Monday, June 28, 2010

Just About Lost the Camera

Last night we had a storm come through. Wasn't much here but was interesting to see in the distance. With this I got the bright idea to go out on the deck and to try my hand at night/lightning photography. We weren't getting the visible bolts that everyone makes over, no we were getting the ones in the clouds that light the cloud from within. Almost like heat lightning but with the thunder and brighter.

I had my tripod all set up and was just trying to get the camera set for the shots with the correct shutter speed and f stop. I was just experimenting with everything as well as the focal zoom or how much if the sky I wanted to try to capture.

It started to get a little windy so I thought I would take advantage of a lull in the action and pull the umbrella from the stand and lay it on the deck. Just as I got to the table with the umbrella a huge gust of wind came and all I had time to do was turn and see my camera go from an upright postition eight feet from me to fifteen feet from me on another deck level three steps down. Even with the wind and thunder I could hear the camera hit the lower level hard. Maybe it was the camera and not thunder that I heard, or my voice screaming, NOOOOOOOOO!

I went ahead and got the umbrella save and then picked up the camera. The back light screen was still on and I didn't hear any rattling. I tried to manually zoom it in and out and I realized I had problems. I could see hundreds of dollars going down the drain. I took it in where I could see better. I took the lens off the camera and still had problems moving the lens in and out. The camera at this point seemed okay, only the lens was affected.

While giving it a real good slow look over I noticed the focus ring was gapped more on one side than the other. I could only turn it part way in either direction. Figuring I had nothing to loose at this point so I applied some real pressure to the ring on the side with most of the gap and voila, it snapped back into place. I put it back on the camera and took some inside shots. Seemed okay, thought I would try it tonight at sundown.

When I first got the lens it had a "tough" spot when moving it that I was told would go away and it did. Well it's back. I can live with it since I don't do moving focusing like one would do for a video and I hope it too will go away with usage. It does keep the lens from drifting in or out when the camera is pointing up or down.

Killing two birds with one stone here, the following pictures are the same picture.  First is the original taken with my Canon Rebel XTi.  The lens is a Tamron 18 - 270mm / 3.5-6.3 / 72mm DiII VCD.  The second picture is the original doctored with nothing more than the program that came with the camera "Zoom Browser Module".  For more intricute detailing I us Gimp 2.6.  Works just like Adobe Photoshop without the manuals in your hand.  It is a free download on the net.  If you need help, it's online.
Details: ISO 1/500, f-8.0, 270 mm focal, auto white balance, size = 2.10 MB / 636 KB.

This set of picture is just to show the zoom of the lens.  Kind of an after thought of tonight.  Secong picture is zoomed in on the right hand side of the cloud.


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