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de_Selby

Member since Nov 2008 • Last active May 2022
  • 12 conversations
  • 503 comments

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  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    I've not often seen otherwise-identical models offering both sizes. And I doubt you'd get 7x50s for the same price as otherwise identical (eg) 10x40s or similar. But I don't inhabit binocular websites much.

    But yes, spend a bit more for the greatly increased user-friendliness.

    Decent 7x50s will show you the rings of Saturn and the moons of Jupiter.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    I would strongly recommend 7x50 for stargazing.

    Cheap optics have made us drunk on magnification, so 10 is more than 7 and is thus 'better'. In truth the more magnification you have the more the image jumps around (and even being able to locate things that are hard to spot, eg stars, in the lens is more difficult).

    But magnification is cheap, and a large objective lens is expensive. Cue endless conversations about how your 10x40s are so much more of a bargain than my more expensive 7x50s.

    At school a kid who was nuts about astronomy sold me his ex War Dept 7x50s; they were, and decades later still are, excellent for stargazing. All my life I have used binoculars for looking at the sky, and at sea; I've never been able to improve on 7x50s.

    10+ x magnification is not the 'it goes all the way to 11' of the binocular world!

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    I do 1.6km twice a week at 7:30am.

    I don't eat or drink anything beforehand. Seems fine to me; have been doing it for years.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    Unusual sight. F-16 came barrelling over here Norfolk/Suffolk border this am fast and low. Took me a while to work out what it was. Dunno whose they are; I didn't know there were any F-16s here. Looks a bit like Tornado and flying c. 1,000ft was very reminiscent too. Ou sont les Tonkas d'antan?

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    Probably 3 times the normal level of US air activity here in East Anglia, where departing and recovering KC-135 tankers and RC-135W Rivet Joint electronic surveillance machines fly overhead. They live at Mildenhall, Suffolk, but non-locals also fly in from the USA.

    Also new: rarely seen KC-10 tankers, C-135 atmospheric sampler machines (detect/identify nuclear explosions) and RAF E-3 Sentry surveillance aircraft.

    All the above are usually stood down at weekends, but not this weekend!

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    There's very little doubt about not so much CIA but US intellectual heavyweights pushing hard for the centre of gravity of western art to be reclocated from France/Paris to the New York/USA. I wrote my art school degree thesis on this ... a long time ago c. 1986. Clement Greenberg/Harold Rosenberg/Leo Steinberg were the chief protagonists in favour of the whole field of US abstract impressionism being raised to 'world-movement' status. Tom Wolfe skewered the whole thing rather well in The Painted Word. There was a strong feeling among many in the US that as they had 'won' the war it only made sense for Europe to be stripped of its status as the centre of the artistic Universe. The US was so very hard to love in those days; their interference in democratic movements across Latin America and in the Middle East and Far East remains a serial outrage even 50 years later.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    Given the publishing industry's propensity to sell utter tripe, especially at this time of year, one wonders if the real reason behind Mark Francois's rejection is that it really wasn't much cop.

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    'This accusation ...'

    Nicely put, gbj. It is tiresome how often this comes up.

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    The 2015 Adam Curtis film Bitter Lake (available on iPlayer) goes a long way to explaining how Afghanistan went down. Brits, USA, etc, don't come out of it well.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    Not at all surprised to learn they were built at Brough, or at least that there was an airframe on test there. The Hunter was quite a big export succes so production could have been all over. Some of the exported ones were still operational into the 1990s I think. I think further fatigue testing is often carried on when airframes are in service for longer than had originally been envisaged.

    There's a Buccaneer outside a petrol station at Elgin in northern Scotland. Something to do with Lossiemouth I guess. Very interesting to inspect at close quarters.

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