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.

Welcome to Stargazers Lounge

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to this site by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customise your profile, receive reputation points as a reward for submitting content, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more! This message will be removed once you have signed in.

  • Announcements



Advanced Members
  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

1,115 Excellent

About jambouk

  • Rank
    Red Dwarf
  • Birthday

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location

Recent Profile Visitors

2,407 profile views
  1. I love these threads; poor Olly must be fed up of typing this stuff out every few weeks
  2. Can you show the polo mint on here? often focual reducers need to be carefully paired a specif telescope. Is this focal reducer designed for the C8? James
  3. The May edition of the Society for the History of Astronomy's e-News is now available and accessible to all: James
  4. I don't think there is any need to ask us to go easy on you, you clearly have taken to this like a duck to water. I think carry on are you are. Your images have been taken at near full moon. You can't alter what phase the Moon is at. Imaging the Moon at full get a nice bright disc, but the sun shining directly onto the full face of the Moon bleaches most of the fine detail out other than the mare and the ray systems. If you want to pick up fine detail you have to image either side of the full moon, when the terminator, the line which seperates lunar daytime and lunar night, moves across the face of the Moon. Features near or on the terminator are exposed to sunlight coming in form a low angle, and this is when shadows appear and much finer detail can be determinded. Several books take the reader on what features to observe and image on what day of the lunar cycle. There is a pretty extensive list of nice lunar books in these two articles. Just keep at it, you are doing better than fine James
  5. Just check the software you are using does pick the best percentage of frames. If the seeing is good and many frames look stable, whack this up to20, 30, 40, 50, 60% - experiment; Damian Peach says try to get 2000 useable frames for the planets., so if you are starting with 4000, ideally use 50% of them, but clearly if 88% are AWFUL then this isn't to be advised. You should only use the FWHM algorithmon a pin point of light, so on a star, not on a planet or the Moon. It is a valid technique as a) there is a fair amount of scope for you to be within critical focus with your scope unlike other makes of telescope and b), I suspect infinity focus on a star is pretytclose to infinity focus on something in the solar system. Make sure you are picking a star at a similar altitude and in a similar part of the sky as your target object. Ahome made exlectric focuser can be a real help too. Lots of threads about these online. There is another guy from Vancouver on here, probably several others, hopefully you've all managed to network. Keep up the good work. James
  6. For vibration supression I'm not sure they are that useful. What mount are you using? What they are good for, and depends on which ones you get, is marking where to put your mount each time you set up. If you can stick them to the ground / lawn whatever thennext time you set up you can just plonk the tripod legs in the pads. That is handy. But you don't need fancy, expensive vibration pads for this. There are a range of things to use for this purpose. James
  7. It looks like this map has been updated so is now much more user-friendly:
  8. I love surveys though find it hard to answer this one. All of the sky in my back garden is hindered by light pollution, but actually the sky quality meter gives ma a reading of 19 which isn't bad seeing as Nottingham City Centre is just 2km away. I think for a survey like this to be meaningful it needs to have some quantitative data; eg what is the limiting magnitude from your back garden looking north, looking east, looking south, looking west, looking at the zenith... what is the SQM reading pointing at the zenith... Good luck with the project. James
  9. I think most modern day groups and societies, whether astronomy-related or not, generally have five things to potentially offer members: - Meetings - Publications - Online presence (stuff to look at and do when at home or away from home) - Resources / something unique to that group - A means to interact with like minded individuals There is often overlap between these categories and not all of my categories are delivered by all groups and societies, and other groups may have additional categories. This is simply my take on the whole “joining a society” thing. Anyway, trying toa get back on track... I enjoy being part of the BAA. - I really enjoy the meetings (though you don’t have to be a BAA member to attend); on balance the choice of topics and speakers is excellent. Everyone is made to feel welcome and it’s good opportunity to chat with other amateurs. - The BAA Journal can seem quite intimidating and several of the articles are very detailed but then it is a peer-reviewed journal and the scientific (and historical) papers are often cited by professional astronomers. However, there is also the lighter side of the Journal with meeting reports, news, small advert sections, less technical papers and tutorials and articles for beginners. It really is a mixed bag and is a great showcase for all that is good about the BAA. If an article doesn’t float your boat, don’t read it – I probably skip more articles in Astronomy Now than I do in the JBAA. If you are undertaking original work the Journal would be a first place to think about getting it published. The other publication is the annual BAA Handbook which contains so much useful technical information about occultations, conjunctions, phases of the Moon, eclipses, planetary positions and motions, meteors, you name it. It is a mostly technical (numerical) publication but if you want to work out when the prime meridian of Jupiter is facing us or when the Moon will occult a bright star, then it is your one stop shop. - Within the last two years, and I’m not sure when, I was at a BAA meeting and Jeremy Shears came over and started chatting to me. We got talking about the explosion of interest in astronomy in recent times and the availability of information online. We continued the conversation via email after the meeting and as a result I ended up on the BAA Website Operations Team and have been part of the decision-making and implementation of recent changes to the website and the BAA’s online presence. I think the website is a really useful resource for amateur astronomers of all levels and interests, and a hub of the BAA community (through the forum, member pages, email network etc). There is plenty of material on the website for non-members too, and this continues to evolve. - Being part of the BAA community means it is easy to get help and advice from leading amateur astronomers, and have your observations (images, sketches, observing notes etc) commented on by them. With 17 observing sections, there are countless resources and avenues for advice for both beginners and the advanced amateur. Members can access scans of historical copies of the Journal and Handbook, use the shop, search for images other amateurs have taken of specific targets, watch past meetings online, use the sky calendar, access tutorials... - I suspect for a fair number of people who join any society, it is about ‘people’ and being part of a community, and the ability to socialise. Having online resources and online chat rooms and the like is one thing, but to be able to have a cuppa and chat face to face with someone is something totally different, but not something everyone is interested in. But I love going to meetings and seeing people there I only ever see at meetings, and catching up, and saying “we really should make the effort to meet up outside of a meeting” but never do, lol. It’s nice to see hear stories from the old timers “I remember when so and so was doing his A-levels and a member of our local astronomical society, and look at him now... we are so proud...” etc. And in passing, sharing woes “... I just can’t get good collimation on my C11...” to which a flurry of suggestions comes fourth. And making contacts. And having a laugh and a pint. So I think it is great. I think like all societies you can’t please all of the people all of the time, but it is responsive and it listens to its members. It encourages participation and has the goal of helping individuals to get as much out of their hobby as they want to achieve. It is much more than the Journal which comes through the door. Have a nose around the website: Like and follow the Facebook page: Follow the BAA on Twitter: Why not attend a meeting, see if you like the ambience. I’m going to the comet meeting in June ( not because I am greatly into comets, but it isn’t too far from where I live, I know I’ll enjoy the talks and learn something (and probably want to start getting into comets), and it will be nice to catch up with people and have a chat. You get out of things what you put in. If you want to know more ask, and I’m happy to be sent a message through here. That’s a nice succinct reply James
  10. Well spotted.
  11. Interestingly in the v4 manual they describe the method of updating the firmware in the same way as for the older style handset, not through the mount. Good to see that Skywatcher's attention to detail in the manual is as good as elsewhere James
  12. There are pros and cons for them all. I can't get the meade links to work but I an in a very poor wifi area. I am drawn towards this: as you won't need to collimate it, and it is relatively compact. the tripod looks like it may be prone to vibration, but you'll get used to that. You need to work out how you would power the set up. Are you any good at DIY / basic soldering and the like? If so you could build your own small battery supply, if not you'll need to explore ready made versions; you won't need much power to run this for 2-3 hours. with a tracking mount you'll also be able to do some basic astrophotography. Would be worth exploring which of these set ups allow you to easiily achieve focus with the Nikon and if you need any extension tubes and the like. i'm pleased you've started looking at GOTO, it is the riggt decision in my opinion. james
  13. The budget here is $350 so this isn't an option unfortunately.
  14. If you buy from FLO they will flash the handset for you, if you want, with the latest firmware before sending it out. Other retailers may also do this. I think you are making a mountain out of a molehill personally Nothing will change in the next 5 years so if you want a mount it is a case of put up with what Skywatcher have on offer, or look elsewhere. Good luck. James
  15. Who modified it? They will likely know what filter is now in it. It sounds like it has something useful if the red is more prominant. It's modified, so I wouldn't worry about that any further. James