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A Failed Week.....

So this week has been pretty unsuccessful, to say the least. It began with an attempt to photograph the sun in preparation, or rather as a practice run, for the Transit of Venus. Well, let me regress first by saying how I'd previously used the variable PSU for my 6v motor drives on my 12v sound system. I forgot to reset the PSU to 6v and used it once again on my motor drives. Looking through the eyepiece, I noticed no movement, or rather, that the sun apppeared to be moving through the field of

badgerchap

badgerchap

Getting closer alll the time....

So I finally think I have something that I can call an Astroimage. It's not the best, granted, but I'm happy with it from a beginners point of view! It's M13 again, of course - I wanted to at least get something right-ish before moving onto somethng new. 12 subs of 30 seconds at ISO 800, processed in Registax with one 30s dark. Here's the (cropped) result! It's a little dim and lacking in vibrance, but I'm fairly pleased. I'm sure I can improve it with time, but for a beginner, it

badgerchap

badgerchap

I see it! It's a....blob!

Well - I've had a modicum of success tonight! Whilst I'm still somewhat short of a viable Astropic, I'm certainly getting closer. Tried out my Bhatinov mask first. It's now in the bin - a complete waste of time. Whilst I can see how it might be beneficial on a larger scope, with the tiny aperture of my Zenithstar, there was just nothing visible with the mask in place and the camera viewfinder leeching all the light away. So instead I tried out the star trail focussing method - and I li

badgerchap

badgerchap

Focussing, focussing....

So after an encouraging first night, things got a little frustrating with my second attempt. I decided that M13 would be a good target. It's bright and easy to find, and it's well in the range of my equipment. However, focussing became a real problem. It's my own fault really - I ignored people's warnings of 'you can't focus well through the camera's viewfinder', thinking I knew better. Of course, all I got was blobs! The difficulty stems from the fact that even quite unfocussed images

badgerchap

badgerchap

First night - the results.

Well, as expected, didn't get a fat lot to show people out of last night. Mainly experimented with exposure times, practiced polar alignment etc. What is clear is that stacking images is going to be essential, because at the moment, it's hard to see anything but stars in the pictures I have taken. In one picture though, with a little processing, you can just about see a little more.... Near the centre, and again halfway across the right of the image, there are two faint littl

badgerchap

badgerchap

First night

Right, so for my first night out, I'm not expecting a fat lot. In fact, I'm not sure if I'm even going to take any exposures. First come the joys of polar alignment, focus practice and seeing if there's any merit to my cobbled together guide scope! I may inadvertently take a photo of one of my cats - they tend to climb up my leg when I'm out there in the dark, and I wouldn;t put it past one of them to ascend my tripod! The sky is clear, night is on the way, so out I go!!

badgerchap

badgerchap

Badgerintro!

Hi, I'm Badgerchap. I've been doing visual Amateur Astronomy for some time now, but of late, I've been getting a little bored of faint fuzzies and rapidly moving planets that zip straight out of the field of view. Whilst there really is something truly awe inspiring about having photons arrive in your eyes that have taken millions of years to get there, I fancy a bit of colour - and some evidence to prove what I've been doing, outside and alone in the dark all these long nights! So I've b

badgerchap

badgerchap

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