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Posts posted by ramstar

  1. Hi - me here again. I think there was some progress this evening in so far as the scope appeared to align itself close to one of the selected targets, though Sirius was a bit off. Should it be straightforward to see Polaris in the polarscope because although it appeared to be pointing in that direction, there was nothing to be seen through it. I understand Polaris isn't the brightest star in the sky and presumably because of the moon and some intermittent cloud would this have had an effect?

  2. Many thanks for the comments and kind offers of assistance. I'm fairly sure that the data entered into Synscan is correct, having checked it a number of times after looking at advice given in previous posts. I have also watched Dions' videos (really excellent help particularly for beginners such as myself) and have come to the conclusion that I must be going wrong somewhere in the mount setup with regard to polar alignment.

    I have looked through the polarscope and there's very little off-centre movement of the reticule when the mount is rotated in RA - certainly not enough at this stage to tempt me into fiddling with the 3 small screws to make it any more accurate. My thoughts are that the problem is what i'm doing (or more likely not doing) from this point forward. The forecast for the next 2 or 3 evenings is promising so any more advice would be most appreciated

  3. Yet another evening of frustration! I just can't get to grips with my newly acquired NEQ6 Pro - it's taking me everywhere but where I want.

    Is there some kind soul in the Lichfield / Cannock area who has this mount who would be prepared to give me the benefit of their experience - I'm more than happy to travel a reasonable distance if it means an end to my torment? At this rate it's soon going to be a pickup for the local rag & bone man!

  4. Oh dear! In the 12 months since being a member of this wonderful forum, this is the first negative feedback I have encountered -sad.

    If Q has responded with well meaning advice in the past then we'll done, I'm sure it would have been appreciated by the recipients. However, if some of this advice has been ignored by some which seemingly has resulted in obvious frustration to you, then surely the thing to do would have been to withdraw the benefit of your experience and just leave it at that?

  5. If you want to do AP Martin then the EQ mount is a natural choice.

    If it's any consolation, my mount and scope sat in a shed, boxed and unopened for 10 months as I was just too scared and confused to try to get it setup. Nothing made sense!!! You'll get there, don't worry!!!

    Well that's a relief -I thought it was just me! My first ever EQ mount which I've had since last Sept has only within the last week made it from the garage to the lounge. I have followed Astronomysheds' setup guide up to the point where I'm in the 'home' position but haven't summoned up the courage to go further!

    What's making it worse is the fact that there's a (new to me) APO 100ED Evostar Pro in the garage waiting for something to sit on.

  6. You might want to check the integrity of the film before you start on your filter. I didn't and after quite a lot of time, effort and a few quid spent in making it, I found it was riddled with pin holes so ended up binning it. Not sure if they were due to something I'd done or not, even though I thought I was being careful all the way through the process. I was not a happy bunny I can tell you!

  7. If you decide on the Baader solar film just make 100% sure there are no pin holes - I spent ages making a holder for the film, never having taken it out of its sleeve. When all completed, i checked it using a torch in a dark room and it was riddled with tiny holes. Needless to say i binned it - if I'd ckecked it beforehand it would have saved me a number of wasted hours and not to say a few quid!

  8. It's less than 12 months since I got involved in this hobby and i must admit I've learnt a lot more in that time than I had expected - mostly thanks to you guys and the excellect advice, tips & recommendations given. However, I still have this streak in me which occasionally wins out over common sense where I go headstrong into doing (or buying) something which in next to no time I start thinking "why the hell didn't I.............". 

    Anyway, no regrets on where I started - the Skywatcher 200 Dob which has given me the opportunity to see stuff I had never thought I would (once I realised my naievety in expecting Hubble-type images - what a dope!).

    I've since convinced myself that I want to start taking some pictures - I know it's still early days in my learning curve but as I've indicated, patience was never one of my virtues! Having realised the wisdom advocated on here of buying second-hand so that if I wasn't suited to astro-imaging I could get most of my investment back, I've managed to acquire a couple of the bulky items which I thought might stand me in good stead for the immediate future. I got the point that the 3 most important bits of kit for imaging is 1) mount,  2) mount and  3) mount so I've got myself a second-hand NEQ6 which appears in great nick. Then I found an Evostar 100ED DS Pro and now think maybe the 80ED version may have been a better option but my main interest is likely to be the Moon, planets and star clusters so hopefully I should be OK? More recently I've got a Philips SPC900 Webcam (modified) seeing as I don't currently have a digital camera, so where's the problem?

    In one word - fear! All these items are still in the garage and although I've made a start on setting up the mount (using the Astronomy Shed video which is a great source of help by the way) I have the same feelings of uncertainty I had when carrying out my first collimation. I see guys on here who rip the wrapping off new gear and away they go. 

    I know that to get a real understanding of how the mount, Goto & telescope work together the best way is just to get stuck in so why do I hesitate, back off and return to my simple Dob. Is it just me?   

  9. I only had a few minutes viewing so having looked through the binocs I brought the scope out of the shed - I assumed having been in there sleeping all night it would be sufficiently cooled. Ordinarily I would have taken the standard SW 10mm out and replaced it either with my 6mm BGO or 10mm Delos but didn't have the time to see what difference the image would have been  (I keep the standard eyepiece in the focuser just incase I trip up and drop the scope bringing it out of the shed!). Never saw the GRS - still haven't if I'm really honest with myself - for now I'll settle for good viewing of the banding.

    What yesterday's viewing has done is given me more of an incentive to get up a bit earlier when the forecast is promising and have a decent hour before having to get my backside moving!

  10. First time ever with the scope out early morning (early for me around 6am). Was putting the cat out and despite the moon a number of stars were quite bright so I thought why not?

    Even using the standard SWI0mm which came with the Skywatcher200 the view of Jupiter was clearer than anything I saw earlier in the year.

    Is it just my imagination or are viewing conditions better early morning compared with late evening - less LP maybe?

    • Like 1
  11. The good lady and myself are going on a 12 day cruise at the end of November and are really looking forward to it. We've booked through Hurtigruten and it sails up the Norwegian coast, across the Arctic Circle and almost as far as the Russian border.

    The forecast is that 2013/2014 Winter will be a great period for the wondrous Northern Lights to put on a display - hope they're right!

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