Saturday, January 21, 2012

National Guard Readiness Center in North Las Vegas, Nevada

Here is the groundbreaking ceremony for the National Guard Readiness Center in North Las Vegas, Nevada, a 68,000 sq. ft. shoot-the-works-boondoggle that y'all are paying for. And I thank each and every taxpayer for my paycheck.
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I didn't recognize any celebs. Right now this is about the biggest job starting in Las Vegas, so I kinda thought the governor would show up. But no. Photo by my partner Carlos.
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Guardsmen put up this tent for the ceremony. It didn't get used. Carlos took this picture too.
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The superintendent came around and told us we were to stop work and be all patriotic when the trumpets started blaring. We were supposed to sob genuine tears for Dear Leader show respect during the National Anthem and the Invocation. I took my hard hat off and reverently held it over my heart. I took this picture and all the rest with my crappy phone camera. Carpenters Carlos and Gary to the right, rodbusters Jake and Dave to the left.
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Carlos(center of picture) ran one total station and I took the other. Spittin' out points on the dirt.
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I use this pretty Nikon total station and HP48 data collector to lay out the building. Batter boards and string lines are for losers. This is how carpenters do things these days.
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The water tank in the background is for the existing National Guard facility. This is where they spend their one-weekend-a-month training for the next pointless war.
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The first thing we do is to mark the ground with pink feathers and paint lines. Then the backhoes have at it.
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After the backhoes dig the footings, we put in "steel racks" for the vertical rebar. (Verts are not in yet.) If the above pictures seem disjointed and random, it's because they are. I took these pics on break. When I'm working, we're under the gun and expected to keep our heads down and look worried.

Posted by Dave

Monday, January 9, 2012

Moon Slice

I think the thin crescent moon is about the prettiest thing in the sky. This shot is from December 27 of last year.
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This was taken with an 80mm Orion telescope and my Nikon D3000. ISO 200 and shutter speed of 1/20 second. I have heavily edited this photo in Nikon Capture 2. I rotated, cropped, and sharpened.

Posted by Dave

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lunacy

Yep. My obsession with moon shots is the very definition of lunacy. As always, click on any pic to embignify.
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This first shot was made last night with a Celestron C6 refractor as a prime-focus lens for my Nikon D3000. ISO 200 and a shutter speed of 1/640 second. I also used the unsharp mask in Nikon Capture 2.
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A little creepy, no? I had some clouds drift past, and this was the coolest cloudy shot. ISO 200 and a shutter speed of 1/20 second. Here I used my Celestron 11" Schmidt-Cassegrain as a prime-focus lens.
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The setting moon. It would have been a better shot if the mountain was craggier, but I'll take this one. ISO 200 and a shutter speed of 1/60 second. Celestron CPC1100.

Posted by Dave

Friday, January 6, 2012

By The Light Of The Focally-Reduced Moon (2)

I was going to get some moonset shots this morning, but I screwed up. I failed to consider where the moon was going to set, and it set on a retainer wall instead of the lovely, distant mountains. Oh well, maybe tomorrow night.
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Click to embignify. This photo was taken this morning when the moon was fairly high in the sky. The best moon shots will be had when the moon is directly overhead; less atmosphere to distort the view. I played with this shot in Nikon Capture 2 by selecting "unsharp mask" and putting the intensity at almost 100% and the radius at 50%. The threshold I left alone. As you can see, the picture looks "grittier", but sharper.

Posted by Dave

Thursday, January 5, 2012

By The Light Of The Focally-Reduced Moon

This last week we've had high, thin clouds and heavy atmospheric disturbance. But last night it was clear, and although not calm, I managed to get a decent shot of the moon.
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I got to try out my new focal reducer with the 11-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain scope as a prime-focus lens for my Nikon D3000. The focal reducer allows me to get the whole moon in frame.
This shot used an ISO of 200 and a shutter speed of 1/500 second.

Posted by Dave

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Cannon Or Two

My Grandfather took this photo of a cannon in a fort on one of the islands of the former British West Indies. The date on the box I took this from says March of 1963. Gramps was doing some aerial photomapping in the area.
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Wouldn't it be cool to have a few of these behind the walls of your front yard? Keep your powder dry.

Posted by Dave

As Pretty As A Sunrise

Sunrises. We never just look anymore.
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This is yesterday's sunrise.

Posted by Dave

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Good Form

Me and my big sister, a long, long time ago.
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Even back then, I kept my finger off the trigger until I had acquired my target. Back in those carefree days, a little happy fire was no biggie. Nowadays, if you celebrate with a little random gunfire, the po-leece know just where to send the SWAT team.

H/T to Art at Failure2Neutralize.

Posted by Dave

Monday, January 2, 2012

Washington, 1953

My Grandfather took these pictures, back in July 1953.
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These shots were taken in either Ellensburg or Wenatchee. I've been to neither, so all I can do is admire the antique tin.
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Old time stores that people used to shop.

Posted by Dave