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Everything posted by gary1701

  1. Hi, Look forward to seeing it if you do have luck. It takes a lot of patience though. I made my first trip up to Coningsby from Suffolk with a digital camera in July 2006, yet I didn't get my first sunset shot until November 2013. In all that time I knew what I was looking for it was just I never had the right opportunity and combination of factors to get anything in that style. So it may be a long wait! Each airfield has it's own geography so some are easier than others. Coningsby is generally okay with the sun setting roughly in line with the runway around November and March time
  2. Hi Gents, Sorry a bit late coming back. The equipment used on the recent Lakenheath shots a few weeks ago were a Canon Eos 7D Mk II and a Canon 100-400L IS zoom lens, that's the older Mk I lens, not the new Mk II version. That lens is now 14 years old having been bought back in 2006. The Coningsby Typhoon shots were taken in 2016 for the first with the runway and the second silhouette was in 2013. Same lens but with the older Mk I Canon Eos 7D. Both were shot on manual mode as detailed above. Obviously you've got to recognize the opportunity for the shot and position
  3. Thank you for the kind words. Going fully manual has come about because of seeing such variable results when shooting in the semi-auto modes. I always tended to shoot my airborne aviation images in shutter priority as I was mostly happy for the camera to set the aperture, but I wanted control over the shutter. I've never trusted myself to get sharp pictures with a slow shutter speed, unless shooting helicopters or props where the option is kind of taken away from you if you want some prop or rotor blur. So I used to shoot shutter priority but increasingly found that the aperture settings that
  4. Thank you. Those F-16 airframes are block 40s and are 88/89 builds. When the AFRES unit at Homestead came over last year they brought even older block 30s! Gary
  5. All, I know there's already been a few posts from the 31st FW deployment to Lakenheath but here's my efforts from one early evening a week or so ago. This was during the 'late' surge so most of the 48th sorties and all the F-16s were launching late afternoon with the arrivals being after the sun has moved around to the North. This made shooting viable from the Northside as opposed to the normal practice of photographing from the South. I noticded the comments on the other threads concerning exposures and settings. My own pattern in recent years is to set up my own exposure and sett
  6. Thanks gents, thinking about it a bit more the Puma shots may be slightly darker than they should have been. They were the first pics I took when I got there and I was still quickly trying to reconfigure the camera from Comet photography (see my Comet Neowise pics!) to aviation and didn't get it completely set up in time. The aperture setting is a lot higher than it should have been and the higher the F number the darker the picture. I've pulled it back as much in processing as I dare without making the images look false but given the time they probably would have looked better. Ga
  7. Gents, Having gone back to work in the last couple of weeks I haven't been able to put the evenings in at Wattisham as I was during June, but I popped up for a couple of hours last night to catch the activity associated with the finale of Exercise Talon Hydra. This exercise has involved the Stamford training area (STANTA) in Norfolk. As well as the resident Apaches yesterday saw up to four Chinooks and two Pumas working out of Wattisham, to and from STANTA. Started well when I found out that they were operating a Apache FARP down at the Western end on the North side wit
  8. Hi Gents, Some more from a late night session last night. I thought initially it was going to be a waste of time as there was still quite a lot of cloud hanging around into the night. Still, I thought I would give it a go so I went to a different location from the previous effort, rather than go North of Stowmarket, I decided to head South in the direction of Wattisham airfield and use the corner of a field that I know that has a good panoramic of the Northern skies. The cloud bank hovering on the Northern horizon wasn't a factor after all, as even with a difference of five days th
  9. Thank you gents. There is a chance the weather may be good enough to try again tonight, will know either way in a few hours. Gary
  10. All, Shot these a couple of evenings ago between 23:00 and 23:30, looking to the North just outside Stowmarket in Suffolk. First one was a wide angle test shot, as I couldn't find the damn Comet visually despite knowing where it should roughly be. First frame found it inbetween the cables and once I knew exactly where to look I could then see it with the naked eye. The light on the field came from a car approaching behind me. Another effort a little closer. Gary
  11. Thanks gents, My comments in the Ospreys for Indonesia thread elsewhere on the forum go into some more details on the long term problems with the MV/CV-22 Osprey, but to elaborate a little here as well. I've been watching these since they first turned up and were permanently assigned to the 7th Special Operations Sqn in mid 2013, although a test deployment had been made by stateside aircraft as far back as 2011. I don't get over there as much now as I used to since a job change in 2014 - ironically I now work for another subsidiary of the corporation that owns Bell helicopters, one
  12. Gents, If the Indonesians are looking at the MV-22 then they must have money to burn. Whilst I've enjoyed photographing and watching the type at Mildenhall since they first turned up in 2013, even now they're hardly a reliable and capable piece of equipment, particularly in the SF role. Even the more basic MV-22 used by the USMC has many restrictions on it's operations that were not applied to it's predecessor, the Sea Knight. I remember reading an article not that long ago by a former USN helo pilot who stated that they're not allowed to operate alone over water, and that they're
  13. Gents, I thought I would put a selection of pics together of the CV-22 Osprey that I have taken at Mildenhall in the last few years. Operating from their apron on the North Western corner of Mildenhall they're fairly easy to photograph, especially from the end of Pollards Lane, which over looks they're usual rotation spot, called the 'Alpha' pad. You'll frequently find that they go out prior to dusk for night ops, often alongside the MC-130J's. They're still hardly the most reliable of types, and I've lost count of the number of times I've been about to photograph one and it's abor
  14. Hi Tim, I look forward to seeing this being built. Just a reference to the configuration of the early UK Apache. I was seeing Wattisham airframes not fitted with HIDAS well into 2008/9. In fact looking through pics I see numerous examples of airframes that have carried HIDAS not being fitted at a later date. I can only speculate that the sets were rotated as airframes came back from deployment. ZJ231, Wattisham, June 2008. I photographed this one again last week. Gary
  15. Gents, Another bunch from last week on the sunny evenings. Wing overs taken from underneath as they pull up. Turning over the North side fence as the crew over shoot. Same callsign landing. Some 'arty-farty' on a couple of evenings last week. Wattisham is not a good place for this, as the alignment and geography of the base doesn't really work, unlike somewhere like Coningsby, where it's relatively easy. Hunter section
  16. Nice, I may have to take a wander up again. I used to go up for photography many times a year but in recent years I just haven't bothered as with the vast majority of the fleet just varying shades of worn grey it hasn't seemed worth the trip. I gather that at the moment there is just two marked for 12 Sqn. I also believe that the farmers earth mound at the 07 end on the South Western corner has been removed which means no more elevated views across that end. Gary
  17. Here's a few more gents from the last couple of weeks, including some interlopers popping in for refueling. Activity is still up a fair amount, although not quite as high as that first week. This last week has seen a FARP up by the North Western side of the field with approaches directly over the fence... Even had a crew come over and pose by the fence for the camera, been many years since they've done that.
  18. Thanks guys, I was shocked to see that these were the first pics I had taken on the fence here since August 2018. Opportunity has been lacking, not from my end as I can pretty much pop up any evening of the week as it's just a couple of miles up the road, but because it normally isn't worth it nowadays, but this last week has been extremely busy, don't know why. I know they're behind on training, as they did shut down for a couple of weeks early in the virus crisis - my cousin is currently dating a trainee AH driver and his course is way behind. I also notice that the f
  19. Gents, Here's a selection, right up to the minute pics which may be of help as a reference for AAC Apache builds. Rural Suffolk and the Wattisham area is pretty empty even at the best of times so knowing that there wouldn't be a sole around and I would be alone, apart from the mad time trial cyclists still trying to kill themselves on the narrow lanes and blind corners, I've spent a couple of evenings sitting up by the fence at Wattisham. I used to spend a fair bit of time up here, as it's only a few minutes up the road, but a change of job and hours, and a large decrease in activi
  20. Hi gents, Thought these might be of interest, especially as the 493rd FS F-15C in the D-Day anniversary scheme is due to be painted back to normal soon, if the 48th's comments of social media are accurate. Shot on Wednesday of this week in some nice light on the 24 approach. They didn't fly the similarly marked 492nd F-15E either, although that has been active this week. The third, the yellow tailed 494th FS jet has gone, as it's back in the US on overhaul and it will almost certainly come back blank. The 493rd 'heritage' jet, 84-0010 landing Wednesday afternoon as the
  21. Hi, Nice and glad to see that you found the end of runway 02. I never got to see the 707's but I heard that they're departures were interesting. Gary
  22. Hi there, Okay, the images up and until the banked Italian were all taken from the A15/WAVE area on Thursday and Friday last week. You can use a step ladder up against the fence and hedge and shoot pics across the airfield and approach. It is being policed by WAVE staff with MoD/police support, the Israelis even have their own security officer in the car park, and there are some rules. If you use a stepladder they don't want you more than two steps up and will be watching - the Italians on the Southern taxiway show that should still be okay. They also don't want you closer up the r
  23. Gents, I spent two days late last week up at Waddington for Cobra Warrior. Thursday was nearly ruined by cloud, as I'm a bit of a stickler for having shots lit well, but Friday, despite a runway change made up for it. BUFF over the top from Friday morning. Looks like the Luftwaffe has the same problem a
  24. All, I have to admit it's been a considerable amount of time since I've been on the forum but a recent PM reminded me so I thought I would post a round of pics from trips out with the camera in the last couple of years to get back into the swing of things. No particular subject, but a mixture of pics from trips to the fences around Suffolk and Lincolnshire during some decent weather. Starting off with just a couple of weeks ago and the visit of the 93rd FS to Lakenheath. Unfortunately I managed just the one day which was before they really started to play to the crowd w
  25. It looks like the AH is over the crest of the slope so it may not be buried in very deep. Mind you, it probably won't take a lot of damage for them to just use it for spares and not bother repairing it. The one that went done in the field South of Ipswich after striking cables in early 2012 was never repaired. Gary
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