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Showing content with the highest reputation on 01/03/15 in all areas

  1. After the children went to bed last night I set up my kit up on the patio. As as the forecast was very clear I decided to leave it out all night... When I woke up this morning I was so impressed with this I had to share it. Now I know others take more impressive shots, however I'm using a simple SW150p ( ie not even the fancy DS version) on a manual EQ3-2, but with a home made dual axis motors and controller system. My camera is a "spares or repair" Nikon DX40 (from a popular auction site) that I removed all the IR filters from and cost me £40, plus a whole lot of other home made & DIY kit do do everything else you need (you should be getting the idea by now...) Image is from 59x300s with other correction frames from my library.Full image is here http://www.astrobin.com/160090/0/ I love how the dust is beginning to show, as I never thought I'd be able to capture that with such basic kit. Thanks for looking
    8 points
  2. Hi all, this is my 1st process of M81 & M82, i cant ever seem to get to a place where i am happy with my images, im way too fussy....i know what i want to do, just my Pixinsight skills are not up to what i need to do, and i try to over think things in processing which really seems to bog me down, any way this is my 1st process of this target.... This was taken at Turf Hill on Saturday 21`st Feb, it was a good night collecting the photons, how ever i had quite a lot of problems lol, but hey ho it would not be astro imaging if there were no problems i ended up with..... 16 x 10min light subs @ ISO800 50 flats @ ISO800 50 darks @ ISO800 (taken from my darks library to match light temps) 140 bias @ ISO800 thanks for looking clear skies M81 & M82 by tingting44, on Flickr
    7 points
  3. Ok just a quick update to explain how the Quark works when combined with the Lunt 60mm versus the Equinox 80mm The seeing wasn't much better then Friday. However, there were no clouds in the sky. Once again I used the Giro WR dual mount to keep proceedings on an as even keel as possible. The Quark did not work at all with the B600 blocking filter, it was just to dark so I removed it from the experiment altogether. So for reference purposes I used the Quark, 2" diagonal with the 2" UV/IR filter and the 32mm TV plossl and simply switched the diagonal between the scopes. Once again I was mesmerised by the results of the Quark in the Equinox, most impressive, with huge bundles of surface detail and some lovely prominences on display between the 1 & 3 O'clock positions. Now the Lunt with the Quark, to my surprise even more detail was visible than in the Equinox and a very obvious 3D effect was apparent, almost like plumes of smoke coming out of the surface of the sun (the scope wasn't on fire, I did check) However, the prominences were nowhere near as defined as they are in the Equinox and adjusting the etalon did not seem to make any difference. There were also some strange dark lanes going from top to bottom which was a bit distracting, the whole view was much darker but very pleasing all the same. So there we have it, both scopes work with the Quark albeit quite a dark view in the Lunt..... For visual use I would still opt for the Quark in a standard refractor.
    6 points
  4. Hello, In January I found in Big Dipper NGC 3953, it's close to M109. A good night with seeing between 2.04 et 2.6 arcsec. Setup : Observatoire de Conlie, Sarthe Date : 20 et 24 janvier 2015 Instrument : Télescope Newton de 250 mm à F5 Monture : Skywatcher EQ-6 (Eqmod) Caméra : QSI 583 WSG à -20°C (capteur Kodak KAF-8300) commandé par MaximDL et Maxpilote Correcteur de coma : Baader RCCI, focale résultante de 1280 mm. Filtres : L R V B Ha Baader Guidage : Starlight Xpress Lodestar en Bin2 avec PHD2 Luminance : 3 h 20 = 40 x 300s Rouge : 0 h 15 = 3 x 300s en Bin2 Vert : 0 h 20 = 4 x 300s en Bin2 Bleu : 0 h 30 = 6 x 300s en Bin2 Image crop around 80% : The full size on my website : http://astrophoto-sarthe.fr/ngc3953.html What you see on 300s sub with KAF8300 with MaximDL? I find this galaxy really pretty. Thank you for viewing. Jeremy
    6 points
  5. Hi Guys First bash with a new scope and new camera. Recently acquired a C9.25 to use as a "travel" scope as I am going for an imaging trip (ahem!! family holiday) abroad soon. This is a mosaic of three very overlapping images taken in average seeing. Camera was a ZWO ASI174MM. I used a 4x Powermate, so including the filter wheel and Crayford focuser on the scope, this would probably be about F45-50? In future, I would think about F30 would be more suitable for average UK conditions. You live and learn... If anyone is interested, looking at the videos I have a couple of other images of similar resolution to this one. Let me know if you would like me to post them.
    6 points
  6. Hi, This is version 1 of a 6 tile mosaic made with my FS102 NSV + QSI532WS-M1 (all data from the last 3 months) Ha data: 6x 17x15min OIII data: 6x 18x15min For a total of 52.5 hours! Processed as Ha - sG - OIII but not the usual red tone one! Cheers paulo
    6 points
  7. Copernicus and Plato on February 28, 2015 in average seeing conditions.
    5 points
  8. Hi all, this is my 1st process of M81 & M82, i cant ever seem to get to a place where i am happy with my images, im way too fussy....i know what i want to do, just my Pixinsight skills are not up to what i need to do, and i try to over think things in processing which really seems to bog me down, any way this is my 1st process of this target.... This was taken at Turf Hill on Saturday 21`st Feb, it was a good night collecting the photons, how ever i had quite a lot of problems lol, but hey ho it would not be astro imaging if there were no problems i ended up with..... 16 x 10min light subs @ ISO800 50 flats @ ISO800 50 darks @ ISO800 (taken from my darks library to match light temps) 140 bias @ ISO800 thanks for looking clear skies M81 & M82 by tingting44, on Flickr
    5 points
  9. Re done some data from last year that I originally had trouble processing. This is 2hours of 300sec subs and a few of the subs had high thin cloud in them. Canon 60Da Sigma 105mm macro lens at f/4.5 ISO 1600 24x 300secs. Thanks for looking.
    4 points
  10. So 2yrs ago using a skymax 127 I took my only image of M51 with a cannon D500. It was the only time it had been in my limited area of seeing in my garden. 2 yrs on and with completely different equipment and software I had another chance to take it again. Freezing cold so only took 25 180sec exposures and with my limited software experience I offer the 2 images side by side .
    4 points
  11. This morning finally some Sun, it was intermittent, so took an image, then during cloud I changed the filter and imaged again. I managed 4 images in 2 hrs before it closed in to rain. Seeing was terrible but remained the same terrible throughout. All were taken at 100mm except the WL with continuum at 140mm. All with a 2x Barlow and the Grasshopper 3. All were taken and stacked the same and processed the same. First off Baader Herschel wedge (ND2.4) + Continuum filter 010315_091448 WL SC by Alexandra's Astronomy, on Flickr Next, the Baader K Line (80A) + Herschel wedge (with ND2.4) absolutely no focus what so ever? 010315_101310 Baad K by Alexandra's Astronomy, on Flickr Then Bob's Calcium H (5A) filter with the Herschel wedge (no ND filters), crystal clear again but curiously the same as WL image? but more bright (granulation) than regular WL which was more flat. 010315_102939 Bob CaH by Alexandra's Astronomy, on Flickr Then finally the Lunt Calcium K (2.4A) 010315_110526 Lunt CaK by Alexandra's Astronomy, on Flickr and then a comparison 2015-03-01 Filter test by Alexandra's Astronomy, on Flickr I hope this is interesting, like a say the seeing was terrible so the images aren't anything to rave about but the different filters and how they perform is interesting. I have no idea what happened to the Baader K line. Alexandra
    4 points
  12. Clear skies and a steady atmosphere today. A stack of 46/128 frames using my ED120APO and Canon 1100D. Baader solar film. (While I remember, the grid is courtesy of "Tilting Sun" freeware - I regularly forget to mention it!):
    4 points
  13. Inbetween the clouds tonight I managed to take my 1st ever photo of the moon using my new set up. I tweaked the lighting in faststone image viewer ( a freebie software App). Picture taken using a Canon 1200D and a SW ED80 Apo at iso 200. I'm as new to this as can be so still learning and experimenting. Any feedback appreciated
    4 points
  14. Hi. Just a quick 30mins on this little trio. NGC5981,5982,5985. ED 80 and HX916 ccd camera. Pure mono image. 3x600 secs. I hope to do a lot more on this little trio,on my next night out. Mick.
    4 points
  15. Stop shining torches down scopes, it is almost uniformly a bad idea. :eek:
    4 points
  16. Thanks! I do not have a 100% image link for now! Here is another version at 50%.
    4 points
  17. My very first pic of the moon by my phone camera pretty impressed with myself
    3 points
  18. Quick intro: Have received my first scope on thursday and yesterday was the first more or less cloudless sky. Put my Skywatcher 200/1000 into the garden to play around a bit when I realized that I could take some pics Just quick and dirty without a plan what I'm really doing. Have made around 40 images and a 30 sec. video. This pic is one of the best I've taken. It's unmodified straight out of the cam. Cam is a Sony Alpha 65, single shot with ISO400 and 1/1000. Yeah I know it's not the common way but I'm pretty proud of it cause its my first one ever Tons of things to learn but it's worth...
    3 points
  19. A Few More Galaxies Before the big Moon came on the scene, I was able to enjoy a couple of nights hunting out a few more galaxies. It's curious that everyone has their own definition for home and that home can be many different things at once. It is the house we live in. It could be the planet itself, our shared clump of rock and water hurtling through space. Perhaps for astronomers it is something even bigger, something so vast it is impossible to meaningfully comprehend. Home in this sense might be the Milky Way, our galactic home, our little puff of dust and gas amid the infinite of thousands of millions of other galactic puffs we can observe in the night sky. NGC 2368 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Lynx. At 125x it was fairly bright and reasonably big, but showed no significant detail. I can find very little information about the galaxy, so even its distance is as yet unknown. NGC 2903 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Leo. About 30 million light years away, NGC 2903 presented itself as a bright, rather elongated galaxy with a brighter core. NGC 3184 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Ursa Major. This is a rather beautiful galaxy about 40 million light years year. Upon observing you can discern a round disc showing its face towards you with a brighter core. After a while, you can also begin to distinguish the arms and its spiral shape. For those with more aperture, this is certainly a galaxy to be recommended. NGC 3953 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Ursa Major. Just under 50 million light years away, NGC 3953 appeared an elongated, oval disc with quite a bright nucleus. Regardless of magnification or attention at the eyepiece, I could discern no other detail. M 109 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Ursa Major. M 109 presented itself with an elliptical shape and bright condensed core. Probably due to being anything from 85 to 100 million light years away and speeding from us at something like 4,000,000 km an hour, I was unable to discern anymore detail. M 104 Spiral galaxy in the constellation of Virgo. Whenever possible I always try to visit this galaxy and on most of those occassions will try to capture its beauty. At some 50 million light years away, at the heart of M 104 is a bright stellar core and whether observing at 125x or 250x, this core is clearly seen to be at the edge of a very dark lane.
    3 points
  20. I am a sucker for refractors, so here is a couple of tasters for my latest refractor, i will add to this once i have had a chance to point it at a night sky
    3 points
  21. Just a couple of images from a difficult day of imaging ( very windy )
    3 points
  22. been looking for some more locations , only needed the sky to clear
    3 points
  23. Cor, look at that panorama, you lucky devil. Carole
    3 points
  24. Wow, what a thread. Glad I married the right girl, we encourage each other to get the best out of life within our means; deceit is not in our vocabulary.
    3 points
  25. Yes I'm afraid its another, but a first to me So far I have only managed 9 x 1200s Ha and a quick tweak in PS CC 25th Feb 2012 SW Equinox 80 APO and Flattener EQ5 Pro Synscan GOTO. Guiding: SW 9x 50 finder guider and QHY5. Atik 314L+ Baadar HA 7nm, Using: Artemis capture, PHD, DSS, and Photoshop CC. NGC 2244 - ROSETTE - HA 9X1200 by VikN46, on Flickr
    3 points
  26. Nice setup Phil. You chose wisely !!! I think it is a tripod to keep and just adapt to any different mounts you might have in the future. The Berlebach is a beautifully made product, I bought the Planet with a view to using it with an 4"F5 FSQ and felt it was overkill........ (that was last week) Here it is today with my new TOA130S and T-Rex and suddenly it doesn't feel overkill anymore.
    3 points
  27. Mostly mosaics for me. TEC 140, 2 panel, with Paul Kummer. Also with Paul, a much wider FOV to include the Squid using the dual Taks. Also with the Taks and with Tom and Yves, VdB14 and 15 to the Soul, 6 panel. And then two attempts to go deep with the dual Taks. Olly
    3 points
  28. Hi folks, I like it to do not so famous objects. Close to the Rosette Nebula you can find a nice trio: sh2-280/282/284. Done with the Canon EF 200 @ f/4 (aperture stopper to avoid spikes) and Moravian G2-8300FW. Ha 23x900s, and 11x300s for R, G and B. Annotated: and full size: http://www.starrymetalnights.at/Bilder/sh2-282_HaRGBfull.jpg Regards Werner
    2 points
  29. I've been trying to make a reasonable-sized Horsehead image with my C8 hyperstar since early December with the ultimate aim of making a print but this is becoming a bit of an ordeal! I managed to collect a few hours of Ha data over the Christmas period and although the seeing was relatively poor I got some reasonable detail out with deconvolution, HDR transform etc and decided in Jan/Feb to try and get some RGB to complement it. However what I hadn't counted on was quite how bad the internal reflections of Alnitak were going to be; attempts in the past with my old OSC camera seemed fine but mono plus RGB filters (both with and without an LPS P2 in front) gave multiple reflections brighter than most of the nebulae! Even placing the star in the centre of the field gave off centre reflections so I tried to devise a mosaic strategy to avoid them. Of course this meant taking multiple fields for each channel just to match the single field of Ha data, greatly increasing the time required and of course the weather has been a total pain to boot. Long and short is I haven't managed to get a high quality RGB signal for the whole frame yet (and time is running out as Orion disappears for spring/summer) so I've given in and just made an HaRGB image with what I've got, hence it's severely cropped (to remove reflections) and rather H-a heavy. I'm encouraged by what it shows so far but lord knows how long before I 'finish' it! If the weather is kind I might try using my newish Canon EF200 L F2.8 lens to grab some more RGB (the resolution with my Atik 490EX @1x1 is pretty similar to the hyperstar @2x2 and hopefully reflections will be much less and if present easier to deal with, with the much bigger field of view. Of course that would require me to get the lens to CCD chip spacing bang on which isn't proving as straightforward as I'd hoped.... Paul Full res image: http://cdn.astrobin.com/images/thumbs/3ba70d60dc254f0b49b0870de49a951d.1824x0_q100_watermark_watermark_opacity-10_watermark_position-6_watermark_text-Copyright%20Paul%20Cordell.png
    2 points
  30. Bit of a redo from an earlier post. Opinions and suggestions most welcome.
    2 points
  31. Hello friends , I leave you this video of Uranus recorded today with my AstroMaster 130 EQ and the mobile sony xperia P
    2 points
  32. What a night last night...managed to grab enough to process this...although I will probably grab better red and green subs. I really had to work hard to make it work...Surprisingly the IFN in the blue channel was the strongest...but the red frames were captured with variable conditions in between rain showers. Still not convinced there is much in the way of colour in the IFN itself....but I've come this far so I may as well try for some better Red and green data. Total 28hours captured using 30min subs. Thanks for looking
    2 points
  33. This is my first attempt at this object - I didn't get much time on it - and the last from my Atik383L as I have sold it. Atik383L & WOZS71 + x 0.8 FR Ha 10 x 900secs Sii 3 x 900secs Ha, Sii, Sii, SE London Carole
    2 points
  34. I'll hold you to that I've had another session with the TV Planetary Filter this evening. I wan't expecting much clear sky so I put my ED120 out to cool but the clouds have been fewer and further between than I'd feared. The seeing conditions are quite a bit better tonight with 180x / 225x producing pleasingly sharp images of Jupiter with a decent amount of surface feature contrast without the filter in place. Tonight there was a more noticeable enhancement of the belt contrast with the filter in place. The pale pink tint is still there but it does not seem to be affecting the background sky as much, or maybe my eyes are getting used to it ?. The filter also seems to enhance the limb darkening effect which is perhaps why the planet looks a little more 3-dimensional when it's in place ? Out of interest I used the Planetary filter to view the Moon, some binary stars and even M42. While it's not designed to enhance such objects it's clear that this is a quality optical item because the filter did not produce and adverse effects on high resolution targets such as Plato craterlets or splitting tightish star pairs. I still could not split Sirius with the ED120 but the filter kept the view of Sirius itself well under control with no additional scatter or flare that I could see. M42 showed a good amount of nebulosity, albeit with a pink tinge, around the Trapezium group despite the bright moon in the sky so the filter must have a decently high light transmission rate. Perhaps I can learn to love pink after all
    2 points
  35. Having acquired M81 figured I'ld better have a bash at M82. Acquisition details can be found by clicking on the image at....
    2 points
  36. Still going Looks like the problem was simply a dirty RJ45 connector RJ45 connectors were never designed for outdoor use and seems a poor design choice. I would like to replace it with something waterproof (to keep dew out). If the NEQ6 is anything to go by (and I would expect the connections to be the same) only 3 wires are needed - so why use a fragile 8 wire connector? OR does the hand controller use more?
    2 points
  37. I don't think so Gerry as both the scopes are 500mm in focal length, the only difference is the Lunt has a focal ratio of 35 and the Equinox of 26 when used with the Quark
    2 points
  38. Hi Nighthawk. Your main problem is that you've picked some of the more difficult Messiers to start with. M33, in particular, is a tough visual target, since it has a very low surface brightness. In general, galaxies are much harder to see, and thus to find, than clusters or nebulae. I suggest you start with some less-challenging DSOs - it will reduce frustration, and give you practice in finding fainter objects as you build up toward the hard stuff. This list of easier-to-find targets, with finder instructions, might give you a good start. - Richard
    2 points
  39. My biggest issue is on the occasions in which I may set up a scope outside in the backyard. My daughter has pet rabbits, they get to roam around quite a bit and can be a nightmare to catch. So when the scope is outside and left unattended, I form a barrier using the collapsed rabbit run cage. The problem is the scope is then pointed upwards whilst cooling. It works but fortunately I do not set up in my yard so often.
    2 points
  40. A tick list is fine but it should not turn into a race to complete , nor should the already ticked not be revisited. I have tried over the years to tick off all the Messier objects but it just has never happened, one day I will do it but it is way to organised for me. I dont even like to plan ahead I just like to do what the moment requires :-). If I start on the moon and never end up moving on the evening would have been a complete success and I would have had a great night , on the other hand if I had a list but never moved on I would consider it a failure, so no list or plan launches my Satellite. :-)
    2 points
  41. (arent 6" mirrors diddy!!!), I thought they were for secondaries
    2 points
  42. I have the standard 9x50 finder and use it more than the Telrad from my normal observatory. Keeping both eyes open will help enormously when looking through the finder scope. Although you will see more with one eye than the other, the Stars will align in both eyes when finding and on target. I find the Telrad useful when I cant see the 9x50 reticules against darker skies Don't give up on Stellarium, its a brilliant program. http://www.stellarium.org/en_GB/
    2 points
  43. Here's my other two older Naglers, also about £100 each. The coatings look more similar to those on the Radian than anything else. I really rate them as they seem to suit me better for all the usual criteria associated with eyepieces
    2 points
  44. I can see theres a few discerning tripod owners out there, we obviously have taste Nice set up Rainmaker davedownsouth, Berlebach do a range of heads from HEQ5, HEQ6, APM etc etc theres quite a few variations I made some spikes on the lathe yesterday and feels much tighter now Ive replaced the rubber feet. I am leaning towards the spreader now as the chain seems to be a bit of a pain, not in set up I hasten to add but its got a life of its own when transporting. A spreader is much neater I reckon
    2 points
  45. it will be rude not to turn up Lenny
    2 points
  46. I hate spending money but the Baader wedge is one thing I'd have no hesitation in buying again.
    2 points
  47. Onto the first testing To test the mirror I was going to use a combination of Ronchi screen and the knife edge Foucault test. Firstly I had to build the testing rig. I managed to pick up a single axis linear stage with 25mm of travel and went about fitting it to a camera tripod. Next up was a piece of ply to hold the LED light source and Ronchi screen. Here's the results So with that complete I made up a test board to mount the mirror on via a sling suspended between 2 bolts. I was now ready for testing. I was going to perform the test's with a moving light source so here is the test rig labelled up The test's are carried out at the Radius Of Curvature (ROC for short) or twice the focal length. There is a lot of info on the net about both these tests and others that are used but I shall stick to just these two as they are probably the easiest for the amateur to use and set up. Firstly the Ronchi test and I took these inside the ROC Then onto the Foucault test Interpreting these image's was my untrained eye, so I exchanged a few email's with John and a verdict was given which I can't fully remember all the details. As can be seen the centre is raised (think it was actually mount Everest in mirror terms) and there were other problems with it too mainly the edge. So John advised a stroke through the centre with lot's of weight on. So back home and I tried this but again I had problems. I was in the garage so however I warmed the lap it would cool off and basically school boy error No.2. Looking at the surface I might as well have used a brillo pad to polish as when I took the lap off to inspect it there were more scratches than my parent's record collection. The pitch was obviously too cold and the lap just skidded about. You can feel when the lap is working right as it sort of suck's onto the mirror and the polishing action is smooth and quite a resistance to push I should have known. A return trip to what I thought was the redundant tile tool and another trip through the fine grinding (400, 600) pencil testing along the way and then back to polishing. I moved all the table into the kitchen where I could work at a constant temp and have the lap warm. After cleaning and pressing I tried again with the lap I had to polish but struggled to polish out the centre. The lap had become too thin at the edge's and was never going to form to the surface. To cut to the chase I made a new lap below and redid all the the polishing operation having purchased more Cerium oxide. The new lap was a world away from the old one with the lessons I'd already learnt And the table in the kitchen with the old lap pressing The lap at the correct temperature worked beautifully and in no time at all I was polished again Again now I could return to testing, but not nice retracing your steps and doing it all again but I should at least be getting goods at it! Just realised the back door put's into perspective the size of the mirror the table will just fit through the door jamb. Damian
    2 points
  48. I carried out a plate-solve on the image to determine sky position and camera orientation.
    2 points
  49. Here's the "list" for 2015...
    2 points
  50. Always tough to take the stage after an act like Olly Penrice, but somebody has to do it so here goes... 2014 was a very enjoyable year for my imaging development and saw many additions and changes to the kit list. It started off with a recently modified DSLR and M42 - The Orion Nebula: I needed to get longer for The Spring Galaxy Season, so treated myself to a Celestron EdgeHD 800 and managed this of M51 - The Whirlpool Galaxy: Fed up with the noise generated by the DSLR, but loving the whole astrophotography journey, I scraped together everything I had and purchased a QSI 683-WSG CCD. The absolute best move ever. Here is my first light with the new camera, NGC7000 - The North America Nebula: The CCD was just a pure joy to use and I was awarded Photo Of The Month in December's edition of The Sky At Night Magazine for my image of M31 - The Andromeda Galaxy: The final challenge of 2014 - a two panel mosaic of IC1805 - The Heart Nebula. This image appeared in December's episode of The Sky At Night: 2015 is going well so far, despite the very rare clear and dark nights. Clear skies to you all!
    2 points
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