Nikon F Camera in Ikelite Water Housing
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Tourmaline Surfing Park on a Summer's Morning as Seen Through a Nikkor-Q Auto 1:3.5 f=13.5cm

Everything about this is little project has been a test of will. Nothing wanted to go right without a lot of coaxing. But what would you expect from ancient artifacts, anyhow...?

I had done a little bit of shooting with another Nikon in an Ikelite housing, but that was an N-8008 body with autofocus, auto exposure, and auto film advance. Once that rig was set up, the only thing that really mattered was that the shutter button did its thing.

But with the F, I have to also make sure the film winder (big lever on top) and focus knob (the one with the red octopus) work without a glitch. And just for laughs (and a measure of control over exposure settings) I also decide to hook up the aperture knob (you can see it set at f8 in some of the pics).

Oh and did I mention that when I first put it all together, the shutter button lever was misaligned, and that when I tried to coax it back into position it snapped in two? Luckily it was made from 1/4" round stainless rod, so a little trip to Industrial Metal Supply and an hour or four later on my lathe, and I have whipped up a new one.

To get the focusing working I have to find a better way to attach Ikelite's black plastic collar to the lens barrel than just the little springs that they somehow believed were up to the task. Enter some black cloth electrical tape to the rescue!

The clear plastic geared collar for the aperture ring turns out to be a piece of cake in comparison. They did a pretty decent job of designing that I must say - just find the right position and clamp it down with one little screw.

So now the thing's finally all rigged up and ready to sit in my trunk for months on end until the stars align and I have both the free time and the motivation to use it.

just as soon as I get my shit together

just as soon as I get my shit together

some assembly required

some assembly required

like a bug encased in resin

like a bug encased in resin

no need to squint

no need to squint

i'm right over here

i'm right over here

nothing lost in translation

nothing lost in translation

where to start

where to start

but you're not there

but you're not there

oh that's what it looks like

oh that's what it looks like

in my beautiful green room

in my beautiful green room

but no nudity

but no nudity

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That moment finally arrives in early July when everyone's new favorite parking lot sweetheart Josephine (or Joy as she is aptly known) is about to embark on a new journey away from our shores and off to a whole new set of adoring fans on the east coast. But before many tears of joy and sadness are shed by her and those who knew her and love her, we all paddle out for a farewell session at the Pump House. And as a nod to joy from Mother Nature, conditions are absolutely stunning. The camera is loaded with Fuji Velvia 100 and ready to go.

I quickly realize how much shooting this thing requires full engagement. It takes at least two hands. An assistant would be great. Preferably bikini clad.

And forget about fins, you have to stand amongst the stingrays and take your chances. Pre-focusing helps until you realize that people actually move when they're surfing. Oh yeah, and waves are coming. And like most F's I've used, occasionally the shutter button sticks and you miss the Shot Of Your Lifetime. And don't forget to wind the film after each frame!

All that said, I am really stoked on the results. Joy was everywhere and it shows in the photos. Have a look for yourself. And have a FANTASTIC 2019!

with just a hint of sadness

with just a hint of sadness

we're all winners

we're all winners

panache, eat your heart out!

panache, eat your heart out!

rhymes with 'fly'

rhymes with 'fly'

au jus

au jus

shakekai? shakakekai?

shakekai? shakakekai?

charge on

charge on

but not out

but not out

as if four weren't enough

as if four weren't enough

but it's still a crowd

but it's still a crowd

smooth as silk

smooth as silk

all smiles

all smiles

we all have them

we all have them

dave hops on a log

dave hops on a log

lean into the moments that matter

lean into the moments that matter

watch out

watch out

to his wife that he surfs

to his wife that he surfs

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