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Everything posted by clarkpm4242

  1. Something to consider is the exit pupil, especially as you get a bit older https://www.astronomics.com/eyepiece-exit-pupils_t.aspx I have a TMB 92mm f5.5 APO and 31mm Nagler combo that gives 5 degrees FOV and a reasonable exit pupil. Cheers Paul
  2. My observing is very much a part of 'outdoor activities', seeing the wonder of nature at night. Being out there under the stars. Visual!!! IS binoculars for a quick fix or with dobsonian (& Mountain Bikes) during holidays that somehow always mix great countryside, low light pollution and a new moon
  3. I find this website gives access to a range of very useful weather charts. The pressure, synoptic & cloud... http://www.stronge.org.uk/charts/ Cheers Paul
  4. I've been fine with the 200mm f2.8 L on a Canon 40D (astrotrac). Mosaic images for wider FOV...
  5. Hope weather plays ball. No true dark for a couple of months though. A lovely area to visit Cheers
  6. My South African astronomy trip was fantastic! Arrived at Cape Town about 23:00 and drove direct to Sutherland. 10 nights with tours of the SAAO and use of 14" and 16" SCTs. Stunning sky!!! Centre of the Milky Way directly overhead casting shadows. The Karoo is wild Returned to Cape Town in the dark and rain and flew home. The locals were great. The message of the story - being away from tourist areas and the big cities seems much safer...maybe. Cheers Paul
  7. Now that is very nice! Well done!! Makes me want to get to the southern hemisphere... ...I had an image printed in the mag. once and it lost about 3 magnitudes worth of stars Cheers Paul
  8. Yes. Car hire essential. Works as a rest room and a wind break. Have observed from Mirador de Chio and a couple of 'sheltered' locations near the observatory. The light pollution isn't too bad if the inversion layer cloud is in place. Good luck. Paul
  9. Mars did look excellent at about 30 deg. altitude around 23:00 last night. Using a TMB 92mm APO at ~ x195.
  10. Try M108 which is very close. Also try direct entry of the RA and Dec coordinates to get you there. It should also appear on a named objects list on the handset?? Good luck. Paul
  11. I use this understanding for 'conjunction'... ...when 2 or more celestial objects 'appear' to be close for an earth based observer. irrespective of their real positions. Opposition is an absolute statement of position relative to the sun and earth. Cheers Paul
  12. Add one of these! http://www.digitalcamerareview.com/default.asp?newsID=5480&review=pentax+O-GPS1+astrotracer+pentax+k-3+astrophotographer+made+easier+and+less+expensive Job done! Cheers Paul
  13. If you are able to get out under a dark sky, doing a Messier Marathon via star hopping is great fun. The best Marathon season is late March! Cheers Paul
  14. Hale-Bopp got upto 40 degrees long. Moon is about 1/2 degree...
  15. Hi As a long time abuser of large aperture dobsonians I'd recommend at least 1/6 wave (gives a bit of slack on 'diffraction limited') and high reflectivity coatings. At least on the secondary. You don't want to be moving around all that heavy aperture without reaping maximum rewards When you get familiar with what you can see through large apertures, you do notice the difference. Spend, spend, spend... Cheers Paul
  16. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SN_2014J#Properties
  17. Was under dark skies over the weekend. It was clearly visible though my 92mm TMB refractor. Also viewed through a 22" dobsonian. An obvious colour difference to the nearby star. Yellowy/golden. Don't now if this an attribute of the SN or caused by dust in M82. Cheers Paul
  18. The Orion SkyQuest 14" base will fit through a standard doorway, assembled or disassembled.
  19. The primary mirror in a newtonian becomes cool enough to create a cold boundary layer of air next to the mirror surface. Dew is formed from this layer. One method of preventing dew is to keep air moving across the surface of the mirror preventing the cold layer forming. Fans situated to the side creating a laminar flow across the mirror do this. A very low power heater is best for the secondary, that is used to prevent dew in the first place. Similarly a wraparound heater strip for refractors. HTH Paul
  20. Hi I think this is probably harder than the Horsehead to observe. Needs transparency and good seeing with good optics that can take higher power. I used an 18" Obsession. Another good one for the late summer/autumn season is Pease I in M15. Good luck! Paul
  21. A bit of a simplification. As it gets nearer, you would think brighter, however the same amount of light is spread of an apparently larger object decreasing brightness per unit surface area. It wouldn't really appear 'brighter'. Don't think I'll wait Cheers!
  22. For those wishing to observe from this area it is worth noting that the military at the Otterburn Ranges do light up the sky on a regular basis. The southern sky from the NNP can get quite lively. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/otterburn-firing-times Probably not an issue from Kielder. Also the glow from Newcastle is less. Cheers Paul
  23. Great news! Every bit helps. Have been observing from the Elan Valley many times. Just back from a week there only 3 hours of clear sky but magical as always. I've had slightly darker skies from D&G.
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