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johnriley1uk's Blog

johnriley1uk > johnriley1uk's Blog
06/08/2015 - 2:18 PM

A Romantic Train for Two

As it's our 40th Wedding Anniversary in October, I've been thinking of a few different things to celebrate it. Yesterday was our trip to Edinburgh with West Coast Railways. This started at 5am when we stirred from our slumbers, 6am we were picked up and at 7.20am we left Wigan Wallgate on our Vintag...

507 Views - 4 Comments
03/08/2015 - 4:22 PM

Day of Thunder

Yesterday we arranged an ADAPS trip to the Yorkshire Air Museum, at Elvington. It was a Thunder Day, where several of the planes are fired up. It was actually a fantastic day, with lots of planes pulled out of the hangars and certainly a lot of noise! There isn't much to see when a jet fires up, but...

464 Views - 1 Comment

For us, this evening's ADAPS Photo Shoot at Castlefield was off to a bad start as I tripped over a cobblestone and plunged forwards onto the floor. I was saved by a passing female Pirate (yes, really) and she found me a chair to rest for a moment till the pain eased off. The camera kit was OK, safel...

18/07/2015 - 9:21 PM

Llandudno Musings

Today's trip was to Llandudno, not a likely destination for me, but there I have been. The SatNav even pronounced the town name correctly, the sky was blue, the sun shone, the omens were good. Seaside towns are not generally my forte, but there's always something to be found. The Pentax MX-1 was in ...

13/07/2015 - 10:12 AM

Miniature Lens Fun Part Two

Yesterday we looked at the potential of using Pentax 110 System lenses on the latest Pentax Q system digital cameras, and it seemed that good quality was possible. Why would we want to? Well, the Q cameras do encourage experimentation, and there are lots of adapters available at low prices for using...

12/07/2015 - 4:35 PM

Miniature Lens Fun Part One

A while back I tried out some CCTV lenses on my Pentax Q-S1 and found they were universally dreadful. Today I tried out my Q-S1 kit, plus a 110 adapter and a selection of lenses from the Pentax 110 film camera range. I had the 110 18mm, 24mm and 50mm lenses, lovely little gems that performed well wi...

09/07/2015 - 12:07 PM

A Day at Yorkshire Air Museum

Every time I mention to Sue that I fancy a trip to the air museum at Elvington she groans loudly and pretends she hasn't heard. Yesterday the opportunity came and I took her into York to attend a training day. I went to Elvington and spent the whole day drinking coffee, fuelling up on a morning baco...

461 Views - 1 Comment

All commitments fulfilled, we had a few hours to spare this afternoon, so we made our way down to Pennington Flash. We intended to spend a while in the hides, practising with our new lenses. Sue was using the Pentax K-5 and the HD Pentax-DA 55-300mm lens. She added the Pentax 1.4x converter to this ...

571 Views - 1 Comment

We are just back from a fantastic show, with 81-year-old Frankie Valli defying time and delivering the goods without so much as a falter. His voice is still amazing and of course we had our cameras to capture some of the atmosphere. Large DSLRs are pretty much out, they seem to scare the promoter...


Pentax have had a fisheye zoom in the range for many years. In the days of film (days of yore?) it was the 17-28mm and currently, for APS-C DSLRs, it is the 10-17mm. It's a lovely lens, well made and compact, but surprisingly heavy for its size. The lenscap is one of the classy metal ones with a gre...

566 Views - 1 Comment

Sometimes we come across little gems where photography is a pleasure and a few hours can be spent away from the normal rush of the world. Tropiquaria is one of them. It's not dissimilar to the South Lakes Animal Oasis that we also enjoy, a small, rough and ready zoo with good access to the animals, ...

480 Views - 1 Comment
04/06/2015 - 4:57 PM

Back In the Bad Old Days

Well, not bad, but a title just to contrast with the usual idea that somehow there was a Golden Age. That's right now by the way, we're in it. I was just musing about our start in digital photography, which was when i won a sales competition. Yay! I won a Kodak 1.3MP compact and Sue started to us...

02/06/2015 - 10:53 PM

Pentax 150-450mm AF Speed

Just a short blog today, to add a bit if information regarding the AF speed of the new Pentax 150-450mm, with and without the Pentax 1.4x AF converter. Subjectively, it didn't seem to make much difference to the speed of AF, so I ran a test using an online stop watch. The time to focus and releas...

521 Views - 2 Comments

Yes, finally I managed to get to Martin Mere for a first tryout of my new lens. The conditions were not good, with high winds keeping the birds down and quite dull light needing at least ISO 1600 on the Pentax K-5. The rain was not a problem, as Pentax cameras and lenses are well sealed. The lens...

815 Views - 2 Comments
25/05/2015 - 12:14 AM

The Making of a Wendy House

The moral of this tale is don't forget to document everything that happens, large or small. This is the photographic story of the demolition of our old Wendy House (or Play House if you prefer) and the assembly of the new. The new is a Dutch Barn design and is big enough to last the grandchildren fo...