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Old Feb 12, 2012, 6:37 PM   #1
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Default The Last Navy Fighter

A couple of years ago I had the opportunity to go out to sea - an all expense paid 14 day luxury cruise to the Hawaiian Islands, courtesy of the the US Navy, as a subject matter expert. I had posted a couple of pictures in the past on this, however - I was going back and looking at a few that I have always wanted to show, but really never took the time.

So, I was out on the USS BonHomme Richard - officially referred to as an Amphibious Assault Ship - aka Helicopter Carrier. sported a very unusual hood ornament - the last Navy Fighter - the last F14 (all the new aircraft, the F18, the Hornet, are a multi-role Attack/Fighter - a slight difference). It was unusual in that this was the first, last and only time a Navy Amphibious Assault Ship sported a fighter on the flight deck (well other than a Harrier - not a real fighter - but the Marines like it regardless).

The ship was ferrying the 14 to the Navy Aviation Museum over at Pearl Harbor for permanent display.

The 14 was moved pretty much daily, from the bow to the stern, to in back of Tillie (the crane), to - well that was the question of the day - where it was going to show up next. These images were taken in the late afternoon. We were getting near Hawaii, and the Bonnie Dick needed the "hood ornament" back in place....

I used a K100 - with the 10-17 fisheye lens for these (they were just a single image - no bracketing). I do have to say the K100 is a wonderful little camera. At the time, I was thinking that the K20 would be able to do a much better job. However, now with a K20 and a K5, the K100 really holds its own.

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Old Feb 12, 2012, 7:21 PM   #2
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It certainly did hold it's own. Nice images.

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Old Feb 12, 2012, 9:01 PM   #3
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Great images. I really like the 6MP Pentaxes and the K100D and K100D Super were the best of them (although my old DS was faster and had a better viewfinder). Some of my best images were shot with my old DL, my first DSLR.
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Old Feb 12, 2012, 9:44 PM   #4
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I don't have anything to add, except to say that my dad was aboard the BonHomme Richard when he went to Vietnam. Beautiful pictures, thanks for posting.
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Old Feb 13, 2012, 7:07 PM   #5
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Really nice photos. The 10-17 fisheye served you well. And I agree -- the K100D was (and still is) a very fine camera.
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Old Feb 14, 2012, 8:30 AM   #6
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great photos!
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Old Feb 14, 2012, 3:03 PM   #7
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Very cool pictures! I agree about the K100 - an excellent camera that I still own (along with a K7 and K5). It's amazing how it does hold its own against some newer competition - and (in my opinion) was equal to the K10 in just about everything except for megapixels.

Recently we were in Oceanside and I saw a large ship on the horizion. It looked sort-of like an aircraft carrier, but rather small from what I could remember seeing one at port. It had a big 6 on it, so I assume it was BonHomme Richard, perhaps supporting an exercise for Camp Pendleton.
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 7:10 AM   #8
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I had a friend who flew F-4s back in the 70s. He took me to Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach and we went to the F-14 hanger (Tomcat Alley). The planes were incredible, basically a cockpit on two massive engines!
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 8:56 PM   #9
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I love F-14s, they have a grace that is missing from a lot of twin jet fighters. Your use of the fisheye really brought out the subtle lines of the F-14. Wonderful shots using the K100, I still wonder if anything past my first DSLR a *Ist DL is really any improvement other than more fancy bells and whistles.
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Old Feb 17, 2012, 10:49 PM   #10
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Awesome shots, I just took a couple with my old K100D and was surprised how good.


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