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Member postings for SillyOldDuffer

Here is a list of all the postings SillyOldDuffer has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: cutting spur gears on a mill
13/09/2021 11:17:22
Posted by brian jones 11 on 12/09/2021 22:01:21:

Fantastico JB whats not to like?

so make another gear and see how they run together

you can smooth them out by running them through a shallow bath of fine abrasive powder of some sort

Its exactly what I intended to do


the ultimate insult to the purists is to use my sliced bolt method


So it may not be a nasty knurl at all, just a rough fix for those without expensive complex gear hobbers who need to knock up some gears for lightweight use.


I hope other members appreciate this

I get the impression Brian sees himself as a brilliant maverick leaving the rest of us plodders in the dust. Anyone who points out his method has disadvantages must a dimwit conservative failing to recognise progress. In the film, Brian will be played by Mel Gibson as a thrilling success!

Actually, this approach is far from new, and there are good reasons why it's never caught on. The method is unreliable, which much reduces the number of applications for gears made this way:

  • Cannot guarantee how many teeth will be be cut on a blank. No good for applications requiring fixed gear ratios.
  • The teeth are an unknown profile, neither hypo-cycloid or involute. So whatever the profile is, no good for low friction, power transfer, or low noise applications.
  • Difficult to make two gears that will mesh together from fixed centres. Can the same cutter be used to make both gears, or not? If two different cutters are needed, what are the design parameters? I don't think anyone knows.
  • Difficult to make a replacement gear for an existing gearbox.

The method works in the sense gears can be bodged, but they aren't good gears. And the method wastes time because it might take several attempts to make a meshing pair, and even more time to grind them in. I've tried it in the past and wasn't impressed: Jason has demonstrated the method in this thread, whilst Brian has yet prove his purist critics wrong by delivering.

I suggest the method isn't popular because it has major theoretical and practical shortcomings compared with repeatable, accurate alternatives such as filing teeth by hand, hobbing, casting, and generating. Rather easy to make Sunderland rack cutters if you own a lathe and mill and they produce predictable involutes. Even easier to buy mass produced gears in standard sizes. Brian's method is interesting and occasionally useful, but in the real world it has many disadvantages and faces hot competition.

In Lethal Weapon 2, Mel Gibson saves his burly partner from a booby trapped toilet by pulling him into a bathtub just before the bomb explodes. Mel's maverick solution works well in the film because the scriptwriter rewards his bravery for our amusement. Unfortunately, maverick tropes cut no ice in the real world where both men would have been hospitalised or worse...




Edited By SillyOldDuffer on 13/09/2021 11:19:40

Thread: Parametric design bug
12/09/2021 17:13:26

Umm, 'fundamentally broken' makes a good headline, but is it justified? The video makes a strong case for the prosecution. but read all the comments.

The problem isn't just FreeCAD, other much more expensive CAD software does it too. A solution is given: turns out industry best practice is to avoid the issue in CAD generally by drawing on new planes rather than faces.

In practice, how often do your models break? Though I've cursed the problem on occasion, I don't encounter it much. Certainly not a showstopper.

Not claiming FreeCAD is perfect - far from it!!!


Thread: Multimeter recommendations
12/09/2021 16:55:36

Posted by Robert Atkinson 2 on 11/09/2021 13:00:40:

From IEC 61010-1

"16.2 Multifunction meters and similar equipment
Multifunction meters and similar equipment shall not cause a HAZARD in any possible combination
of RATED input voltages, and settings of function and range controls. Possible HAZARDS include
electric shock, fire, arcing and explosion.
Conformity is checked by the following test.The maximum RATED voltage specified for any function is applied to each pair of TERMINALS in
turn, in every combination of function and range controls. The test source connected to the
equipment measuring TERMINALS during this test is limited to 3.6 kVA for measurement category I
or measurement category II. For measurement category III or measurement category IV, the test
circuit has to be capable of delivering 30 kVA.

During and after the tests, no HAZARD shall arise.
Multifunction meters and similar equipment are to be tested by changing the Functi
on/ /Range Selector to all
possible settings while connected to the maximum rated source.”

Robert G8RPI.

Excellent to see what IEC 61010-1 actually says! I think it can be read two ways, one of which is Robert's strict interpretation, the other much less onerous. As Devil's Advocate:

First, the successful test is one in which there is no HAZARD. I argue this means it doesn't matter what happens inside the case provided the explosion, fire and arc are contained and can't physically harm or shock the operator. A hand grenade could be safely exploded inside a sufficiently strong box. The contents would be completely wrecked, and the box bulged, but I claim it's a pass.

Secondly, what's meant by 'The maximum RATED voltage specified for any function is applied to each pair of TERMINALS in turn, in every combination of function and range controls.'? I could argue it doesn't mean 600VAC must be applied to all the terminals and switch settings. For example, my less rigorous interpretation is that the maximum RATED voltage on the 200mV DC range function is only 200mV, not 600VAC. Not difficult.

Thirdly, the input energy of a CAT I or CAT II test is limited to 3.5KVA, which is far less than a sand-filled mains fuse has to cope with. Even if the meter disintegrates inside the box, 3.5kVA isn't spectacular unless the current continues to flow. I argue there's no particular reason why it should, and in practice all those thin PCB tracks will break almost instantly. It's another pass.

Just a hypothesis. Though I suggest an overloaded M-830 would still fail safely, with minimum HAZARD, I don't know! However, if my sophistries are correct, it might explain why weedy multimeters are CE marked and equally acceptable for sale in the USA and all other administrations around the world. They can't all be fakes can they? Maybe IEC 61010-1 isn't that demanding, or perhaps all the testers have been bamboozled by smart lawyers!



PS. I actually sympathise with Robert's line on electrical safety: in practice I'm pretty careful with volts and amps.

Thread: Extension to Digital Version
12/09/2021 16:02:52
Posted by JasonB on 12/09/2021 15:55:59:

Well now we know which magazine that could explain why I have not had an e-mail as I subscribe to ME not MEW

I haven't had an email either. I have a print only MEW subscription, whilst ME is print and digital. Not panicking: I'm British. Stiff upper lip chaps, we can take it!



12/09/2021 15:51:41
Posted by bernard towers on 12/09/2021 14:51:18:

Didn’t know that Royal Mail had a shortage of HGV drivers I still get my post on time. Is it shortage of paper to the printers??

The growing shortage of HGV drivers has been in the news for several months, and trouble was predicted last year. At the moment the UK has jobs for about 600,000 HGV drivers and there are about 100,000 unfilled vacancies.

Although the heavy supply chain is far from collapse, deliveries are queuing because of driver shortages. Priority is being given to perishable goods - not magazines. The effects vary depending where you live: round here it's most obvious in the building trade; all sorts of odd shortages and funny prices! The problem is slowly getting worse: some Supermarkets have warned it won't be possible to fully satisfy consumer demand over Christmas.

In that context, sounds like Kate is trying to reduce the risk of upsetting print only subscribers by allowing them digital access in the event their letterbox fails. Sensible precaution methinks - these are difficult times.


Thread: 12volt three wire fan connections,
11/09/2021 22:25:21

The diagram at the end of Michael's link shows the simplest option is to run the fan at full speed by connecting black to negative and both red and violet to positive.


Thread: I dont think its 3phase but what is it ?!
11/09/2021 14:42:54

The exterior box seems to be an extreme bodge! Maybe the picture is misleading but it appears:

  1. The green ellipse shows the data cable pairs are shorted together at the choc block , converting an 8-core into a 4-core cable.
  2. One side of the data cable appears to be cut off inside the box - see red circle in photo
  3. The choc block appears to show the three of the 4-ways are connected to Earth, and Neutral. The live wire inside the Brown Circle seems to have come out of the choc bloc, and may be dangling.


I guess the wiring is all mains and a naughty bodger has substituted data cable for 4-core mains cable, and then forced everything into a too small interior box rather than buying a slightly larger waterproof junction box. If so pretty yuk.

Another guess: the power goes to an adjacent shed or garage, and the 4-core is for switching a light from either end of the path, a variation on this:

Might be able to confirm this by looking for similar wiring in a nearby sheds.


Thread: solid edge community edition woes
11/09/2021 12:55:19
Posted by Clive Foster on 11/09/2021 11:37:18:
Posted by Nicholas Wheeler 1 on 11/09/2021 10:55:13:


those 2d draftsmen are the ones who also insist on placing features using coordinates instead of 'offset it 7microns from this bit'. Making things difficult for themselves in the process. That's before the part changes as part of the design.

One thing that puzzles me is that anyone who is used to 2d drawing using plans ought to be able to pick out profiles for 3d base features really easily, but actually seem to struggle.

I suspect the big problem for experienced 2D folk is that we carry the 3D object and 2D plan conversion process automatically in our heads. For me flattening an object from 3D space into 2D views or reconstructing 2D views into the 3D object happens so automatically that I'm not even aware of it.



I think the disconnect between 2D and 3D is a mind-set problem, nothing to do with intelligence. Learning is a kind of habit, and - as we all know - habits are hard to break. I suspect converting from 3D design technique to 2D might cause the same cognitive problems in reverse. Future generations may be amazed by the complexity of our 'simple' Technical Drawing methods because their experience of computer applications make drawing board methods seem alien.

Similar conceptual collisions occur in other fields. In computing, fully competent functional programmers often have severe trouble grasping Object Oriented Programming. Like 2D/3D, OOP inverts the thought process. Our poor old brains struggle with inversions because learning normally builds straightforwardly on previous experience. We're in deep poo as soon as previous experience lets us down, which is why I and most other older folk all hate change.


Thread: Multimeter recommendations
11/09/2021 11:07:55
Posted by Robert Atkinson 2 on 11/09/2021 09:24:44:
Posted by duncan webster on 10/09/2021 20:13:23:


The problem with using 250V fuses is that they don't meet the 600V CAT rating of the meter...

Is that true, or an assumption? From LittelFuse, who invented them, my bold:

In electronic equipment with relatively low output power
supplies, with circuit impedance limiting short circuit
currents to values of less than ten times the current rating
of the fuse, it is common practice to specify fuses with
125 or 250 volt ratings for secondary circuit protection of
500 volts or higher

Does anyone have access to IEC61010-1?

Possibly Fluke meters are designed to survive blowing a fuse, whereas the cheaper meters are disposable. In them the fuse protects the operator, not the instrument, which goes in the bin.

What's the most destructive test I could put my spare M-0830B too? With suitable precautions I'm tempted to blow it up deliberately! Could be wrong, I think it's light construction will cause the board to pop inside the case rather than explode or catch fire. Pity Maplin have gone bust and I can't ask them: be good to see their documentation justifying the CE mark.


Thread: solid edge community edition woes
11/09/2021 10:30:34

Posted by brian jones 11 on 10/09/2021 18:28:48:


I believe that SE can accurately position a vertex of the intersection 2 arcs (or circles)

but circles are displayed default as 36 segments - can go to 96 under View options

When you zoom in you see the intersection of two segments but they dont form a vertex. You have to use the Trim tool which seems to provide the required accurate vertex AFAIK

2D we take this for granted drawing a radius to get an intersect

OK so far?

Now the interesting bit comes when you intersect 3 spheres to get an accurate radial point and line in space draw from the origin say.


For example try a simple tetrahedroncheeky

I don't understand 'intersect 3 spheres to get an accurate radial point and line in space draw from the origin say.' A drawing would help!

Don't know SE, but computer software typically separates the definition of graphical objects from display. What's shown on screen is only a loose representation of the definition. Behind the scenes the definition is as accurate as the machine's number base, i.e. near perfect, but the display is limited by the resolution of the media. This varies: screen, printer, plotter, or hologram - all different.

As CAD models can be made of thousands of graphical objects, programmers code for performance: they avoid the machine doing work whenever possible. SE probably represents screen circles as segments because that's the fastest way to draw them: rather than waste time calculating perfect circles, it whacks out a 'good enough' imitation, a series of lines at a fixed angle. However this is just for display and the software uses definitions, not what's shown on screen, to calculate intercepts and other geometry.

Manual 2D technical drawing often uses arcs drawn with a compass to fix mid-points and find intercepts etc. The draughtsman sets the radius, sharpens his pencils, and eyeballs the result. Mechanical methods aren't available to computers, so they use purely mathematical methods. This is one of the booby traps a 2D draughtsman converting to 3D might fall into: he's discombobulated because the computer absolutely doesn't work as he expects it too. Or wastes time setting drawings up manually from first principles, when the computer has a toolbar full of Wizards!

This tetrahedron is produced with a single click on a tool in FreeCAD's "Pyramids and Polyhedrons" Workbench.


Or I could have created a tetrahedron in the "Parts Design" workbench, which is best for most mechanical modelling, by sketching a triangle and lofting it to a point. Both methods, and there may be more, require the operator to learn the CAD tool. I know the loft method works in Fusion360, and would bet money SE supports it too, but I don't know if F360 and SE have a Tetrahedron button. It's not unlikely.


Thread: Multimeter recommendations
10/09/2021 10:50:17
Posted by Robert Atkinson 2 on 09/09/2021 19:41:50:

SOD's picture of a Maplin meter is typical of a "830" type meter sold under many brands fron a few pounds up. Better than nothing, but not safe for use on mains or high energy circuits.


Robert G8RPI.

Is Robert's; 'not safe for use on mains' statement personal opinion or evidenced fact? I ask because the meter claims IEC61010-1 and CAT II on the 600V range, and, as it was sold with a CE mark by a reputable UK supplier, I've no reason to believe it's a fake. Can't take it back now if it's a wrong 'un!


I don't suppose the meter on ohms would survive being connected to the mains, but I don't think it's fundamentally unsafe when used as per instructions. What's the failure mode? If the 200mA fuse failed, I think the fine PCB tracks would fuse inside the box ; the instrument fails safe, unlike the much more heavily built AVO which depends on a 60 year old thermal cut-out.

The cheap meter's 10A shunt isn't a simple loop: the shunt has a notch full of solder and is presumably it's own fuse. Not quite the Widow-maker Robert fears. Whether all examples of this generic type of meter pay the same attention to detail is another question!


PS. I agree the Maplin meter is too flimsy for working on switchgear!

Thread: origin of CAD
10/09/2021 09:59:58
Posted by brian jones 11 on 09/09/2021 19:35:33:...

Well I want to show how we made and important transition to 3D ...

I think its all to do with extruding from a sketch face but one step at a time

Trying to see how it came about is even more nebulous smoke and mirrors

example from siemens


Why is this visceral inspection needed? You just load up the app?

Well it helps to understand what you are really doing with your models and why they are likely to go wrong

Because there's the difference 2D drafting was simple both in concept and geometry

3D opens up a potential can of worms as you are sketching in 2D - your pc screen - and this is translated by the app into a 3D space model. That is a BIG jump


Tricky stuff this! My engineering mind likes to start with basics and build on them. The method works quite well up to a point: an IC engine can be maintained by understanding 'suck, squeeze, bang, blow', but much deeper knowledge is needed to design a high-efficiency engine that meets emission requirements. Fortunately it's possible to drive cars without understanding any technical details: provided it works, the technology doesn't matter. The driver learns the controls and the rules of the road, and can ignore Carnot and the scientific relationship between energy, work and power!

CAD is the pinnacle of three millennia of human endeavour. Depends entirely on mathematics as applied by software engineers to run on leading-edge computer hardware. Impossible for an individual to understand all of it. Doesn't help that many CAD packages come with multiple 'workbenches' and it's not obvious which should be used. On first sight they seem packed with unnecessary functionality, causing beginners to bail out in favour of a basic package. The shortcomings of basic CAD hurt much later, when the user discovers he's outgrown the software: this can be agonising.

I do have a simple mental model, it is:

  1. The design projects 3D from 2D sketches and sketches can be drawn on faces and planes.
  2. Projections include removals, making holes, as well as extrusions
  3. The end result is the sum of many previous steps, and changing early steps ripple through the whole model. It's possible to break a model by entering impossible dimensions.

Existing mental models can be a serious obstacle to learning 3D. 2D drawing (wot I learned at school), translates 3D objects into plan views. It's the exact opposite of how 3D modelling, which creates solid objects from 2D. A serious error is to assume the Sketch editor produces old-skool technical drawings, which it sort of can. However, it's dangerously misleading and a learning dead-end. The process is:

  • A series of Sketches define a single 3D object
  • 2D Technical Drawings are generated by the software from the 3D object, not by the draughtsman.

Common for beginners with 2D experience to come unstuck because the sketch editor is a poor 2D CAD tool: if you think that's a problem, you're doing 3D wrong. Can be very difficult to unlearn 2D, or to move from one 3D package to another. You have to learn how the package works rather than trying to bend software to work as you imagine it should!

The easiest way to get started is to have someone else show you. Otherwise keep an open mind and don't expect grown-up CAD to be simples! Design is the hardest part of engineering.


Thread: CNC Knurling
09/09/2021 19:33:11

By default print() terminates with end-of-line

It can be turned off, or changed to something else, by adding an end parameter:

print('hello', end = ""    )  # end-of line is nothing


pesky smiley!

Edited By SillyOldDuffer on 09/09/2021 19:34:28

Thread: Gun Laying Plotter Instrument ?? OZALID
09/09/2021 16:14:09

I think it's a precision protractor, used for chart work or plotting maps from survey results. Here's similar:


Thread: CNC Knurling
09/09/2021 15:58:42
Posted by John Haine on 09/09/2021 11:01:29:
Posted by DC31k on 06/09/2021 14:18:52:

Could I bang the drum a little for learning a programming language (e.g. Python) for this task?


I know there are Pythoneers here, could anyone point me at or otherwise give an example of code that writes to a text file? I'd rather have an example to "be inspired by" (= copy!) than links to tutorial stuff, since the latter in my experience assumes Python knowledge I don't have!

Thanks in advance!

Not that it matters for small files, but Dave's example is slow because the file is opened and closed for each append. As open and close are expensive operations involving the operating system in permission checks and resource management, it's usual to open files once at the beginning and close them only at the end.

My example writes 30 'hello' lines to a file once per second. It uses print() rather than write(), which I pedantically reserve for binary output. Omitting file=myFile, or setting file=sys.stdout, writes to the screen, which is useful whilst debugging.



Thread: Multimeter recommendations
09/09/2021 12:12:04

Rather than theorise about 'quality' here's photos of the insides of an AVO8 (Model B) and an inexpensive Maplin Digital.

dsc06495.jpg dsc06497.jpg

The AVO movement and electronics are mounted on a thick plastic front panel backed by a heavy steel box, not waterproof. The electronics are hand assembled from separate components of basic type: wire-round resistors, bent springs, open switches, the whole being much exposed. The construction style is a century plus old, and was pretty sensible because the unreliable components of the day often needed repair. (My meter has a few old repairs.) This type of construction is semi-skilled, labour intensive, and extremely expensive: much of the customers money went on wages, not 'quality'. In 1953, an AVO 8 plus leather carry case cost the equivalent of about £700: only an exceptionally wealthy amateur could afford a new one.

The Maplin meter was built using modern mass-production techniques. Few humans involved: most likely the SMD components were automatically placed on the board by a machine and wave-soldered in the blink of an eye.


The meter's brains are in the Integrated Circuit far right in the photo. The electronics are far more complex than those in the AVO, and also far cheaper. Once designed and debugged the IC can be sold in volume for less than a pound. The other components are also mass produced far more cheaply that their 1950's equivalents. The AVO has a seriously pricey high-end D'Arsonval movement; the modern meter has a Liquid Crystal Display costing a few pence.

Not much difference between brands or models when inexpensive meters are mass produced in this way; the old-fashioned notion of quality that applied to my 1950's AVO don't apply to this class of consumer electronics. It's quite hard to make duds provided the meter isn't too cheap. But beware buying manufacturer rejects, customer returns, and damaged goods from unknown purveyors on the web.

Chasing 'quality' is likely to waste the amateur's money on a grand scale! Going up-market takes one into paying serious money for ruggedisation, high accuracy, and safety features designed to save professional electricians from mistakes made on live switchgear.

If you're the type who enjoys owning feel-good tools, by all means buy an AVO or one of its modern equivalents. Just don't pretend it's a rational procurement decision. (I fancy owning a red MG even though it's daft)

Otherwise think about Requirements! Comparing my similar examples:

If carrying the meter in a pocket is important, don't buy an AVO! If AC current is wanted, don't buy the Maplin. If safety is important, don't buy either!!!


08/09/2021 10:54:24
Posted by brian jones 11 on 08/09/2021 02:35:31:

Dont knock the old analog Avo type. you see things on the needle sweep you d never pick up on a digit display.


Good point, which is why I own digital AND analogue meters. I recommend buying one of each!

Digital meters are hard to misread but need time to settle, so best for measuring steady volts and amps accurately. For a bit more money the meter can do frequency, capacitance, and inductance, plus reasonably useful transistor testing.

Analogue meters are easy to misread, but are good for many common situations where a quick check is good enough: continuity ; does a power rail have roughly the right volts on it, etc. They're especially useful for detecting changes like capacitors discharging, batteries and power rails fading under load or motor boating. My analogue meters also detect RF oscillation by going full scale on all ranges by detecting on the movements protective diodes.

I own a genuine AVO, same age as me but the meter is still in good working order. Don't use it much because it's heavy and inconveniently beefy. Mainly valued for it's 10A AC range. It's unusual 27V battery is a mild pain to source.

The analogue that gets most use is an inexpensive rather than cheap 20000 ohms per volt Japanese plastic hobby meter. Fully portable, and - unlike the AVO - can be propped up to ease reading the scale. 30 years old, takes ordinary batteries and accurate better than 3% on all ranges last time I checked.

Otherwise, I have a couple of Maplin digitals. The second was bought because I lost a lead and it was cheaper to buy a new meter than a set of new leads.

My Use Case is electronics, originally valves up to 1kV, but transistors and 240Vac mains only since 1995. These days, lots of 3.3V and 5V microcontroller stuff, all low risk. I would buy a safer meter if I did more than occasional mains work, and the kit I have is definitely unfit for 440V mains. Flimsy leads are the most obvious problem - they bring the operator too close to death - but the meters aren't built to resist internal arcing if the operator makes a mistake.

I suggest amateurs should never work on the sort of electrics needing a safe meter. The meter won't save an untrained bodger from the consequences of his ignorance. The meter is only part of the safety regime: important to know what you're doing, and to take all the other appropriate precautions, including PPE. The Fluke Website is worth reading, this section deals with hand-held meters. The information is relevant to professional electricians and over the top for me and my Arduino!

If safety is a requirement, buying second-hand online or from a mate probably isn't an option. Although my venerable AVO, is in good condition, I doubt it meets modern safety standards. The same doubt applies to all second-hand kit: brand names do not protect equipment from age, wear and tear, abuse, iffy repairs, or changes in best-practice. Second-hand equipment has to be tested: safety, calibration and functionality cannot be taken on trust.

There's much to be said for buying a modern Digital Storage Oscilloscope rather than a multimeter if electronics is the main requirement.


07/09/2021 20:28:23

Posted by John Doe 2 on 07/09/2021 18:32:57:


Not quite sure why some recommend cheap equipment - surely here we understand quality, and we know quality costs money? Get decent test leads too, which are not semi-rigid, but nice and flexible.

By good quality gear, look after it properly and it will give superb performance and last a lifetime. yes


Oh no, John has unleashed my hobby horse! I submit the word 'quality' has no place in engineering.

Engineers should start by identifying requirements and then select equipment to meet the requirement. The criteria are Fitness for Purpose and Value for Money, not 'quality'.

Spending money without justification is an engineering sin. You have to engage brain to define exactly what's meant by fit for purpose; for a one off, the answer might be the cheapest available. The very best might be essential in a professional setting.

Lasting a lifetime, whatever that means, is rarely a engineering requirement in the way Capacity, Frequency or Induction ranges might be. Does one really want to pay for expensive calibration, multiple channels and high accuracy?

For ordinary workshop purposes a cheap multimeter is more than good enough, and easily replaced if the worst happens. And the money saved could be spent on something useful like an oscilloscope.

Sky's the limit If quality is the only requirement. A £3636 Keithly isn't bad but you can spend more!



Spending money on 'quality'

Thread: Win 10 back t0 Win 7
07/09/2021 13:23:07
Posted by peak4 on 07/09/2021 11:15:46:
Posted by Clive Hartland on 07/09/2021 07:58:35:

peak 4, basically it will not load all the pics in the camera, I get 4 or 5 and the presentation gives me a headache as i cannot for instance take a pic. to put in my ME archive. Yet, with win 7 it was all so easy.

Clive, I'm not quite sure what's going wrong here.
Are you downloading direct from the camera, or from your memory card?
I normally use the SD card in a reader on the PC and don't have any issues; I have a folder for all 2021 photos, and sub folders for each day, titled with the date and contents. e.g. yesterday's folder is "2021-09-06 Old Moor"
I then just copy and paste the camera's memory card contents into the folder.
600+ transferred yesterday with no issues.
After launching my processing software (DxO Optics) I just point it at the new folder.


Worth investigating as Bill suggests before going to the painful bother of reverting to Windows 7. As Windows 10 is supposed to handle pictures OK, and most owners are happy it does, I suspect Clive's problem is a mismatch of some sort between his older camera and it's Windows 10 driver.

What's the make and model of the camera? We can check if the manufacturer has updated W10 drivers for it. Also, it sounds as if the photo manager is different, and needs changing. Possibly the camera's memory needs to be reformatted. Fingers crossed, it's an easy fix.


Thread: RAF to give up flying planes.
07/09/2021 11:43:10

Simulators have been around since WW1; I've got a photo somewhere of a sort of swivel mounted wicker bathtub fitted with a Lewis Gun. A couple of burly blokes bounced Trainees around in the basket as if they were defending a plane. Learning to hit moving targets this way was safer and cheaper than experimenting on Baron von Richthofen.

I suspect it's been technically possible to wholly train pilots on simulators for at least 20 years. They have many advantages such as being able to train pilots to manage fault conditions far too dangerous to try for real, like glide landing an airliner after all the engines have failed.

Ten years ago all the advanced air forces were actively investigating not having pilots at all. What essential function does he perform? In a weapon system the delicate pilot is rather a liability because he can't stand the G-Forces, and requires life support. The man is a problem. To improve manoeuvrability a modern fast jet is aerodynamically unstable to the extent that an unaided human can't keep in the air. Instead the pilot 'flies' a computer system that micromanages the aircraft's control surfaces as necessary to stop it crashing. The pilot is only needed to take command decisions, and with good communications, the pilot might as well be in Wiltshire.

And captured pilots can be the major embarrassment when a military mission goes wrong. In the U2 incident, the Russians didn't reveal Colonel Powers was alive and well until President Eisenhower had committed to denying any and all US involvement, a lie. Only then the soviets put the pilot on TV! (The Soviets were a bunch of hypocrites: Col. Powers was exchanged for Rudolf Abel, a GPU spy caught operating in Brooklyn by the FBI .) Strangely, having a human being invade someone else's airspace is far more politically charged than doing the same job with a drone or satellites.

The need for high performance aircraft waned somewhat with the end of the Soviet cold-war. China appears to be developing an aggressive military stance that may trigger another confrontation, in which case I expect many of the next generation of aircraft will be pilotless. The trend is already evident in the decline of the Flight Engineer: modern aircraft have automated out much of the need to employ one.


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