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MarkRadice

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Everything posted by MarkRadice

  1. Glad you enjoyed it, Stu. It was lovely to meet you all - especially the tea and cakes.
  2. Clear skies at Autumn Equinox star party at Kelling Heath with many wonderful observers and stunning telescopes. That being said, my dew heaters were glowing as they battled the humidity. And I can't believe I missed the trade stands as my brain melted with a migraine! If you haven't been to a star party, it is thoroughly recommended. Great fun and looking forward to April 2022's spring event. Lots of objects observed through scopes from 80mm aperture to 450mm and 500mm – and an amazing pair of 7-inch Mak binos. Sketches are of the Cygnus Wall in the N America nebula and the Sword of Orion through a (borrowed) 80mm. https://youtu.be/zZuwxPZbpp8
  3. Ah cheers all, thank you for your kind comments. Easily one of the more inspiring yet dull views I have had at the eyepiece! I’m up at Kelling at the mo so am recording for the next video (while hoping the skies clear).
  4. Absolutely buzzing! I managed, on my second attempt, to bag the globular cluster in the Andromeda Galaxy some 2.5MLY away from the garden observatory. Gosh what a challenge with our humid skies! I think this must be one of the most challenging objects I have observed. It required averted vision and high power (x350) to separate the mag 13.6 globular from the adjacent field stars. In all honesty, the view was nothing special, but it felt pretty inspiring knowing this was a deep sky object not in our own galaxy but across intergalactic space. Interestingly, there is research to show that this is not a globular but the core of a galaxy that lost its outer starfields in a collision with the Andromeda Galaxy. How amazing is that?
  5. Nice pictures - I wish my first images looked that good! Keep them coming (when it stops raining!) and shout if you have any questions.
  6. This is what I bought for my C11. https://www.diy.com/departments/diall-reflective-bubble-insulation-roll-l-10m-w-0-6m-t-3mm/1934806_BQ.prd And I didn't cover the focuser end (nor the upper end ) primarily as it would affect my deep sky observing and secondly, with the scope pointing upwards, I am assuming that radiative cooling to the upper atmosphere is lessened.
  7. You’ve asked it to display an observing list and I’m guessing best double stars. Search - best double stars - actions and settings - highlight objects (slide it over)
  8. Join Mary McIntyre and I as we discuss observing techniques, sketching kit and the best ways to observe the night sky, including cameo appearances from Evie the cat. Our first collab saw us chose three lovely objects in the summer milky way to observe. I sketched mine at the eyepiece (although one was quite a challenge) while Mary sketched from her own images. We then compared notes on observing techniques, sketching equipment and how to get the best out of an observation and improve with time. It was a lovely to work with Mary. She is an experienced observer, writer and keen photographer who features in Sky at Night, the Yearbook of Astronomy and is a regular on the speaking circuit. Lots of tips – although be careful as I had to visit the art store and have the pleasure of buying yet more supplies. Mary’s copy is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8C3R176qm8&t=39s
  9. Great stuff! Love this image. I’ve struggled to capture Miranda so if you do work out how to pull it out of the glow then let me know but I think you may need a bigger scope as it is so close to Uranus. Neptune and Triton next?
  10. Thanks for your kind comments. It was great fun watching in real time and then putting the video together.
  11. Great stuff, Neil. Love the surface details. Just imagine what the it's going to be like next year when Jupiter is higher again and Mars is coming back.
  12. Hurrah, it all came together although my poor laptop is about to melt having processed 50x 10GB video files! We had awesome seeing earlier this week during the recent warm spell resulting in an extended session on Jupiter. I spent 3 hours watching Europa transit over the face of Jupiter while Ganymede slowly closed in and Io suddenly reappeared from eclipse. Amazing to see celestial dynamics in action. I put my 3 hours of imagery into a timelapse below and submitted the derotated imagery to the BAA Jupiter Section. More details are here:
  13. Awesome seeing in Salisbury on night of 5-6 September during the Europa shadow transit and Io reappearance. Amazing views, such a joy to watch celestial dynamics in action. That being said, I had to keep on bumping the gain up to compensate for the crud in the air. Timelapse to follow once my laptop has cooled ...
  14. I try and get the histogram at around 70% or so, 10millisec exp and gain around 375. That means a 2 min video capture has ~12k frames of which I stack 1-2,000 frames.
  15. Lovely image Craig. Beautiful. And thanks for the thoughts on colour balance. I just hit the auto balance on mine so I’ll compare your approach when the skies clear. keep them coming!
  16. My first thought was the jet in M87 but isn’t Mercury’s position and orbit affected by relativity? You could measure it’s celestial position and compare the positions for Newtonian versus relativity. I thoroughly enjoyed this book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hunt-Vulcan-Discovered-Relativity-Deciphered/dp/1511372877
  17. PIPP would be my recommendation too. I also use the freeware VirtualDub to compile my timelapses into an AVI - after processing. Virtual Dub can also chop up videos to the desired length/frames too.
  18. Not a stupid question and one that I asked my friend Ian. It is the joys of rebar. There is a metal cage in there. He drilled a good way into the original block and then assembled a number of 1m rods vertically, held together with horizontal struts and rebar-wire. We then poured the concrete over the top. Secondly the first buckets were quite wet to help it flow into the original plinth. Not being a builder that’s the best I can answer!
  19. I can’t believe how much metal piers cost! Looking online they are several hundreds of pounds. While I am sure they are robust, I made my bombproof concrete pier for just over £100 in materials. It easily takes a C11 on an EQ6 without breaking a sweat. That being said, now it is concreted into the ground, I cannot take mine with me if and when we move house. This is the true benefit of a metal pier. When we do move, I shall simply pour a new one, wherever that may be. Measurements are 1.2m tall x 0.3x0.3m square with M20 bolts supporting the top plate. It took a day to prep the shed and make the wooden framing (with hindsight, I should have bought a length of scrap air conditioning duct) and a morning to pour the cement. Thank goodness my friend, Ian, who has an observatory in Bath was able to bring his mixer and lead the show as I have never mixed concrete before. Thanks, Ian. The bolts for the top plate were put in the cement while it was cured but I added further bonding with the rawl-plug epoxy (whatever it is called!) as belts and braces. After a week of curing, it is now loaded up waiting for clear skies. Hurrah!
  20. I bought the Linear Binoviewer - although I gotmine from Telescope Express in Germany. First impressions are favourable. I put together a short review on youtube and summarised my thoughts below: - It arrived in a great pelicase with space for a number of eyepiece pairs. - I love the fact it does not need a corrector to reach focus. If your eyepiece can focus, the binoviewer will focus. - That being said, I'm not sure I like the reflections looking at bright objects. It takes some getting used to for sure. Picture of Jupiter below snapped with smartphone. - On the other hand, for deep sky observing, it's a winner. Quite a pleasant way to observe! The review is here for further interest: https://youtu.be/ExdkGG9MXRM Spoiler - the binoviewer is quite good!
  21. They sound just the ticket for you! Likewise I didn’t want to faff with barlows and correctors. I got mine from Telescope Express in Germany https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p10297_TS-Optics-Binoviewer-1-0-magnification-zero-optical-path-and-erect-image.html A quick search shows that Telescope House sell the Bresser version. Let us know how you get on!
  22. Ah that’s the beauty of these linear BVs. They have built In relay lenses that mean, if your eyepieces come to focus, then the binoviewer will come to focus. Glad you like yours Knighty. Why do you prefer them to the WO version, may I ask?
  23. I have been enjoying the TecnoSky Linear Binoviewer that my wife gave me for my birthday. A lovely way to observe although limited by the full moon and long summer twilight. More testing to be done, always a pleasure under clear skies! A few thoughts: It arrived in a great pelicase with space for a number of eyepiece pairs. - I love the fact it does not need a corrector to reach focus. If your eyepiece can focus, the binoviewer will focus. - That being said, I'm not sure I like the reflections looking at bright objects. It takes some getting used to for sure. Picture of Jupiter below snapped with smartphone. - On the other hand, for deep sky observing, it's a winner. Quite a pleasant way to observe! I put together a review here for further interest: https://youtu.be/ExdkGG9MXRM Spoiler - the binoviewer is quite good!
  24. Sorry for slow reply. I have been building and finessing a concrete pier in the obsy and am slowly catching up with my admin (and resting my shoulders!). I think you are right, Craig and Craney. WinJupos is such a powerful piece of software that in addition to derotation, can also map and measure planetary images. Its UI, though, is a bit off-putting as it assumes a lot of prior knowledge. That being said, for the price, we cannot really complain. And, yes good point Alan re alt-az scopes. I am used to my EQ so did not think of field rotation limiting exposure length.
  25. As you know, stacking images reduced noise while boosting signal. But what happens if your target, in this case Jupiter, rotates so fast you can only take 2 minute captures before Jupiter’s own rotation blues the image? Derotate a series of captures in WinJupos that takes into account Jupiter’s own rotation. By inspection, WinJupos must be using, I guess, clever spherical trigonometry maths to do this. I found this surprisingly effective using some captures I took on 21 July and put together a short video that, I hope, is useful for planetary imagers.
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