag on the ball when the big knob is loosened; you normally set that the way you like it and leave it alone after that. The really cool thing about that knob is that you can't adjust it when the big knob is locked, so you can't have any nasty surprises when you unlock the ball with the big knob. This is a big advantage of the larger BH-55 over the smaller heads, which don't have that feature. The lower knob locks the panning stage at the base of the head.



stevezzzz
Registered: Aug 01, 2010
Total Posts: 4085
Country: United States

JWilsonphoto wrote:
Yikes Steve, take care of yourself, glad you are feeling better. I kind of thought the 55 would be your recommendation, but I wanted to make sure before I bought a 500 dollar boat anchor. My Gitzo sticks should be stout enough. I just want something when I'm in tight quarters that will facilitate going vertical, and I want to have the correct components for multi shot pano's as well. I guess I need that nodal thingamajig too.


Single row panos require only one axis of 'nodal point' adjustment, fore-and-aft. Multi-row panos require that you be able to adjust the entire camera/lens combination, in pitch, about the nodal point as well. Mine is the single-row kind: it's just a slider on top of a panning stage and clamp, so you can adjust the camera/lens fore and aft. It also has a spirit level at one end of the slider and another on the panning stage: the spirit level on the ballhead's clamp is obscured by the pano clamp but otherwise the two are redundant.

By the way, using the spirit level on top of the BH-55 with quick clamp normally requires that you dismount the camera; it's pretty much hidden by the RSS L-plate and the overhanging camera body. It's really the only design 'miss' in the whole system, in my view.



futurshox
Registered: Feb 15, 2008
Total Posts: 2777
Country: United States

stevez wrote:
Nice elliptical wing; but I don't recognize the type.


Looks like a Silence Twister to me. A German type; there's a few in the UK now.



FlyingPhotog
Registered: May 09, 2008
Total Posts: 4775
Country: United States

Must be a bug going around. My darling bride is dividing her time between an early bed and our back bathroom. Glad you're on the rebound Steve.

Morning Continited Departure At Sky Harbor



futurshox
Registered: Feb 15, 2008
Total Posts: 2777
Country: United States

I am pleased to announce the new Sport Air Racing League calendar for 2014! If you want one, head this way to Lulu and pick one up.



FlyingPhotog
Registered: May 09, 2008
Total Posts: 4775
Country: United States

Leaving 35 for 85 (degrees!)



david russell
Registered: Jan 06, 2008
Total Posts: 754
Country: United States

FlyingPhotog wrote:
Leaving 35 for 85 (degrees!)
<snip>



Shucks, I'd take 35 about now!



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