Sunday, October 30, 2011

1955

My Grandfather was an avid photographer. Everywhere he went, he snapped pictures with his Leica camera.

This is the Utopia Lodge in 1955. It's either in Jackson, Wyoming, or near Yellowstone Park, because that's what it says on the box of slides. I have hundred of boxes of old slides from my Grandparents, who unfortunately are both long gone. I can scan slides, 16 at a time, in my HP Scanjet G4050.
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Undoubtedly, the main drag of Jackson, Wyoming. Check out the antique tin!
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This deer and moose antler arch is the gateway to a park in Jackson Hole.

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I'm guessing this is Old Faithful, 56 years ago.


Posted by Dave

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Hope For Old Slides

I'm using an HP G4050 scanner to turn old family slides into jpg pics. I came to a group of slides that were very red. I don't know whether they turned red over time or whether they were always red. Here's what I did.
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In Adobe Photoshop CS3 I clicked Image > Adjustments > Auto Color. That made the biggest improvement. Then I clicked Image > Adjustments > Selective Color > Magenta > -35%. The result is above. I could probably have played with the individual colors for hours to achieve perfection, but the result is acceptable to me.


Posted by Dave

Another Damn Fire

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This week's fire:
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MOHAVE VALLEY — Heavy winds are being blamed for a fire that destroyed an unoccupied home at the far east end of King Street in Mohave Valley Wednesday morning.


Week after week it happens, yet another fire of suspicious origin that provides steady employment for firemen. Heavy winds? Nope. The real cause of this fire is the flammable sticks used to build the home.

Metaphor time: Don't go in the pool.


Posted by Dave

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Bob's Knobs and the Unsharp Mask

In search of better pictures, but with a mind toward economy, I keep trying different things. On Schmidt-Cassegrain scopes, the major cause of poor performance is bad alignment of the secondary mirror. For my Celestron CPC1100, collimating (aligning) the secondary mirror is a pain. You have to risk scratching the front glass cover with a phillips screwdriver while you're looking in the eyepiece to make an adjustment. So clever Bob made up some replacement screws that don't need a screwdriver. These knobs make it easy to collimate your scope's secondary mirror every time you set it up.
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I replaced the phillips screws with Bob's Knobs. Easy.
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After putting in the Bob's Knobs, you need to do a rough collimation. Stand about 10 feet in front of your scope. See how the circular reflections are listing to the right? Adjust the knobs until things look symmetrical.
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 Then take the scope out and find a bright star. Defocus thusly and fiddle with the Bob's Knobs until the image is symmetrical. Just a small improvement in symmetry yields a huge improvement in clarity.
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Here's a moon shot I took this morning. In addition to the improvement from tightening up the collimation, I used the unsharp mask in Nikon's Capture NX2 to get further sharpness. Capture is a must-have if you have a Nikon DSLR.
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