Jump to content


Activity Blog

  • entries
  • comments
  • views

12/08/2021 Eyeballed Jupiter, missed Saturn, picked on Polaris again. Star hopped to Neptune (I think).  Saw a meteor...




I saw the CO was showing green for a few hours around 2300 - so took the dob and the st80 on the Azgti outside around then. I first tried the lightweight travel tripod with the st80 but the altitude clutch couldn't hold the weight - either need a new head or print a counterweight holder.

Set up the st80 on the Azgti while the dob cooled. Still running it off the broken AGM battery I took off a bike - nice boat anchor for additional tripod stability! Must print a holder for it to hang underneath the tray. Pointed it at Andromeda and promptly forgot about it. Came back later to nick the contrast booster filter in the diagonal....  While I was setting up a meteor flew over my head away from me - quite bright.  Came from the South West - not sure what that would be from.

Once the dob had mostly cooled I pointed it at Jupiter. Last time I had the best views (to my eyes) with the 25mm plus barlow giving 100x. Wanted to try and push it further this time so tried the 24-8 zoom at the 10mm to 8mm end.  I think this is when I nicked the contrast booster - not sure whether it helps but certainly doesn't spoil anything, once you get used to the colour cast.

I think the seeing steadily improved - could clearly see the GRS to the RHS (dob view) and banding etc. Then I noticed Ganymede  looked a bit coma-ey and the sharp spot looked to be a bit to the left of the centre of view.  Very narrow sharp area with the cheapy zoom - Seriously thinking about a Baader but no-one has the matching barlow in stock....

Down the rabbit hole of star-collimation for the first time. I don't think I've ever looked at Polaris whilst any 'scope has been in focus but this is the first time I've attempted to shift the primary "on the fly". I thought I improved it and swung back to the Ecliptic to see Saturn vanish behind the neighbors house. Wups. Back to Jupiter.

The GRS was nearly central now and a shadow (looked it up)  Io. Couldn't make out Io itself though. Ganymede looking better too, but still not quite right.  Resolved to have a look at collimation with a Cheshire ASAP but not then - having too much fun. Watched Io traverse for a while (or its shadow anyway). Clouds started to gather in the West (thin high ones)...

Noticed that according to SkySafari  (SS) Neptune would be mag 7ish to the East and so decided to try and star hop to it. Turned off mag 7.1 and dimmer stars before I could see views in the finder similar to that shown by SS.

Found Bluish star? Not certain. Must complete PushTo system.

Clouds started pushing in to the West and the North and I think seeing started to go a bit - might have been my tired eyeballs.  One last look at Jupiter (Io moves quickly doesn't it!) and started bringing kit in at about 0145.

Cheshire View:

Looks like secondary moved at some point in the last few months and the star test made me move the primary to compensate. Secondary screws were quite loose.  Had the usual "Turning the tilt screws causes the secondary carrier to rotate" fun but got near enough in the end. Nipped screws up tighter. Slipped collimating cap on to check I could see all primary clips - yup - lovely!  Back to Cheshire for primary - a few tweaks and bang on.

Mental note - make sure Cheshire is seated in eyepiece holder before tightening thumbscrews. Think I'll check collimation when in-situ with a red light next time while the scope cools...

Fun night!

  • Like 1


Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.