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Everything posted by Albireo380

  1. I have one of these as my "Grab n' Go GOTO" setup. It is a nice wee 'scope and the GOTO is surprisingly accurate. I am not surprised it is selling well as it is well worth the money. Tom
  2. Bring some Jura Steve, perhaps I will get some of it : ) I seem to remember it evaporated very quickly last time. Tom
  3. Thanks for the link, I had missed the thread. The new s/ware looks good and if it facilitates the return of a buy/sell section, then excellent. Cheers Tom
  4. It looks good - can't wait for it to be implemented. Thanks Admin/Mods. Tom
  5. Dear All (Admin and Mods), I am aware that there was a thread about 3 months ago regarding the demise of the Buy/Sell section. I can't remember the detail of the thread, but seem to remember reading that the section would come back sometime in 2012, but with different rules etc around it. I haven't seen any thread recently giving an update and wondered what was happening. Can we have an update on this issue please? Regards to All, Tom
  6. It has got to be a good thing if it gets some youngsters interested in Astronomy. It doubled the numbers the Astro Soc of Glasgow got at a Public event in late January - and that has to be a good thing. It isn't aimed at us, we are already hooked. Tom
  7. To whet your appetites: Got home at lunchtime today, after 3 nights / 4 days at Galloway. Thanks to Mike (Demon Barbour) et al for welcoming me into the warmth of their large static caravan and feeding me 3 breakfasts and 2 dinners. It was a cloudy all the Thursday and Saturday nights, but we did get a 2.5hr window until about 9.30pm on the Saturday. The seeing conditions were not ideal as there was a stiff breeze and moisture high up in the atmosphere, but I can't complain - we got some Astronomy in. I don't think the dedicated imagers got much joy and my fumbling attempts with a Canon 500D on an Astrotrac produced an indifferent M42 before the clouds rolled in. However, observed: Jupiter, Mars, Venus, 2.8day Moon, M41, M42, M51, M46, M47, M48, M50, M81, M82, M93, NGC2360, NGC2506 & NGC2509 - so a fruitful session. Some of the Messiers/NGCs around Puppis / Monoceros / Canis Maj are new to me, and very nice they are too. So ..... it was a good weekend overall, with Steve, Kathleen and me from the Central Scotland Observers Group in attendance, and 11 others from Galloway or northern England. A good crowd. A load of beers got drunk and a fair amount of Single Malt (Isle of Jura, Glen Moray & Tormore) as well. The die hards returned to their tents at 5.30am on the Saturday morning (not me, I was tucked up by 1.30am as I need my beauty sleep). If you haven't been to Galloway before, you should note - It is VERY DARK. Perhaps slightly darker than Kielder, and that is the best I have seen south of rural Perthshire or up in Skye. The galloway site has absolutely flat horizons so is great for observing those southern objects. It is well worth going in November, as if the weather is clear, the skies will be great. I have already booked Cheers Tom
  8. Excellent Steve, I will speak to Lesley and book a pitch. Tom
  9. Even if you want to do some visual work, don't buy one of these. The build quality has decreased markedly over the last 5-6 years and they are not the 'scopes they were then. I know three people who regret buying these. Consider a Celestron equivalent if you want to observe primarily. I know a couple of people who have bought 4" and 5" Celestrons and have had no problems with them. Possibly controversial comments, I know, especially from someone with a Meade LX90, but this was bought 8 years ago, is of excellent quality and has never let me down - unlike the LNT and GPS versions that were bought by friends more recently. You just need to see my scope next to theirs to see the drop in quality Negative comments I know, but hopefully useful. Tom
  10. Okay, cheers Guys. I have looked after this powertank, recharging every month or so, but as you all say, 7 years is a good lifespan for one of these. I have 2 17ah ones from Maplins, so they will do me at the moment. Thanks Tom
  11. I have had a Celestron 7ah power tank for about 7 years. It has always worked just fine, but recently it didn't seem to be holding its charge and when recharged the "fully charged" green light seemed to come on very quickly (after a couple of hours charging). A few nights ago the tank showed fully charged but showed its amber (needs charging) light within half an hour. After another half hour my LX90 could no longer draw enough power from it to slew. Ysterday I recharged the power tank for about 4 hrs until it showed "fully charged" (which is very quick - it would normally take 12hrs). But when I switched it on tonight the amber "needs charging" light came on and a test with the spotlight beam showed it was not highly charged. I am currently leaving the spotlight on to fully discharge the powertank and will then give it 24hrs charge. Is this likely to fix the issue or has it finally come to the end of its lifespan? Tom
  12. The Flocking paper I had ordered arrived from FLO a couple of days ago and I got around to flocking the 14" Flextube today. I had bought 3 rolls of the matt black velour flocking paper. The 14" has an OTA diameter of 16", the main section being about 70cm tall and this meant that I needed two rolls of the paper for that alone. The upper section (holding the spider and focus mechanism) needed about half a roll. The paper can be cut easily using kitchen scissors and this means you can cut sections to fit the shapes you need, or to cut small sections out where nuts/bolts protrude. The whole job took me just over an hour and I am left with a totally matt black interior for the OTA. This is a big change for the better, as the interior of the OTA was a dull, dark grey before. The paper sticks down easily and can be peeled off within a few seconds of sticking it down, if it wasn't on straight. After a few minutes it seemed as if stuck on with super glue. I have left it in the house for the last 3 hours and it seems solidly attached to the OTA. I will see what happens after a few nights under our dew ridden skies. I also bought a lightshroud for the 14" Flextube and spent about 10 minutes installing it. So, I now have a 14" Flextube GOTO which can get no stray light on the mirror and with a matt black OTA interior. The views through this 'scope were already good, with the enhanced contrast this little upgrade provides, they should be awesome now. Tom
  13. Ahh John, you "oldie" . I am a year younger than you (53), pity my mental age is still about 15. It seems that we are above average age for SGL members (judging by the poll so far). Perhaps we should think of ourselves as a fine wine, matured to perfection. Or maybe not. Tom
  14. Cracking effort! Well done both the imager and processor. Tom
  15. Hmm .... James must be immune due to the good Scots Genes he has. Hope you Southern woosies recover soon. Joking apart - get well soon FLO. Tom
  16. It is excellent news that the "For Sale" section will return in some format. I have bought and sold several times over the last few years and would miss this section terribly. I look forward to seeing the new section early in the New Year. Mike (Veracocha) - a good quote earlier in this thread, but perhaps a bit over the top - nobody died, thank goodness. Also, listened to a couple of Veracocha tracks and didn't see you as the type to "bop" to that. You are a dark horse. : )) Perhaps see you at the next CSP bash. Tom
  17. "The Beast" gives fantastic views of M42, it blows me away every time. But your 10" should be pretty good too Isabelle. As regards cupcakes .... I like eating them, so perhaps some of your cupcake baking friends would take pity on a hungry Scot and send over a couple of dozen. I will happily provide feedback on their baking skills. Tom
  18. I have enjoyed this thread Isabelle. I have smiled and laughed all the way through it (except where I grimaced) - could my two track approach be due to being born in June (Gemini)? I have heard that being born in June meant I was amongst the youngest going to school and University. Certainly it took the fright of a resit at the end of my first Uni year to make me grow up a bit and start working hard (I was a very young and green 17 year old when I went to Uni). The fright must have worked as I ended up with a PhD - so my birth month didn't hold me back too much. I often have members of the Public (at Astro Soc outreach events) asking me about astrology and star signs. I always have to remain polite (although it is a strain sometimes). I try to explain the difference between facts and make believe (in a nice way). It usually doesn't work. Like several people on this thread, I just keep going back to Orion time after time - I can look at M42 for ages as there is always something that I hadn't noticed before. Tom
  19. Just a few piccies to show the layout we had on the Friday/Saturday. I can still hardly believe we were lucky enough to get clear skies. Regards Tom
  20. Just back and unloaded the car. Feeling pretty knackered after a GREAT weekend. Friday night - patchy clear spots from 1am Sat to 4am (so liver took a bashing from the Glenmorangie, Isle of Jura, Glen Moray and Aberlour in the earlier evening) - slept 4am-8am. Saturday night - clear right through until I crashed out into the sleeping bag at 1am (I believe it stayed clear until at least 2am). This evening, wall to wall cloud after a sunny day. Still, got some Solar stuff in with a PST, Solarmax 40 and fract + white light filter. Mike's 15" Obsession Dob was great as usual. I had my 8" LX90 and the GRS was very clear on Saturday evening. Good Chilli from Mike and Madras curry from Steve. Excellent Onions in paprika and lemon juice from Adrian (seemed to go well with both curry and chilli). Roll on CSP5. Nina - You are a STAR (as always). Thanks for running CSP4. Tom
  21. "Jane .... Check" Are you sure Terry? Loading Jane into the car tonight is probably not a good idea. Lentil and Tomato soup simmering gently on the stove. Should be ready about 12.30, then off to bed, up 8am and a quick Gym trip, back for 9.30am and load the car, then shower and brunch. Will set off 11.00-11.30 and arrive 1.00-2.00pm. Netweather forecast is 40% cloud at 9pm tomorrow, dropping to 30% at midnight, similar (but slightly better) Saturday night - so we may see some stars. Sorry you can't make it Mike - see you next time. Tom Tom
  22. We can't blame David this time Mike - he isn't at CSP4. Good you had a couple of hours clear on your first night. I will keep sacrificing to the cloud nymphs. Tom
  23. Hi Steve, If I am sober I will help with your nocturnal tent erecting endeavours. Put some of the curry aside for me : ) Single Malt waiting to be loaded into the car - first thing after the astro kit and tent/sleeping bag. Isle of jura eh! I considered that myself but was beguiled by the Glenmorangie. Still, a good choice and I will be at your shoulder for a wee taste (or two). I will arrive early afternoon on Friday and try to coral Adrian and Mike to assist with my tent erection. then I will slump in my camp chair, beer in hand and solar scope at the ready. Nina will fan me with fresh Peacock feathers and feed me grapes whilst singing softly too me (You will Nina, wont you?) Okay, maybe your hostess duties don't extend to that. : ( Away now to sacrifice to Sol Invictus and the Longtown cloud nymphs (in best Roman tradition) - it will probably be as successful in getting good weather as anything else. Regards to all, Tom
  24. Netweather.tv is reasonable Andy. Sorry to hear Sandra is unwell, please extend my best wishes. Clear skies not guaranteed, but if you sacrifice young children to Sol Invictus (Roman Sun God) he may smile on you and give good weather. On second thoughts, I believe the Romans used chickens and their Empire did pretty well for 400 years or so. So go for the chicken entrails - it keeps you out of Jail. Regards Tom Bring LOTS of cakes - I will put the calorie controlled diet and get fit regime aside for the weekend in honour of your humungous cakes : )) Tom
  25. lentil and tomato soup will be made Thursday evening (a large tureen of it - about a gallon or so, the biggest tureen I have). Tom Adrian and Pete - just bought a bottle of Glenmorangie (matured in Port Casks), I seem to remember (hazily) that it went down well at Galloway.
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