View Full Version : Chris Spadafora
01-12-2004, 03:13 PM
Chris, Hope I spelled your name right. I'm trying to make a 100 post before the week is up so here we go.
You like Harleys so I thought I would post a few more photos of my Grand Canyon trip.
The first one is a rest stop on the way from Flagstaff to the Canyon.
01-12-2004, 03:20 PM
on the rim of the Canyon
01-12-2004, 03:25 PM
It was a little hairy to get the bikes parked here but it makes for a good photo.
01-12-2004, 03:37 PM
They were rentals right? If you slipped you slipped ;D
01-12-2004, 03:48 PM
We rented the bikes at a place called Fire and Ice in Scottdale Az. Can't remember what the cost was but I do remember it wasn't bad.
The bike were in great shape almost like new. One of the better short trips that I've had in a long time. Of course it's always good when you break the routine of working all the time.
01-13-2004, 03:32 AM
That is a great shot of you three guys and the bikes.
Did you, by chance, take a gyro trip through the canyon?
01-13-2004, 03:49 AM
Wasn't doing gyros at the time. I was saving money to by a new bike when I saw a gyro fly over and that was all she wrote. Bike was out, Gyro was in......
I posted these photos to see what kind of reaction I would get to the last one. I guess people have seen this kind of thing before and not impressed. Oh well......
01-13-2004, 04:46 AM
That's the way it was with me also. I loved my Harleys. But nothing I've ever done can compare with gyro's. "Ain't it fun"?
Not impressed??? Phil YOU ARE NUTS!!! :o
Was that good?
01-13-2004, 12:15 PM
Chris I know that ledge ! a bunch of us went there and did the same thing. No big deal. We really did get to the edge though..... jtm
01-13-2004, 12:43 PM
The Grand Canyon is one of my favorite places- I have done three 21 day kayak trips thru it and will do another one next year (after being on the waiting list since 1993).
I have flown a Cessna 182 thru the canyon several times too. It is FANTASTIC. Even though you have to stay sort of high and fly special VFR corridors above the commercial operators the scenery is so BIG it does not matter it is awesome.
01-13-2004, 02:26 PM
Gigs up! Here's the original photo.......
01-13-2004, 02:30 PM
I took the guys out, rebuilt the background and then took this photo a cut a pasted us in. Reworked the lighting, added some shadows and there ya go. I sent the other photo to the rental place and wasn't asked to come back and rent again. Wonder why?
01-13-2004, 03:57 PM
Very Nice Job. I was thinking about that picture as I drove to work this morning. Getting the bikes out there would have been one thing. Backing them off would have been another. Good Work!
01-13-2004, 04:32 PM
Okay Okay, our group only actually had 4 people in the group. I mean ummm that would be neat to see.....
01-14-2004, 02:10 AM
You really had us there! I was thinking the same way that Todd was, then we saw James' pic and realized that was a hoax, still not knowing yours was. I said to Shar, "I'd never take my bike out on that." Now you tell the truth!! We were impressed.
I have been a little busy and will get to that brake thing soon. Hang in there!! Haven't even touched my gyro in weeks and now they want snow today. Just trying to make ends meet right now.
01-14-2004, 05:09 AM
01-14-2004, 08:29 AM
Chris, I know what you mean about making ends meet. My ends are so far apart I can't even see them right now.
Todd, The hardest part about putting those bikes on the ledge was taking out the old Fire Station that you could see through the windshields. Ended up air brushing new ones on.
Rob, You'be been waiting 10+ years to kayak the river? Did you have to wait that long for all the trips? Man you must want it bad!
01-14-2004, 03:58 PM
You had to remind me of my long lost cat. I have owned 2 black cats, they both lived approximately 10 years each, they were the greatest. Little Black Sambo1 and 2. Sam for short. We caught both of them in our leg hold traps at one time or another, but Sam2's back foot didn't heal. His leg had to be amputated. He got around so good for the rest of his life, it was like he didn't even need the 4th leg. Here is a pic.
01-14-2004, 04:45 PM
I have a cat, her name is Mrs. Meow meow. I love to put a piece of tape and wrap it around one of her paws and let her go! That is so funny to watch her try to shake it off ;D
Also Both my Black Lab Mr. Miller and Mrs. Meow Meow love to chase my laser pointer light around the house. They know it is me with the light and as soon as I pull it out they start going nuts, like Laser Light Junkies.
01-14-2004, 06:25 PM
You guys are all full of it. I know it's all in good clean fun though, huh? Pretty good one Phil. Good editing job. That reminds me of a picture I used to keep on my desk at work of my son. Back in the early 70's I took a triple exposure of him with my 35 mm against a solid black background. People at work thought I had identical triplet sons.
The weather must really suck over there in Georgia and the Carolina's. It sure has been good flying weather here in Southeast Mississippi for the past several days. Why don't ya'll pack up and bring your machines over here for a while. We'll have the first annual Rotors over South Mississippi.
01-14-2004, 08:10 PM
I have been a proffesional photographer with a studio for 20 years. It is truly an amazing time in photography. More changes in the last 3 years than in the last 40. You know when digital is here when Kodak just announced that there will be no more Film R&D. When the great yellow father stops relying on film sales, you have been notified that film is dead. Never thought it would have happened this fast.
01-15-2004, 01:44 AM
You made some rather interesting points, some of which, I wasn't aware of. Xray film is probably close to extinction too, huh?
James, would you mind making a suggestion or two for a good digital video camera. What would you recommend for both decent quality and best price?
air commands and harleys good stuff
01-15-2004, 07:57 AM
I haven't kept up on video cameras for the last year. Once the mini sized digital cameras came out I have only looked a few moments at them while browsing at local stores. The price keeps getting better and better while the quality keeps going up. One camera writes directly to the dvd which I think is really handy but since it is a delicate device.....
One thing though is on kind of digital camera is to forget about digital zoom. See what kind of optical zoom is available so there is no image loss. The more optical zoom available the better chance you won't have to use the digital zoom as much.
With the digital zoom, the software is telling the hardware to ignore the outer edges of the sensor and just record using the center area. This is like saying you have a 3 or whatever megapixel camera but you are going to only record at 1 or 2 megapixel depending on how much you zoom in. Optical changes the lightpath and does not adversly affect quality.
Also when shopping for a camera it depends on what you are hoping to do and what kind of rough budget you are on. In cameras you will usually see the good, better and best models from a manufacturer. If you look for say - better - you will notice what features are on a camera for XXX amount and then look at another manufacture and you will usually notice their camera at about the same price point. Then you can start to see what you will get for XXX amount of money. It is alot like cars that compete with other models in same class of cars. Once you know if we are talking a Sunbird or Intrepid, the amount you would spend... you can tweek the actual amount by considering features.
Nowdays though, I think they pack alot of quality and technology in a camera - even an inexpesive one - you could hardly go wrong.....
Hope this helps. If you have any other questions I will try my best.
Gyros, Harleys, and photos ! jtm
01-15-2004, 08:07 AM
Oh yeah, X ray film?
Do you remember hearing anything about the Sony camera that had to be recalled? It had built in some sort of infrared / heat based viewing that they thought would be handy. It was and pointing it at people revealed a lot more than they thought about......
Anyway, something happening all the time. Today I am cleaning out studio with all the stuff I thought would hold its worth. Medium format cameras I haven't even used for 2 years. Hard to believe I am simply not using them. I have a Pako roll paper printing machine that originally was 25k. I bought it for 5k a few years ago and printed all our proofs on it. I got my moneys worth out of it but I am guessing that unless I donate it to a school I may have to pay to get rid of it. It is something I never thought would come that fast but I was always keeping up with it. I also know that film shooters usually have a good fundamental knowledge that will make them better shooters than someone that just picks up a digital camera and snapshots it. Its just that now any new photographer is going to use the digital right away and not really understand everything that is happening, and maybe not really know how to get the best results and why.
01-15-2004, 06:05 PM
Thanx a lot for taking the time to help me with the info re the video cam. That will definitely help me when I do decide to get one.
That Sony camera sounds like something one could have a lot of fun with.
How's the weather in Michigan? Do you normally get in some flying time in the winter months?
I flew for about 45 minutes today. It was 62 degrees and the wind was from 350 at 06 when I took off and the sock was hanging almost straight down when I landed.
Later James, and thanx again, Chuck
01-15-2004, 09:52 PM
I do a little flying but the runways having ice make flying difficult sometimes. My flying partner Vince and I have an Archer that is just itching for Florida and possibly the Bahamas someday. Our wives don't care for flying that much so we both go flying around Michigan, usually less than an hour flying to destination. We have only flown down to Ohio as the farthest so far.
I think we did get 6 - 2 degrees today, almost same as you. I am building the rotor brake on the Little Wing and some other supports so I have mostly been learning metal working. We did go up Monday taking turns landing. I really have been to busy working to do what I really enjoy doing (flying). I guess flying from the right seat after months of no flying and my partner saying D.... you just lost your engine after my second landing was his way of saying things were going good. He says if you can get in after that much time and keep it on the numbers during takeoff and landing he says just do it and call for the checkride. I know I have to study and fly 3 with a CFI but I always get pulled different directions. I thought I just did well because I think about it alot and when it comes time it is no big deal.
There are quite a few LW projects getting started in the Indiana / Michigan area. Saturday I am going to drive the 2 hours down to one of their houses and a few of us are going to try to meet. The second week of Feb they are all coming up to us. This is pretty exciting stuff for us since there isn't that much gyro activity (usually) going on in this area. Flying activity at our airport is blackhawks from the National Gaurd Base and FW traffic.
Different subject but related is that after 2 years of not seeing one of my brothers that lived right here in town, he shows up at my doorstep, as I heard he had done with other siblings. In my case he sat down and said : Who would have thought Hell would have frozen over. I can't go back over what I have done I just need your support. I am getting shipped over to Bagdad after 6 weeks of training down in Georgia. With only a few days before Christmas and him leaving last week we tried to catch up. He came over with a video he made while flying huey's around the airport. He was having fun, and he knew where our house was and the open door policy.
He just waited until he was ready. Don't think his attitude has changed but what can you say? Flying around the airport, and seeing the helicopters around made me think about how much I had hoped to finish up my training last summer. I wanted to do two things, take my father for a ride and wished to take him wherever he wanted to go. He knew how much I loved flying and saw me go from building r/c helicopters and flying them to they gyro parked in my dads polebarn. Now if nothing bad happens when he gets back from working on Chinooks I need to get in gear to get this done.
He chose to go when they needed some volunteers but it could be a year and 1/2 before he gets back. Flying around there is kind of quiet for me and not as much fun because of the worry. Looking ahead to the time I can maybe just tell him to hop in we are outta here - would make a memory that I hope to have soon. We got him back because of Iraq and yet we might lose him because of Iraq. To find out that the last couple years we may have crossed paths around the taxiway and didn't even know it is sad, but there was nothing we could do. Now he may or may not be changing but we may never see it. We are lucky to have the freedom that we have now because of the many people who have used these flying machines to make a change. How it is related? ...... When I am actually flying I almost feel guilty having fun because of the other people flying the airport are doing it for more important reasons, and I am even more aware of it. I get frustrated with airport milking students along. Makes me feel stupid. Then I can go back to building..... Sooner or later this building is going to be completed and I have to finish flying up.
I gotta just fight the weather and the distractions, brush up on stuff and just achieve it. Then I can finally share some of the things that are exciting to me and my family. I think it is really neat when you can say yeah, I just got done flying - it was blah blah..... You are so lucky to get in, go flying and make those important memories. I hope you appreciate how unique you all are. I think it is great to get to know you all.
01-17-2004, 04:26 AM
That last post of yours really got me to thinking. There are certainly some things that are much more important than having fun. You have no idea how much your last post has helped me, and will continue to help me with some family relationships. Thank you for taking the time to write what you did about your brother and your dad. Perhaps I won't be the only one it will help.
The Little Wing sounds like a really neat project. Let us know how the LW meeting went. I'm sure many of us would like to stay posted on your brother as well, I know I would.
Thank you again, James,
01-19-2004, 01:53 PM
No problem. I re-read my post and it's funny how sometimes it seems flowing as you write it but later, it is apparent it isn't quite that concise. Still, I am glad you still got the point even if I was writing when I was tired.
I stayed overnight at a new gyro builder's house in Indiana over the weekend. He, and a friend (who rebuilt his steerman) came up a few weeks before. Imagine how unique it is to fly. Imagine how much more unique you are if you are a rotorcraft pilot. No wonder why we seek out others and are so willing to share. We know how much work it takes to get this far and are very protective of our fellow pilots. It is a connection that leaves us feeling good about helping each other.
I learned alot down there and I am sure it might be considered metalworking 101 but to me it taught me the steps to better looking more accurate partmaking.
Rich L. is joining here and the original forum soon. We got him up and running with computer/internet. He wanted to spend all he could on something that would help his project directly. He is building a LW4. He has the tail laid out, the frame jig is holding the second side frame now that one is tack welded. He listened to how the computer is going to become valuable for sharing knowledge and ideas that may help. Not only that but you know that feeling you get leaving Bensen Days or Mentone or whatever - knowing it will be another whole year before you get to have fun again? This keeps the contact going and helps support builders and fliers.
Anyway, I think it is pretty neat to get together to work on things and share. Also we had a guy come over from St Joe Michigan who is also building a LWing along with Rich. I think they are building two parts at the same time in some sort of a mini production.
Anyway, if I hear anything about my brother Joe, I will keep everyone up to date if they want to know. Thanks for your wishes, BTW did you catch that earlier part of the post about the 6 -2 degree flying "same" as you ?
01-19-2004, 06:27 PM
Good to hear from you and glad the meeting Saturday went well. Re the 6 -2, does that mean it was 4 degrees up there?
From 1-11 through 1-18, I got to go up all but one day. It rained all day on the 16th. It was in the 60's the whole eight days. I flew again yesterday. Today was a different story. It was cold and windy and is to be that way for the next five days.
A friend got me with his digital cam yesterday, so I got to see myself fly for the first time today. Boy, did I look good (joking, of course). It was neat though to see myself flying and to be able to hear the sounds of the engine, prop and the rotor blades.
01-20-2004, 12:23 PM
Yes, it warmed up but it was hitting negative numbers. You and your 62 would be just about enough for shorts.... I was wondering though....
All that flying and you just heard your engine run? lol
01-20-2004, 01:43 PM
James, I meant from the perspective of a spectator on the ground. This video is the first time I have ever seen and heard me flying. Look at my note below... "I know you understood what you etc......"
01-20-2004, 05:29 PM
the little "lol" means lots of laughs which means I was joking with you...
BTW, I was thinking about this being the first time you heard your engine. Thinking... - what if you don't normally listen for your engine running when you are flying and one time you are on your takeoff roll and just pulling back on the stick when you realize you didn't turn the engine on..... that would be a problem wouldnt it ?...there you would be flying around without the noisemaker... that would be embarrasing wouldn't it? ..lol
01-20-2004, 05:55 PM
Hi James, I was touched by your post. You have a fine mind and a great ability to aiticulate your feelings. Thank you for being you, Vance
01-20-2004, 06:09 PM
I hope my last reply didn't sound a bit testy. I certainly didn't mean for it to. However, I was under the impression though that lol meant lots of luck.
It got down to 22 degrees here this AM and the high today was only about 40. It's predicted that it'll be back up around 60 by Thursday and stay there for about a week or more. I hope so. Maybe you should come down here for a while.
I was going to send you a clip from Sunday, but the camera that was used really takes up a lot of disc space and my Internet speed is only 28.8kbps. So a 15 second clip would probably take a couple of hours to send, unless it can be condensed or whatever that term is. If you know anything about this sort of stuff, let me know please.
01-20-2004, 09:44 PM
Hi Chuck, - no, you answered in a way to explain your perspective better - which let me know that you didn't catch it that I was ... oh just read small print at the bottom of your post (hehe). And I have read your other posts and the posts are not with attitude.
About the tape, I don't know how you would reduce the size of your video tape. Using quicktime or something would probably help but I am not exactly sure. Most of the time I spend my efforts moving big files around trying to pack in more quality rather than downsizing to make it ready for internet. One photo from my camera is producing a 35 meg file. But I am thinking quicktime movie is something to look into. Sorry I don't know about a whole lot of video editing when it comes to downsizing.
Vance, thanks for the kind words.
01-21-2004, 02:50 AM
I miscommunicated again. (Miscommunication is one of my forte's, thus the note at the bottom)
The file is not on tape. It's just a file on my hard drive. In other words, it is digital. If it were real small, I could attach it to an email. However, I have one clip that is only 17 seconds in length and it is 27,484 KB in size. When I view it on my computer monitor, the format is 4.5" x 6". I have downloaded movies in the past, but none of them used this large a format. I assume that this is why it is such a large file.
Maybe I should initiate a new thread and see if anyone knows how to condense a file of this type in order to expedite the time to send it out on a real slow Internet connection. Your thoughts, please.
01-29-2004, 02:26 PM
You've been mighty quiet lately. What's going on? Is it cold up there?
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