Shooting the moon

LAST week's passing of the "first man on the moon", Neil Armstrong, bought back vivid memories for Kiama Downs' Derek Davis.

Mr Davis, 81, a lifelong employee of Kodak Eastman, still vividly remembers the first moonwalk on July 21, 1969 and playing a vital role in what happened after that historical event.

"The Parkes Radio Telescope had been selected to beam all the live photos of the moon landing and subsequent first steps on the moon and it was decided that the Overseas Telecommunications Centre (OTC) at Paddington in Sydney would be the point where photos of the landing would be recorded," Mr David said.

"So Kodak was asked to take charge of the recording of the images at the Mirror Newspapers Ltd offices in the centre of Sydney, but the pressure was well and truly on us as we had to install a brand new Kodak Versamat film processor and we had just five days to have the processor and printer installed and working.

"It was a lot of pressure, but looking back on it now it is probably one of the highlights of my career with Kodak."

The images of the landing were displayed on a special TV monitor and photographed with a Fairchild camera fitted with a Graflex 70mm back. The camera took a photograph every 10 seconds on Kodak Tri-X film loaded into cassettes.

After exposure, the films were rushed the three miles from OTC to the Mirror offices.

Here, the images were processed in the Versamat processor.

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