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Thread: Crop Duster

  1. #1
    PopsPhotos's Avatar
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    Crop Duster

    I'm on a dead run today and for the next few, so the PP on these is pretty poor. However, I enjoyed setting up the story
    He came over:
    Crop Duster

    He sprayed:
    Crop Duster

    He swings around:
    Crop Duster

    How close can he get?:
    Crop Duster

    This close:
    Crop Duster


    I know they are not processed properly, but I'll do a better job when I get a few. D40 @ 200mm, f:5.6 ~1000 to 1500. Pretty dull, dreary day.

    Pops
    Last edited by PopsPhotos; 7th July 2010 at 05:15 AM.

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Crop Duster

    Good ones, Pops.

    Quote Originally Posted by PopsPhotos View Post
    I know they are not processed properly, ...
    Maybe. But plenty of drama and excitement.

  3. #3

    Re: Crop Duster

    Good shots, Pops. I read recently that crop duster pilots used to have a very short life-span, due to the dangers involved. Is that still the case, do you know?

  4. #4
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Crop Duster

    Hi Pops,

    Good captures considering not planned and the flat, 'bright sky' lighting, really gives the feel of it

    I'd just love that kind of flying, I'm not saying trad. GA flying is without skill (far from it), but to be adaptable enough to cope with the variable conditions found in and around new fields, with obstacles and wind gusts at such low levels, on daily basis, would be a challenge I'd enjoy - shame I never learnt

    Thanks,

  5. #5
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Crop Duster

    Great shots, did he know you were down there or did you know when he was likely to spray or were standing at the end of the field?

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    Re: Crop Duster

    Super shots, Pops. Wonderful detail, like in the first, where you can see the wind turbine that I imagine drives the spray pump. And the propeller frozen.

    Cheers,
    Rick

  7. #7
    PopsPhotos's Avatar
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    Re: Crop Duster

    He sprays my neighbor's corn field a couple of times a year. This time he was not making the long swing North to come around for his next pass. I don't think he noticed I was out, because he didn't do a wing waggle as he passed overhead, as he did on the previous one I posted. I was in my back yard and he was spraying only the lower 1/4 of the field, so there was no need for him to adjust his pattern for my position. Looking at the "HeSprays" picture, the fuzzy cattails in the foreground are about 20 feet off the field edge.

    The life span of crop dusters has extended greatly over the past 30 to 40 years. Partly due to more stringent training requirements and partly due to previous gene pool thinning. The old saying about "old" and "bold" applies here. Most crop dusters, these days, are ex military fighter pilots. This lad is ex US Marine and served 3 tours in the Middle East. He is a double "Ace."

    I'm really disappointed in myself for screwing up the last picture's sharpening so badly. When I get time, I'll run them all through the system again.

    Pops

  8. #8
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Crop Duster

    I wouldn't beat yourself up too much on the sharpness. Considering the angle you have to hold the camera and try and focus on a moving object what you have achieved is more than acceptable. It's easier to pan when you are holding the camera level, when you are positioned at a 45 degree angle it can affect your balance. But I am sure you will challenge yourself and get the shot you want to achieve.
    Quote Originally Posted by PopsPhotos View Post
    He sprays my neighbor's corn field a couple of times a year. This time he was not making the long swing North to come around for his next pass. I don't think he noticed I was out, because he didn't do a wing waggle as he passed overhead, as he did on the previous one I posted. I was in my back yard and he was spraying only the lower 1/4 of the field, so there was no need for him to adjust his pattern for my position. Looking at the "HeSprays" picture, the fuzzy cattails in the foreground are about 20 feet off the field edge.

    The life span of crop dusters has extended greatly over the past 30 to 40 years. Partly due to more stringent training requirements and partly due to previous gene pool thinning. The old saying about "old" and "bold" applies here. Most crop dusters, these days, are ex military fighter pilots. This lad is ex US Marine and served 3 tours in the Middle East. He is a double "Ace."

    I'm really disappointed in myself for screwing up the last picture's sharpening so badly. When I get time, I'll run them all through the system again.

    Pops

  9. #9

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    Re: Crop Duster

    What an interesting photo essay. I was also wondering if you were in danger, but after reading the posts I see you just had a ringside seat

    Myra

  10. #10

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    Re: Crop Duster

    There are old pilots and there are bold pilots - I'm guessing this was the latter!

    Edit: Oops - just read what you said. The bit that scares me with this kind of flying is "it's not about the number of times you push the limits and not have an accident - it's about giving yourself a safety margin so that when things DO go wrong (as they eventually will in aviation) - you have a chance to live and fight another day". I know lots of pilots who would back me on that, but unfortunately they learned that lesson too late and aren't with us any more to tell the tale.
    Last edited by Colin Southern; 27th May 2010 at 04:49 AM.

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