Cannon are this week’s Time Off Magazine‘s Live cover shoot, they talk about…themselves.

We also donned the cashmere and ventured out to see Jason Lytle play to a full house at GOMA.

Check them both out in this week’s issue #1565.

Get it FREE from all the usual street press outlets or read it online @ Time Off magazine – Brisbane

If you’ve owned a Nikon DSLR for a couple years with reasonably heavy use you’re probably more than familiar with the problem with the rubber grips, for me its been the thumb grip in particular.

Basically the rubber wears thin, the adhesive comes loose and the rubber stretches out from the cut out area and pretty much becomes an irreparable annoyance. It also seems this is more prevalent with heavier bodies like the D700. On the plus side it’s a quick and easy fix.

Old grip - noticeably thinning and stretched beyond housing

1. First of all you need to track down the grip you require. Ebay is a good place to start and is where I got my thumb piece for about $15-20US but there are plenty of other places that stock them. Apparently Nikon USA sells them direct to the public, however I have yet to confirm this for Nikon AU confirmed – these are also available through Nikon AU (thanks Aaron!). The best thing is they come with the OEM adhesive tape already on so application is quick and tidy. You’ll also need some toothpicks, cotton tips and acetone (products like “Goo off” are good choices as well).

Step #2 - Old adhesive strip - melted, full of grime, sweat and dirt

2. Peel off the old rubber, don’t worry there’s no sensitive parts underneath

Step #3 - Pick

3. Use a toothpick or similar scraper to scratch away as much of the old adhesive and gunk as possible. I found it works best if you ball up the adhesive to collect the smaller bits as you go, kind of like Blutack. Be sure to clear the access screw area, in case your camera ever needs servicing.

Step #4 - Swab

4. Take a cotton tip and dip it lightly into the Acetone. Use this very sparingly as it will strip a little colour from the plastic housing, but dont fret, its completely unnoticeable. Go over it a few times, using a fresh tip each time to gradually pick up the pilled adhesive. Eventually it will be smooth (other than the texture of the casing) and non sticky to touch. After this I did a once over with a cotton tip dipped in water to pick up any stray dust and lint.

Step #5 - Affix

5. Once its dry, stick the new rubber piece on. It fits perfectly so you either get it in the right spot or you don’t. Apply pressure for a minute or two to allow the adhesive to bond and you’re done! Your camera’s original textured grippy goodness has been restored and you saved some dollars in doing so. I’d say replacing the other grips would be just as easy.

Note 1: When your camera is serviced, the grips are usually removed to gain access to the body screws. The service center will say they lovingly replaced the grips while they were at it but really its because they had to, of course you will be charged for that lovely courtesy.

Note 2: This is a guide only, if you feel uncomfortable with undertaking this, pay a professional to do it for you. No responsibility will be held for accidents or plain stupidity :p

The Louvre - click for big

Carousel du Lourve

Most notable for its big glass pyramids and feature spot in The Davinci Code movie, it also plays host to a bunch of historic pieces like the Mona Lisa but personally the pyramids were the highlight for me, looking almost alien against the late setting sun. It also seemed like my work is never done being roped into doing group shot photos for a class of excursioning school students!

Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe

All roads may lead to Rome but in Paris it seems like they all lead to the Arc’. With 12 roads firing towards one helluva roundabout it makes the Normanby 5 ways look like a Macca’s drive-thru. Of course there’s also all the chaos and flinching that would come with no lane markings and European drivers.

Photo tip: For best photos and viewing of the Arc’ (and the crazy traffic), its better to get off a stop before Charles de Gaulle-Etoile eg. George V – especially late in the afternoon to get a nice glow on it from the sunset.

Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower

Even with the hours in the day dwindling, the good thing about those long upper Northern hemisphere days is everything stays open late, especially round tourist spots. Daylight till long after 10pm also gives you a little sense of security and a little more confidence when wandering to and from metro stops but do still keep your wits about you, places like the Eiffel Tower are notorious for thieves and scammers.

Travel tip: As always, keep all belongings on you or in your hands at all times. If you have to put something down like a handbag or backpack, stand one foot in the straps or stand on it if it’s a shopping bag or put it between your legs, this includes when you’re sitting down. At the very least this will slow them down if they try to swipe it. Thankfully it hasn’t happen to us but better to be safe than sorry right?

To top it off, this of course is Paris’ biggest and most famous landmark, it is a very bright candle for the tourist moths so there wont really be a time when the place is empty (even early in the morning) for you to have some picnic blanket time with your “main squeeze”. Different times of the day you may get less hawkers but in general be prepared to be bothered by at least 10 times in an hour by people trying to sell you stuff like cheap/rebottled warm champagne, wilted roses or take you on a “tour”. Another problem is the line to go up the tower… well the line for the tickets THEN the line for the tower. “9-11” style security exists here as well so be prepared for at least an hour of standing around. Even late at night the line was still snaking its way around the base of the tower. The couple food stores also had quite long lines. Prices are inflated with the usual tourist tax and you get your choice of baguette or… baguette. Ingredients were however fresh and it made for easy eating on the grass areas. If these few factors haven’t deterred you too much then its certainly worth it come 10pm when the tower lights up like a Christmas tree and “twinkles” against the sunset.

Photo tip: Check local guides for sunrise/sunset times as you will find sunset is around 10-10.30pm in May.

Sainte Chapelle

Sainte Chapelle church

Don’t know much about churches but love the architecture and massive stained glass windows then this is the place for you. Sainte Chapelle has the largest collection of 13th century stained glass anywhere in the world. Even with the on going restorations, 95% of the place is accessible and viewable. Getting in early is again the key as the lines form quickly as you compete with other tourists and school excursions. The downstairs section and entrance may seem a little lack lustre till you climb the narrow spiral staircase to enter the upper chapel…. And whoa, you can almost hear the angels singing. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves. Being essentially “just” a room, a budget of an hour or 2 will be more than enough time here.

Travel tip: The #4 Metro line will get you to the Cite’ stop with no problems, then its just a short walk. Entry fee is E7.50 Euros. Check the website for opening times as these vary through out the year.

Sainte Chapelle - downstairs

Sainte Chapelle

Sainte Chapelle - stain glass windows

Sainte Chapelle

Next up we pretend we have a platinum card, impractical taste in clothes and head to the shops!

Paris 2011 part #1 – Arrival
Paris 2011 part #3 – Shopping

Paris photo gallery

Hey Geronimo are this week’s Time Off Magazine‘s Live cover shoot.

We also popped out for a quick look at UK rockers The Graveltones knock out a set at Black Bear Lodge.

Check them both out in this week’s issue #1564.

Get it FREE from all the usual street press outlets or read it online @ Time Off magazine – Brisbane

This week’s Time Off Magazine‘s Live cover shoot brings out one of the future saviors of Brisbane rock, Flannette. Don’t let their hard wearing yet comfortable materialed garment name fool you, these guys have all the bite and panache of early Metallica.

Check them out in this week’s issue #1563.

Get it FREE from all the usual street press outlets or read it online @ Time Off magazine – Brisbane


If you’re not staying near the airport (departure or arrival), the Eurostar is by far the most convenient way to get to Paris from London. Even though flights are short, the time and hassle with airport transfer eats into the total travel time …and your sanity. Since we stayed mere blocks from St. Pancras Station in London and like wise for the Grand Hotel de Paris (review here) from Gare du Nord, it was a short walk to and from both Eurostar stops. We’re not overly big history buffs so we budgeted 1.5 days in Paris for a highlights tour. Too tight a schedule for sight seeing AND shopping? Challenge accepted!


Travel tip: Purchase your Eurostar tickets well in advance, the closer to the departure date, the more expensive they become – if they’re available. Also note tickets take into account peak periods so there are different prices for different times of different days. Adjusting your trip dates to coincide with particular days can save you considerably. Eurostar also occasionally has sales, so keep an eye out for even more savings.

Rolling into Paris through a spaghetti maze of rail tracks and overhead lines I couldn’t help but to think of the Star Guitar video from the Chemical Brothers, cue loop. Heading from west to east we lost an hour with the time difference but the journey was surprisingly short and ride was bearable. We left London with the temps in the mid teens so it was a bit of a shock to arrive a few hours later to a muggy 27C.

Street signage is hit and miss and the once welcoming clearly visible landmarkers of “Underground” for the London Tube were completely non existent for Paris’ metro system. Some entry points were notable by their antique green garden fence styling but were difficult to spot amongst other bits of architecture of similar vintage. The ones that did have more visible signage was sadly only visible from front on so if you were a block or so away it was pretty tough to scan ahead to see if you’re at least heading in the right direction, b-bomm.

So it’s the city of lights, love and history… well it has lights, there’s things you’ll love and there’s plenty of history but if the only knowledge you have of Paris is from Meg Ryan spawned movies and stories from travel brochures, you will more than likely be sadly disappointed. Paris is like any other big first world city, its dirty, noisy, congested and polluted. Even in the short walk of a few blocks from the train station we encountered more shady ethnic types than last year in the Bronx or Brooklyn in NYC! But don’t let this discourage you, the history is certainly there with an abundance of sights to see and with the short stay we had, we had our work cut out for us.

Paris 2011 part #2 – Sight Seeing
Paris 2011 part #3 – Shopping

Paris photo gallery

Cold and Need swing in with they’re substitute band member for our Time Off Magazine‘s Live local band cover shoot this week.

Check them out in this week’s issue #1562.

Get it FREE from all the usual street press outlets or read it online @ Time Off magazine – Brisbane

Some might see Aussie day as a day to get drunk and punch on but Dame Reggaeton sees it as a chance for Latin lovers to get busy!

Dame Reggaeton Australia Day edition photos here