TPF Across America - The Journey of One Lens Across the USA - Round 2


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Jul 25, 2008
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The project is now open to Canon shooters! If you're a Canon shooter, and would like to participate, please feel free to PM me and get on the list!

**UPDATE 2**
The project is now open to international shooters. Just know that all international shooters will be put on a separate list and will be able to participate only once CONUS participants have all had their chance. It is only simpler and more time-efficient to do it this way. I hope you understand. If you're in a country other than the US and would like to participate, please feel free to PM me.

**UPDATE 3**
From this point on, please do your best to keep the lens for the allotted 7 day time maximum. Disregarding this time limit has gotten us 6 months in to the project, with only 2 months' worth of participants able to do their part. If, for some reason, you think you could do something constructive with extra time, please PM me with your plans and we can work it out from there. Should I not get a message saying that you have sent the lens out on the 8th day, expect to get a phone call on the 9th day as a polite reminder to do so promptly. I'm sorry it has come to this, but it really is in the best interest of the group.

Please, no Spin-Off Threads. Please respect this project to that extent.


A long while ago, there was a project started up by myself. An "old klunker" of a lens was donated by a member of this forum, and the lens was sent around the country from one life to another, going in and out of hands and homes. It was mounted many times in different environments. The lens was a rambler like no other. Until one day, a certain member, one who should probably remain un-named, seemed to have fallen off the face of the earth. The worst part of all of this was that the lens was in his possession at the time. So, as far as I'm concerned, it is lost forever until further notice. If, one day, this person would like to return the lens, I would graciously take it back, though. Anywho, another vagabond has come to my attention, and is urgent to pick up where the his adventurous ancestor left off. What lens is it, you ask? It's the marvelously antiquated Nikon 35-70mm F/3.3-5.6D AF. This lens was part of the very initial batch of Nikkor AF lenses produced, and was first spewn out of Nikon's production lines in 1986. Anyhow, throughout this journey, the lens will be traveling across the country from one photographer to another, seeing the world as they do. What kind of malarkey can a 26 year old lens get itself into? We'll just have to wait and find out!

I will be the first to shoot the first photo of this adventure. The lens arrived at my door this afternoon, and looks very well prepped to undergo the adventure! I will spend my allotted time, one week, with the lens. It will tag along with the rest of my photo gear and soak up the scenery; every beautiful pixel worth. While it's tagging along, I'll be documenting its journey using the lens itself on my camera. Once it's stayed its allotted time with me, I will ship the lens with an additional $5 in the box to the first person in line. The $5 will help cover shipping of the lens from the second person to the third. The second person will then take the lens on adventures, shoot whatever their heart desires and can be kept for up to, but no longer than 7 days to keep it moving and interesting. At the end of their length, they will put the lens in a box, pay for shipping by use of the original $5 they recieved with the lens, and ship the lens plus an additional $5 in order to restart this cycle. This will continue in this manner until everyone has had their chance with the lens, then it can be shipped back to the original owner, or continue to be shipped around. I understand the $5 will not completely cover shipping costs. But, it will help minimize cost for everyone taking part in the project.

You're late! It has begun! Sign up now!(PM me)

  1. PM me if you're interested in participating, and I'll send you the participation form (NOTE: no information will be given out.)! - It should be fun! - Names will be added in this post in the order they are received.
  2. Once you receive the lens, PM me to let me know. I will mark your name on the list as the current holder of the lens.
  3. Shoot your photos! If you have a photoshoot, switch your $1k+ lens for this bad boy for one or two clicks, then click back if you'd like. Run it through the ringer, just make sure to take care of it properly!
  4. Arrange shipping with the next person in line, or contact me and I will do so for you.
  5. PM me when you ship the lens and I will change your name from "Current Photographer" status to "Completed!"

  • You can keep the lens for up to, but please do not exceed 7 days (No minimum time frame. If you'd like to keep it for only 5, 3, etc, you're more than welcome to, but should you want another chance, you will have to be bumped to the end of the line.)
  • No max amount of photos to the pool, but please try to post only your best work with the lens.
  • Please geotag as many of the photos as you can.
  • At least one of the photos must represent the place where you live. These type of photos are the ones you should ensure are geotagged, if no others.
  • Without filling out your participation form, you will not be permitted to participate.
  • If you drop, break, or in any other manner dismantle the lens, you will be responsible for the replacement cost. Contact me for details.
Video is becoming ever-present in the photographic universe. Of course videos are welcome and encouraged! Please be sure to post them in the thread below, and on flickr if it allows!

The Photo Forum and it's members are not liable for anything! Should the lens be lost in shipment, broken, misplaced, forgotten, eaten by the dog, sold on eBay, buried, trashed, rolled off the roof of a car, dropped down the stairs, drowned, flushed, or otherwise ruined or gone in any way, shape or form, etc, etc, etc, the game is over unless another lens is put into action to replace it.

  • Autofocus will function on the following DSLRs: D4, D3/x/s/, D2/x/xs/h, D1/x/h, D700, D300/s, D200, D7100, D7000, D90, D80, D70/s, D50, D100
  • Lens will have to be manually focused on the following DSLRs: D5200, D5100, D5000, D3200, D3100, D3000, D60, D40/x NOTE: Even though the lens will not focus, it will still meter, and the AF confirmation light will still light up when she does strike focus!
  • This will be a US only deal. If a member from any other nation/country would like to contribute, you will have to wait until I feel it is the right time to send this baby internationally.
Those who are on the list, please sign up for the Flickr group and include your TPF member name for verification.
TPF Across America - Round 2 Flickr Page
Flickr Group Map

List of confirmed members participating
(Red= In Posession - Black = Waiting - Green = Completed)
480 Sparky




Chris Stegner

I will update this post with new information and constantly change the participants list, etc; so be sure to check back frequently. Thank you everyone for participating. Lets try to make this thing as great as possible, please treat the lens responsibly and respectfully.

A Plea
If nothing else, please treat the lens and the project responsibly, and with respect. Should you lose, break, sell, barter, etc, the lens, please tell me. I want to be kept up-to-date on every aspect of this project to try to avoid a fiasco like the one from last time. This project means a great deal to me, and it's something that I want to see live out its full life. Please be responsible and act as a proper adult. Thank you.

If you have any questions, or feel that I have forgotten to mention anything, feel free to post them below, or PM them to me. I'll reply promptly.

Thank you,
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How to geotag on flickr:

- If you find a better how-to video, please let me know.

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Update 1:
New photo added as the group logo. If you think you have something cooler, shoot it my way. :)


You do realize those $5 extra dollars in the box cover nothing if you have to put another $5 in the box when sending it? :p
Cool project though, too bad I live in Europe.
You do realize those $5 extra dollars in the box cover nothing if you have to put another $5 in the box when sending it? :p

It covers the shipping to the next person.
It covers the shipping to the next person.
Yes, but that next person has to pay shipping plus put in another $5 for the next person. The only one to benefit would be the last one to have the lens, and if it ends up back in the original hands, then all that is accomplished, is that a $5 bill also travels around the country (which could be a thread of it's own).
OK, try this:

It keeps the current possessor of the lens from claiming they don't have the funds available to send it to the next.
Bingo. The original thread had a $10 in the box. But, the box the lens will be shipped in will cost $5.83 to ship through USPS. So, no excuse not to be able to at least ship the lens.

Alrighty, well, I don't think I'll have too much more time to devote to the lens until its departure. So, without further ado, I present to you my photos for my leg of the project. Enjoy!:


















Well, I know there's alot of photos, and none will win any awards or anything, but I didn't want to wast a minute with the lens. I hope to see some spectacular results from all of you! Enjoy the project. This should be fun. Now, let's get this show on the road (...again)! :Mrgreen:

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We need to add a Canon lens to it! I wish I hadn't gotten rid of all of my old junkers!
We need to add a Canon lens to it! I wish I hadn't gotten rid of all of my old junkers!

From original post:

  • Blahblahblah...
  • As of now, this is a Nikon-only project. If anyone would like to use the lens with their non-Nikon camera, be it Canon or otherwise, you must purchase the corresponding adapter (cheap on eBay!), and agree to donating it to the project once your turn is complete.
I'd be happy to it to the rotation, should a Nikon->canon adapter be donated to the project! That way, Canon users would be in on it as well.:thumbsup:
I'll go take a look at getting one... I am gonna say probably!
Sorry... I am looking for the AF confirm, Nikon to Canon adapter, right?
Really cool idea and once I feel more comfortable with my photography I may request to be added. Until then I cant wait to see the results from you all =)

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