Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by badgers

  1. I'm sorry I've been away from the forums for an age with work and other things. Sadly the new LED lights on my street and the appalling weather dampened my enthusiasm for DSO imaging, although I plan to dust off the ATIK, 80/480 and the Canon 200mm lens and get some work in this winter. I wanted to setup a planetary imaging rig to give me something to do on nights where I don't want to fight with guiding and alignment etc. I've a HEQ5 mount already and have been offered a Celestron C9.25 at a decent price. Will the HEQ5 mount deal with the C9.25 ok for lunar and planetary imaging ? What kind of Camera would be good for this ? Was thinking of a DMK21AU618, or similar. Is it worth going for a mono camera, or would it just be a whole lot easier getting started with a colour CCD ? Anyway, hope to be posting images again on here again soon! Thanks, Anton
  2. Yep, the Gnome Camp : ) Security told me there were some astronomers about, although I've not yet done an imaging session on the campus. I've a good spot at the back of Duxford I've used and one near six mile bottom. PM me for details, would be good to meet up with another imager in the area. Anton
  3. Welcome tdmodels, I work just down the road from you in Hinxton but spend the rest of my time in the orange light-fest of Cambridge.
  4. No worries Ewan. The OAG did work wonders for me. My home-made guidescope rings and finder-guider seemed to cause quite a bit of differential flexure that crept in above 10-15minute exposures.
  5. Bias frames have completely eliminated this issue for me. Thank you everyone, I feel embarrassed for my 'hissy fit' I don't have a massive budget and my CCD was by far the biggest expense so I was a little alarmed. I finally got around to reshooting 200 bias frames and this has cleared up the problem nicely. It was about time I reshot bias and dark frames anyway. Thanks again for the support, Anton
  6. Hi Ewan, I'm working with the previous version of the Flattener on the same scope and the old planostar required 51.5mm backfocus which was even less space to play with. I use a Quantum Filter 7x electric filter wheel (21mm) and the TS OAG 9mm + Atik Backfocus (13mm). If memory serves I come in at about 52mm when everything is connected up due to mms lost at thread interconnects. I have the Planostar connecting directly into the TS OAG and there is very little wasted space with that setup with the connections. You shouldn't have any problem at all getting the spacing right, but it may take you a few nights of experimentation. Here is my current setup -> Around 53mm flange to CCD spacing. You could do the same but you'd probably need a very short extension. Get a good vernier calipers and don't underestimate how many mm's you can gain or loose by swapping out different adapters. I changed the T-Adapters on the filter-wheel with new ones from astroboot which were shorter and cost me less space at the interconnect. If the SXV filterwheel + OAG had been available back then, I'd have bought it in a heartbeat. Anyway, all I can say is that my current setup is consistently delivering flat stars and 30 minute guiding, so I'm not going to tinker with it again : ) But it took 3-4 nights to get the spacing right. Here is my old setup before moving to the new filter wheel, I gained a mm or so Hope this is helpful in some way! Anton
  7. Hi Sara, The imaging train is: Lens -> Eos side: Filter Drawer :T2 side -> T2 Spacer (5mm) -> Atik 460. If I can get this running a bit faster, I can make a lot of use of the few nights that aren't cloudy here. Thanks, Anton
  8. Thanks, Yes, I think I'll want to look at tilt using CCD inspector on a nice flat star-field and adjust the Gerd Neumann adapter to be more solid. That and focusing on different reference points around the image. The aperture mask I'm using is a piece of black PVC that's been perfectly cut to size by Monsieur Penrice the original owner of the lens. It may be that I should try and construct some incrementally smaller masks as you suggest Peter. Anton
  9. Yes, it's a shame there's no way to hack into the autofocus motors in this kind of CCD setup. The metal focusing adapter though is good, I can make adjustments that change my FHWM by 0.2 or 0.3 so I think I'm doing a reasonable job nailing the focus. I'm thinking its a combination of focus and that the imaging train might not be square. So the star I'm focusing on in the 1/3 intersection is blowing out the focus everywhere else as the optical centre isn't where I think it is. The gerd neumann adapter is nice, but it doesn't lock down the lens as well as I'd like, also the filter trays are very tight when they are inserted and might be pushing things off-square. I think a night of experimentation with focusing in different parts of the image and rotating the CCD etc might be in order. (and whoops, sorry I credited the wrong person for your 1/3 focusing strategy, fixed now.)
  10. My own tests (see new post) at f/2.8 aren't anywhere near as nice as jnc's, coma everywhere!, although f/4 looks great. You've got a great setup there jnc!
  11. Hello Everyone, I've finally got my widefield imaging setup working, many thanks to jnc71106 and his thread for help. I finally got some proper test images running with the lens wide-open at f/2.8 and aperture masked to about f/4. I've been adopting the wisdom from psychobilly to focus on a star at a point near the 1/3 intersections on the sensor. I did a series of tests last night on the pelican and north america nebula for 10 minute shots through a H-alpha filter. click to enlarge to full size I have seen some people getting fairly acceptable stars at f/2.8. However, I'm not sure the performance I'm seeing above on the left is really very good at f/2.8. The stars throughout the image all seem to be badly affected by coma. At f/4 the results seem excellent, although you can see a lot more noise as expected there seems to be better detail and mostly absent coma. For both images I focused using minute adjustments to a minimum FHWM on a moderately bright star roughly near the 1/3 intersections, I'm wondering how sensitive the results might be to this. jnc's stars in his post looked pretty fantastic, although his was a smaller sensor (Atik 314L+). But I've seen some APS-C sensor DSLR images that seemed to be pretty crisp, although they may have done some processing to improve things. I can't identify a point anywhere in the left image where star shapes aren't affected by coma. Is it possible that I'm doing something wrong with the focusing or perhaps my imaging train isn't square ? I guess it's possible that this individual lens isn't great at f/2.8 while other peoples might perform better ? It's also possible that I'm being overly fussy and my f/2.8 images are ok. Any suggestions appreciated, I'm thrilled at the f/4 performance, but It would be fantastic to be able to run this wide open on the Atik 460. Thanks, Anton
  12. Thanks for that Steve, my defect looks almost identical to the one in Figure 2 of the SBIG PDF, so hopefully will vanish away with bias and darks. I was more worried about some electronic or power issue, the more reading I do now the more I see how common these are. I feel like a bit of a wally now for over-reacting..... But I love that Atik : )
  13. Well looks like I've just developed my first column defect on the Atik, praying that bias frames remove the little swine..... I may hold off ordering though until I've sussed out the issue with the Atik. But yes, I think it's a good upgrade from the HEQ5 Pro, I'm taking Stephens warning under consideration, but I should be able to manage the extra weight, hopefully that gym time will pay off : ) Thanks again, Anton
  14. That's good to hear! I took a punt on them for the Atik due to currency fluctuations.... The following week FLO had them on special offer about £200 cheaper : ) I'll drop them a line in the morning, but it's hopefully fixed with the bias frames assuming the defect is consistent.
  15. Yes, I guess so... And yes, I will be onto Atik regardless and see what they say.
  16. Yes thanks for the reassurance Stephen, I should probably not panic. I was all set to pack up and not bother tonight... But I'll go out anyway and get some imaging done. I'll see how it looks after bias subtraction tomorrow. The camera was from Teleskop Service, I'm not sure how their customer service are for things like this. Thanks again for the support Anton
  17. to answer questions the questions above. Yes, I've tried cooled, uncooled and different temperatues. I've gone through 2 power supplies I've tried 3 USB cables. I've tried another windows box. looks like its here to stay.
  18. Arghghgh I had a lodestar like this with 3 of them on arrival, but FLO kindly replaced it. I don't get how it just appeared overnight. I guess I'll have to redo all my bias frames and darks.... I'm not a happy camper.
  19. I got setup tonight as usual booted up Maxim DL and took a few test shots on my Atik 460ex to get focused. Every image I get back has got horizontal single pixel white lines. One large one and one smaller one. I've rebooted, changed all the cables tried another power-supply etc. etc. Any advice ? I'm not doing anything different to my usual setup. I don't know what I'll do if the camera is broken, it's the single most expensive thing I've bought..... It's 16 months old, so I guess it's out of warranty
  20. I've got bigger problems right now. I think my Atik 460 is broken : ( Large white lines down the image in two different places. Will post in a new thread when I save an image....
  21. Swap the badges with the NEQ6 you've got for sale Olly and see if they notice..... I'll gladly take it off your hands then : ) The EM200 had me seriously contemplating going overbudget too. I need my children to grow up so I can finally afford mounts that involve anodised red metal. But for now, I'll stick with off-cream and stainless steel.....
  22. Hi Kim, Yes EMS directed me to the red field, but it's huge and hard to find individuals. Besides, I get aperture fever if I spend too much time near Millionaires Row on the red field : ) I was moving my scope and pitch around numerous times on the blue field to get the best viewing, so I wouldn't have been easy to track down : )
  23. I think my mind is now made up.... Barring the Alt-Az mode issues that will hopefully be addressed in firmware and the cable snags, I'm sold. Good luck unboxing your new one Kim! Anton
  24. You've done wonders with that OIII shell and the soap bubble has come out beautifully too. Lovely job. Don't grumble about the spanish weather, or we'll make you move over here for 6 months! I've been waiting 3 weeks for clear skies to get more OIII for this one. : )
  25. This is all very useful info, thanks everyone. I'll predominantly use this in EQ mode and I'll only have to carry it 10 metres each night. So the Alt/Az goto issues don't worry me too much. Actually goto performance doesn't bother me too much, I tend to plate solve and sync with EQmod. My main hope is that the encoders will mean that if I accurately PA each night then the PEC corrections will keep RA drift to a minimum and that I loose some backlash when guiding on Dec. So far it's looking good. Belt-modding an NEQ6 Pro is also an option, but the addition of permanent PEC with the AZ-EQ6 looks like it might justify the extra cost for my needs. My major grumble with the HEQ5 Pro is Altitude adjustment is just awful, even with upgraded bolts, it sounds like the re-engineering they've done on the AZ EQ6 will improve this a lot. Maybe FLO can ban me from their website now, my wallet is getting twitchy. Thanks, Anton
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.