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Forum: General Talk 09-01-2019, 01:51 PM  
Please read this about Adorama
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 13
Views: 797
Unfortunately, businesses going downhill after management changes are very common. New people come in with no relationship to any employees. I was in that situation several years ago when a management change came to the company I had worked for for over 10 years. We did contract maintenance for a truck fleet. I was literally days away from leaving when the customer announced they were moving all fleet maintenance in house. They were just as unhappy with the regime change and were concerned that the garage staff would leave so they accelerated their plans a year early. Ultimately, my previous employer lost every customer and has ceased operations in NY state altogether.

It's extremely stressful when your customer is happy with your work but your manager tells you that you don't work for them, you work for me. In my case, I was hired by the customer and even given seniority for the years I had worked as contractor so I lost no benefits such as vacations. I wish you well and hope you find a good and well paying job.
Forum: General Talk 09-01-2019, 01:22 PM  
Did you like Google+
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 12
Views: 446
I didn't really like Google + although I used it. I was forced in after Google bought out Picassa. At first, it was OK but then they started merging my stuff into Google photos and photo sharing became very confusing. I will never subscribe to or buy any Google owned product again. They have a history of just closing things up after a couple of years.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-25-2019, 11:16 AM  
My 15mm Ltd is gone. What to replace it with?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 21
Views: 1,093
While my DA 15 isn't used often, the things it does best can't really be done with another lens. If I end up breaking it or loosing it, I would either replace it or just have to learn to live without it. The real question here is whether there is a "cheaper" option for a replacement lens. IMO, there isn't. There are other wide lenses that are pretty good but much larger and not as easy to carry around and they are almost as expensive anyhow. I use mine for car shows, motorcycle shows and our annual hot air balloon festival where I have to get in close due to crowded conditions and get my shots. Car owners love the starbursts on their highly polished vehicles and the flare resistance is superb. I would be looking in the Marketplace for a used SMC version.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 08-24-2019, 12:44 PM  
What's the best wedding lightroom presets for pentax cameras?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 6
Views: 543
I've never used any purchased presets. I always spend the time adjusting a couple of shots to what I like, saving a preset, and then applying those settings to the other shots. There are usually large groups of shots where the exposure is identical so once you get what you want, you can breeze through them quickly. I can see the value in using somebody else's presets when you're first learning PP to see how all the different tools work together but the chances of one of your photos having the exact same exposure and starting point of somebody else's is very slim and you would end up adjusting your shots anyhow.
Forum: General Talk 08-09-2019, 06:06 PM  
Which OS are you using
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 18
Views: 789
Three years ago when my Windows 7 tower was really showing it's age, I made the decision to buy a Mac Mini rather than upgrade to another Windows machine. I have no regrets at all. I'm currently running macOS Mojave.
Forum: General Talk 08-07-2019, 06:25 PM  
Pentax prominently featured...
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 8
Views: 1,972
Just an hour ago I scrolled past a KEH ad on Facebook offering the Stranger Things kit. An ME Super, M50 lens and a Vivitar Thyristor flash along with the same strap.KEH Camera - KEH Camera added a new photo. | Facebook
Forum: General Talk 07-30-2019, 06:00 AM  
Do people in the USA ever use tons as a measurement?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 57
Views: 1,756
I've worked on truck and trailer refrigeration and mobile AC for over 40 years and all the systems are rated in BTU's. All the residential AC units I have worked on are also rated in BTU's although that type of system hasn't been my bread and butter through the years. The large commercial rooftop AC units are more often rated in tons. When I was in factory training numerous times through the years since the late 70's at the Carrier facility in Syracuse, they always mentioned BTU's and that tons was an older rating that was going away.

---------- Post added 07-30-19 at 09:05 AM ----------



There is also the "face cord" which is a single stack of wood 4 feet high and 8 feet long. Some also consider a "face cord" a thrown load in a 8 foot pickup bed, level with the top of the sides.
Forum: General Talk 07-29-2019, 05:29 PM  
Do people in the USA ever use tons as a measurement?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 57
Views: 1,756
You rarely hear the term ton used in refrigeration anymore. Most AC and refrigeration units are rated in BTU's which is the energy to raise the temperature of one pound of water 1 degree F. 12,000 BTU's are equal to one ton. Very large commercial AC units still are sometimes rated in tons. But with all that said, I'm not sure if that is only in the US because we're just about the only place still using the Fahrenheit temp scale. I see air conditioners advertised in stores with BTU ratings and I kind of snicker because almost nobody probably knows what that means.

Living in upstate NY with our cold winters, things regularly sold by the ton are coal and wood pellets for use in stoves. While heat output is very variable in stoves, a ton of pellets or coal are considered equivalent to a cord of wood. For those who aren't familiar with that measurement, it's a stack of cut and split firewood 4x4x8 feet. A full cord is considered the maximum safe load on a one ton truck.
Forum: General Talk 06-21-2019, 07:27 AM  
Travel Safety for Senior (Retired) Nature Photographers
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 67
Views: 2,464
I'm 68 and still wander freely through the woods and mountains. I do bring my cellphone although the Adirondacks are notorious for poor or no service. There are many places where GPS doesn't work either. I don't subscribe to the "you're too old for that" BS. There is always some risk in everything you do. All that said, I rarely spend much time on the trails alone. I am always coming across other hikers, fishermen, photographers, mountain bikers, etc. Wandering off trail has more risk but I currently don't consider any more risky than it was 20 years ago.

Safety is an illusion. I feel safer in the woods or out on the lakes than I do driving on the highway. Oh, and I still ride my motorcycles, too.
Forum: General Talk 05-24-2019, 10:59 AM  
Home Warranty Scam....... Thought I was covered with American Home Shield
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 12
Views: 1,319
I don't buy third party warranties for anything as I have been burned in the past. $130 a pound for R22? I still have some at work. Ten pound drums are currently being sold online for $179 and there are a few 'drop in" replacements for considerably cheaper. You've been had! A reputable local HVAC repairman could probably have repaired your system for a reasonable price.

Just a quick edit. They also lied to you big time about R22. The complete ban on R22 doesn't take place until January 1, 2020. I would make a formal complaint about this. Your unit should have been fixed.
Forum: General Photography 05-09-2019, 07:16 AM  
tools / multi-tools for the camera bag
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 13
Views: 731
I'm not one to frequent places with metal detectors so I've never paid much mind. When I fly, my camera bag goes in my checked luggage and my camera and whatever lenses I am bringing go in my carry on bag. Mostly when I go into a museum, I leave the camera bag behind. I have a couple of bad discs in my neck and carry as little as necessary. My multi tool is usually in the saddlebag of my Harley or in one of the storage compartments in the car. That said, my old Swiss army knife has never been an issue.
Forum: General Photography 05-09-2019, 05:28 AM  
tools / multi-tools for the camera bag
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 13
Views: 731
I have a very old Swiss Army knife which has been a permanent member of my camera bag since the film days. I also carry a Leatherman multi tool knockoff just about everywhere.
Forum: General Talk 05-04-2019, 04:58 AM  
Let's Be Careful Out There
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 13
Views: 778
I think the count is now up to 7 at the Grand Canyon. I really don't know the circumstances of all of these falls but a little common sense would have prevented them. We have a lot of fatalities here in the Adirondacks every year and most are people doing something dumb or hiking into places that are beyond their ability or current physical condition.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 05-03-2019, 07:16 PM  
Adobe Photography Plan Price Increase?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 42
Views: 2,758
As long as it stays $9.99, I'll continue subscribing. I read a similar article in The Verge a couple of days ago. It mentioned they were testing the price increase in certain markets. I'm hoping it got enough people mad that they decide against it.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 05-03-2019, 07:03 AM  
Adobe Photography Plan Price Increase?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 42
Views: 2,758
I use Lightroom but almost never use Photoshop. Doubling the price would result in me cancelling the plan and switching to something else. I really don't use it enough anymore to warrant the price. Some of it is my lack of doing much photo shooting in recent months. If I was regularly shooting I would probably just pay up but I haven't even gone into Lightroom since my last batch of motorcycle racing photos in March. Being semi retired with less income, I'm in that stage of life where I'm forced to cut expenses and anything I'm not using much of is going away.
Forum: General Talk 04-19-2019, 04:46 AM  
My orphan squirrel "Pip", dedicated to Rupert
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 20
Views: 1,096
Rupert and the Chronicles of Otis are missed by us all. Nice job in rescuing Pip. I hope she can make the transition back to the "wild".
Forum: General Photography 04-07-2019, 05:32 AM  
I love Pentax but good Lord...
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 237
Views: 13,208
I've been shooting motorcycle racing for years, often along side of guys with more expensive Nikon and Canon gear and my keeper rate is just as good as those guys. A lot of times, I do better simply because when the dust, snow, ice gets flying, AF stops working and you have to use manual focus and the other guys give up. It's easy to get get caught up in the hype. People shot this stuff with manual focus film cameras for decades.





Forum: General Talk 03-07-2019, 07:00 AM  
Your motorcycle - flog it please, say why you love it and do you use it to shoot?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 27
Views: 1,775
Ah, but owning a Hondamatic qualifies you to join an owners club called the Shiftless Bums. I once considered buying one just to have that patch on my vest.
Forum: General Talk 03-02-2019, 04:47 PM  
What is better...... Apple or PC ?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 111
Views: 3,957
I had used Windows for years. When my last PC was getting long in the tooth and Windows 10 was coming out, I decided to buy a Mac Mini and try it for a while. I was previously using Windows 7 and I was going to have to get used to a new OS anyhow. It was pretty painless switching. So far, I'm completely satisfied. The Mac seems to have far fewer issues and the updates aren't forced on you. That said, I am up to date but it's nice to be able to wait a couple of weeks to avoid problems.

I use an iPhone and iPad and there are some real advantages to having a Mac if you prefer those products. All that said, there are still PC's in the house. My wife has a fairly new HP laptop that she loves. In reality, I should probably say I haven't completely switched to a Mac as our household has both but I rarely use the PC. IMO I think Lightroom runs better on the Mac but maybe that's just because I use the Mac so much, I'm more accustomed to it.
Forum: General Talk 03-01-2019, 05:45 PM  
Your motorcycle - flog it please, say why you love it and do you use it to shoot?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 27
Views: 1,775
If I was younger, a dual sport bike would definitely be on my radar. Reality is, I'm 68 with arthritis and hip issues as well as stenosis in my neck. I am seriously considering three wheels. Buying a built trike is big bucks and out of the budget so I'm kicking around a trike kit or a sidecar. I have seen the Frankenstein trike for Sportsters and it's sweet. For whatever reason, the prices jumped from $3500 to over $5K in the past year so now I'm kicking around sidecars again.
Forum: General Talk 02-28-2019, 07:57 AM  
Your motorcycle - flog it please, say why you love it and do you use it to shoot?
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 27
Views: 1,775
In all the hectic stuff going on, somehow I missed this thread. I've been riding motorcycles for decades. My current ride is a 2012 Harley Davidson Sportster which doesn't look too much like a traditional Sporty with the 4 1/2 gallon tank, windshield, and saddlebags but it's light enough and low enough that I can still park it easily at my age and physical condition. Here's a phone snapshot I took on New Years Day after the temperature hit the low 40'sF in the afternoon. I was actually re-arranging my garage that day because I needed to get some stuff inside due to a large impending snowstorm and while it was out, I just had to take a quick ride.

Forum: General Talk 02-25-2019, 06:33 PM  
Peter Tork is gone
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 31
Views: 1,414
RIP Peter Tork! The Monkees didn't get much respect from critics but their music holds up very well, even after decades.
Forum: Weekly Photo Challenges 02-19-2019, 06:40 PM  
Picture of the Week POTW # 537 - Covering period 11 - 24th February 2019
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 13
Views: 758
I haven't posted in quite a while because in all honesty, my camera has been gathering dust. But it finally got cold enough to freeze the lakes and motorcycle ice racing is back in my life. A couple from Sunday in Lake George, NY. These 2 were shot with my K5 and K300/4 manual focus lens. I use this lens for a reason because the snow gets flying so much the AF doesn't work and after many years of shooting this way, I'm used to it.



Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-16-2019, 06:30 PM  
Sigma 70-300mm versions
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 14
Views: 869
I shot this today with the cheap non APO version on Lake George. Motorcycle sidecar racing on ice. After this discussion came up, I decided to bring it along and shoot a few shots with it. 12 years old and been dropped a couple of times but acceptable results for shooting in a rather hazardous environment where it's getting sprayed with snow and ice and you may have to dive out of the way if a racer looses control.

Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-31-2019, 09:55 AM  
Sigma 70-300mm versions
Posted By reeftool
Replies: 14
Views: 869
I still have the Sigma 70-300 (non APO) that came with the original kit package that Ritz camera was selling when I bought my K10D. I still use it on occasion. It's a decent enough lens, considering the price. It's best stopped down to f8-f11. I'll agree with the others that it's a bit softer at 300 but just zooming back to around 250mm makes a big difference. I've used it for all kinds of shots from sports to wildlife and had fairly decent results. What I found it best for was the "macro" range from 200-300 mm. It's much sharper close up than as a telephoto and I found it ideal for getting close up shots of flowers, dragonflies, etc while in my kayak where your distance to the subject is hampered. I would say the lens is worth owning just for the close ups and as long as it's stopped down, it's pretty good. I haven't shopped lately but these lenses were like $139 new.
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