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Old October 23rd, 2008, 03:31 PM   #16
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I finally managed to remove the adaptor (after trying ALL other methods) by;

removing lens from camera (obviously)
removing zoom demand servo
drilling 2 x 3mm holes opposite to each other through the outer most edge of the adapter ring.
carefully screwing the entire lens assembly (face downward) into a block of hardwood and clamping the block to something firm such as a workbench.
holding the sun hood / end of the lens turn the entire assembly until the ring begins to turn.
DO NOT USE THE FOCUS or ZOOM rings to turn the lens.

Hope this helps anyone else who may find themselves in a similar position. When the tank struck the matte box in pushed the adapter ring across an opposing thread, thus locking it.

Best way to avoid it would be to not put your camera in the way of a speeding tank!
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 06:17 PM   #17
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Stuart.


A welcome good outcome on two levels.


1. You succeeded in recovering the lens and hood.

2. You survived the encounter with the tank. These things have ended badly.


An independent cameraman from Australia operated with the mujihadeen in Afghanistan during the Soviet occupation when few others if any were doing so. He was using a Super8 camera I think and was it seems a largely unsung source of visual record from that conflict.

He filmed a captured tank being driven past and was struck and killed. There is apparently some sort of target fixation and misjudgement occurs because the sheer bulk of the object, also error in distance perception introduced by the viewfinder if used, similar to people being drawn into the sides of trains pulling up at a platform.

You would likely know first hand the truth or otherwise of this legend from firsthand experience.

Subsequently, his widow went to Afghanistan with her two young children to determine the full story and to get some closure.

A memorable documentary recounted their story and her journey.
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 06:20 PM   #18
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Congratulations!

One other method I though of would be to use a dremel tool to saw into one sice of the ring. Then take a small and strong pair of pliers and twist and break the ring inward. I have never tried this on a filter but it works on 2 inch pipe.

Yes, I imagined it might have become cross-threaded, so, at the least, it would have to be pulled our and snapped back into the correct thread track.
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Old October 24th, 2008, 07:37 AM   #19
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Do you mean Andy Skrzypkowiak?

Andy was a legend among those of us working out of Peshawar into Muj controlled Afghanistan in the late '80's. A great man, a good friend, and still sorely missed. I'm glad his family finally found out what happened to him - at the time we all believed he'd been killed by a bandit (or more likely by Hekmatyar's men) while he slept. That's still the commonly related story of his death. I've not seen the documentary you referred to.

Andy was a Brit, though - of Polish descent - who was in the British Special Forces before he became a freelance cameraman.

On another note:

So come on, Stuart: what were you doing with the tank to get that close to it? and where you behind the camera when it got hit?

Tell all....

Best wishes

R

Last edited by Robert Adams; October 24th, 2008 at 08:11 AM. Reason: more info
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Old October 24th, 2008, 08:36 AM   #20
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Sorry Robert.


He was an Australian citizen of Italian ancestry. I don't know if he was born in Australia or migrated.

My recollection of the documentary, possibly now a bit vague is that after he was killed filming the tank, the mujihadeen he had joined were were less than fully forthcoming as to what happened. The film that was was taking when he died was broadcast as part of the documentary.

When his wife went there, she took their two children with her. Apparently they were blond headed and their hair was died black so they would be less apparent as foreigners.
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Old October 24th, 2008, 09:33 AM   #21
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No probs, Bob; I'd love to know who he was. I knew most of those guys - we were a fairly small clan. I can't recall another freelance cameraman who was killed in Afghanistan in the '80s apart from Andy. If you remember his name, please drop me a line; we should have him listed on the Rory Peck Trust Memorial to freelance cameramen and women killed on active service:

The Rory Peck Trust

But this guy clearly knew the first lesson of conflict camera work: if that incoming has your name on it, make sure the little red light is glowing.

Best wishes

R
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Old October 25th, 2008, 03:37 AM   #22
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Robert the camera got hit by the tank during the filming of a recruitment film we're making. It was on the end of a crane when the 'incident' occurred.

Getting back to the threaded ring, I was amazed to see that all the threads on both the camera and the adapter were still entirely intact...nothing chewed! For such soft aluminium I found that amazing.
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Old October 28th, 2008, 09:41 AM   #23
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Stuart, that's really good news! I'm not sure that the lens front is made of metal though, it appears to be some sort of plastic or nylon compound. I wasn't too keen on that but if it has survived maybe I'm wrong and should think more of it.

I've been run over by an electric car while getting "the sexy ground level, very wide angle, 3/4 on, up and past, over Paris cobbles" shot, (or TSGLVWA3/4UPOPC for short). That's the real danger of keenly studying a wide angle shot - you can so easily misjudge how close the thing is. It climbed my Betacam SP, up and over me; Oddly nothing but the car was damaged.

You are right Bob, that phenomenon is known as spotlighting, basically it's concentrating so hard on the object you might hit rather than the way of avoiding it that you do hit it. It's common in skiing and one of the reasons ski resorts tend to only operate "Piste Bashers" at night, too many skiers seemed to aim straight at them and come out the other end as pre-cut chips. There's a clip up on my website Paris Cameraman, France, Stuart Nimmo Show Reels, 2nd item down left column with some dodgy skiing/ shooting with a Piste Basher.

Enough.... Very glad about the jammed filter cure Stuart
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