Balwyn, Melbourne UFO picture (1966)

English was not present when Kibel pulled the tab, though he saw Kibel remove the finished picture.

From the descriptions, the picture needs to be forcefully torn out, which would be unmistakable if you were familiar with the camera; though I expect Mr. English was not.

The tab, or previous negative needs to be pulled with some force to start the development process for the next photo. As you point out, English would not have seen this step according to Kibel. English saw the camera opened and the picture revealed by the pulling back of the paper which seems to be a much easier and smother operation once the little starter tab is pulled back.

I'm not convinced that the photo already existed when English saw it. But it's a possible way to account for the story in simple terms without a lot of added steps, that also allows for Kibel to have just created the photo in the simplest way.

Here is the YouTube video queued up to when he opens the camera and peels back the paper to reveal the photo. It looks like something fairly easy to fake or replicate as if it's actually happening right after a supposed photo was taken:


Source: https://youtu.be/06G2JD_aKrw?si=s-5JBDCVxIzackSY&t=436
 
The tab, or previous negative needs to be pulled with some force to start the development process for the next photo. As you point out, English would not have seen this step according to Kibel. English saw the camera opened and the picture revealed by the pulling back of the paper which seems to be a much easier and smother operation once the little starter tab is pulled back.

[..]

Here is the YouTube video queued up to when he opens the camera and peels back the paper to reveal the photo. It looks like something fairly easy to fake or replicate as if it's actually happening right after a supposed photo was taken:
You can hear the paper rip as the picture is removed in your video; the video cuts off before the picture is loose.

Compare (from my earlier post):
Article:
Place your fingernail in that small notch, and start to lift out the triangular section.Pull carefully on that triangular 'tab', and the attached print will lift away from the negative as well. Try to pull up in a single motion, and do not let the print fall back down on the negative.The end of the print is a bit more securely attached; continue holding the tab as you pull sideways slightly to detach the print.

That would be difficult to fake.
 
The positive print is peeled off the negative, with the back of the camera open. More of a delicate, fiddly thing to do. It would be very hard to put an existing positive print back onto a negative strip convincingly enough to fool someone who was knowledgeable and paying close attention. Something like putting a peel back onto a banana and peeling it off again.

However...

If Kibel really did do what he said:
-Few people in the general public had any idea of how these film roll Polaroid cameras work. Just pulling a print out of the camera might be convincing enough.
-How interested would English be, anyway? To him, Kibel might have been an eccentric interrupting his work. Maybe feigning just enough interest to be polite.


This is not even taking into consideration the flimsy nature of the later "interview" process.
 
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The logical thing is that his in-camera print he showed English (if this really happened) was a copy of an original. He had just produced that in-camera print and ran over to English (if that really happened).

I'm not convinced that the photo already existed when English saw it. But it's a possible way to account for the story in simple terms without a lot of added steps, that also allows for Kibel to have just created the photo in the simplest way.

If Kibel prepared the photo earlier (in any manner), that would mean he always intended for his story to be about a huge reflective bell that bounced around then shot off like a bullet - in which case, he wouldn't have told English he may have seen merely a bird.

My suggested likely chain of events:
  1. On April 7th Kibel sees Joy's Westall sighting (6th) report to VFSRS (he's a member). She drew a vaguely bell-like object. (Note: No Westall witness has ever described their UFO as a highly reflective bell, but Joy's sketch could be mistaken for a bell because of the messy lines on top that look like a button - I think she was just going over the dome carelessly.) Joy reported the UFO "turned edge and disappeared fast".
  2. At some point Kibel also hears about Westall from his brother-in-law who belongs to the same car club as Andrew Greenwood (science teacher at Westall, the only adult witness who's come forward).
  3. Inspired by (or to bolster) the Westall sighting, Kibel sets up a witness, throws a bell into the air and assumes the shot will be a blurry ambiguous UFO photo that looks vaguely like Joy's sketch.
  4. He tells English he saw something weird, maybe just a bird. But the photo turns out crisp and it's clear he could not have mistaken that for a bird. English is "very taken aback" upon seeing the picture (per Kibel to McDonald). Because he was expecting to see a bird-like thing.
  5. Kibel now has to create a story to match the photo - what he saw was a huge reflective bell with movements to match Joy's report - it turned on edge and zipped off fast. He tells his friend Norris, misreporting the date as 2nd to avoid accusations he copied Westall. Norris believes in Kibel's integrity (or goes along with the hoax).
  6. The photo's first mention on record is 12th when it's "leaked" to the Herald. (Note: This is 2 days before a local paper reported for the first time on Westall, so Joy's report was all Kibel had to go on.)
  7. A month later Norris asks English for a statement. English doesn't recall the date as he was at Kibel's house frequently during that time. Norris minds him (via Kibel) it was the 2nd when in fact it was the week after.
  8. A year later Kibel feigns ignorance of the statement to McDonald in order to avoid talking about his "may have been a bird" goof.
Kibel was highly interested in the Westall sighting. Around June 1966 (2 months later) he sent an audio letter to James McDonald about it, in which he paraphrased a conversation he'd had with science teacher Greenwood. In this, he mentions the May-Jun 1966 APRO Bulletin which had published his Balwyn Bell UFO as well as a report on Westall. Kibel lamented they printed his photo backwards.

Some relevant quotes from the audio letter [CD11 T08S105 in McDonald's collection, uploaded here as an unlisted YouTube video, h/t Keith Basterfield), my emphasis (I don't think it was a coincidence at all):

In the last APRO Bulletin [May-June 1966], which incidentally published my photograph - round the wrong way, as a matter of fact - there are several reports emanating from Australia. I’ve got the APRO Bulletin in front of me now...

It may be coincidence or one of these lucky things, but ...my brother-in-law is on the committee of the Australian Light Car Club. And the science master, who was one of the key witnesses in this sighting, is also in the Light Car Club as a member, and I managed to arrange with my brother-in-law to get this particular chap to come over to my house and discuss the sighting with me... Now this science master told me a great deal about this sighting. It was certainly a fascinating one...

...the UFO was first brought to his attention by a rather hysterical child who ran into his classroom and said, “There’s a flying saucer outside.” ... He went out into the yard - incidentally this occurred on the 7th [6th] of April, only a few days after I took that photograph.

...[Greenwood described it as] a bright silver object about the size of a car. And there seemed to be to him a bar just floating in the air, a sort of rod. I think this was probably a disc seen from the edge.
Content from External Source
Greenwood said the UFO was a bar, not a bell. He told the local paper on 21st it was a "thin beam of light". But if Kibel had already made his bell photo by then and given it to Norris, it was too late to fix.

Joy's Westall sighting report:
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Balwyn Bell "print" (backwards) in the May-Jun 1966 issue of APRO Bulletin:
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Excerpt from Dandenong Journal (local paper) reporting on the Apr 6 Westall sighting, pub. Apr 21, 1966, with Greenwood's interview - clearly not a bell:
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The paper also talked to student Marilyn who provided this sketch - neither bell-like or beam-of-light-like. (I believe she and Greenwood saw two different objects but that's off-topic.)
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The dark pixels around the top of the object looks interesting. As in not sure why it is like that. No real effect of motion either. not convinced with it.
Certainly not a hotel bell.
 
  1. Inspired by (or to bolster) the Westall sighting, Kibel sets up a witness, throws a bell into the air and assumes the shot will be a blurry ambiguous UFO photo that looks vaguely like Joy's sketch.
  2. He tells English he saw something weird, maybe just a bird. But the photo turns out crisp and it's clear he could not have mistaken that for a bird. English is "very taken aback" upon seeing the picture (per Kibel to McDonald). Because he was expecting to see a bird-like thing

Not disagreeing with you here, just tossing ideas around with y'all.

Your contention is that Kibel was trying to create a bad blurry photo that vaguely resembled Joy's sketch and that when the photo turned out too good, he had to scramble to explain it. I'll buy that, however I still think the photo is too good, it's to composed. The UFO is almost centered in the upper 3rd (good photos always use 3rds) with just enough of the house visible in the lower 3rd. It seems way too good for a one and done off the cuff try that was supposed to be not so good.

Kibel, knowing that English is at the house, runs out to the yard, chucks a bell in the air and tries to take a not so good photo of it, then not knowing what he has, invites English over for the reveal only to find it's better than he thought? Maybe.

As Z.W. Wolf has noted, it's very possible what we see is not what the original looked like, that it's been copied and cropped, though that would contradict English who seems to say what he saw in the camera is what's in the Herold.

Regardless, I keep coming back to why show English the reveal. If Kibel wanted a blurry photo, make sure that's what you have first, same if he wanted a good photo.

The challenge I see in the good photo scenario, is that it's close to the actual claim. That is, while English is there working, Kibel heads out to the yard, chucks a bell in the air without English seeing him, manages to get the near perfect shot given the camera he is using, then not knowing what he has, invites English to see it for the first time. It's not quite a UFO flying over, but there is a lot of room for error.

And again, if Kibel doesn't know or isn't sure what's on the photo, why invite English for the reveal at all? Though English's actual location seems to a bit like Schrodinger's cat (and as someone that has remodel more than a few kitchens this sound perfectly reasonable), Kibel has already primed him that he (Kibel) will be out in the yard "using up the film". In which case, it seems logical he would take the picture and then see what he has first. If it's good (or bad if that's what he was after), then run over to English and show him. The reveal seems a bit of a spectacle designed to show the photo was just taken mere moments ago.

And, if English is constantly going in and out of the house and/or his truck (been there, done that) there is a bigger risk of Kibel being caught chucking shit in the air and trying to photograph it.

Having managed the photo the day or so before after multiple tries, Kibel then sets up English to be his witness in a more controlled manner. The comment about it maybe being a bird is part of the set up. "Well David, I might have photographed something very interesting here or maybe just a bird..." opens camera to show photo, "But Crickey!! it's a UFO! Good thing you were here to witness this happening" Wink, wink.

Again, just a thought. And it probably assumes that either Kibel was really good at making it look like he was revealing the EDIT: just previously developed photo or English had little knowledge of how the camera really worked.
 
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Not disagreeing with you here, just tossing ideas around with y'all.

Your contention is that Kibel was trying to create a bad blurry photo that vaguely resembled Joy's sketch and that when the photo turned out too good, he had to scramble to explain it. I'll buy that, however I still think the photo is too good, it's to composed. The UFO is almost centered in the upper 3rd (good photos always use 3rds) with just enough of the house visible in the lower 3rd. It seems way too good for a one and done off the cuff try that was supposed to be not so good.

I agree that the photo is well composed and a very lucky shot if Kibel just chucked a bell in the air. The UFO stories that have persisted, though, are the ones with that element of luck. Travis Walton's set-up had a dozen ways it could have failed during the course of the night. Fortuitously, everything went well and now we have a classic tale that's "never been debunked." For every Kibel UFO photo, there are an unknown number of hoaxes that failed or were instantly seen through, and we will never hear about them.

If Kibel did some practice shots that were blurry, he would have expected this one to be, too.

I do agree is a possibility he did set up the shot to be perfect, which means his "bird" comment was the result of overacting, overselling the lie, and/or a poor understanding of human interactions. That could mean the bell is suspended. I don't know how else he could do it. And that makes it even more of a risk that the carpenter would come upon him setting the thing up.


Regardless, I keep coming back to why show English the reveal. If Kibel wanted a blurry photo, make sure that's what you have first, same if he wanted a good photo.

He wanted English to see the reveal because that's the one thing that would distinguish his UFO photo. As McDonald said, "You have a witness to the appearance of the photo. (…) Next best to witness the object." Kibel was a member of the VFSRS - he would have read and heard dozens of UFO reports. He knew the importance of an independent witness. (I wrote about the set-up to ensure an independent witness for the Salem lights 1952 UFO photo. Travis Walton of course did a similar thing - five witnesses who saw a plausible flying saucer and believed he vanished.)

This is all about the performance (or spectacle as you say) as much as the resulting photo and story. (JMO)

Having managed the photo the day or so before after multiple tries, Kibel then sets up English to be his witness in a more controlled manner. The comment about it maybe being a bird is part of the set up. "Well David, I might have photographed something very interesting here or maybe just a bird..." opens camera to show photo, "But Crickey!! it's a UFO! Good thing you were here to witness this happening" Wink, wink.

This makes sense only if Kibel was intending his bird comment to come across, in retrospect, as a joke. Hard to tell from English's statement. I think it's notable that the bird comment is not part of Kibel's testimony - he never suggests that he thought it was anything other than a huge metallic UFO.

Again, just a thought. And it probably assumes that either Kibel was really good at making it look like he was revealing the EDIT: just previously developed photo or English had little knowledge of how the camera really worked.

I was thinking he could've placed an existing photo in the camera, then whipped it out as he excitedly approached English - so what English watched was not the clear reveals we see in these YouTube videos. But English did say he stood "shoulder to shoulder until" the photo was removed. If he knew nothing about such cameras, perhaps he couldn't tell the photo had been placed in there. Kibel would have to have established his lack of knowledge beforehand.
 
Coda to the story: Kibel told James Fox (The Phenomenon 2020) that military officers came to question him.

Narrator: Air Force officers showed up at his doorstep asking for every detail of his experience.

Kibel: And they also had some photographs of similar things, and they also had a book which had pictures of things, and which they didn't leave with me but I had a look through. But they said it was an unidentified flying object. That was it, you know.

Fox: What was the implication?

Kibel: That it didn't come from anywhere on Earth.
Content from External Source
From his sighting report to VFSRS on April 19, 1966 - a full week after the Herald published his photo:

33. Were you interviewed by Air Force investigators?
No, not yet.
Federal, state, county or local officials.
No.
Content from External Source
He does not mention to McDonald a year later that any officials questioned him.

Coincidentally (or not), this exactly mirrors Andrew Greenwood's story about the Westall sighting that month: On the same 1967 trip to Australia, McDonald interviewed Greenwood who made no mention of being visited by officials. When he was tracked down by Shane Ryan for his documentary Westall '66, Greenwood would not appear on camera but Ryan paraphrased him - apparently based on the following interactions that Ryan reported to the Westall Yahoo Group in Sep 2005:

the two RAAF officers treated him fairly badly (in a verbal way). They threatened him under the Official Secrets Act if he talked about the case; they began insinuating flaws in his character and in his professional life as a teacher, and a willingness to divulge these to the public if he continued to talk about the Westall incident.
Content from External Source
Source: Yahoo Group, Sep 4, 2005 (via Keith Basterfield) (Greenwood was age 20 in 1966)

In 2017 Greenwood (by then about 71 years old) repeats the story on camera for Fox's The Phenomenon:

There was a knock on the door one night. Two older men, one in uniform, asked for my description of what I'd seen. I was then told that I hadn't seen anything... And that I had to keep quiet about it.
Content from External Source
Yet a year later, he would tell McDonald everything without any seeming fear of losing his job.

It's possible Kibel in 2017 appropriated this part of Greenwood's story, having seen it in the 2010 documentary (which mentioned Kibel's photo in an attempt to tie it into the Westall story).
 
The dark pixels around the top of the object looks interesting. As in not sure why it is like that. No real effect of motion either. not convinced with it.
Certainly not a hotel bell.
Why is it certainly not a hotel bell? Looks very like a desk bell or some other kind of mountable bell, right down to the decorative rim and the stalk. He may have removed or replaced the button as the top of the dome does seem distorted but that might just be the low-res quality. I would say it's about the size of a desk bell too, thus reflecting only one object (tree or roof).

1707543436169.png

A vintage bike bell with a "stalk" but this one without the rim. And a vintage telephone bell box, also without the rim.
1707543622599.png1707543667713.png

These bells were everywhere of course, with a variety of details to the basic bell shape. A mid-century desk bell and an even older one with an external hammer, mounted on a stalk:
1707543733290.png1707543779074.png
 
Kibel was a member of the Victorian Flying Saucer Research Society (VFSRS), "Victorian" referring to the Australian state of Victoria.

Now we have Kibel's photo of what he saw. Having seen that, would he, as ufologist, describe that as "something peculiar in the air" that "may have been a bird"?
SmartSelect_20240208-003510_Samsung Internet.jpg
 
I received a response from Keith Basterfield who spoke with Kibel in July 2016. Keith says he didn't ask for, and Kibel never offered to provide, a copy of the (then stolen) polaroid.

We know Kibel had a copy available because in April 2016 the TV morning show Studio 10 (Aus) did a segment for the 50th anniversary of the Westall sighting led by one of the hosts Ita Buttrose (who was a huge personality here - magazine editor and fluff-piece interviewer) and it included a few minutes on the Balwyn UFO.

Buttrose (voiceover): In an interesting twist, James says his house was broken into and the only thing stolen was that original polaroid.

[Buttrose to Kibel] But you’ve got a copy?

Kibel: Oh, I’ve got a copy.
Content from External Source
Source: Studio 10 Facebook post of the segment [starts 18:30]
Unlisted YT upload of the segment
_____________________________________

At 20:20 Kibel says, re. English the carpenter: "he looks up, he saw a flash of light but he didn’t see it [UFO]". This is not in English's statement.
_____________________________________

At 21:39 Buttrose says she got a copy of the report on the polaroid written by CSIRO* scientist named by Kibel as Dr Berson (by then, deceased). The report shown onscreen is the same as the unattributed one that appeared in the APRO Bulletin Dec 1966 (but retyped).

*Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation

Berson worked in the Division of Meteorological Physics. He wasn't quite impartial - he had an interest in UFOs since 1956 according to the research done by Bill Chalker who wrote about him on his blog. (Bio details match this document from the CSIRO about the German contribution to Australian meteorology.) Berson investigated a sighting in 1963 and had his own sighting that year. He was interviewed by James McDonald during his Aus visit in 1967. He investigated the Westall sighting in 1966.

Chalker in 2009 writes that "VFSRS issued a report" then quotes the same phrase bolded below from the CSIRO report. It makes sense VFSRS asked Berson given his interest in the subject (along with at least two of his CSIRO colleagues). I haven't found any indication Berson was a polaroid expert, but his opinion that Kibel's polaroid showed "no sign of a multiple exposure, montage or any other tampering" was used in Buttrose's fluff piece to authenticate it.

Report as it appeared in APRO Bulletin Dec 1966:
1707572814433.png

_____________________________________

In the same 2009 blog post, Chalker (who had known Kibel since 1988) writes that it wasn't just a couple of Air Force officers who came to his door:

...all hell broke loose when the photo was released to the media without his permission. He claims he came under intense scrutiny by the military and intelligence agents. He alleged that helicopters surveyed the area repeatedly and that he was interrogated by military, intelligence and CSIRO officials on numerous occasions. [Kibel] claims he was taken to a clandestine meeting attended by military, intelligence and CSIRO representatives and at least two individuals noted for their high public profile on the UFO phenomenon as advocates and witnesses. It was at this meeting he claims to have been told about an extraordinary film event at Dry Creek Tracking Station and Woomera during 1963.
Content from External Source
No reason is given why Kibel, a civilian with business ties to China, was made privy to all this.

In 2023 (after Kibel's death) Chalker wrote more about Kibel's secret knowledge:

[Kibel] told me that he had been shown the title page and introduction of a document purporting to describe an Australian operation called either Operation or Project APOTHEOSIS. Apotheosis means either exaltation to the rank of a god... The document allegedly referred to "modules" and "aliens" being ready for transfer from an Australian facility. Kibel indicated to me he believed the facility in question was Salisbury... He claims to have sighted the document in Britain, via a Ministry of Defence contact. The "briefing report" was allegedly dated around 1986 or 1987... [He] suggested that it might prove hazardous to pursue the APOTHEOSIS connection.
Content from External Source
Somehow Kibel survived the acquisition and dissemination of this top secret information and lived to a ripe old age.

Salisbury probably refers to the South Australian facility of DSTG (then DSTO, Defence Science and Technology Organization - the main DoD research group comprised of civilian scientists). [Some years later I was working at its Melbourne facility. FTR never saw aliens.:cool:]
 
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I agree that the photo is well composed and a very lucky shot if Kibel just chucked a bell in the air. The UFO stories that have persisted, though, are the ones with that element of luck. Travis Walton's set-up had a dozen ways it could have failed during the course of the night. Fortuitously, everything went well and now we have a classic tale that's "never been debunked." For every Kibel UFO photo, there are an unknown number of hoaxes that failed or were instantly seen through, and we will never hear about them.
This is worth stressing. If some number of people are trying to perpetrate UFO hoaxes (and some number are) then some of those will be so obviously fake that we'll never hear of them (the string is visible and the like), some will survive initial inspection but fall to a more subtle "tell" (Captain Disillusion recognizes the stock elements from the video effect package, Mick notices the repeating pattern in the road pavement, etc.)*

If I went out today to shoot a fake UFO picture by, say, tossing a pram hubcap in the air, the odds are that I will get an unsatisfactory result. If I try again, and learn as I go, I improve my chances. But no matter how poor my individual chances, if enough other folks are also trying enough other things, then eventually some of us will succeed. As Terry Pratchett pointed out to comic effect, "million-to-one chances crop up nine times out of ten!" which is not literally correct but captures the spirit of the thing. No matter how bad my chances are to win the lottery when I buy one ticket, SOMEBODY wins it regularly.

The set of UFO hoaxes that make it to Metabunk for scrutiny is pre-selected for having gotten any required lucky breaks to make it this far, we never see the countless others that fall at the first hurdle and never become well known through never fooling anybody. Thus, "It is really unlikely he would have gotten such a perfect shot!" is not really a valid argument -- we are only seeing the ones that got the "perfect shot," the multitude that did not fall away before they get this far.

* Captain D (and others) recognized palm tree elements in the "Haiti UFO" video.
Source: https://youtu.be/lLRbTtd8IKM?t=126
(An older vid, resolution is poor)


Mick recognizes repeating pattern in road.
Source: https://youtu.be/bfrjyklzF14?t=20
Edited to remove MEDIA tags, as the vids are not really needed in THIS thread, but are linked for the curious...
 
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In the same 2009 blog post, Chalker (who had known Kibel since 1988) writes that it wasn't just a couple of Air Force officers who came to his door:

...all hell broke loose when the photo was released to the media without his permission. He claims he came under intense scrutiny by the military and intelligence agents. He alleged that helicopters surveyed the area repeatedly and that he was interrogated by military, intelligence and CSIRO officials on numerous occasions. [Kibel] claims he was taken to a clandestine meeting attended by military, intelligence and CSIRO representatives and at least two individuals noted for their high public profile on the UFO phenomenon as advocates and witnesses. It was at this meeting he claims to have been told about an extraordinary film event at Dry Creek Tracking Station and Woomera during 1963. Content from External Source No reason is given why Kibel, a civilian with business ties to China, was made privy to all this.

In 2023 (after Kibel's death) Chalker wrote more about Kibel's secret knowledge:

[Kibel] told me that he had been shown the title page and introduction of a document purporting to describe an Australian operation called either Operation or Project APOTHEOSIS. Apotheosis means either exaltation to the rank of a god... The document allegedly referred to "modules" and "aliens" being ready for transfer from an Australian facility. Kibel indicated to me he believed the facility in question was Salisbury... He claims to have sighted the document in Britain, via a Ministry of Defence contact. The "briefing report" was allegedly dated around 1986 or 1987... [He] suggested that it might prove hazardous to pursue the APOTHEOSIS connection.

So, we're way beyond just a photo if any of Chalker's claims about what Kibel told him are remotely true. I always like that so many of these UFO guys get harassed and threatened by the MiBs, or variations thereof, and yet in the process of that get let in on all kinds of top-secret UFO stuff.

These government types remind me of Haggred from the Harry Potter movies: "Now see here Mr. Kibel, you should not have photographed that UFO over your house! It might convince people that we actually have a captured UFO were sending to the Yanks. I shouldn't have told you that. Just to show how much trouble you're in, look over these secret files."

I've only run across Chalker a bit, mostly in this thread about alien sex fantasies and DNA. He seemed a bit credulus, but I guess he's kind of a UFO big deal Down Under? https://www.metabunk.org/threads/alien-dna-after-sexual-encounter.12070/
 
I agree that the photo is well composed and a very lucky shot if Kibel just chucked a bell in the air.
If it is what it looks like, a desk-top bell, then it's small enough to hide in a coat pocket before talking to the carpenter. But it's a relatively heavy object, as well as being one that's aerodynamically unlikely to have been in that position if thrown (as well as the problem of taking the photo while it was in the air, which I'm reasonably sure would give a blurred image). I think it's more probable that it was either hung from a fine thread from something or other, or completely faked by photographic imagery. Either one would explain the need for all the rigamarole about "that original was stolen, but here's a copy".
 
But it's a relatively heavy object, as well as being one that's aerodynamically unlikely to have been in that position if thrown
I don't know, toss it up underhanded with a little backspin, it would be pretty stable in that position, spinning on the axis that is horizontal in the pic.
 
If he threw or had someone throw up a bell , or had a bell hung from a tree in the yard near the fence where it looked like the shot was taken from. Then the shot will not be a composite etc, it would be - real. Just not of a real alien craft
 
I don't know, toss it up underhanded with a little backspin, it would be pretty stable in that position, spinning on the axis that is horizontal in the pic.
Perhaps. But could he do it himself and still manipulate this cumbersome camera?
IMG_2343.jpeg
 
he said so?
I was taking him at his word as far as possible, because if he claimed he had a copy we end up with the question of why he didn't make it available to Basterfield and Dean in 2016. (Buttrose mentions in her April interview with Kibel that a "cold case" investigation is currently underway - she is most likely referring to B&D's investigation, although Basterfield didn't get to speak with Kibel until July.)
 
Perhaps. But could he do it himself and still manipulate this cumbersome camera?

He says he hit himself in the nose when he raised the camera to take the shot.

McDonald: Is there anything else you can think of, at the moment that needs to be remarked?

Kibel: Not really, apart from the fact I felt I was very lucky. I gave myself a very sore nose hitting it with the camera... I nearly knocked myself out.
Content from External Source
 
I've uploaded the Studio 10 report here as an unlisted video. Studio 10 was a morning show with mostly women hosts similar to The View. Ita appears from 1:08. Kibel interview starts 18:00.

Bonus link: To illustrate what an absolute icon of integrity Ita Buttrose was to women in the 70s-90s, which adds some context to her being the main presenter of this UFO report (for better or worse), this is a 1980 hit song about her from Cold Chisel (one of Australia's all-time most popular pub-rock bands).

Some lyrics from ITA:
Get a dose of integrity
I believe, I believe, in what she says
To every housewife through the land
There is no-one else they can depend upon
How could I not believe what Ita tells me to?

Full lyrics
 
Are you guys confident about the object's approximate size / distance from the camera? -My practical knowledge of photography is limited to say the least.

It certainly resembles a bell, or perhaps a pram wheel hub.
To me, it also looks a bit like an insulation pin dome cover, like these ones

dome-cap.jpg
Capture.JPG

(Product photo from "Made in China" website, link here. I carelessly lost the link for the US-spec. illustration above it).

A little bit of work on one of these, and some fine-gauge fishing line...
It'd still need a bit of rapid dexterity on the part of a hypothetical hoaxer, but maybe dangling a similarly small object not very far in front of the camera, or perhaps pre-hanging the (reasonably inconspicuous) object, taking the photo and then quickly pocketing the evidence, would allow a better chance of a stable object for a focussed picture.
It would avoid the handling problems involved in throwing a larger object and then bringing the camera to bear.

(Not sure if this is at all plausible; I realise the background is reasonably in focus. But I've not progressed far from "box go click, make picture".)
 
But could he do it himself and still manipulate this cumbersome camera?
Could he count on doing it? No. I'd guess not. Is it possible? I'd guess so, with practice "Hang it by a string" would also work, of course -- me, I'd hang it with the knob up so it looked like the usual flying saucer tooling along, though. I'm not ready to rule either tossing or a string out, or in, at this point. Or stick an earlier pic of the bell/hubcap on a pane of glass and shoot through that. The problem is there are so many ways to fake this...
 
Are you guys confident about the object's approximate size / distance from the camera? -My practical knowledge of photography is limited to say the least.

It certainly resembles a bell, or perhaps a pram wheel hub.
To me, it also looks a bit like an insulation pin dome cover, like these ones

dome-cap.jpg

Are these highly reflective, or merely polished? I'm thinking something that small wouldn't produce the quality of reflection in the photo.
 
With the string method, a reasonably competent photographer would be assured of taking a focused picture. Thus, the UFO-cognisant photographer might well describe his sighting as "something peculiar" but not as "may have been a bird". To me, that latter description points me toward the notion that the photographer expected motion blur, but by a lucky coincidence managed to catch the object near the apex of the throw.

Likewise, the object need not be stable; it could have been tumbling, with the photographer hoping for the dome to point upward, for a more traditional UFO shape.
 
Are these highly reflective, or merely polished?

I'm pretty sure the one in the picture with dimensions in inches is just computer artwork.
These items are often brushed metal so they're kind of reflective of bright light. There are many variations.
Capture4.JPGCapture5.JPGCapture6.JPG

With hindsight, there are other similarly-shaped small items that are widely available in DIY / craft stores (and would've been in 1960s Australia) such as bolt head covers, alum bolt covers, back fastenings for some pin badges, maybe some "popper" clothes fastenings, etc. which come in a variety of finishes (including polished, chrome) and are more commonly used than insulation pin covers.

The caps illustrated on the Chinese website appear to be real items photographed under bright light (below, with the Kibel widget for comparison):
Capture.JPG Capture2.JPG

...I'm sort of speculating that maybe the object is something like this with something punched through it to produce the finished shape and to allow attachment points for fine-gauge line at each end (or to allow line to be threaded through the object).
I'd hang it with the knob up so it looked like the usual flying saucer tooling along, though.

That's a good point I think. It's also simpler to do (just one connection point at the "top" of the convexity).
Maybe the widget was threaded onto a horizontal line for stability? Or maybe that's an unnecessary complication by me.
(In passing, it's interesting that we all know what a "real" flying saucer should look like!)

A small item (smaller than a bell) might be easier to suspend on fine thread and pocket / throw into bushes afterwards, and would be less conspicuous if set up beforehand.
Not at all sure if this is more likely than a thrown / suspended bell or other larger object though.

Just throwing it out there (as Mr Kibel might have said) :)
 
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"Hang it by a string" would also work, of course -- me, I'd hang it with the knob up so it looked like the usual flying saucer tooling along, though.
That's a good point I think. It's also simpler to do (just one connection point at the "top" of the convexity).
Maybe the widget was threaded onto a horizontal line for stability? Or maybe that's an unnecessary complication by me.

If my theory that he photographed this after reading student witness Joy's Westall sighting report to VFSRS, then this could be the reason he photographed it vertically. She wrote that it "turned edge and disappeared fast." Kibel gave very detailed testimony to McDonald about his UFO's movements (I've reordered & numbered his statements somewhat to present the scene chronologically):

1. saw this object descending [stalk down], apparently almost vertically in a sort of bouncing motion rather like a yo-yo... It was dropping down and then returning through about quarter of the distance it had dropped... Apparently not [advancing at the same time]. It looked about the same size... I had the impression its actual distance from me was about 300 feet...
2. It just stopped as if a switch had been turned off. It sort of flipped up on its edge. It was just dead still there for... half a second.
3. I brought the camera up... and I took the photograph...
4. Then it turned with the stalk towards me...
5. it appeared to me to be turning slowly [rotating about the stalk] because of sort of flares of light were going across the bottom of it...
6. Then it seemed to lose a small amount of altitude, it seemed to drop, 15 or 20 feet.
7. When it reached the bottom of this drop, it jerked violently upwards 30 or 40 feet...
8. and at the same time accelerated to what I can only describe as an unbelievable speed as it disappeared just almost instantaneously out f sight behind the trees.
Content from External Source


I made this graphic a while back to illustrate his report (matches the numbered list above):
1707695556618.png
[Cannot un-italicize the italicized text.]
 
If you are going to throw this up, edge first with a bit of spin is the easiest way to do it IMO
Spin makes it stable, and throwing it edge first upwards is the easiest way to do it IMO.
Otherwise you are sort of frisbeeing it to try and get it horizontal .

Just my opinion anyway
 
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Ok, so I went out into the backyard and threw up a yoyo to get it in frame with the chimney.

First ~ 2-3 goes I threw it straight up, ie took a few goes to practice throwing it up and little away from me.

Then I noticed in ~ 2-3 shots my old digital camera took like a half second to take a pic from when I clicked the button. This made things very challenging. But on my ~ 6-7th throw , aiming at the chimney and snapping a shot without the yoyo in frame on the judgement it would drop in frame by the time the camera decided to snap it . I was able to get it. I think the digital camera had the chimney in focus, and the yoyo was a little wobbly on that throw.
I stopped after this very short time, as it's a stinker hot day today.

So is it possible? Given the extraordinary challenge I had and was still able to do it . I'd say yes
Bear in mind also, I was trying to reproduce a framed shot with a chimney in it, as opposed to taking a shot and getting whatever just happened to be in the background
 
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Ok, so I went out into the backyard and threw up a yoyo to get it in frame with the chimney.

First ~ 2-3 goes I threw it straight up, ie took a few goes to practice throwing it up and little away from me.

Then I noticed in ~ 2-3 shots my old digital camera took like a half second to take a pic from when I clicked the button. This made things very challenging. But on my ~ 6-7th throw , aiming at the chimney and snapping a shot without the yoyo in frame on the judgement it would drop in frame by the time the camera decided to snap it . I was able to get it. I think the digital camera had the chimney in focus, and the yoyo was a little wobbly on that throw.
I stopped after this very short time, as it's a stinker hot day today.

So is it possible? Given the extraordinary challenge I had and was still able to do it . I'd say yes
Bear in mind also, I was trying to reproduce a framed shot with a chimney in it, as opposed to taking a shot and getting whatever just happened to be in the background
Post your results?

I just bought this on Amazon... arriving tomorrow. I have a crappy old iPhone and also an old 35mm digital camera at my disposal.

1707718929542.png
 
Post your results?

I just bought this on Amazon... arriving tomorrow. I have a crappy old iPhone and also an old 35mm digital camera at my disposal.

1707718929542.png

If you try it. I think the thing to note and try and get right, is the focus.

I think the Polaroid 800 had settings in feet you could set. Ranging from something like 6, 8 10 feet etc then a setting for infinity.


Whereas on my camera, I don't know how to set a manual focus. So I'm guessing it probably auto focused on the chimney, dont know

I think I had a wobble on the yoyo in this throw

1707720134054.png
 
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Then I noticed in ~ 2-3 shots my old digital camera took like a half second to take a pic from when I clicked the button.
Turn off autofocus and auto metering: set the f-number and shutter speed manually. Every bit of processing the camera has to do before taking the photo causes some delay.
 
I think I had a wobble on the yoyo in this throw

No no, that's an excellent and genuine shot! James Fox told Joe Rogan that according to NASA!!!, not him mind you but NASA, the lack of sharp focus in UFO photos is evidence they're real. Something to do with propulsion something something.

Let me tell you, if you ever see a photograph of a UFO - and I've talked to NASA analysts about this - and it has a clearly defined edge, it's probably a fake. They somehow, they have something to do with it's blurred around the edges. They can't get a crisp photograph. They think it has something to do with the propulsion, but again that's not me saying this.
Content from External Source
James Fox on Joe Rogan Experience #1976, April 2023 [24:00]
1707785476532.png
 
No no, that's an excellent and genuine shot! James Fox told Joe Rogan that according to NASA!!!, not him mind you but NASA, the lack of sharp focus in UFO photos is evidence they're real. Something to do with propulsion something something.
How conVEENient! :)
 
Let me tell you, if you ever see a photograph of a UFO - and I've talked to NASA analysts about this - and it has a clearly defined edge, it's probably a fake. They somehow, they have something to do with it's blurred around the edges. They can't get a crisp photograph. They think it has something to do with the propulsion, but again that's not me saying this.

I love these guys: "Well you know I talked to NASA!" Or more accurately he talked to a NASA "analyst", as in someone who may have done a bit of work for NASA at some point in their career. Who? When? Where? On the record? Actually is employed by NASA? I'd bet you the Aussie equivalent of a donut, if he spoke to anyone that said something like this it was Eric Davis.

Corbel pulled a similar stunt on Rogan's show trying to defend the Bob Lazar story. He claimed he spoke to the reporter, though too late for his documentary, that wrote the original "Lazar and his crazy jet car" newspaper article in which it is claimed Lazar was a physicist at Los Alamos. Corbel's contention was that this guy would have fact checked that information (he likely would not have as it was a puff piece) and no one contradicted the claim at the time, so all the other holes in Lazar's story are therefore patched up.
 
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