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Everything posted by Patbloke

  1. It's the weirdest thing, everyone says it's upside down, but when I first saw it down there I had to think for a few minutes why... However, it's not as weird as seeing Orion near the zenith looking like a giant bow tie!!
  2. It's the same Moon out there from wherever you are in the world, just looks different... (Apologise for the poor quality pics, but you get the idea....) Left - Kidderminster, Worcestershire Right - Cairns, Queensland
  3. I've got the 20mm really clear and sharp... someone will get a good EP here!
  4. Great point I forgot that, I think my old Skywatcher EQ5 had N marked on the mount? Anyway, it's great to get tips, such as yours and the simple blanket on the washing line... it all helps for a good night
  5. I've been looking at those and am in the research phase of making my own... after last night I might try to repeat my success without it for now. I have rubbish knees and stiff neck so feel for you with the arthritis bloke...
  6. I spent a fair amount of Wednesday afternoon centering my polar scope... Little did I realise that the polar scope requires centering before you even attempt perfect polar alignment. It appears that my AVX has been very forgiving in the fact that in the past I have more or less just got polaris somewhere near the centre of the circle before aligning. However, after watching many YouTube clips on how to centre the polar scope I finally achieved my aim in having the polar scope centered. Last night was my first serious attempt at 'Bang on' polar alignment with a well centered polar scope!!
  7. Watched Jupiter for a while last night with my trusty Starwave 102 - 8mm BST, basic 15mm plossl and x2.5 Revelation Barlow with blue filter... lovely and clear, enjoyed the night. I watched Europa appear not long after midnight which is amazing. I have to say that since Nick advised to download the Jupiter moons app I've enjoyed studying the movements in more detail. I'm also learning patience sitting on my viewing chair, noticing that the longer you look the more you see! That sounds basic but I think it's true that the seeing does change very quickly... (unless it's my eyes drifting in
  8. Keep the faith Don... Seeing the pictures of the place again in the news has reminded us of what a wonderful place Big Island is. Like everyone we hope you all keep safe and that pesky volcano down the road behaves itself.
  9. It seems there are quite a few astro apps out there... Here are just a few of mine ?
  10. So it all went horribly wrong three times... Alignment!! how can you mess up alignment three times? Well, when you are in a hurry and have an pre planned observing list that must have been prepared for targets around at 4 in the morning!! Objects currently below the horizon... Argh I must learn more star names to make alignment easier!! Anyway, I want to let you know that despite some frustrations my advice is you should never give up on a clear night! Today for the first time in ages I was inspired by 'Nick of the Swad' to plan an evenings observing... I created a list of targe
  11. Out now and just been through this list! Lovely stuff Nick and total lack of neighbour annoyance as all lovely little moves with the scope. Good news is My target for the night Jupiter has just appeared from behind next doors Conifer... Rejoice
  12. Nice report Cobbler... Great pics! You can't beat truly dark skies fella. Whenever I've had the pleasure I just stare up and out into space taking it all in! Be careful on those mountains.... :-)
  13. I use a pair of Bushnell Trophies 8x42... I do take my Apollos when I go to Australia, but a bit heavy for general 'day out' use... Just for a simple grab and go, well made great optics I like my Bushnells :-) Come in a nice little padded bag as well...
  14. Wow, great idea to share on a movie clip... Love it! I just need a garden now then that building will be something to plan into the design :-) Such a shame to have to worry about all the security measures though... I suppose it's best to be prepared rather than having to react later if the worst happens... Congratulations...
  15. Lovely read... I really got a sense of your enjoyment under the dark sky :-)
  16. As the 'Unexpected Visitor' I can confirm that the evening was indeed superb (as usual) Here's the thing with Astronomy and Astro folk - there is a genuine willingness to share the Astro experience with everyone and anyone who shows an interest. It is true the observation platform slabs wobble a bit (especially after three hours in when I decide that jumping up and down will somehow make me warmer!) and Yes - the occasional pungent aroma in the air made me feel like I was back at the Crystal Palace Bowl back in the 70's watching Bob Marley singing his tunes before Joe Jackson appeare
  17. Great work! I'll try the UHC then maybe an OIII if I can borrow or buy :-)
  18. Victor, did you have both filters attached at the same time? I love my Apollos and had a great night scanning the skies last night and found this area... I've never really bothered with filters, but you've got me thinking!! I have UHC not OIII though...
  19. G'Day.... On my fourth trip to Cairns and am stopping this time at Clifton Beach... I am determined to bag the large and small Magellanic Clouds this visit!! I've picked the right time of year but need a good clear view south, currently the ranges and light of Cairns is in the way... Anyone local doing a spot of observing soon? :-) Current plans are to drive up to the table lands somewhere near Mareeba over the weekend, any other ideas? Thanks I have come tooled up with my trusty Apollos 15x70's
  20. I'm off again to Cairns next week for November... Very lucky as my daughter has set up home there and obtained residency, so I've been three times in two years already :-) I take my 15 x 70 Helios Apollos in my flight cabin bag and have been so lucky viewing the wonders of the southern skies... It's funny you should mention Orion as I remember looking up whilst swimming in the pool noticing how funny it looked on it's side almost at the zenith... One of the things that I could not get to grips with was the path of the planets (ecliptic) I couldnt get my head around it all (could be the je
  21. Some great pictures and as always Nick great sketches... I don't yet have solar observation equipment apart from my homemade filter made for the transit of Mercury in 2016... But I do visit the Slooh telescope site online and see live solar pics on the Canary 5 scope... At the moment you can even take pics if you piggyback missions on the night sky scopes... I in Chile and 4 in Gran Canaria... I love it, ok it's not the same as getting out there and doing it yourself but for anyone without a garden or solar gear it's ace...
  22. It's crazy they've done that... where is their commitment to battle pollution? Light is a form of pollution and your council should have an environmental policy somewhere!! It's a weird thing, where my son lives there aren't any streetlights, it's a couple of villages on the edge of Birmingham and Halesowen... Everytime someone mentions installing them, there is uproar! The thing is Burglars actually like lighting as they can see what they are doing, all that light prevents crime can be disputed I suspect. On the flip side though a well placed light down an alleyway or subway is sometime
  23. Never mind Nick a good day on solar will sort you out bloke................. Oh! er hum where's the sun?
  24. Ha ha brilliant it'll be 15x70's soon... I love my binocular observing nights - Just laying on the recliner scanning the skies looking at billions or colourful stars glistening away... then I hunt down targets! I love the wide Field of Views and in particular the star colours using my Apollos. Another great thing is they are easy to transport on holidays, used with a monopod it's just brilliant... looking forward for your next targets bagged
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