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DanDare

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About DanDare

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    Star Forming
  1. Had mine a few years, again on offer from Maplin. No problems with the pluck foam (or handle), I leave my eyepieces out to dry before putting them away and have a couple of bags of water absorbing crystals in the case just to be on the safe side.
  2. Thumbs up from me, I thought the balance about right. If it creates more interest in Astronomy then all to the good.
  3. 'twas in the summer 'Horizons' magazine from Hertfordshire CC, the freebie they puch through your door. There may be more on their website www.hertsdirect.org although TBH I haven't looked on there lately! Update: See here http://www.hertsdirect.org/envroads/roadstrans/highways/hertslightpfi/
  4. I read that Hertfordshire Highways are planning to replace the majority of their (110,000) street lights. So I got an email off to them asking if light pollution had figured in their plans. This is what they come back with: As well as being more energy efficient, the light fittings that Herts County Council plan to install will reduce light pollution. The fittings are specifically designed to shine light downwards and avoid 'sky glow'. Mind you, they are looking for central government to provide funding - so don't hold your breath. If successful though they could start introducing these from 2013.
  5. I was out at 4.30 am had a bit of light cloud at 4.35 but that had cleared in about 5 minutes, although total cloud cover at 5.00. A very enjoyable half an hour with 17 meteors seen. Roy
  6. Thanks all, your comments are very much appreciated. Certainly a labour a love Ron, hate to think how many hours I've spent on it. Fairly costly as well, with having the mirrors re-coated, paint, SS nuts and bolts and everything I reckon I've spent around £200. Doc, I will need to get some weight on the back, which should sort out the balance - as you've spotted it's a bit top heavy. Its a bit of a beast, the truss is 6' long, it's too heavy really to keep getting it off and on the mount, so I'll leave it mounted permanantly. I have to keep it in the garage as that's the only place big enough for it - and it half fills that. Don't think I'll be taking it to any dark sites/star parties. Roy
  7. This is a homemade 10" f7.5 truss tube newt I picked up about a year ago. It was made about 25-30 years ago, the truss tube had been sitting in a shed for about 20 years and the mount had, I think mostly been out in the open. (I had to knock out or drill out every bolt to get it apart). Mostly used the original bits, but needed to fit a new (homemade, but not by me!) secondary holder and spider. Had the mirrors re-coated. Also bought a s/hand focusser and finderscope and sorted out the mirror cell. I attached some lockable castors to make it easier to move arounnd. I've yet to sort out a counterweight and a light shroud. I haven't got the collimation right yet but have had a quick peek through it with Jupiter as a target and just some general scanning around. Some before and after pics:
  8. DanDare

    What have I done?!?

    Welcome to SGL Zanes. Roy
  9. Not sure if this was the same thing but at about 10.20 ish on the 22nd, I had just looked up from the eyepiece to see a bright flash heading south west through Hercules. But this only lasted a second or two. This was more meteor speed (which I initially thought it was, only getting a quick glimpse) certainly not satellite speed.
  10. Camkorn, I was a member of Letchworth (LDAS) about 5 years ago, but found it a bit too far, (I'm in Cuffley not far from Crews Hill/Enfield). Unless anything comes up a bit closer I was thinking about joining Loughton.
  11. Nothing last night - too cloudy in SE Herts! Forecast is a bit better for tonight though.
  12. ..me too re the pics. How is the camping mat working out as a light shroud? - I've heard of this many time before and was thinking of getting one myself.
  13. Hi Dean, I too am refurbishing an amatuer built truss tube newt. This is how I done mine. You will need a tape measure, a piece of white card and a torch. Remove the primary mirror, prop it up safely indoors (you will need plenty of room for this). Holding the torch in one hand and the piece of card in the other and standing well back from the mirror and (with the card and torch in the same plane as the mirror), shine the torch into the mirror so the reflected light hits the card. Now move forward (or back) until you get a focussed image of the torchlight on the card, place a marker on the floor at exactly that spot. You then measure the distance between the mirror and marker and then double that figure. That should be your true focal lenght. Good luck Roy
  14. My very best wishes to you both for a long and happy road trip. Clear skies and a clearer road. Roy
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