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Showing content with the highest reputation on 15/05/15 in all areas

  1. 12 points
    Being galaxy season I have hung up my Hyperstar and had a go with an Optec NextGEN WideField 0.5X reducer I bought some time ago for my C8. This works out at 0.75 arcseconds/pixel with my Atik 490EX, close to the limit of what I can guide on my HEQ-5 (and not helped by my dodgy seeing) but the results are a noticeably higher resolution than with Hyperstar. It took me a while to get the spacing near correct and it’s still perhaps a little off or maybe there’s a slight tilt in the focal plane, but the central part of the field is starting to look ok. The flats were not quite right; so a couple of big bunnies at the edges haven’t been removed properly. In total the image comprises 28x10min Luminance (IDAS LPS P2 filter 1x1) and ~20x 4 min R,G and B filters (behind the IDAS, binned 2x2). Guiding was with a celestron OAG and ASI120MM mono camera which seems to work well with the OAG with 2x2 binning enabled. Paul Full res at http://cdn.astrobin.com/images/thumbs/3a08125935ff90965dde764c7dd05fcd.1824x0_q100_watermark_watermark_opacity-10_watermark_position-6_watermark_text-Copyright%20Paul%20Cordell.jpg
  2. 7 points
    Ngc 3190 group L 23x15min-R 8x15- G 6x15-B 8x15 M63 ------------- L 28x15min-R 6x15-G 4x15-B 6x15 Ngc 4565------- L18x15min-R 6x15-G 4x15-B 6x15 All bix2 10"rc f8 mesu 200 mount Sbig STF8300m camera Thank you for watching )
  3. 6 points
    After the rather hot and muggy day of yesterday, today brings with a more calming 30ºC+ and the seeing is excellent. This morning the Sun put on a spectacular display in both white light and H-alpha. What stood out are the very active regions snaking across the disc and the humongous prominences soaring and exploding all over the solar limb; surges, sprays and free floating fragments. The sketch was made using chalks but no matter what I do, they still seem to come out blurry when passed over to SGL. Howeve, I find that if you actually click on the image the sketch improves quite a bit. With a couple of months practice now, these H-alpha sketches are not nearly taking so long and within reason are completed from start to finish within 30 minutes.
  4. 6 points
    I agree, James but over time the body does acclimatize and one literally feels the heat (or cold) less. Dave, the Sun put on a show of quite large hedgerows, surges and sprays this morning whilst the plage and sunspot regions across the sun are still quite bright and prominent. I've cut and pasted the sketch from the above photo so as to give a general indication of what is going on. Fingers crossed for you and Stu and Spaceboy tomorrow. Ghostdance, you probably know this already but Spain is the second most mountainous country in Europe. Quite literally, you could be skiing one morning and the very next sun-bathing on the beach. The area I live is no different. Basically I reside in a relatively humid valley set between large hills or small mountains running through on either side. Far from being perfect, the valley is riddled with small and quite large towns (30,000 tops), so it does suffer quite badly from light pollution. Seriously, I was really surprised to find a 'rural' area being so horrid in these terms. Fortunately, to the east and south are the mountains where no one resides, so I typically point my scope in that direction. The hill you mentioned is called Puig and on top of it is an old castle/monestary which used to communicate with the main castle about 20 minutes away. Here are a few pictures showing a rough idea of the area I live in:
  5. 6 points
    Plenty fish, just good to catch a glimpse of elusive clear sky ! Normally we come up in early October and get blasted by storms. Previous years have produced super auras and dark skies. Plenty room for the Dob Mob ! Nick.
  6. 5 points
    Managed to capture sufficient panes for a mosaic. Bit soft in the lower right-hand side, but what with encroaching clouds I was expecting much worse. Visually, the two "horns" formed by the proms in the north looked a bit more symmetrical, but the difference in brightness breaks that symmetry in the image. Grey scale: Part inverted: Pseudo colour: Part inverted + pseudo colour:
  7. 5 points
    Well clear skies arrived this morning but they were significantly shorter-lived than the forecast suggested. Just about got a white light full disk before the clouds came in. 20150515 by David_The_Bears_Fan, on Flickr 20150515mono by David_The_Bears_Fan, on Flickr
  8. 5 points
    Just waiting for those cristal clear winter nights! Canon EOS Rebel Xs (modded) 30x300" 35-80mm lens set at 35mm F/5 ISO 1600
  9. 5 points
    It's been a beautiful sunny morning, so I've been capitalising on the sun being out and done a bit of solar viewing/imaging with the 80mm frac and DSLR. Loads of sun-spots today and it's worth a view if you have your solar filters. If anyone has a bit of n3.8 solar film I could have it would be great, as I am imaging through the visual quality 5.0, however it still captures the sun-spots a treat
  10. 5 points
    Simple, Detail, the more aperture you have, the more resolution you have and for me it's all about the detail. For example, I have an 80ED and a 10" newt, I could pretty much fit M33 in the FOV of the 80ed but would rather take the time to shoot a mosaic at a higher resolution. may take a few years to complete but for me it's worth it. Mike.
  11. 4 points
    We don't just do 400 hour images here! This is a real quickie to see what happens if you take just one ten minute sub in each of LRG and B. We don't have the right FL for the Sombrero at the moment so this is massively cropped. I used a synthetic Lum derived from the RGB to combine with the real L but, as usual, the 30 minutes of RGB had far less signal than the ten minutes of luminance. So here's the full forty minute's worth. Olly
  12. 4 points
    Hi guys, I have reprocessed this image, Soul nebula in narrowband: Shots: 10x900 in ha bin1 10x900 in OIII and SII to bin2 Equipment: TMB105/650 QHY9 EZG60 QHY5L-II AZ-EQ6 by HAS Regards Juan
  13. 4 points
    It's another one of those May days when the Sun shines, where it's summer in the shade and feverish in the light As promised the Sun today has truely arrived in all its splendour. After sketching and observing the Sun this morning (woken up early by the visiting in-laws ), I took a couple of snap shots of the rising temperature. As can be seen, in the space of a mere 120 seconds it rose from 54ºC to 56ºC and as anyone who's ever been to the east of Spain appreciates, midday is still the morning Sun and temperatures will continue to rise reaching their peak somewhere between 14:00 hrs and 16:00 hrs. I imagine before the end of the day, we'll be witnessing 60ºC and more. The temperature to the right is what's it's like in doors, in the shade Today is well and truely scoooorchio Not wanting to disappoint the Sun has also had the decency to put on a rather fetching display in h-alpha with fountains of plasma pouring into space and gorgeous and very detailed active regions and sunspots bridging across the disc.
  14. 4 points
    Had two nights trying to get to grips with my first guiding experience with a Lacerta MGEN and Orion 50mm mini guidescope. Had all sorts of problems, probably due to the power supply dwindling and causing the MGEN to misbehave, but here is my first sub anyway. Only a single 90 second exposure but it is a start!
  15. 4 points
    Yayyy! Cygnus is back, and this is the first target available within it from my location. I wasnt sure how it would turn out becuase I knew a few of the subs were taken with someones washing line in the way - but it seems ok. Its nice to be able to image once again without being plagued by gradients!! Anyway, this is just under a couple of hours worth - the sky was alright, some passing cloud but nothing too damaging. Hopefully I can revisit sometime soon and double the amount of Ha to sort out the noise in the wispy bits, and if possible - some OIII for a crack at cannistra colour (fingers crossed!) While I was waiting for Cygnus to rise above the house, I took the opportunity to see if I could grab some of the outer shell of M57 - managed to get it in 90min (6x900) but the noise is horrendous.... needs 3 or 4 hours to clean that up. Tiny as well.... like a little polo mint 9x720 (Ha) 2x2bin 130pds, Atik 383L+, NEQ6 Setpoint: -15c Calib: Flats & Bias Thanks for looking!
  16. 4 points
    My first proper attempted with the new scope; a Skywatcher Esprit 120ED. Taken from the back garden on Tuesday Night / Wednesday morning. Consists of 9 x 5 minutes 1x1 Luminance and 9 x 4 minutes 2x2 RGB. Flats and Bias applied, and the flats were absolutely required as there were loads of dust bunnies . All processing done with PixInsight, and once more, huge thanks to Harry for the brilliant tutorial videos . Not quite ready to do a review of this scope yet, or the Lakeside Astro Motor Focus (which is just fantastic, out and out five star bit of kit), think I need to a couple more sessions with it first, but a quick overview is great scope, but deep reservations about the flattener and how awful it is to attach the camera to the scope via the flattener . All comments welcome Crop of Sunflower: -
  17. 4 points
    GSO 12" F/5 Canon EOS Rebel Xs (modded) 39x60" ISO 1600 Full Res: http://www.astrobin.com/full/180127/0/
  18. 4 points
  19. 3 points
    Finally, the last couple of nights have been clear - best part of a week with the NEQ6 and only just been able to play! First impressions? It's a big fellow! Fair dwarfs the EQ3-2. I have read a lot of comments about the poor build quality of Skywatcher mounts and I am sure there are much better but, with just the EQ3-2 as a benchmark, it is pretty impressive to me. Big, heavy and rock solid. I spent a few days playing inside and following some of the AstronomyShed tutorials on YouTube to start getting it set up, polar aligned etc and then sorted out tube rings and guide scopes. The clocks are obviously going to be better than the EQ3-2 and have found them to be useful when setting up the mount and polar aligning. Can't recommend AstronomyShed enough. Couldn't get any smaller rings, so settled with another set of SW80mm rings and beefed them up with some cork spacer that was left over from laying flooring. Then grabbed some aluminium carpet joining bracket thingy (can't remember the proper name), doubled it up for rigidity and drilled it for the tube rings. Bit of a botch job, but it is pretty solid and was incredibly cheap - will do for now! And then added the cameras ready to balance it all up Then the test. Out on Tuesday night. Set it all up, balanced and a 2 star alignment with the handset seemed to work very well. Slewed to M13 and it was (almost) bang centre in the frame. Had a play with some photos, just a few frames on the first night as I was just getting used to the mount and equipment. A 3 minute unguided M13 came out quite nicely and was reassuring as I never managed that long on the EQ3-2 (cropped from original) When I pushed it up to 5 minutes then there was some trailing evident, so it was time to try guiding.... .... which is where it pretty much fell apart for the evening. I haven't downloaded ASCOM yet, I am sticking with the handset while I learn the ropes, so ST80 with ASI120MM connected to the mount to guide via PHD2... which I couldn't get to work... and PHD, which I couldn't get to work... I just kept getting a very noisy screen. I played with the settings, gain and exposure times, but couldn't see any stars because of all the noise on the screen. If anyone has any suggestions how to get past this, they would be very welcome! Found some comments on line about using ASCOM, but I didn't really have time to go through that on the night, so will save that for later. Ended up downloading Metaguide which I stumbled across in my frustration and that, after some hassles, seemed to work and allow me to guide. I clearly have some learning to do with the guiding software. PHD/PHD2 did eventually seem to work, but they would lose the star almost as soon as I tried to start guiding so I gave up as Metaguide was working. Just for the hell of it I went all out with 10 minutes and got a fairly decent result on Bodes (cropped from original) and the Whirlpool - although trailing was evident in that effort - 10 minutes may be pushing it for now! (Although I did trip on the back door grate which might have caused the image to jump ) (cropped from original) And that was it for Tuesday... back out on Wednesday and had a go at Bodes. Saw trailing on a cheeky 10 minute sub, so dropped back to a sensible 5 minute guided sub. Was limited for time, so only took 10 frames (one discarded because of satellite) and the requisite calibration frames. I did think I would get a bit more information with a series of 5 minute subs, so was a little disappointed with the outcome as per these two efforts with slightly different processing (and heavily cropped) When compared to a previous effort with 90 second subs (also cropped) I presume that there (perhaps) wouldn't be a massive leap as the overall time in the stacked images is fairly similar, so I am probably expecting too much on the first night out. I guess the images are also going to be tricky to process well as the original images are so small on the DSLR sensor and need considerable. They are also fairly faint so probably need to stick to some brighter, larger targets while using a DSLR. But, overall, very impressed with the NEQ6 and the Synscan handset. The extra weight means I have to set up the mount in pieces but, this is balanced by the much faster location of targets via the GOTO software - the first time I tried to image Bode's I struggled for about 45 minutes to find it - this time around it was obviously much easier! Can't wait to get out and have another play... if the clouds ever clear again.
  20. 3 points
    Been a while since I captured these only recently got around to finishing them. I must try and spend equal time on capturing and process Archimedes (left) Aristillus & Autolycus all taken with C9.25/ASI120mm + Pro planet742 filter. 4,000 frames per image stacked around 500 in Autostakkert, lightly processed in Photoshop.
  21. 3 points
    A few months back the focuser on my 100ED Apo gave up working and finding the part to replace it was near impossible as it is not an off the shelf available part. OV said they could get it but would take a minimum of 4 months and would be £130. So because I wanted to press this scope into some white light service this Summer I ordered a Moonlite from FLO. Even this took a while due customs issues and other delays but none of this was FLOs fault and Martin at FLO kept me updated all the way. Thanks guys, super job as always. Well now its here and it fitted on like a glove. It feels super quality and looks fantastic. The colour even matches my solar finder! Looking forward to the sun re-appearing and getting some astronomy done this summer Notice how the weather changed when this arrived?
  22. 3 points
    Hi guys Here is the Cave nebula (Caldwell 9) Imaged from Newton Aycliffe, Always wanted to try for this target , Its a faint beast, probably not the best time of year to capture it as its low down. Details FSQ85, SX694 ccd 15 x 15 minute subs in Ha, and 20min each RGB I do have about 3 hours of Oiii data, so hoping to get some Sii data to try produce a complete narrowband image. Thoughts and criticism most welcome paul j
  23. 3 points
    First day of viewing for quite a while and what a lovely greeting. Full of activity and the most lovely prom at 2 O'clock. If you get the chance well worth a look. The wife has spent more time at the scope than me.
  24. 3 points
    No astronomical observing light up here in mid May, but just a scan with bins showed how good it can be. Been waiting for a clear night and small darkness , then out at 2 and overhead the sky was just packed with stars. In and around Ursa Major the bins showed the granulated goodness of a packed sky. Down to Alkaid and the fuzz of M101 on one side and M51 on the other. M13 just glowed between it's two capture stars and all the arms and legs of Hercules were there. Corona Borealis showed a bright crown. Between Cor Caroli and Arcturus I caught he glow of M3. A bright Saturn was sitting in the pit of Scorpius, Antares and Libra. The wind was quite biting, but it was wonderful to see full constellations. The sky began to glow with daybreak coming. Not much if any light pollution here, just plenty sky , Nick.
  25. 3 points
    More 130pds goodness..... (larger image & more info in deepsky section):
  26. 3 points
    Hi all, I think I took this image of AR2342 flaring a bit at about 6.50AM. It was quite blurry, maybe Sol was down in the murk? I've sharpened quite heavily to try and bring out a bit of detail. Thanks for looking, and good luck for some weekend Sun if your solar setup is on standby. I am a bit worried because for once the weekend forecast is actually showing some partially sunny patches on Saturday in the afternoon, this can only mean doom and gloom!! Luke --- 13th May, 2015 Equinox 120, Quark Chromosphere, Grasshopper 3 camera (ICX687), 0.5x reducer, cup of wake me up coffee (ND3)
  27. 3 points
    Hi all, I was very lucky to catch some Sun this morning, I nearly didn't try as I could already see clouds in the distance nearly half an hour before the Sun would clear the tree. But the clouds took their time. Seeing was poor and I struggled to process and I think my 120mm scope was a bit overkill for conditions, but there's not really any point I guess taking images in poor seeing unless I am going to process them! Thanks for looking, Luke --- 14th May, 2015 Equinox 120, Quark Chromosphere, Grasshopper 3 camera (ICX687), 0.5x reducer
  28. 3 points
    No pies for you then Adrian ;-) Sent from my Fone
  29. 3 points
  30. 3 points
    Tuesday night was the best night for ages, calm, clear and no dew. Had a few problems guiding, don't know why but wasted an hour, In the end settled on having a crack at IC1396 having not really tackled it before. It's still quite low down and got just over 2 hours but the first 12 subs were not so good. Decided to stack the last 14 as the sky was darker with the streetlights out. 14 x 300secs with Canon 60Da, Canon EF 200mm L f/2.8 @ ISO 1600 Thanks for looking.
  31. 3 points
    I always feel the same about this: 12inches too big in most circumstances if you are on your own lugging it around and trying to conjure the motivation to set it up. 8inch too small, you will always wished you were straining a bit harder to lug it around, 10inch is perfect the balance between fulfilling an aperture fever and not blowing a blood vessel in your eye to move it. I do use a 10inch mirror in light polluted skies and it packs more than a punch. All the objects you mention look great in it. Regrets = 0/10.
  32. 2 points
    I've recently come across this piece on the web written by Alan MacRobert from the well known and respected astronomy magazine Sky & Telescope. It is well worth a read if you are thinking of getting into the hobby - ideally before you leap in and buy a telescope : http://www.wwnorton.com/college/astronomy/astro21/sandt/startright.html As someone who has been in the hobby for many years now I found that many of the hints, tips and pointers in this article are right "on the button". John
  33. 2 points
    ..thought this might be of interest to forum members:- http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-32734978 Nick
  34. 2 points
    Only got around to doing these now, been doing mosaic practicing............not very well I can tell you but it all goes into learning I guess. Hope you like em & thanks for looking.
  35. 2 points
    Ten frames over a period of 35 mins. C8 SCT, 2.5x powermate & ASI120MM. 1 min captured for each RGB filter (42GB of data in total captured), 5000 frames from each filter stacked in AS2!. James
  36. 2 points
    I use red wine. Whenever I get an urge to clean the mirror I pour a glass of red wine, sit back and enjoy it and forget all about the mirror. Unless there is a seriously good reason for cleaning the mirror it is best left alone. If absolutely necessary follow keith's advice above
  37. 2 points
    What is wrong with water with a couple of drops of washing up liquid and lots of cotton wool? And a final rinse in distilled water. Have a look on youtube. PS I use PVA to clean records, B&Q decorators brand; videos also on youtube. .
  38. 2 points
    Haven't been to France for many years, the last time I drove down through Andorra to the Costa Del Sol in Spain with wife, three kids, mother and father in law , roof racks piled to the sky only room for some 10X50s and saw nothing of the country as everyone insisted on going like a bat out of hell by the quickest route. Got stopped at the Andorra, Spanish border by guys with sub machine guns who seemed to think we were drug smugglers and insisted on unloading everything from the car to search it. May be able to go back sometime soon now I don't get the nightmares so often and the memory has faded a bit, just need somebody to have my wife for a couple of weeks Dave
  39. 2 points
    Interesting! I just started with AP this spring and bought an Explore Scientific 80 mm triplet apo (got good reviews and costs about the same as SWs doublet 80mm) and I have been very pleased. However, I got a SW 250 Newtonean as a packet deal with my NEQ6 mount (a SW 250 costs even less than the 80 mm triplet). The Newtonean is so bulky so I have so far not got around to use it for AP, but your pics and that by Red Dwarf further up in this string convince me that it would be worth while and I will surely try this autumn (when the sky gets dark again up here in Sweden). Still, for a beginner I think the small apo makes life easier.
  40. 2 points
    If you're dissatisfied with 100mm after 2 months then you'll probably be dissatisfied with 8 inches after 2 months. But if 100mm is still fun after 2 months then keep having fun with it. Try getting it to a dark site (where you can easily see the Milky Way) and it will show you more DSOs, in better detail, than a 16 inch at a site where the MW is not visible. It would certainly be capable of showing all the Messiers, for example. My personal rule of thumb is that to get a "wow" factor you should increase aperture by at least 50%. Going from 100mm to 8 inches would certainly do that, as would 8 inches to 12 inches. That would give you a nice upgrade path to pursue over a number of years. But if you're really impatient then an 8 inch dob is a manageable scope that can be easily transported. The biggest "wow" factor is going from a light polluted site to a genuinely dark one, regardless of aperture.
  41. 2 points
    Hmm. I see your point Although it would be nice to have the option, I feel aperture would be best put to use at lower f numbers. Purely because having a higher aperture at a lower f number (e.g. 3.0) will give way more brightness whereas most dobs going from 5f @ 300mm to 4.1f at 450mm (with about £2500 between the two) will provide little more brightness and increases the image scale. Which to me is wasted aperture considering EPs can do all the magnifying work for us at 1000/900mm focal length! There are a lot of beauties out there that are quite wide in the sky that can't be observed in their entirity with these larger dobs. I just feel that paying big bucks for more aperture goes to waste if you're not making the image segnificantly brighter in the process! (I re-wrote this a few times, sorry if it's a bit of a jumble) ~pip
  42. 2 points
    I feel that F/4.7 is a little too fast. It challenges lower cost eyepieces because they will show astigmatic stars in the outer parts of the field of view, the scope optics will show a fair degree of coma and the "sweet spot" for accurate collimation and therefore diffraction limited performance is rather small at F/4.7 at just over 2mm compared to nearly 5mm at F/6. Thats not to say that these F/4.7 scopes are not successfully used by many members here but I think it would be nice to have the choice of a slightly slower scope in the 10" aperture, accepting that would need a longer tube of course.
  43. 2 points
    Chris, you might fancy a quick read of this brief report I made a couple of years back. The camping site I stayed at was amazing; it was only for over 18 year olds, the staff were all British, extremely friendly and very helpful, and the site was very well-equipped (swimming pool, tennis courts, kitchens etc) and really, really peaceful. Tip-top. The area of Quercy has loads of fabulous sites to visit to boot
  44. 2 points
    The 100 Greatest Stars by James Kaler
  45. 2 points
    If there is a nice caravan site you are aware of in this area (or any other dark sky area for that matter en francais) then let me know please. Even better if it has something for the wife to do!
  46. 2 points
    I see it just like ordinary nature photography. If you want wide field (landscape) you put a wide angle lens on your DSLR, which in the AP world would correspond to a small 80 mm refractor (about 500 mm focal length and f6) and if you want a pic of a bird in a tree you use a telephoto lens. In AP terms that would correspond to something like a 200 - 300 mm Schmidt-Cassegarin (2-3 m focal length, f10) that you can use for taking pictures of small things (as seen from earth) like the majority of galaxes. So, even if I am new to astrophotography I soon realized that I needed at least two scopes to cover most of the deep sky objects. I ended up with an Explore Scientific ED80 (the cheapest 80 mm triplet apo with good reviews that I could find) and a Celestron Edge HD8. I could have bought a hyperstar adapter to my Celestron to get wide field but that thing costs more than many decent 80mm ED refractors (still I may very well end up buyng a hyperstar one day if budget allows...). A plus with the 80 mm refractor is of course its small size so you can have it on a small and less expensive mount.
  47. 2 points
    So I’m in France in April and there’s a telescope in the window of a secondhand shop. It’s a 4” Newtonian on an equatorial mount and I know nothing. It’s priced at 48 euros. One of the leg clamps on the tripod is busted and the seller has wrapped a G-clamp around it as a cheap fix. It comes with two crummy eyepieces and an even crummier Barlow, but I don’t find out how bad they are until I start climbing the learning curve. The eyepiece holder has clearly long since lost whatever grip it had so the eyepieces slop around in the holder. The finderscope will fix in any position it likes but never the position I like and even then wobbles like jelly. I take the ‘scope back to England where I’ve already got an 8” Dobsonian still in its box waiting to go to France one of these days. I've bought a collimator and some eyepieces for that so they will be useful to see just how useful the 4” might be. I buy a Rigel Quikfinder, handy with the two mounting plates so that it will be interchangeable between ‘scopes. While trying the Quikfinder out on the 4” through the open bedroom window back in Surrey last night I tighten one of the remaining tripod clamps beyond its limit of exhaustion and it snaps off. With no more G-clamps I reduce all the tripod legs to minimum height and fix them permanently in place with black Duck tape. For someone over 6’ in height this is not the most convenient viewing position. I have a second-hand tripod on order from AstroBoot but no sign of it yet. I’m thrilled with the QuikFinder.. Alignment at last an absolute doddle. I seem to have bought cheaply but well with the eyepieces. What I need is a clear sky and open space. Tonight there is a clear sky but I am surrounded by houses and trees. Across the road, though, there is a hill in open fields. A windmill is being rebuilt in the middle of farmland and there is a firm track leading to it. I’m nearly 76. I played three sets of tennis this morning and now I plan to heft this telescope 400 metres across the road and up the hill to, maybe, look at planets and stars. I could do with a table, a chair, a flask of hot cocoa, a star chart and a decent tripod. As it is I put on a woolly hat, stuff a few eyepieces in my pocket, put on my woolly gloves and head on up to the hilltop where there is a 360 degree view with scarcely any light pollution. Why in Heaven’s name did I get into this I think as I spread my short tripod legs as far as they will go and insert a 12mm ED lens into the sloppy eyepiece holder. Then there she is, Venus in all her luminous glory. I swing around to aim at Jupiter and I cannot believe what I’m seeing – the Galileo moment. A striped planet with three moons in a line and perhaps one a bit more distant. I didn't bring my star chart so wander aimlessly around the sky until the excruciating crick in my neck threatens to become permanent. I put all the caps back on, pick up the scope on its amputated legs and go back home to send you this. Buying a clapped out scope has been a great experience for me. I have learnt more from it than from something that works straight out of the box and, in the end, have just enjoyed a magical couple of hours. But for any other newbies out there, take heart. It’s gotta be easier than this!
  48. 2 points
    Hi and welcome to the forum. Stellarium is very popular among many here and has some very useful features such as being able to configuring it to match the view of the night as seen from your observing site and also the advance date/time feature which is idea for anticipating what will be coming up and when, especially if your sky view is partially obscured. Clear skies and hope you enjoy your stay here.
  49. 2 points
    Just took this Jupiter and moons in between the clouds 2s, iso 800, 200mm f4 on shaky tripod with self timer I just did a couple of quick curves on the jpeg. Jupiter looks quite big - presumably just bloating really? Still, looks in focus? Was quite surprised to see the moons with just 2 secs - could even see them on the screen. Opinions welcome Will hopefully do some more testing when I get some proper clear skies. (FWIW I just undid the 3 screws which hold the focussing barrel in place and through trial and error I think it goes past infinity a tad.) Louise
  50. 2 points
    I've found that there are some objects where an O-III filter makes a really huge difference to the visibility of the object. The Veil Nebula complex is one, M97, the Owl Nebula is another. The Veil, to me, is sufficiently spectacular with the O-III filter to be worth the price of the filter alone being extensive, comprising of a number of distinct elements with each having a distinct character and beauty. This said though, I find many other nebulae where I prefer the unfiltered view most of the time although the O-III and the DGM NBP do bring out other aspects of these objects so it's interesting to compare the views "with and without" so to speak. As yet, I've not found the H-Beta filter has produced much in the way of "goods" for me but that maybe because my skies are a little too light polluted to enable good views of the rather challenging objects that respond well to the H-Beta filtration.
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