Monday, October 08, 2007

The DIY Monster strikes again



Well, folks, I’m at it again – the DIY Monster has bitten me once more. Here’s the deal:
I have been trying to maximize the effectiveness of my modest digiscoping rig of the Nikon CP-4800 and the Meade Condor scope, right? One of the most important things is an adapter that firmly holds the camera to the scope. This is essential to prevent blurriness from hand-shake. I recently digiscoped some photos of a green heron, using the Mountain/infinity setting which helped a lot, but there was still obvious hand-shake (I’d link to that pic, but I can’t find it for some reason—maybe I didn’t post it?).

Anyway, I was sitting here thinking about adapters. I had tried a piece of PVC with some felt inside it to tighten up the grip, but that never really worked, so I checked out some universal adapters online.

Now we all know what happened the last time I tried to do something like this myself; need I remind long-time readers of the homemade spotting scope saga? I would embed a link there, but the saga continued for months—for a few laughs, check out my archives from the beginning of beginningtobird back in July ’06 all the way through November! That’s when I finally broke down and purchased a real (although a bargain one compared to Swarovskys and Leicas and stuff) scope.

Anyway, as I was saying, my last effort was not that successful OR inexpensive, so I determined I would do A LOT of research before spending even a penny on my crazy little plans. So I went to this one site called Photosolve, which is a great place for accessories of all sorts, and found this universal adapter:

But at $104, it’s really out of my current price range. I mean, I’m about to drop a pretty good wad of cash on the Cape May weekend, so I’ve got to watch my pennies. So I continued to look at the other accessories near this one on the web site and saw these:

That’s when the DIY Monster bit me again and I realized that basically, this is a plastic tube of some sort with a rubber sleeve collar tucked inside. Then the screws turn and tighten that rubber sleeve’s grip on whatever is in the tube. Hmm…. THIS COULD WORK!

So I’m going to Lowe’s at some point this week to look for supplies. I figure I have a ton of PVC pipe left over from the homemade scope, so that’s covered. I will go to the plumbing section, then, and look for rubber tubing of some sort. I mean, I can make something like that sleeve in the picture, right? And I can probably find some little screws like the picture, right? Lowe’s has “everything for home improvement,” right? Oh wait—this isn’t home improvement. But still—they should have something. I realize this might seem like industrial espionage—making a generic version of someone else’s idea. Hmm. I kinda feel bad about that aspect of it. What do you think? Should I just go for it?

Whatever happens, I am not even going to breathe a word of this to Kat, though. At this point, in the middle of her three-week-long comps exams, even the mention of these crazy plans would send her right over the edge. She still bristles when I mention the homemade scope fiasco. So mum’s the word, okay?

17 comments:

Lynne said...

GO FOR IT!!! Will you bring it to Cape May? Last year I bought a used Nikon Coolpix 4500 because I'd heard it was a good camera for digiscoping. I found the two adaptor pieces to connect the camera to my old spotting scope on line. A week later, half of the adaptor arrived. Two weekes later I got an email stating that Nikon no longer made the other half!! So, now I've spent $150 on a used camera and a ring adaptor but still can't connect the camera to the scope!! I got hold of a Nikon rep who said I could make one if I had a lathe. A lathe!! Of course now DH Art wants to buy a lathe (he's always wanted one) so who knows how much this whole rig will cost.

Dang- that's the longest comment I've ever written! Rant over. So, if it works, will you share your technology?

archi's mum said...

on an unrelated comment on a different blog... i just have to say I hope bunnyluver pics Hugo - i wanna see you do a spit take with coffee. he is a pretty funny bunny!

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

My safe word is "banana." But "mum" would be fine as well.

dguzman said...

Lynne, if it works, I'll get your camera lens and scope eyepiece diameters and make you an adapter too! Update coming up--I've got the ingredients!

archi's mum--a new avatar--nice! but I do miss seeing archi in there.

Thanks Dr. M, though I think that's a little too much information, no?

pissed off patricia said...

You are truly dedicated. I admire you for your efforts.

Mary said...

What's a scope? Really, I know what it is but I've never seen one. Your description of screws and tubes is making my eye cross...

dguzman said...

Mary, you crack me up. I have since purchased some ingredients and will post on my progress tonight. Then it will all become clear....

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