Charlie A. Piper

June 27, 1914 - Sept 29, 2001

3-D Camera Repair Doctor

Charles Piper was a part time optical engineer and former amateur telescope maker when he bought his first Stereo Realist.

 

Until joining the Stereo Club of Southern California (SCSC) in 1966, he made stereograms purely for his own amusement. In 1969 and 1970 he began writing a monograph on stereo, which he felt was needed to help the new members of the club get started on the right foot. A few excerpts of this material were printed in the 3-D NEWS monthly newsletter of the Stereo Club in 1970 - 1974, and in 1975 one page selections became a regular feature. When stereographers outside the club saw 3-D NEWS asked for reprints of THE TECHNICAL PAGE back to Installment #1, it was decided to make the back issues available at cost to all interested stereo- graphers. Beginning in 1979 the reprints were put together with a Table of Contents, Index and Glossary under the title The Technical Page. 

Charles Piper was President of SCSC from 1975 - 1977. He instilled the importance of accurate slide mounting into all those fortunate to have met him. 
 
Charles Piper repaired hundreds of stereo cameras for people all over the world. He was a graduate of M.I.T. and a Registered Professional Engineer. He's the maker of these slides.

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Charlie Piper, on left, at Photographic Society of America convention, with Charles Osborn far right, with others fiddling with the TDC stereo projector by anon
 Male group of technicians evaluating the 3-D projector at the Photographic Society of America convention, Charles Osborn far right, with others fiddling with the TDC projector by Charlie Piper
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1981 Charlie Piper, on left, at Photographic Society of America convention in Salt Lake City, UT
at a Luncheon and Learning by Susan Pinsky
1990 Daphne and Bill Shepard, Tony Alderson , Charlie Piper with his friend, Cynthia Brown, at the Stereo Club of So Calif holiday banquet at Shanghai Winter Garden restaurant by David Starkman 
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Charles A Piper was born June 27th, 1914 in Providence, Rhode Island, passed away September 29, 2001 in Torrance, CA. He attended Medford, Mass. public schools, Boston Latin School, Phillips Exeter Academy, and, in 1936, graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He spent the bulk of his career in aviation at Bendix Aviation Corp. and TRW Inc., Redondo Beach, from which he retired in 1981. 

He enjoyed painting and sketching, was a member of the Palos Verdes Gem and Mineral Society, and was an expert in the repair of stereo cameras, earning himself the nickname "3-D Doctor". 

He is survived by nieces and nephews David S. Quinlan of San Pedro, Kathleen T. Quinlan of Stoughton, MA, Janice C. Quinlan of Santa Fe, Christine A. Plungas (Trent) of Torrance (PO Box 807 Hermosa Beach, CA 90254), William C. Piper of Orangevale, and James S. Piper of Port Angeles, WA, and by his friend Cynthia Brown of Oceanside. 

He was preceded in death by his wife, Jean Pouliot, sister, Calista Quinlan and brother, James Piper. 

Obituary:

1971 Max and Valerie Bruensteiner, Russ (Pres SCSC 1965-66) and Frieda Terrill Dec
Stereo Club of So Calif banquet by Charlie Piper
Judy Archer & Clare Merfield ISU 1987 In

Charlie Piper was SCSC President when David and I joined the club. Apparently there had been a major conflict when he won the election (normally there's only one person running, but that year there had been two). We weren't there at that exact time, but we heard that half the club quit when Charlie won. Obviously the not-so-flexible members quit. So, it was just the other people who were left, and we were thrilled.

We quickly were asked to be on the board, and I recall going to Charlie's for board meetings, where they were run according to Robert's Rules of Order, with the book on the table to refer to. What a long way we've come. Times have certainly changed.

Max & Valerie Bruensteiner, Russ (1965-6

Thoughts about Charlie from Susan Pinsky​

1987 Judy Archer and Clare Merfield International Stereoscopic Union congress in Interlaken Switzerland by Charlie Piper
Elmer Weidknecht 1967-68 & Maude Osborn
1972 Elmer Weidknecht, APSA SCSC Pres. in 1967-68 and Maude Osborn at Photographic Society of America convention by Charlie Piper
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1972 Gerald Church, Elmer Weidknecht (Pres of SCSC 1967-68) and Helen Church in April
at Stereo Club of So. Calif banquet by Charles Piper
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1971 George (Pres of SCSC 1959-60) and Veryle Pond Dec Stereo Club of So Calif. banquet
by Charlie Piper

We went to a lot of Photographic Society of America and National Stereoscopic Assn. annual conventions with him. It was always nice to be there with another member of SCSC. We always talked together a lot. He was very opinionated and cranky, but I always stood up to him, and we came to have a mutual respect. David and I both laugh, and love to recall the time he stated, at a gathering at the PSA convention, that the BEST ice cream flavor was coffee. This was in front of about 6-8 3-D photographers, as we all sat and ate different flavors of ice cream.We all jumped him and disputed his claim. It was very funny. Everything he did involved a design on a tablecloth or napkin, even this silly claim. He was a tough cookie, but with only a thin shell.        

In 1987 he bought a new car. He wanted to buy an American brand, but he couldn't find anything made well enough to meet his standards, so he ended up buying a Mercedes.

 

He was quite particular, kept the car in the garage all the time, wouldn't let it go through an automatic car wash, as it would scrape the paint, and kept EVERY receipt for any work done on the car.

 

After he died we ended up buying that car from his niece. We paid $2000 and drove it for well over a decade, until it was falling apart from at every level. Charlie's hat was on the back ledge of the Mercedes the entire time we drove it. He was always in our hearts and our thoughts.

1971 Harold Candlish, Floyd Garton ( Pres SCSC 1972-74), Maudie and Stergis M. Stergis (1968-69) Dec Stereo Club of So Calif banquet by Charles Piper
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1983 Charlie Piper and Susan Pinsky in Sept at Photographic Society of American convention in
San Francisco, CA by David Starkman
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1971 Gladys Clark, Gladys and Bryan Riggs (Pres SCSC 1974-75) Stereo Club of So Calif banquet
by Charles Piper

Charlie was one of the few other people at the Stereo Club who documented meetings, events and banquets.

 

In 1979, when I started emphasizing that people should make provisions for their 3-D slides, cameras, gear and equipment in their wills or in writing for their families, I wrote articles that were published in many 3-D periodicals.

 

I listed in the article people and places that would appreciate receiving your 3-D collection, with a bit of a joke at the end about leaving it to me, if you had no one else.  

 

Years later, when I received a letter from an attorney, saying I was named in Charlie's will, I never would have imagined that he would take that line seriously. But, we both enjoyed "people" pictures, and his club slides came to my home, where they would be put to good use in many ways.

 

He had been involved in the Stereo Club of So Calif long enough to have pictures of, and by, almost every SCSC President from the beginning of the club in 1955. I was able to assemble a 3-D show of all the Presidents images, and work, because of those Piper images, plus my own, and a few other stereographers. I'm still eternally grateful.

 

Please let this be a reminder to YOU to leave something in writing for your family, or friends, so that your own collection, digital or analog, doesn't get tossed into the trash.

 

Please, leave a list of a couple of possibilities: family, specific friends, a local library or museum, or last resort a thrift shop. Put it in your will, or just a letter in a file that will be found when you are gone. These images are treasures, and many future generations will appreciate them.    

1979 PSA Hartford CT Charlie Piper at Lu
1979 PSA Hartford CT Charlie Piper at Luncheon and Learning with Howard Sweezey by Susan Pinsky
1971 Marge Adams and Stereo Club of So Calif. Pres. Lester Lauck 1971-72 Dec at
Stereo Club of So Calif. banquet by Charlie Piper
 Setting up the screen by Charlie Piper 
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1983 Charlie Piper in Sept at Photographic Society of American convention San Francisco, CA
by Susan Pinsky
SAFP Coral Phantasy by Charles Piper SCS
Coral Phantasy by Charles Piper
Charles Osborn (1966-67) Dec 1971 by Cha
1971 Charles Osborn (1966-67) Stereo Club of So Calif  Dec banquet by Charles Piper
1992 Charlie Piper and Ray Zone Stereo C
1992 Charlie Piper and Ray Zone Stereo Club of So Calif Holiday Banquet by David Kuntz
Marge Adams, Lester Lauck 1971-72 & Erma
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1971 Marge Adams and Stereo Club of So Calif. Pres. Lester Lauck 1971-72 Dec at
Stereo Club of So Calif. banquet by Charlie Piper
Veryl & George Pond (1959-60), Edna & Jo
1972 Veryl and George Pond (Pres SCSC 1959-60), Edna and Joe Abramson Apr Stereo Club of So Calif banquet by Charlie Piper
Maude Osborn & Elmer Weidknecht (1967-68
1971 Maude Osborn and Elmer Weidknecht (Pres SCSC 1967-68) Dec Stereo Club of So Calif banquet 
by Charles Piper
Martin Folb, Stergis M. Stergis (1968-69
1978 Martin Folb, Stergis M. Stergis (1968-69),  Maudie Stergis, and Charlie Piper in back July Stereo Club of So Calif Awards Banquet by David Starkman
Charlie Piper (1975-77), Leroy Barco & D
1983 Charlie Piper, past SCSC Pres from 1975-77, Leroy Barco and David Starkman, past SCSC Pres 1981-82 in March at Bill Shepard's by Susan Pinsky
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1989 Bill Duggan, Charlie Piper, Cynthia Morton, Bob Bloomberg and David Starkman on train to East Berlin during International Stereoscopic Union Sept by Susan Pinsky
1979 Stereo Club of So CA coffee and cal
1979 Stereo Club of So CA coffee and calories after meeting. Left to Rt: Jerry Walter, Rich Bruland, Dori Atlantis, H. Lee Pratt, David Kuntz, Rick Finney, Earl Colgan, Charlie Piper
and Marshall Stewart by David Starkman
132 Max by Charles A Piper, Palos Verdes
Max by Charles A Piper, Palos Verdes, CA
1979 PSA Hartford CT Charlie Piper holdi
1979 PSA Hartford CT Charlie Piper holding his camera by Susan Pinsky
134 Spheroid Shadows by Charles A Piper,
Spheroid Shadows by Charles A Piper, Palos Verdes, CA
133 Refinery by Charles A Piper, Palos V
 Refinery by Charles A Piper, Palos Verdes, CA
Jean & Charlie Piper & Mr & Mrs Rosselot
1957 Jean and Charlie Piper and Mr & Mrs Rosselot and friend in newspaper dresses 11 May  
Jean Piper & Mrs Rosselot in newspaper d
1957 Jean Piper and Mrs Rosselot in newspaper dresses 11 May by Charlie Piper
Jean Piper, Mrs Rosselot & others in new
1957 Jean Piper, Mrs Rosselot and others in newspaper dresses 11 May by Charlie Piper
Jean Piper shot Adams, Richards, Harriso
1957 Jean Piper shot Adams, Richards, Harrison, Hall, Gossner, Graham and Rosselot in paper dresses
11 May by Charlie Piper
Jean Piper shot Adams, Richards, Harriso
1957 Jean Piper shot Adams, Richards, Harrison, Hall, Gossner, Graham & Rosselot 11 May 
Queen Elizabeth stomping in the garbage.
Queen Elizabeth stomping in the garbage by Charlie Piper
1971 Harold Candlish, Floyd Garton ( Pres SCSC 1972-74), Maudie and Stergis M. Stergis (1968-69) Dec Stereo Club of So Calif banquet by Charles Piper
1971 Conrad Hodnik, Roberta Stilley and
1971 Conrad Hodnik, Roberta Stilley and Sylvia Sikes (1961-63) Dec Stereo Club of So Calif
holiday banquet by Charlie Piper
1981 Charlie Piper (1975-77), Marilyn Felling (1982-83) & Rick Finney (1980-81)  at July Stereo Club of So Calif Awards banquet by Susan Pinsky
Sylvia Sikes (1961-63), Hugh Stilley & D
1971 Sylvia Sikes (1961-63), Hugh Stilley & Dorothy Hodnik at Stereo Club of So Calif Holiday Banquet Dec by Charles Piper
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1981 David Starkman and Charlie Piper holding the new Nimslo camera Salt Lake City,  Utah Photographic Society of America convention by Susan Pinsky
Oliver Dean, Joe Abramson & Elmer Weidkn
1972 Oliver Dean, Joe Abramson and Elmer Weidknecht (1967-68) by Charlie Piper
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1981 Charlie Piper checking out the new Nimslo camera Salt Lake City,  Utah Photographic Society of America convention by Susan Pinsky
Spain Alhambra Fountain by Charlie Piper
Spain Alhambra Fountain by Charlie Piper
1998 Charlie Piper and Alan Williams nex
1998 Charlie Piper and Alan Williams next to him at Stereo Club Viewer Night Oct by Susan Pinsky
Stereo Realist Light Leak Fix by Tony Al

How to fix the

light leak in

your Stereo Realist camera

1984 Charlie Piper at PSA Chicago IL con
Please Note - all photos will enlarge bo
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