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About Tim

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    Coventry UK
  1. US firm Astrozap make an SCT dewband and dew shield combined. If you can keep the temperature of the corrector plate just higher than the dew point, you will have no troubles. You'll need a 12v DC supply and an adjustable controller too. These have worked for me in extreme moisture conditions, while observing near the sea.
  2. I'm not sure, but we are right in the corner over two gravel pitches. You wont miss us, our camp has been described as a refugee site
  3. Perfect. I have pitches in the top left corner of red, near the entrance to the dog walk, likewise you are most welcome. I'll be doing some imaging with any luck, and also have an 18" dob if you fancy a bit of visual. Look for a dirty brown Navara with a huge dent in it
  4. Don't forget you only need the heaters on the bare minimum to keep the dew away Rob. Trial and error will reveal whether warming the lens cell improves or increases the apparent pinching. I'm off to Kelling soon but would like to keep up to date with how you get on, if possible could you @Tim any posts that follow so I remember to pick them up in my half dazed state. After all it is bound to be perfectly clear every night and I'm taking imaging and visual gear this year, so sleep won't be an option.... Thanks
  5. Looks better Getting spacing right has to be one of the most fiddly aspects of imaging. There is something amiss with the central stars to my eye, although it is late, I have a stinking cold, and can only find my rubbish "ready reader" glasses! If you took a short, say 10 second luminance exposure of some centrally placed bright stars, do they have a slight three sided appearance? Or is it just my silly old eyes? Cheers, Tim
  6. Hitch-hikers guide to the galaxy? It might cheer you up during your confinement!
  7. The Sky at Night

    Just watched this one, thoroughly enjoyed the Cassini run down, and Pete's comments about Saturn struck a chord too. Will definitely be looking out for that once in 30 years storm system now. Re-visiting some of Cassini's images made the episode special, especially those with the tiny moons making waves in the rings, epic! The show does seem to have re-found it's feet lately. At first I found Dr Maggie's presenting style to be distracting to the material, but now her infectious enthusiasm has won me over, great to have another unique character at the core of the programme.
  8. 35mm film? Pffft! That was just mucking about, many of the professional industrial photographers my family used to produce prints for worked in medium format. We had to get the smaller glass negative slider out for the enlarger if anyone brought 35mm. There was something magical, (and likely highly toxic!) about the smell and atmosphere of the darkroom. Would love to go back into one for a while to experience that again. Sometimes if I con them into coming to have a look through my scopes, my family will comment that they don't know how I can work in the dark. Yet back in school days I used to hand load film cartridges with film from a large spool tin, doing the whole thing in complete darkness, astronomy is a walk in the park compared!
  9. Red nights

    Have just dismantled half of my observatory equipment to take to a dark site for a couple of weeks...........................
  10. Visual planetary....that's a good question. To compare a 6" to a 5" they'd have to be the same focal length wise I should think, and maybe, side by side on the same night, at the same time, the fleeting microseconds of great seeing would be interpreted by the brain and resolve some extra detail, maybe. A high frame rate camera though will be able to acquire more, more detailed images over the course of a session against a smaller scope. Solar imaging is a prime example of this where resolution is typically much higher than the atmosphere allows, in theory. The best solar images come from larger instruments with noticable improvement inch by inch. That's my theory anyhow
  11. Telescope took a fall

    What sort of telescope is it? A simple star test will demonstrate the optical situation to you. If you don't know what to look for, please ask.
  12. Is the diagonal too long? They add considerable distance. And at any rate, they will adversely affect your image too, so try to find a way without it. Roughly, the chip of the camera will be at the same place you focus an eyepiece Ken beat me to it
  13. Personally, being able to demonstrate parfocality in my filter set allows me to quickly asses the CA qualities of any telescope that turns up for review. I always do a visual test too of course but sometimes the variances which render a telescope unsuitable for full colour imaging are hard to quantify under poor skies, the camera doesn't lie though. An interesting case in point is the little Vixen 100. Parfocal in red and blue but considerably out in green. Wasn't easy to demonstrate with an eyepiece at all but it is impossible to focus a colour camera with it.
  14. Borderline I should think Michael. If you test lower in the sky you will likely see a larger variance between blue and red.
  15. It's an interesting comparison Michael, and one that I do any time I get a new refractor for review. I should have thought that a reflector or true apo would provide the most robust results, but I've noticed considerable effects from atmospheric distortion. Also focus changes due to temperature of course so the closer in time each filter is compared, the better. I'm pretty happy that my Baader sets, both 2" and 1.25" are essentially parfocal to all intents and purposes in the telescopes I use. However, I always focus each filter anyway, as best practice. Are you coming to Kelling btw? Hope so!