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m1dlj

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  • Content Count

    71
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  • Last visited

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About m1dlj

  • Rank
    Nebula

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    SW Radio m1dlj, allotment, hill walking
  • Location
    near Exeter, Devon, UK
  1. Thanks for that Ben. I can't help feeling a bit of a caveman when touching optics: I have a 115mm APO refractor and a few Baader Hyperions which I leave well alone. However, occasionally you just have to give it your best shot. I'm just pleased the mold hasn't etched the surface.
  2. Many thanks, I'll take a look at that.
  3. The fungus in the photo is on the primary, the corrector has been removed. I went at the mirror as carefully as I could, dabbing with distilled water (and one drop of liquid soap), avoiding any sideways motion other than some nervous hand shaking, until I had the fungus and dirt removed, then used IPA and an optical 'wonder cloth'. The surface looks much better, although I accept that I may have degraded the surface slightly. I cleaned the corrector in a similar manor to remove what looked like sawdust, without touching the secondary which is in much better condition. I set it up (between showers) and pointed at the moon, it looked good. The focuser was little stiff at first but worked fine after a bit. Hopefully we will get to use it at some upcoming pubic event, as long as the Autostar keypad holds up: I don't know if there any replacements still around. Just a little rust on the outside to deal with now.
  4. Hi Folks, Acquired 17 year old tired looking Meade LX90 EMC 8" recently. Several issues to deal with, most significant being fungal growth on the primary ( see below). Decided to try cleaning, as leaving it would risk further damage to the coating, so, dabbed surface with distilled water, then dried and finished with isopropyl and a 'lens cloth'. Bit nerve racking, never attempted such before, however, it now looks much better with no sign of pitting. I know the scope has not be used for a while and suspect it was stored in a barn. Had to dismantle and clean the Autostar Hand Controller as several keys were not working. They work now if you press hard enough, but the keypad is badly worn. Q. Does anyone have any experience dealing with fungus like this? What exactly is it, and why grow on the mirror? What else can I do to prevent a recurrence? Looking forward to trying it out, I'm sure there's a few more sessions to be had from it. Ray
  5. Had the pleasure of chatting to Jayesh Goyal, PhD student in Astrophysics at The University of Exeter UK. He made an excellent presentation to our local astro society, explaining how the team at Exeter are using current Met Office models to try and understand exoplanet atmospheres. Apparently, Dimethyl Sulphide, CH3-S-CH3 (rotten cabbage), would be one of the best bio markers to look for, but we're going to need the JWST up and running before attempting that. Ray (Tiverton & Mid Devon Astronomy Society)
  6. Hi Paul Yes, I'm hoping to be there this time. It's a bit of a hike from Devon, but my wife's family live in that direction, so two birds etc... Looking forward to it. Ray
  7. Hi Steve, have a look at Wimbleball Lake, edge of Exmoor National Park. The National Park people do some of their astronomy outreach sessions there. Facilities are reasonable, but you need to chose a time when there are no other events on (sailing competitions etc). Ray
  8. Surely, if it were possible, someone would have come back and told us by now. Ray
  9. Hi folks, Is there any evidence for the suggestion that colour blindness helps one see through camouflage? Ray
  10. Sorry Dave, but must disagree, Romulans use a singularity to power their ships. In the Deep Space Nine 'Visionary' episode, DAX detected a quantum singularity orbiting the station, despite the Warbird being cloaked. Ray
  11. m1dlj

    John Young

    Sad news indeed, longest serving NASA astronaut I believe. Bet he's up there enjoying another corned beef sandwich right now.
  12. Too many clouds, not enough cuckoos.
  13. Interesting stuff, I look at it like this: I have a piece of astro kit I value at £100, advertise it on this forum, get and offer of £95. Should I accept? Well yes. However, what if I take the same item to some local backstreet non-specialist auction, where I get one bid of £10, should I accept? No. I would be wise to put a reserve price on it, and realise I'm in the wrong market at the wrong time. My point is: Yes, it is markets that set the value/price, but markets are poorly defined things that vary greatly, for all sorts of reasons. You may be in the right market, but at slightly the wrong time. If a particular market is not offering what you the vendor are prepared to accept, and you think you could do better, then you don't have to sell. Ray
  14. Many misconceptions in physics and cosmology originate from well-meaning attempts at 'conceptually satisfying descriptions'. Language and metaphor also have the power to amplify small misconceptions, creating established delusions. A complete and penetrable description of QT (as opposed to another misleading analogy) would of course be most welcome, but I'm not as optimistic. Ray (What does Beethoven's Fifth look like? Best ask a synesthete.)
  15. It was indeed a most excellent day, many thanks to those who made it happen. Ray
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