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Everything posted by PhotoGav

  1. I'm really starting to like this double stack on the Lunt LS50THa! Here are a few shots of today's Sun, including a rather lovely filaprom:
  2. Good question (and yes, Lunt 60 with DS would be ideal! Hey, why not the 80?!!?). I will be interested to hear what people say. I think that there is a significant increase in contrast with the DS on the 50, though I have only used it with the camera so far, not with an eyepiece. Certainly the cheapest next step would be a DS for the 50 (though not exactly cheap!).
  3. Thanks Jeremy. Here's a close up that I took as well (with a 2.5x PowerMate):
  4. So, I took the plunge and acquired a Double Stack for the Lunt 50. I gave it a test drive today. Here are the results... Single Stack: Double Stack: Conditions were reasonable, but not perfect - it was quite hazy by the time I was up and running. I think the DS definitely has great potential, but I'm not convinced that I have found the best tune for it yet. The bright area of the image is quite narrow and I found it difficult to get it in the correct place. I felt as though it either showed one side or the other in best contrast, but never the two together. Any advice on tuning and that sort of thing would be most welcome, please!
  5. Thank you, that’s good to hear. It certainly sounds like it would be a worthwhile addition. I have an opportunity to pick up a second hand DS ‘in perfect condition’ at a sensible price. I think it is rapidly becoming too good an opportunity to turn away. At least I would then be ready for the increase in activity due as we move back towards maximum, eventually!
  6. Thank you. It is good to hear that the DS does add a significant enhancement.
  7. Ah ha, thank you, that is a very interesting and helpful reply. It looks like you may have pushed me over the edge!!
  8. As an example, here is my image of the Sun in Ha yesterday (2021-04-05). What would a Double Stack do to improve this image, if anything?! Or do I need a completely different set up to make a difference?!
  9. Not sure if this is really in the right section, but I thought the right people would see my question in here... I have a Lunt LS50THa and am wondering whether the expense of a Double Stack unit is really worth it? I use the scope for both visual (mainly outreach) and for imaging. I am pretty happy with my imaging results, but am always keen for better! I have considered the Quark route as I have an Esprit 100, but have really decided that is not best for me as it would be tricky when the Esprit is set up for DSO duties, as it is now for example. I like the full disk capabilities of the Lunt with my Chameleon 3 and I use a 2.5x Powermate to get in a bit closer. So, what do you reckon - should I go for the Double Stack unit? Thanks in advance.
  10. I like that a great deal! Fascinating and different. Where in Ursa Major is this? It looks like it is crying out for some vast mosaic to show the IFN web in context!
  11. I've been meaning to have a look at the balance on my mount for a while and this thread pushed me to action yesterday. Following a bit of tinkering, I concur with @Zakalwe - the current readout in the SiTech software with my Mk 1 Mesu 200 flits around too much to give a reliably steady reading when moving the mount with the handset. However, I found that the current draw when the mount is stopped but running (i.e. powered on but not tracking) gives an indication of imbalance. If there is a draw when not tracking then it is out of balance. My mount was reading 0.00 for the secondary drive (Dec), but 0.02 or thereabouts for the primary drive (RA). I investigated and found that the counterweight had slipped all the way to the end of the bar, so the mount was totally out of balance. I moved the counterweight until the draw was 0.00 and then turned the mount off and checked the good ol' manual way. Sure enough, perfect balance. I recalibrated PHD2 last night and guiding is much better now!!! Oh, silly me... that's about six months worth of (not many) subs that could have been better!
  12. Here is my entry on the theme of Satellites. It is the radio reflections of the GRAVES transmission frequency (143.050 MHz) between 00:54 and 00:58 on 18-03-21. Guess how many individual reflection trails there are!! I call this a 'Murmuration of Starlinks'. The radio antenna is set up to capture meteor events and you can see that there are a few meteor reflections hiding behind the veil of radio frequency interference from the most recently launched train of satellites. Thankfully they do move into higher orbits and become less obtrusive, but my radio data (not to mention optical data) is constantly being bombed by Mr. Musk's addition to the constellations.
  13. That's a beauty, Steve. How wonderful to have had sufficient clear and dark skies to actually gather enough data to make an image. It feels like forever since that has been possible. This is a fabulous target, with so much going on in the Bok Globules area and you have done it great justice. I would have liked the image to have been presented 'the other way up', i.e. rotated through 180˚, but that is only so that I could make out more easily The Donkey, The Duck, The Leaping Leopard and The Labrador's Head within the dusty bits!!
  14. @Xiga - that is a fantastic tutorial, some really great techniques in there, thank you for sharing. Great picture too, well worthy of the win! Congratulations!
  15. This data set has been sitting on my hard drive since last summer, waiting for the right moment... well that moment finally arrived. Here is my image of The Iris Nebula (NGC 7023): While gathering the data I noticed that loads of subs were photo-bombed by space hardware. I thought it would be interesting to do a stack that didn't remove any of the trails and here is the result. Yikes! I haven't counted how many there are, but it seems to be hundreds... The image comprises 3 hours in each of R, G & B, along with 13 hours of Luminance. A total integration time of 21 hours. Kit used: Esprit100 and QSI-683-WSG8 with Astrodon 31mm filters, all on a Mesu-200. Processed in APP and PS. Thank goodness for the sigma rejection algorithm when stacking!!! Clear skies all!
  16. Thanks Rodd, I will brave the system again and see if I can get a bit further. With regards to filter naming, I was under the impression that V stood for Visual, i.e. around the Green wavelengths. I like the idea that it stands for Verde though.
  17. Superb images and an interesting project. Do you have further information about which filters were used for the data here? I have briefly looked at the Hubble Archive, but not yet fathomed what to look for to create a colour image. All help gratefully received!
  18. I totally agree with the OP, too much data would be a problem. I currently have six full data sets [Ed. when has a data set ever been agreed to be ‘full’?!!?] sitting on my hard drive waiting to be processed. I just struggle to find the time to sit down for the hours required to do a data set justice. Especially at the moment with so much screen time for everyday life, the last thing I want to do is spend more time at the screen. So, on the one hand, thank goodness it hasn’t been night after night of clear skies in the UK, on the other hand, it is totally depressing that there have been only a handful (at most) of usable imaging nights here since about September / October last year. I open the sitting room curtains each morning, see my observatory and reassure it that it’s time will come soon! We should all learn from the Sara Parable... it saddens me that such a great astrophotographer no longer feels the desire to open their observatory. Long live cloudy nights and single scope set ups riddled with intriguing problems that need to be solved and when finally working let us enjoy the excitement of the first sub on a new target downloading, eagerly awaited whilst sitting on the sofa in the warm, with an iPad remote desk-topped in to the obsy PC!!!
  19. Exactly, double click the vbs file for the rate that you want to set. Give it a go!
  20. The vbs route is very simple. You will find a folder of standard vbs scripts in a folder here: C:ProgramData/SiTech/SiTechExe/VBSScripts (see screenshot). You just double click the script you want to run, e.g. LunarRate.vbs and it will change the parameter. A dialog box appears telling you what the current setting is and you just click OK. Don’t forget to run SiderealRate.vbs to put it back to sidereal rate when required! Hope that sorts the issue out for you.
  21. Exactly how are you setting the mount to Lunar Rate Tracking? I have a Mesu 200 and to change the rate setting I have to run a vbs script. You don’t describe doing that anywhere. It very much sounds like you have not really set the mount to Lunar Rate...
  22. I am currently live streaming the output of my GRAVES radio meteor detection system on YouTube and the Quadrantids meteor shower is very active! Have a look here:
  23. Thank you for this Olly. I wasn’t worrying about it until I watched this video and developed ‘balance envy’!! I will stop worrying again now.
  24. Thanks Ian, yes, the kit is glowing! The aerial is on a 3 metre mast. It is at an elevation angle of only about 10° as the ground is uneven. I will do a bit of gardening to drop the back foot of the tripod to raise the elevation of the aerial a few degrees. I have reduced the gain and upped the SNR threshold; the system is now registering proper meteor events only. I’m ready for the Quadrantids!
  25. Could the intermittent line be occasional reflection off the ionosphere?
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