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alanjgreen

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About alanjgreen

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    Cumbria. UK
  1. For Sale: TeleVue Ethos 3.7mm SX eyepiece The eyepiece is in excellent condition and comes supplied with original end caps and TeleVue box. It also comes with the original 2" adapter which can be unscrewed to allow the eyepiece to be used in 1.25" focusers. The eyepiece has one very small chip which is shown in the last photograph, it makes no difference to the optical quality of this eyepiece but is mentioned for completeness. I am looking for £375 plus postage. - I will only ship with Royal Mail Special Delivery (fully insured) next day by 1pm service which is £9 extra. Making a total of £384. - Payment is accepted via bank transfer or PayPal friends & family. Payal (with fees) also accepted but please add 3.4% (£13) to cover the fees. Thanks for looking, Alan
  2. alanjgreen

    The gift of excellent transparency

    Good stuff Neil. Yep, you need the Hb to see the Flame! (fyi, you can also get it with UHC and a big mirror) Glad you got the HH too. Nothing but strong winds up here tho! Clear Skies, Alan
  3. alanjgreen

    Skywatcher AZ-GTi

    Bill, This is not correct. The mount should slew in both axis. When I got my AZ5 GTi, I discovered that you need to tigten the small black knob (azimuth clutch) very tight for the mount to work in azimuth. Check that yours is nice and tight. Here is my observing report from first light, it details the things that I had to learn to get good with the mount. - also note that I am using the mount with a SynScan handset rather than use the app, I prefer handset as I can use it when wearing gloves in the winter! I have been fine since. Here is the second light too.. Good luck... Alan
  4. Date: Monday 3rd December 2018. 1950-0100am. Scope: 20” f3.6 Lukehurst Dob with Paracorr (fl = 2089mm & f4.1). Night Vision: PVS-14 with Photonis 4g INTENS. Eyepieces: Plossl 55mm (f2 x38). Filters: Astronomik 6nm Ha CCD. Preparation It was rainy on Sunday so I set about building a “target list” of the Sharpless objects that I have so far failed to observe either because they are not in Sky Safari or they were too faint to see. I built-up a table of 25 targets and spent time marking stars in Sky Safari that almost matched the co-ordinates shown in the back of the Bracken Astrophotography Sky Atlas. I also tried to lookup photographs of “groups of Sharpless” objects on the internet so that I could try to take bearings from “known” Sharpless to point me to potential locations of the missing Sharpless! After 4 hours my table of targets was ready… Time to “boldy go where no-one has gone before”… Monday 3rd December was forecast as potentially clear all night. So after eating my evening meal I set off down to the scope-shed with my night vision case. I quickly setup the big dob and had the two-star align (of my Nexus) completed. Then headed for the first target on my list… Sh2-164 – Found near star TYC 4021-1255-1. A small bright patch sitting next to a star. Sh2-169 – Found near star SAO 020964. Very faint object, can be seen at the edge of the fov if you centre sh2-168. Stars make “3 corners of a square” inside the faint patch. Sh2-176 – Found near star HD 2559. Very faint indeed. A bright cluster (M34/Xmas tree like) has nebulosity around it and a black area inside it too. Sh2-177 – Found near star HD 2654. You see a large star cluster (that reminds me of “a Rocket on a stand”). The cluster has a lane of nebula running along the side of it. Sh2-179 – Found as pneb BV 5-2. Tiny planetary neb bright enough to be easily seen. Sh2-180 – Found near star TYC 4020-0924-1. Bright, decent sized cluster “crab,lobster” shaped with nebulosity surrounding and several black lanes within. The “crab” stars may be part of a larger “butterfly” shaped formation. Sh2-181 – Found near star TYC 4024-0109-1. Small bright patch sitting above two bright stars. Averted reveals a rounded black shape curved nebula over the top. Sh2-183 – Found near star TYC 4029-1063-1. Seems to be a long lane of nebulosity running up from near sh2-181. Sh2-191 Found as galaxy Maffei1. Small patch on top of two stars. Sh2-215 – Found at star HD 276169. Small faint patch sitting above a star. Sh2-250 – Found near NGC 1633. Several stars sit in a clear black lane. Very faint nebula around the black lane! Sh2-251 – Correctly marked in Sky Safari . Several spaced out bright stars up against a wall of nebula. Wall is thick and curves slightly at the lower end. Sh2-253 Found near star TYC 1336-0819-1. Very faint patch seen in a “gap” found in a line of stars. There are 6 or 7 stars in a row, then the “gap”, then a final star. Sh2-272 – Found at star GSC 0738-2191. This is a very tiny patch sitting just at the side of sh2-271. I missed it before (helps if you have seen an image beforehand!) Thoughts of the observer. I managed to find 14 of my 25 targets so I am very pleased with that. I also uncovered an error in the Bracken Astrophotography Sky Atlas where the co-ordinates for sh2-213 are incorrect, (they are duplicates of sh2-212) that’s why I have not found it so far. I got some “new” co-ordinates off the internet this morning so I am ready to try again for this one! My failures were sh2-172, sh2-195, sh2-213, sh2-266, sh2-270. Around 1am the sky just filled up with water and the heaven’s disappeared, this stopped me in my tracks and left a few lower Orion targets not attempted. It was a cold night (I was running eyepiece & secondary mirror heating all night) and the UTA of the scope was frozen in ice by the end of the session. Supplemental. My Sharpless count now comes to 201 of 313 objects. I have created a spreadsheet of the catalog and added all my location information. I am also adding GOTO references to each of the rows (which I am testing on the Borg107 as time allows). Let me know if you want a copy? Clear Skies, Alan
  5. alanjgreen

    My first telescope

    Why do you want an EQ Mount? Are you doing imaging? With £200 your mount choices will be limited and if you want visual usage then reflectors and EQ are not a good match as the eyepiece will end up all over the place. With your £200 you could get a 150p dobsonian or a 130p on a Pronto AZ Mount. Either of these are a better bet if you are visual user rather than an imager. if you want to image then you really need a decent mount with motors to hold the target in the centre of the field of view. Alan
  6. alanjgreen

    What SCT?

    Hi, I see this is your second thread. In the other you seem to want to try visual then move to imaging. My advice would be to not try to merge these two options. I would say spend a small part of your budget on a visual setup, I will come back to this... And buy the book, “making every photon count” straight away (imagers bible) and read it cover to cover over the cold winter months... return to imaging at that time with more knowledge and maybe more budget! https://www.firstlightoptics.com/books/making-every-photon-count-steve-richards.html Right back to something visual for use now. You could still use your visual kit while your imaging rig is running so no need to throw it away. Your best bang for buck is a 200p dobsonian. Simple as that! ww.firstlightoptics.com/dobsonians/skywatcher-skyliner-200p-dobsonian.html If you want something with GOTO that can find the objects for you to view then maybe the AZ5 GTi ? https://www.firstlightoptics.com/sky-watcher-az-gti-wifi/sky-watcher-explorer-130ps-az-gti.html or this if you want 6” aperture...? https://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/sky-watcher-star-discovery-150i.html I am just not sure that your best bet for imaging is an SCT. An 80mm refractor will be the best start on the road to imaging, but don’t spend anything on imaging until you have read “Making every photon count” is the best advice I can give. This may be no help, sorry, but I would not buy any of the 3 you mention and I am just trying to help. Alan
  7. alanjgreen

    My first telescope

    SmoothOperator, Great choice. I too started out with a 130mm reflector as my first scope, it served me well. I got bitten by the bug thanks to having a GOTO type mount as this helped me find more objects to view. What is your budget for the scope? Here are some options... Obviously the more expensive the mount then the less shaky the view/experience at the eyepiece... This is a great goto bundle that allows Wi-fi control via a free app https://www.firstlightoptics.com/sky-watcher-az-gti-wifi/sky-watcher-explorer-130ps-az-gti.html if that’s over budget, then here is the same scope on a solid AZ mount ww.firstlightoptics.com/alt-azimuth/sky-watcher-explorer-130ps-az5-deluxe.html Slightly less stable but still decent pronto mount https://www.firstlightoptics.com/sky-watcher-az-pronto/sky-watcher-explorer-130ps-az-pronto.html alternative, slightly larger dobsonian style base... https://www.firstlightoptics.com/dobsonians/skywatcher-skyliner-150p-dobsonian.html When deciding on the mount, you must consider where you will store the scope when not in use. If you don’t have much room or have to get down stairs then a mount that splits into smaller parts would be better. Here is a really portable 130mm scope... https://www.firstlightoptics.com/beginner-telescopes/skywatcher-heritage-130p-flextube.html of course, do search on here for each of these scopes to find real user experiences and commentary... HTH, Alan
  8. I have previously tried with a UHC on M33 but the results were inconclusive, I would not say it did not help, the view was different, if you own the filter then silly not to give it a go! Nothing beats a big mirror and a dark sky for M33. I already knew from last year that the E21 would be great on M33 when paired with the 20”. What I did not know is how NV would fair? It has proved better at smaller face ons where the stars are more condensed meaning the arms stand out better in Ha. As M33 is so big then the stars are more spread out and the red is less intense. M100 is an example of a face on where NV wins, I was able to see the whole arm structure with NV but not with glass. M51 was also great with NV revealing black dust lanes running within each of the arms, that glass could not see. I think the same M33 test re-run with the Borg107 may yield a win for the NV as with the smaller scopes, NV can get more mileage from the limited light on offer to the eyepiece. I have tried it with NV already and I was able to see the whole galaxy patch but the whole “S” of the arms was not clear, just the upper section. I have not tried glass with the Borg yet as I am still focused on my Sharpless challenge.. The most disappointing galaxies with NV are the tiny grey smudges which all appear identical as just a core whereas with glass you generally get some extension and shape. However, nothing compares to seeing Markarians chain with the 100 degree ethos21 and a 20” mirror, this is the ultimate galaxy experience IMHO. It’s jaw dropping to just keep tripping over galaxy after galaxy after galaxy. There are just so many in Leo! Alan
  9. I would also avoid that pair. The site sponsor has a special offer on a brand-new ex-demo pair (with full warranty). They also accept returns until the end of January 2019, if they are not what he wants! Alan
  10. Astronomik 1.25" 12nm Ha CCD filter for sale. The filter is in excellent condition and comes supplied with its original Astronomik filter case. I am looking for £70 plus postage for the filter. - Postage is at cost. £3 for first class recorded delivery or £6 for guaranteed next day special delivery. - Payment accepted by bank transfer or PayPal friends and family, PayPal with fees also accepted but buyer to add 3.4% (£2.48) to cover the fees. This is a UK only sale. Thanks, Alan
  11. Thanks, I use this image to identify the patches http://www.seetheglory.com/star-clusters-and-nebulae-in-the-triangulum-galaxy-m33/
  12. Date: Friday 30th November 2018. 1930-2200hrs Scope: 20” f3.6 Lukehurst Dob with Paracorr (fl = 2089mm & f4.1). Eyepieces: Ethos 21mm (x100), Ethos 13mm (x150). Night Vision: Plossl 55mm (f2 x38), Panoptic 27mm (f4 x77) attached to PVS-14 with Photonis 4g INTENS. After five months of concentrating on nebula (Sharpless objects mainly), the time had come to return to my first love – Galaxies. I have been waiting patiently for M33 to make its way into a prime spot over my observing shed and for the moon to go away. Finally the opportunity arrived after what seems like two weeks of clouds & rain! I took two sets of eyepieces down to the shed My Ethos case for conventional viewing... My NV (Night Vision) case with longer focal lengths to attach to my PVS-14 NV device... With the help of my Nexus, I soon had M33 centred and let the battle commence! Ethos13. First up was the Ethos13. Wow, the galaxy was much larger than the 100 degree fov allowed by the E13. I could see a large “S” shape clearly with no averted needed. I settled in and started to look for other arms or some of the many “patches” of bright nebula within the galaxy. As arms and nebula hot spots were seen, I moved to sketch them on paper. After a few trips, it was obvious that I was just “in too close” and needed to step back with the lower magnification of the Ethos21. Ethos21. In with the Ethos21 and peer in. Wow that’s better. The galaxy scale was sufficiently reduced to enable me to see the whole thing. M33 was dominating most of the 100 degree fov and nudging was still required to get around to focus on each section of the galaxy. The main arms were there and also decent snippets of the other arms. I could see several “hot patches” and once again I started to make a sketch of the view. Plossl 55mm & PVS-14. Now it was time to see what the PVS-14 and 55mm Plossl could do. (I have had my night vision since the end of April and learned on M101 that the key to seeing arms with NV is to get the focal ratio as fast as possible, this is achieved with the 55mm Plossl which acts as a x0.5 reducer). I played with the manual gain setting while looking at the main arms to find the position where the arms were showing at their best (too much gain overpowers the view so it needs to be less than the max). Once I was happy, I started to look and sketch the view. What was immediately noticeable was how the arm that runs out to NGC604 was much less visible that with the Ethos. The arm at the other side was much more visible and the several bright Ha patches shimmered on the face of the galaxy. There were fewer snippets of other arms but several Ha hot spots stood out clearly. [The dashed line shows an “assumed” arm rather than a “seen” arm. I got the impression that the arms were there but it contradicts the glass view] Conclusions. Welcome back to the mighty Ethos21! It provided the most enjoyable view and enabled me to get up close and personal with M33 in a way that the Plossl55 and Night Vision had not. The experience of seemingly hovering just over the surface of these large galaxies is just amazing and makes my day everytime! The amount of spiral arms on offer to the observer who is willing to spend time at the eyepiece is astonishing. Its hard to beat M33 and M101 Supplemental. I found that I had really missed the E21 and headed on afterwards to the Pleiades to see more of what I had been missing . The Pleiades and the Ethos21 are made for each other, the view was stunning with great views of the nebulosity surrounding the bright stars on offer. After not using the E21 for nearly six months, I can only conclude that the Ethos21 is one hell of an eyepiece and I need to remember that Clear Skies, Alan
  13. alanjgreen

    Budget telescope & eyepiece combination

    1. Don’t worry about the collimation. These little scopes are pretty good at maintaining the mirror positions. Over time, you can do some “star tests” each session and monitor the collimation status. If it’s slightly out then you won’t really notice so don’t worry in the short term. http://www.skyatnightmagazine.com/feature/how-guide/how-star-test-telescope 2. Download a free app such as Stellarium to help you locate night sky objects. 3. Ask someone to buy the book “turn left at Orion” as an additional Xmas gift. Get the ring bound version that’s designed to take outside. It has 200+ pages of objects, directions to find them and sketches of what you will see at the eyepiece of a small scope. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Turn-Left-Orion-Hundreds-Telescope/dp/0521153972/ref=pd_sim_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=0521153972&pd_rd_r=0db989f5-f542-11e8-a8b9-4f5d588cfac6&pd_rd_w=4Ru36&pd_rd_wg=HUN4D&pf_rd_i=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_p=1e3b4162-429b-4ea8-80b8-75d978d3d89e&pf_rd_r=W6PAKBBB4KT378VRZCMT&pf_rd_s=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_t=40701&psc=1&refRID=W6PAKBBB4KT378VRZCMT - i still have my copy from years ago! It’s covered in notes and scribbles that I made while using it 4. Finally buy a small led torch from b&q (I got a new one last week for £3. Paint three coats of red nail varnish on the lens to turn it into a red light torch, you need this to read the book outside in the dark without ruining your eye pupil size. https://www.diy.com/departments/diall-27lm-plastic-led-black-torch/1370087_BQ.prd 5. Have fun and enjoy the time shared with your child Alan
  14. alanjgreen

    Supernova in M77 (SN AT2018ivc) Mag 14.5

    I managed to bag SN2018ivc tonight with the 20” but it was a challenge. Firstly, I tried with conventional eyepieces, the ethos21 and ethos13. It was a struggle to even focus with the ethos13 the conditions were poor down low. I could see the large galaxy disc with both eyepieces but no detail within. Next I moved to my pvs-14 night vision and was successful initially when attaching it to a panoptic 27mm (x77 magnification) where I was able to see two small point sources within the galaxy disc, one at either end. I made a sketch and based on the location of the nearby bright star, the point source within the lower part of the galaxy was the SN. I tried with the 55mm Plossl attached to my night vision at x38 magnification and was once again able to see the two tiny point sources within the galaxy disc. Hopefully a better night will come along and I can get it using some real magnification from my conventional eyepieces. But it looks like another application where night vision can help us to see what otherwise would not be seen! Alan
  15. Sounds like the Heritage 100p is what you need https://www.firstlightoptics.com/beginner-telescopes/skywatcher-heritage-100p-tabletop-dobsonian.html You need a garden table to seat the scope on, then you just point and look. If you download a free app to your phone such as stellarium then you can use that to locate objects in the sky. Start with something big like the moon. Jupiter will be along in a few months. If you dont have a garden table, or want a scope that "looks like a scope" then the Celestron Inspire 70AZ is decent... https://www.firstlightoptics.com/inspire-series-telescopes/celestron-inspire-70mm-az-refractor.html or Sky Watcher Star Travel 80mm (larger aperture) https://www.firstlightoptics.com/startravel/skywatcher-startravel-80-az3.html Either should fit the bill & both come with simple AZ tripods. The best beginners book to look out for is "Turn left at Orion", it has 200+ pages of objects to try to find with your scope, directions how to find them & sketches of what to expect to see with a small scope! https://www.firstlightoptics.com/books/turn-left-at-orion-book.html HTH, Alan
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