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About petevasey

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    Hexham, Northumberland

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  1. Nice to see that someone has one of these scopes. I first looked through a 6" short tube several years ago. Just a normal 2 element achromat, but it knocked my socks off! To be fair I do have good Apo triplets (as you see in my signature) but that 6" glass has always fascinated me for visual observing - wide field, good light grasp and contrast with no central obstruction. By chance I recently spotted this scope on a couple of web sites, this one and here And it would appear that the manufacturers/designers have done their best to minimise chromatic aberration and supply a flat field all
  2. Thanks for the clarification. Presumably the barlowing acts like a corrector plate in some way by reducing the field of view to counteract the edge distortions due to the spherical mirror. Sort of reminiscent of the Celestron Edge HD. But also worrying is the fact that the primary mirror cannot be collimated. Hmmm. Cheers, Peter
  3. I presume that is the 'catadioptric' Skyhawk, 1000 mm focal length. But I'm a bit puzzled. None of the dealers or reviews I've found explain how it is 'catadioptric', other than it has a spherical figure to the mirror rather than parabolic as for the 500 mm focal length 'P' version. Can anyone enlighten me - is there some form of corrector plate in the optical train. or perhaps just a special lens insert in the focuser? In which case I would suggest that it is not a true 'catadioptric' telescope. Unless of course it is a Maksutov Newtonian, but if that is the case why not call it by that n
  4. A couple of pros and cons to add to the above excellent advice. Undoubtedly a Dobsonian is the best 'bang for the buck'. Relatively light, easily transported and set up. But like all Newtonian telescopes will need regular collimation and occasional mirror cleaning. Collimation can be a bit daunting for beginners, at least a Cheshire eyepiece will be required. I don't know how accessible the primary mirror adjustments are on the Heritage range. A refractor of course has none of those problems. For similar money a fair bit smaller, and although there is no central obstruction so better c
  5. Hydrogen -alpha of course. For many years I have enjoyed my Solarview 50 (bought in 2005!) Superb instrument. Alas it has suffered serious damage, so has to be returned to the Isle of Man for repair. Fingers crossed it can be fixed without excessive cost. And it should be covered by my home insurance although it's not worth claiming for relatively small amounts. But if it's not readily repairable, might need a complete new etalon assembly for example, the insurers might jib at forking out £1000s to fix a 15 year old instrument. New cost is now over £5000! So in case all does not
  6. Although there was a bright Moon in the sky on 21st January, the air was nevertheless very clear, so I decided to try for the 'Seagull' nebula, IC2177 in Canis Minor. This emission nebula is well suited for the use of narrowband filters, being particularly bright in Hydrogen-alpha, so worth a try. Also the large target needs a wide field, and the QSI 683 on my ST65 quad was just enough to cover the vast majority of the gas cloud. But it is very low in my sky, never rising above 24 degrees, so imaging is limited to an hour or so either side of the meridian. Unfortunately it clouded over before
  7. I used TV happily for years until recently. Most will know that later versions forced an upgrade when one became available. Because I have Windows XP on my Obsy computer this started causing me major problems - it got to the point where I couldn't run for longer than two or three minutes at a time without having to reconnect, and the latest version I had (15) wouldn't install in XP. Then I found an old (2011!) installer on my Obsy computer for version 6. This surprisingly would talk to the version 15 on my 64 bit W7 desktop, and all was go again, except that I always had to reconnect twice
  8. Aagh! I wish I'd known about that awning when I ordered our van - a substantial saving in both weight and money! Never mind. What's done is done. Once better weather arrives, even if caravan sites are still closed I'll heave out the awning bag and give it a go in our driveway. Hopefully straightforward - I haven't been able to find any Youtube videos on attaching it. Generally if I'm going to use the awning there will be two of us, so help will be at hand. Sorry to read about your teething troubles, Derek. Sounds like you got a 'Friday afternoon' job. Hopefully all is sorted now.
  9. Yes, there will definitely be weather! Cheers, Peter
  10. With the lockdown and almost constant cloud cover, life is rather boring at the moment. So I had a look at future great conjunctions. 2041 as far as I can tell is no closer than 6 degrees, pretty much a non event compared with our 6 minutes! But April 2060 is a different kettle of fish. Appears to get as close as 67 minutes. Not bad at all, but look at what else is happening! This is a screenshot from Skymap Pro. At the start of full darkness Jupiter is still over 20 degrees altitude. An almost first quarter Moon (not in frame) is 35 degrees away so not too intrusive. Venus bang on t
  11. Hi, Derek. Neat outside socket - I'm using a cable run under my garage door! Well done with the shoehorn job. Assuming you bring that van to Galloway in November I'll look forward to drooling over it Hopefully the weather at that time of year will be kind - I don't fancy towing a caravan on snow and ice! Same comment regarding the 2022 dates of course, nevertheless I have now booked them both with Lesley. Live in hope! March finishes on 4th, then straight home and up to Kielder for the weekend. Surely over that whole week I'll get at least one clear night? A surfeit of whisky an
  12. Hi, Derek, and thanks for the awning tips. As you may have found out, when the big awning is erected on the Basecamp, the overall length of the outfit is 9 metres. So it will not fit on some camp sites which have a length limit. No problem of course, we just won't take the awning to such sites. As you say the van is remarkably spacious, and we got used to a fairly limited living space with our motorhomes. But because of our steep ramp and the need to raise the jockey wheel as high as possible and tip the van to clear the ramp, it can't be towed into or out of our driveway. So we
  13. I just got round to checking on this March - what a shame to see that it isn't happening, although I was pretty sure that would be the case. Anyway, I'm booked for November. Hope to finally meet you all there. BUT there may be some confusion. In March we sold our motorhome in favour of a small caravan - small to go on our drive which has a steep ramp, and of course to be easily towed. We do a lot of exploring when away, and the big vehicle was seriously scary on some narrow lanes, never mind trying to park in towns. So to have the convenience of a car with us, we decided to take the plun
  14. Thank you. As I said, the seeing was awful, not helped by the low altitude which introduced loads of colour separation. So here are a few frames of the Jupiter biased video, clipped from the main video. See what I mean! Cheers, Peter Jupvid.mp4
  15. Hi, Jem Glad you like the pic. But the cluster is pretty small - only 4 to 5 arc-minutes. Yes I certainly did crop the image, and enhance the stars. The original is on my web site here. As you say, your field of view will be more than four times larger than mine, so the cluster will be very small. But what camera will you be using? The sensor on my QSI is quite big at 18 x 13.5 mm, and the pixel size is 5.4 mm. But you should be able to resolve the cluster, and if your sensor has smaller pixels, it could be a reasonable size. I attach a skymap pro screen shot showing the fram
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