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Everything posted by SnakeyJ

  1. Thanks Dave - I didn't realise the source code was available for this - I might just have a pop at this as the focuser works beautifully and it's far more satisfying to DIY it (rather than forking out £300+ to Baader/Moonlight/FT).
  2. It does and the AAF2 is working fine, but Firecapture x64 won't play with it and gives an error about non compliant 32 bit drivers! I'll try and screenshot the error tonight, but I still have the option of using AAF2 as a separate program or going back to x86 version of FC, so not a show stopper but wanted to check. To be honest I'm not sure if there is any real advantage in using the x64 version of firecapture, as USB3 and i/o to SSD are probably the main bottlenecks affecting frame rates at larger ROI's.
  3. @tekkydave - Dave does your 2.5 version include an x64 bit driver? I upgraded my version of Firecapture to try the x64, but it doesn't play with the original ascom driver. Not the end of the world as I can still use the AAF2 software to control the focusing outside of FC. I've been using the original version of this project for the last four years, but will update and build a new version now for new monster planetary setup!
  4. Well done Knobby - good capture considering how low it is this apparition!
  5. The car moulding is good and would do the job, but more expensive and the lagging is definitely softer. I'm getting so accident prone I'll have to start going out in pads and a helmet
  6. Being somewhat follicly challenged, I have scraped the top of my head twice while ducking in to the observatory - the last time leaving a long gash and substantial piece of skin dangling from the fibre glass edge above the door. Possibly not such a problem in winter when I would be wearing a woolly hat, but a piece of 15mm pipe lagging provided an easy all year solution and should save my scalp in future! It's actually fitted very well, just pressing on and no noticeable affect the door closure (unlike the temporary power chord at the bottom right).
  7. Thanks to all - I did follow Gina's advice and bond the three output channels - works a treat and has made a much neater solution than my original solution that was mounted inside the polystyrene cool box (ex vaccine transfer). The box is still quite useful and makes a decent laptop table, but I will eventually remove this and go for a headless pc to remotely control from indoors. If I can shoe horn my newly acquired VX14 in to the observatory there is going to be very little room for me or the laptop.
  8. Literally tons (and definitely not your modern metric tonnes). I found a great article on the original alt-az instrument - http://www.royalobservatorygreenwich.org/articles.php?article=1090
  9. What this really needs is a new commission for Tim Wetherell to create a scaled up version of the GWR http://www.wetherellart.co.uk/pages/astronomy.html
  10. Now that's a proper set of dome rotation wheels - not many home built domes in wrought iron with 2' cast iron wheels and some nice hot riveting on display. Oh for the days when Britain was a great nation of engineers. It's great to see this renovated and back in use, though the current instruments look completely dwarfed in this observatory - what ever happened to the original mount and instruments?
  11. Thanks Steve - great place to live though and it is nice to finally get out under clear skies for a couple of hours and get the gear to work. It's my first attempt with the CGE/nexremote and I've completely rewired the hub power. A few teething problems and fighting a little drift as I've only done a rough polar alignment - but should get easier/quicker with a few refinements.
  12. It's certainly a tough time to do PI from the UK, though we should get a reasonable chance with Mars heading in to the low 40's this winter Another three years before Jupiter starts to climbs higher than it is now. For the patient planetary imager 2024 and 2025 are looking like decent years for Jupiter and Mars from the UK, but it's a full 10 years before Saturn climbs above 40 degrees altitude. Perhaps I can retire to Acension Island - though I'm not sure you can actually live there without employment!
  13. not quite as respectable as my last one from last year....
  14. It's been well over a year since my last shot at Jupiter and I've had many other things to contend with, but have finally setup the obs, new mount and electrics - a very rushed session this evening with fast seeing and low angles, lots of new kit to setup and get used to, but I do have one shot of Jupiter in the bag for this year.
  15. Welcome back Emad - good to see you're back in the game and heading for darker skies!
  16. That's the stuff! I get mine from work, but identical to this: https://www.hookandloopfasteners.co.uk/fasteners/velcro-brand-one-wrap-black-10mm-wide.html?gclid=CjwKCAjwgYPZBRBoEiwA2Xeupbty4cG0kJqhp5ylNyCbtXL5VUCfFpOhQz3gfa_u45QsaULk_xq7OhoCHvcQAvD_BwE
  17. I tried spiral wrap, but it is stiff and a pain to change the harness when you want to change scopes or image train. I just brought a roll of velcro and tie cables together every 6-8". The whole loom gets supported and tied in around the pier below the mount and all the cables running to the scope are secured to the mid point of the dovetail/cradle, with sufficient slack for slewing, but not too much to snag! It's much easier to add/remove cables to the loom. I also try to bundle the power and usb/serial cables separately - though not too obsessively
  18. Personally I'd go down the Lesvedome route, as Tony and Steve have done: I have the newer style pulsar dome, but still baulk at the £2,600 cost of Pulsar's own dome automation (Dome Drive + Shutter Drive). A fully automated system based on Lesvedome can be had for £ 500 or less and there are some excellent build threads and tips here and at other well known sites.
  19. I'd be all up for the foxes, or badgers, hedgehogs (pretty much anything other than rats or a big wasp/hornet nest that closed the observatory. However, having kept chickens briefly on multiple occasions, I totally understand James taking sensible precautions to dissuade the foxes
  20. I'm pretty sure that any of the waterproof foaming gap filling adhesives would do a good job with concrete block, as it's such a large and pourous area to join (gorilla glue?). Otherwise a tube of masonry/fixing epoxy resin should give a bomb proof bond. I've bolted my piers down on 16mm rebar - galvanised as I'm sure this will still outlive me! When I moved out of the last house I bolted the roll off roof down, took away the runners, removed the pier and ground the bolts off with an angle grinder. The shed conversion took 2-3 hours, or about 1/50th of the observatory build time and the new owner was very pleased with the posh shed!
  21. Could one of the Mods please close this wanted ad/thread - Looks like I'm all sorted now, thanks
  22. Thanks Gina - I had wrongly assumed that the PSU had three distinct 12v rails , but this makes things a good deal simpler and I will cross bond the -ve cables and install the V/A meter in series - simples! Much appreciated - Jake
  23. Thanks Jim - I guess it was a little light on pictures! The PSU is mounted in parallel, with three DC outputs connected independently to; 1-Astrozap, 2 and 3 go to car type four way fuse blocks which will supply the mount and other output loads. I've drawn a very rough diagram with my daughter's felt tip pens: I'm trying to balance the loads across the three 12V output rails, but ideally would like to be able to monitor the combined Voltage and load across all three rails or potentially be able to switch this so I can see each output in turn. Still a work in progress, but trying to shoehorn this into an IP rated box that came with the mount. This will be fixed to the pier with the Dew Controller and VA meter mounted to the hinged front, opening up with input mains supply to bottom. Edit - Not a great angle/view, but note that I have doubled up the 12V output wiring between the PSU and the chocolate block, where it will connect to the fuse blocks and Astrozap.
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