Jump to content



  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Chinapig

  1. Guess I can't do much about the sunshine apart from hope, but retirement isn't far away now, and i've just started working from home - the astro cupboard is in my office, so I'm planning to grab any opportunities I can! Thanks Craig - reckon I'm pretty close to the point of no return anyway!
  2. Thanks folks - appreciate the welcome, and the encouragement! Solar addiction is definitely setting in quickly. Having had a quick peep through a Quark at IAS back in June, the concept of solar observing & imaging has been bubbling away quietly. Thought I'd try a wedge to start with, to see if I enjoyed the solar experience at all, before committing more serious funds to a Quark or small Ha scope. Well, I'm thoroughly enjoying it so far! And I'm getting even more obsessive about weather forecasts - quite twitchy if I see a blue patch approaching. Is there a cure for this addiction? I
  3. Hi folks I've been enjoying my new Lunt wedge, and watching the big spot over the last week or so. My first white light experience. Naturally, I wanted to grab a pic of the big spot while still in view. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to get my dslr to reach focus with my Equinox ED80 - not enough in-focus, apparently - and then remembered I had an eyepiece-projection adapter ring for a Hyperion eyepiece. So this is my first attempt at solar imaging, with my 60D on the end of the Herschel wedge, via a 13mm Hyperion eyepiece. Single shot at 1/2000 sec, ISO 500. Lots to learn, like gett
  4. Very sorry to hear of your predicament. I learned about this course at Astrofest, and was thinking of joining it next year - it sounded like it was exactly what I was looking for. Really hope it gets reinstated. Petition signed. Best of luck! Simon
  5. Enjoy them to the full! I've only had mine for a few months, and I've already enjoyed some of the most inspiring, and relaxing, sky-viewing time I've ever had. Found several things that have always been somewhat elusive with a scope alone. Fab fun!
  6. Lovely images Don. Gives a seductive new slant on Lodestar imaging. I've yet to make a final decision on whether to go for a mono or colour X2, but these narrowband results are definitely pushing me towards the mono version. Please forgive my narrowband imaging ignorance - I have yet to try it - but I'm presuming that the mono sensor will be a lot more successful with a Ha filter than the X2C? Inspiring stuff... Cheers Simon
  7. That sounds a stunning colour scheme to me! But then I'm biased - I love the ultimate contrast of the black and polished metal. This is YOUR very special scope, so I'd be concerned about having any influence on your choice of finishes. However, my choice would indeed be to go for black leather on the focuser, to preserve the "black with shiny" effect. Should look absolutely fab! I can imagine that the build process is a pleasurable experience in itself, and it's kind of you to share it. Keep enjoying it! All the best Simon
  8. Hi Anthony - welcome from not too far west of Worthing. Yeah, a bit damp tonight! If you haven't already discovered, there's a friendly bunch of people who meet up near here from time to time. Talks, workshops, viewing nights, and a very good monthly newsletter. I joined a few months ago, and can thoroughly recommend them - more info at: http://www.worthingastronomers.org.uk/ Wishing you clear skies - I'm looking forward to them too! Cheers Simon
  9. Hi Nicos I think these scopes look pretty gorgeous whatever the finish. I gather that the polished aluminium is a very practical proposition when it comes to solar viewing/imaging, in terms of reflecting the maximum heat, but to what degree I'm not sure. Personally, I think Mark's work also looks excellent when there is some contrast between the tube colour (e.g. black, gold), and the highly polished focuser, finder, rings etc. I saw these scopes at IAS back in June, and was mightily impressed. Seriously considering a similar project... Best Simon
  10. Wonderous... Makes a mere million light years or two seem like a cafe round the corner.
  11. I took the jar of decision-making ointment off the shelf, all set for improving FLO's order book and, hey presto, there was a fly buzzing around inside! Stacking filtered mono images with LL? Hmm, that's intriguing... Thanks for the thought Paul, it could be an interesting development along LL's roadmap. Funnily enough, while pondering the Loadstar options over the last couple of days (should be an easy ponder really, with only two options!), I wondered if there was any way to use the mono X2 in conjunction with narrowband imaging. I admit I'm a total novice on that point, having yet to try
  12. Folks - very grateful for all your various inputs, huge thanks all round! Nicely balanced comments, excellent points made, and some very rational suggestions. Several equally valid reasons for going either route. But I'm rapidly thinking that the best option - thanks HiloDon - is indeed ultimately to buy both! Just not at the same time though, as there are a few other things on the astro shopping list (no change there then!). And with both, I could obviously guide with one, if I really felt it necessary, and near-real time view with the other. I have a little 60mm finder-guider, and so I
  13. Hi folks Been planning to get a Lodestar for a while, more than little inspired by the results I've seen people getting with LodestarLive. It'll also get used now & again as a guide camera for more conventional AP, but the prime reason is for VA. Been using a PD1 for a while, and enjoying it, and now want to step it up a tad. So, mono X2, or the new colour version? My natural inclination is to go for colour, but would welcome advice from those of you using these cameras regarding the relative merits of both. Is it simply a case of going a bit deeper with the mono X2, compared to the pre
  14. "Set the controls for the heart of the sun" I didn't know you could actually do that, until I saw these images! Incredibly beautiful landscapes - thank you Renims, for these stunning images. Look like they've been photographed from a ship in close orbit.
  15. A warm welcome from another part of West Sussex. I'd echo the dealer recommendations above. Have had excellent service from FLO, and from Astronomia - been to a couple of workshop sessions that Astronomia organised, which have been very good. Also had great advice and service from Telescope House when I was looking at a new mount last year. They de-forked my LX200 for me, as I was bit nervous of attacking it myself, and even gave me some part-ex allowance on the left-over bits of the Meade mount I no longer required. Very helpful advice, and they put together a very good package. Best of l
  16. Sounds an interesting pair. On looks alone, having seen them at the IAS a few months ago, I would buy a Moonraker in a heartbeat. Beautifully conceived and engineered and, by all accounts, using quality optics. Wonderful looking scopes. Domestically, I'm not sure I can justify the cost, but they're not off the retirement-scope short list just yet. A 60mm triplet Moonraker is a nice idea!
  17. Thanks for the info Karl. Interesting results from the HD SDI cam - I'll watch this space... Yes, inclined to agree, if there's a big bright moon in the way, you may as well observe it, image it or video it. No point in wasting it! Best Simon
  18. Hi Karl Good to see these videos. Inspiring me to try some lunar stuff with my PD1 - thanks! Just curious, which scope were you using? I'm presuming from the image scale it was your C11? Cheers Simon
  19. Not sure this will help, but the principle should be similar: I've fitted a Revelation R&P dual-speed focuser to my Meade 8" SCT. The mirror-shifting integral focuser becomes a very coarse adjustment control, with the R&P giving me "fine" and "very fine" adjustments. In this setup, I haven't found the integral fiocuser to be quite redundant, as it's particularly useful for wider-range adjustment if you change the basic configuration - for example, by adding a focal reducer into the chain, or a dslr. Hope that helps a bit! Cheers Simon
  20. Yes, if you haven't done so already, it's worth checking out the Video Astronomy section of SGL, to see the kind of results that people are getting with Lodestar cameras as a near-realtime video device. Very impressive stuff, even if you're not planning on trying that immediately.
  21. Sounds a fab new scope - congrats! Encouraging to hear you're so pleased with it, as it's on my short-list for a one-more-scope-before-retirement treat. Enjoy!
  22. That's a pretty nifty setup! Well worth trying, simply to see what happens... Curious to see what you'd grab from the same target area, via the three different streams. Have fun finding out! Cheers Simon
  23. Yup, now I have a better appreciation of where to find it, and roughly how much sky it covers, next clear night I'll give it a try with a scope. But I'll use the bins first, just to remind me! Thanks for the encouragement folks. Cheers Simon
  24. It's the first image that counts! And your first one is a really nice start to have made. I've only recently started down the same road. I don't have a PC, for which most of the freeware programs like DSS are designed - there aren't so many around for the Mac. I hadn't heard of REGIM before seeing Toxic's link (thanks Toxic!), and the other Mac-friendly software I've come across is "Keith's Image Stacker" which is donation-ware, and Nebulosity. The latter isn't free but does look excellent, although I haven't got much further than reading the manual! Here's a few links that may help: http:
  25. Thanks for the feedback folks. Yup, I gather that dark frame subtraction is already being incorporated, along with the potential to handle flats and bias frames, with the latter I guess of more interest to the post-processing side of things. The software is designed to be cross-platform, and should work on OSX, Windows and Linux machines. The comparative lack of OSX astro-friendly software was part of the inspiration behind my son having a crack at this. He wants to refine it several stages further yet, and we obviously need to test it pretty heavily, but the ultimate aim is to make it avail
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.