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  • Recent Posts

    • Okay, managed two first lights, not at my dark place, but reasonable 20.61 SQM backyard, just to get a hang of the scope. 0 degrees C tests one's patience, and humid conditions are good for figuring out how it will behave under stress. First, I've contacted Michael re wood chip, he was kind enough to offer to ship it all back so he can make the new cradle (he needed all the parts) but I'll just repair it. He'll ship some novelty of his, truss pole stabilizers. Will post a photo once I receive them. In the meantime, I was stupid enough to mess with collimating triangle and managed to attach it wrongly. Then peeled it off, attached a new one. Some glue around the triangle and the triangle is again a tiny bit off, perhaps by less than a milimeter vis-a-vis center spot. Gotta say triangle is of immense help when collimating and adjusting in the dark. Not sure how much of a problem that slight off-centering is. I am going to let it be for now, but tips on how to remove it without to having to wash the mirror and whatnot are appreciated.  Secondary attachment is so far my biggest peeve because it needs twisting around before starting to hit laser near the center of the primary. On the second night I managed to leave fingerprints on the edge of the secondary. So tips on cleaning secondary are also appreciated. 😂 My second biggest peeve is secondary ring attaching. I feel like I am always fighting it a bit, and RDF in the way is not making me like it more. RDF is under review, will see whether it is possible to mount some quick-release shoe and slot in Baader Skysurfer III because RDF needs adjustment after every collimation and doing it in the dark with the Allen key is not really fun. Also Baader has more clearance. Scope is smooth and works the biz. It is not super stable, so needs to be handled gently. It tracks well and is buttery but if you swing it quickly (as I did) it might jerk and lose collimation. On the second night I had the feeling that it lost collimation once without me being able to pinpoint why. Also, as you might expect, if you collimate at 60 degrees it will not be the same story at 20 degrees and the laser will show it...but that is, again, not surprising.  Here, any tips from the owners are appreciated, but I guess those are the limits of the design. Fans are silent (three of them, unlike GuLinuxes) and one can observe while running them (no vibration and low to medium powers). Seeing was not that great the second night, so I tried some low power targets (M42, duh, M48, Beehive, Pleiades, Double Cluster, M38, Thor's Helmet). Given that I do my DSO observing normally under much darker skies I cannot easily compare (e.g. Thor's Helmet with OIII is MUCH better in SCT8 at 21.40 than in a 12 incher under 20.60 sky). Of course all of the above are nice in a 12 inch scope. There's some coma, I am still learning to discern coma, collimation, heat plumes and astigmatism of the eye. Work in progress, but not too different from SCT (except for upside down effects of the heat plumes). It was fun, cannot wait to test it at my favorite site, although I feel the biggest problem there will be finding some proper flat piece of ground.
    • Oooh, that's a good one. Ta! Praise be for Ben the Ignorant. :)
    • Well, let us hope that those who stay are those of us that count! I trust that Salvatore will do everything to assure that this cannot happen again.
    • As title above, looking for Primaluce Lab EQ6 Puck / Adapter Plate
    • Third Flare at a higher cadence ~ 15s (11s exp) binned 3x3. I was beginning to wonder if changing the exp and binning had jinked me. This time it was QY Aur Regards Andrew
  • Recent Topics

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    • Hawksmoor

      Wind and rain! Rain and wind!
      So rather than "pining for the fjords", I thought to try a bit of astro 'DIY' light. Managed to fit an old Orion EZ red dot finder onto my Altair astro 66mm Lightwave refractor. 
      Also decided to reuse my redundant QHY5v planetary camera for obtaining low res spectra. Managed to complete a few basic calculations and mount a transmission grating at an appropriate distance from the imaging chip. Then set about getting my laptop to communicate with the old camera. Went to QHY site and downloaded the most recent driver for the QHY5v.
      Downloaded a more recent version of Sharpcap which seems to work with the QHY5v using ASCOM. Need to work on settings as first captures were hyper noisy. Not really sure what I am doing but I've never let this stop me in the past. "Ever backwards and downwards"!
      George now tucked up and pleasantly cosy in my sleeping chariot.
      · 0 replies
    • SJAvery  »  DaveS

      I saw your question on the ASA site about sky flats and Sequence.  If you are still interested, I have managed to get this to work quite well on my installation at E-Eye.  After setting up the filter sequence configuration file, you just click on "Dusk Flats" and then select the configuration file from the window which pops up.  Do not press START NOW or START@TIME.  As soon as the sun reaches 0 degrees, the mount will slew and start to make flats.  Therefore, you do need to make sure that the roof/dome is open!  In this mode, Sequence does not open the roof/dome automatically.  (It would help if they told you that in the Manual.....)
      The trick is to get the configuration file set up correctly.  I have mine set to make dusk flats with the following filter sequence: SII, Ha, OIII, R, G, B, Lum.  I make 5 exposures with each filter.  That seems to work well in relation to the speed at which the sun sets.
       
      Of course, if you want to make dawn flats, you need to reverse the filter sequence.
      Hope that helps!
      · 0 replies
    • pcdunx

      Now the proud owner of a Celestron C6-N on a CG5 Advanced GT mount
       
      · 0 replies
    • JRM

      back at figuring my 20, here is where it stands right now, still some to go but headed in the right direction.

      · 0 replies
    • Hawksmoor

      Just watched the first episode of StarTrek Picard. Nice!
      Not only do we share the same values but he has proved conclusively that I'm not too old to go into space. "Boldly going-----" and all that malarkey. Good on you Jean Luc!
      · 1 reply
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