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stan26 last won the day on December 29 2013

stan26 had the most liked content!

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About stan26

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    Star Forming

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    Mendlesham, Suffolk.

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  1. This is so true Stuart I couldn't agree more, and not just astro either, all types of photography! I find PP the most challenging aspect of photography especially DSO work. IMO a lot of the time its what makes a good photo into a GREAT photo!
  2. Dave, Sorry i should have been more clear, i really need the Tiff file that you got out from your stacking software, I'm just not sure how you could send it too me. as the upload limit is 20mb on here and your tiff will be around 70mb. Maybe someone else will know the answer? Failing that you could use a site like file dropper to send it to me..? Once I have the tiff with all the info/data it holds I can have a play and talk you through it. Stan
  3. Cheers guys, i may have an arm wrestle with Alnitak later! I forgot to mention, these subs where ISO3200!!! hense a bit of noise about it, however I have done "some" selective noise reduction in areas. Dave, what ISO where you using..? and is your camera modded or not...? The basic method I use to get the initial nebula to show is this.... I load the stacked tiff in photoshop (complete linear file with no pre stretch done in DSS so it looks black with a few stars) I then go straight into curves and pull the curve roughly half way across to the left (obviously this will vary from image to image
  4. ....Not recommended! I wanted to see what the little astrotrac could handle. After a few tweaks of my DIY wedge I was managing half decent 2min subs with my Skywatcher star travel 102 achromatic refractor. Naturally the final stacked tiff was a processing nightmare, blue halos,flaring, field curvature, lack of contrast and colour compared to my Canon 200 L lens. But it was able to bring the subject closer than my lenses and that was the point of using it. The massive flare artifact around Alnitak is staying put! that would require too much butchering of the image to sort out, besides I think i
  5. haha cheers guys, and thanks for the re-arrangement Peter thats great! Happy new year all! Stan
  6. Thanks Guys. I actually rushed the processing of the original image, I had no intention of it being the final version when I started messing with the data in PS, I was hoping to add a few more hours but when I started seeing what was being revealed when stretching the histogram (jaw hit the floor moment) I got carried away and decided to go with it as a final version allowing me to move onto the next target (rosette neb) I have reprocessed the 1500px version to give it a smoother finish, The original although exciting with all the colour and detail had (i thought) a very "hard" finish to it e
  7. Thanks folks. I'm tempted to re process it to get some better looking stars, I struggle with "toning them down" and keeping there shape. I might clip the background a tad more too..... Cheers.
  8. Thanks folks. I'm tempted to re process it to get some better looking stars, I struggle with "toning them down" and keeping there shape. I might clip the background a tad more too..... Cheers.
  9. Taken over the last few nights, some most frustrating imaging sessions i have ever had with regards to getting the astrotrac aligned. I sort of gave up in the end and carried on with 5minute subs, however the end stacked image didn't show the trailing as bad as I initially thought it would. Just over 3 hours total exposure in the final stack, although I took nearly 5 hours of data, passing wispy clouds ruined a lot of them. Astrotrac TT320, Modded Canon 1100D, Canon 200 f2.8 L (@2.8) ISO400, Hutech IDAS MFA Filter. 3 Hours of 5minute exposures, and 10 x 30sec for M42's brighter parts. Stacked
  10. Thanks for your replies folks, Stuart your last suggestion about the wedge bolts being too tight may be bang on, ever since I have been using the wedge I have had this issue, although it has got worse over the last few sessions. Think I'll look at this first.... Thanks Stan.
  11. Hi Guys, I'm tearing my hair out with this! My astrotrac has always been very accurate with 5min + subs not a problem at 200mm, but over the last few sessions I haven't been able to get rid of star trailing. It has a fully charged 12 car battery so I don't think its a power issue. I have it bolted to my wedge which is very sturdy and very accurately adjustable and proved to be great the first few times I used it. Now I seem to get trailing (very elongated stars) in the RA axis. I have spent hours trying to drift align the wedge but still can't get rid of the trailing. For example I start my dr
  12. So far so good, tonight's drift align yielded perfect round stars with 5 minute subs at 200mm in both the southern and western sky. The fog rolled in before I had a chance to push it further. I'm amazed at how finely adjustable it's turning out to be. I would love to get 10min subs at 200mm but I'm not sure if an unguided astrotrac is up to it. Either way I'm going to give it a go!!
  13. Cheers Guys, when you consider the cost of wedges, i.e the astrotrac wedge which is £300!!, if this "does the job" for a fiver I think I'm onto a winner! Stuart - I have an empty 25ltr plastic drum with the bottom cut off which I place over the top of the wedge held down to the pier post with bungies. Any moving part will be getting a coating of adhesive lube to help protect it further. My poor old pier is looking a bit "weathered" now
  14. Okay, so its currently a little rough around the edges so don't look too hard! and I broke my last hacksaw blade which means there are a few bolts to be cut down to a more sensible length, but otherwise it all seems to work a treat! I originally brought the astrotrac to get out in the country side away from the LP, but now the missus works evenings and I need to be at home to look after the little ones, that doesn't really happen anymore. So I need to make use of the astrotrac at home. The Giottos tripod and manfrotto 410 geared head that I have are OK for the astrotrac but its still a bit of
  15. Cheers QM, Yes the astrotrac is a wonderfully simplistic bit of kit, I just need to tweak my wedge alignment for these long exsposures, theres still a bit of trailing in there. Periodic error is almost non existent at telephoto FL's upto 400mm. With the wedge bolted onto my old EQ pier I reckon I can be setup an imaging in around 2minutes! Cheers Stan
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