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Everything posted by asteria

  1. asteria

    diy dob

    The simplest things work best! I've been thinking about how to protect my secondary mirror because in the design I am working on it is quite exposed - dew is also going to be a problem!
  2. Hi there - I don't think the particular set of stars you were looking at has a name, but it is very likely that the stars formed part of the large open cluster of which Mirphak (alpha Persei) is part. This is from wikipedia: The Alpha Persei Cluster, also known as Melotte 20 or Collinder 39, is an open cluster in the constellation of Perseus. To the naked eye, the cluster consists of several blue spectral type B type stars. The most luminous member is the ~2nd magnitude white-yellow supergiant Mirfak, also known as Alpha Persei. Bright members also include Delta, Epsilon, Psi, 29, 30, 34 and 48 Persei. The Hipparcos satellite and infrared color-magnitude diagram fitting have been used to establish a distance to the cluster of ~172 pc.[2][3] The distance established via the independent analyses agree, thereby making the cluster an important rung on the cosmic distance ladder. The age of this cluster is about 50-70 million years.[1][4] Alpha Persei Cluster - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia It's a lovely view, which is particularly good through binos, as the field of view takes in the whole looping shape of the stars. I hope that helps. Ed
  3. Hi - the is good news. I'm really grateful to the mods for working so hard on this. One idea - how about two for sale boards, split based on the value of the sale. Say, if the value of the item is up to £30.00, the old rules could apply. For items over £30.00, which would include premium eps, mounts, scopes, imaging equipment, a more stringent set of rules could be set. Say, a minimum of three months membership, plus one hundred (or more) posts. There could also be a requirement to continue to contribute to the equipment (other than the for sale boards) or the observing and imaging boards. This might be far too complex to administer, but some variation on these rules might not be too onerous. Thanks one and all. Ed
  4. asteria

    diy dob

    Hi Tony - good to hear about the developments. My teflon sheets seem to be working OK, but I did wonder about placing them between a couple of thin aluminium discs to see if it smoothed the motion out. I think I'll see how I get on first before making any changes. I'm working on my alt. system now. Keep us up to date. Ed
  5. A very fine evening - clear sky, transparent with good seeing. Finally picked up M52, between Cassiopeia and Cepheus. A small red star was the final signpost that confirmed the sighting. A good clear view of mu Cephei, the Garnet Star, which is an extraordinary thing, to us a dim, dark red star, but in reality a huge, luminous star. Other beautiful sights: A rich Double Cluster, magnificent against a dark sky Kemble's Cascade, brighter and more luminous than my previous sighting, a clear view of the chain of stars Stock 23, an open cluster resolved into a number of individual stars with averted vision M34, resolved into individual stars with a.v. M31, a glorious view, with the galaxy at its maximum altitude for the year at mid-evening, with a bright core and a hint of spreading arms M45, Pleiades, a classic as ever, bright and clear Hyades and Aldebaran, best viewed through binos, and becoming clearer now it is higher in the sky M103, a good view in binoculars, a luminous patch of starlight Thanks for reading. Ed
  6. asteria

    diy dob

    Hi Tony - thanks - I'll study this in more detail. It's an interesting system you've devised. The pics are a great help. Thanks for taking the time to do this. All the best. Ed
  7. asteria

    diy dob

    The work went well - I now have a smoothly functioning azimuth turntable. I'd really appreciate any more information you have on your altitude bearings. I've read your account above but I think I'm missing something as I can't quite follow how you've managed the bearing surfaces. As I understand it, this is usually done through glueing 'ebony star' formica onto the altitude riser surface, and running this over PTFE blocks on the bearings, but I think you've come up with something different. Any feedback would be welcome. All the best. Ed
  8. asteria

    diy dob

    Thanks Tony - I'm just putting a bit more work in on my project now. Just going to put the az. plate on etc. Thanks for the tips. Ed
  9. asteria

    diy dob

    Hi Ponytale - I've got one of this non-stick sheets now. Will let you know how I get on with the azimuth bearing. Thanks for the idea! Ed
  10. asteria

    diy dob

    Hi - thanks for clarifying the baking sheet idea - I'll look into this. I'd never thought of using one (or two) of those plastic oven liners. Glad you've had first light - sounds like a very promising scope. Ed
  11. Been out tonight with the binos. The sky was reasonably good - steady seeing but transparency seemed a bit poor. Not the best night I've had with the binos, but not the worst either. I was able to track down some new stuff and some old favourites like the Double Cluster. M34 was good at times, with the cluster resolving into some individual stars with averted vision. I tried for NGC 1502, which lies at the foot of Kemble's Cascade. I picked this up on a hop from gamma Persei to eta Persei, and from there to the cluster Stock 23. The final clue is a chain of four relatively bright stars that point towards the Cascade and 1502. Other highlights of the session included M103, NGC 654 and 663, NGC 457 and the Garnet Star, mu Cephei. I also tried for M52, but it proved elusive. Might go out again for another look now that I've warmed up. Ed
  12. asteria

    diy dob

    Hi Ponytale - nice scope. Thanks for sharing the pics. I'm interested in your teflon baking sheet idea. Is this the non-stick paper that is used in cooking? It doesn't seem that it would be strong enough to carry the weight of the scope. Good idea though and it sounds like it works well. Ed
  13. Hi there - interesting video - thanks. Shows what a bit of lateral thinking and invention can achieve! Ed
  14. asteria

    Jim's Dob.

    Hi - good start - nice to see pictures of the process. What thickness MDF are you using? 12 or 18mm? I'm looking forward to following this thread. Thanks. Ed
  15. I always leave them out overnight to dry off, just place the cap loosely over them so that air can circulate and dry them. The cap helps keep dust off them. Hope that helps. Ed
  16. What a great idea - nice job! Happy observing to you. Ed
  17. I'm pretty much limited to Fri, Sat, Sun nights, but now the evenings have closed in, I try and get out mid-week if possible, can set up, observe, and be back inside by 10PM if all goes well. I go through phases of observing, I've had some good sessions since late August, probably 5 or 6. Binos are great for a grab and go session. Ed
  18. Hi there - welcome to the forum. Great post - thanks for the images. Ed
  19. Yes - it looks like a CG5 variant to me.
  20. Hi - I would be wary of having a fast newtonian because of this problem, I don't think that I would go faster than f5 myself. I guess if that if you are a patient person, with good practical skills, than collimating an fast newtonian is not going to be a problem, but I have found it very difficult to do. Ed
  21. Hi Sky4 - it's worth persisting, that's a nice scope and should do well on planetary and lunar. Good luck. Ed
  22. Great report - excellent read. Thanks for sharing this observation record. A 16" scope must be an absolute dream to use, such brilliant views. Ed
  23. Just watched this - mind-blowing image of Jupiter and two of its moons taken by Damien Peach - actually shows detail on the surface of the moons. The 'model' of the Milky Way galaxy and Andromeda galaxy was also interesting, made using two CDs 3 metres apart! Ed
  24. One advantage of a MAK is a nice compact tube which makes storage/handling potentially easier. I have a 6" MAK which is an excellent scope on planetary/doubles/globs etc. Ed
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