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About ian61

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  1. Thanks - A quick looks suggests you may be right - I will look more when I have some time tomorrow. Ian
  2. We are hoping to observe the transit in school (Don’t panic - we have done several transits and partial eclipses in the past so we are fine on the safety aspects - thanks). However does anyone know how I can get hold of some links to use in advance of the day that we can use to put some professional feeds up on the large screen tellies we have linked up to the computer systems these days – I am told that links on YouTube are the easiest to handle on the slightly clunky system we have to control them. My question comes from reminiscing with colleges that my daughter and I had stayed up to watch first contact of the last transit of Venus live from Hawaii before swapping to Mt Wilson. (We were also up before dawn on top of the local hill fort as the sun rose having lugged an old 4” reflector up there.) Of course at the time we were just browsing through the internet not taking good note of sites we were on.
  3. Gee that was stiff but it did work thank you very much. Ian
  4. I am probably about to look very silly because I can't find anyone else who seems to have a problem there is likely an obvious solution. The only video I could see of a similar mount being fitted with a polar-scope is to an EQ5 and the chap simply unscrewed the assembly and replaced with the polar scope. It is clear this needs to happen so as to replace the scale ring. However twist through I did all I achieved was to remove a collar (I had loosened the grub screws) and that allowed the scale to slide off but there is still black tubing that surely I need to remove - but how? any ideas gratefully received. Ian (there were three small knurled screws on the end of the black tube removed before 1st photo taken)
  5. Thanks. Stu, That sounds sensible, price was not a major consideration but I didn't want to get something I would have little use for. Having to set up every time I know I don't always get my polar axis set exactly or it shifts a bit, I've just got used to nudging it every once and a while.
  6. I was about to get a dual axis drive to add to a Sky-Watcher EQ3-2 mount but had not realised that a single drive for the RA was also available and of course it is a little cheaper. That made me think why would you want to drive the declination axis for naked eye observing? Can I save a few pounds here or is there any real advantage to the second axis? I would welcome any views, I do not intend to go full go-to or do any serious imaging. Ian
  7. Wow, thanks Protostar the 'Sky and tel' link seems very good, I have copied to my favourites bar to go and explore a bit more later. And also thanks to I am a Dob Convert that is the site I had found earlier but appreciate your help. Ian61
  8. I have a few pupils interested in astronomy and we are really just starting out so the eclipse, being in daytime seems a good target for us. Very aware of the dangers of looking at the sun I must be far more careful than adult individuals - I have just been reading the strand started by a lucky chap (member Sub Dwarf) going to the Faroes and taking his binoculars. I was thinking of using a webcam and similar to capture projected images. We have been using cartes du Ciel and stellarium to look into the future - both seem to suggest that for Somerset the timing of greatest coverage will be about 9.30am which seems to be close to an eclipse calculator I have just found online that says 9.28 - so am I to conclude that these programs are pretty much spot on accurate to time such events? A subsidiary question, if I may - is this same for the Gallilean moons as seen on stellarium? Ian61
  9. Many thanks for all the replies I am getting - I am certainly building up my software collection! I used Stellarium to look back in time and it definitely is correct as its pictures married up with my sketches wonderfully. You can't see it for real but it is amazing how fast they are going if you go back or forward even an hour or so you can see the difference. Brilliant! Ian
  10. I suppose I just havn't yet got my head around how fast that these moons are actually travelling. Just loaded Stellarium - looks great once I figured out how to stop it moving in real-time, but are those positions true - I suppose these days its a simple thing to do to get such things correct with access to the data. Thanks, Ian
  11. This topic has had me rummaging in my garage but to no effect - I am sure I had a box kit that contained a rolled up heating element of the type people used to stick on back windscreens of cars to clear mist I suspect the pro version heating coils are the same principle - has anyone experimented with such a kit? It should work off 12V easily enough. Ian
  12. This is probably going to seem odd BUT… As a science teacher I am trying to follow through classic experiments – one I remember from my youth was that it should be possible to plot the positions of the Galilean moons of Jupiter nightly and thus deduce their orbital periods and approximate orbital radius by plotting on graph paper. The last bit is fine, I can handle circular/simple harmonic motion and graph in a spread sheet but I have hit two problems… A Estimating distance – I have been trying to use planetary diameters as this is a constant that is independent of magnification. This is fine as long as the distance is quite small but I find at about 4/5 I start to struggle are there any tips out there? B I think I am losing the moons more than I should be. I started looking on 13th May and up to the 15th saw all four easily at low magnification on the 16th things were a bit hazy, I think I have 4 but 17th definitely only 3. On 18th all 4 clearly visible, ditto 20th, but 23rd only 2 and 25th only 2. Last night 30th in a gap just before the clouds formed a grey dome above us I again saw all 4 quite easily. Now there are two obvious explanations, not mutually exclusive but of course I will not see them in transit or if they get too far away – According to my Norton’s Star Atlas Callisto averages about 26 planetary radii (13 diameters away) but I should be able to see that easily as the plane of the orbits is quite close to being in line with the visible banding. The other moons are all much closer. I can’t believe they are hiding behind the planet quite so much or am I missing something obvious here? Ian
  13. I have been watching Jupiter nightly over last few weeks (cloud permitting) and it is starting to move into the sunset for us up in higher latitudes but you should be able to see it easily in the early part of the night in the western sky, being further south your sunset is earlier so should get a glimpse. Before long the end of the month will be getting too close to the sun to be visible at night and we will have to wait until it comes out the other side as a morning object later in the year - it will probably be November before it will be visible in the late night sky again depending on your definition of 'late night' and how good your horizons are. Stu is of course very correct in his notes above and I agree mars and Saturn are much easier objects to spot currently. Cheers, Ian
  14. Many thanks for the useful advice from all above. I have already looked at a few more possibilities and I will have to be careful as I can see that eye relief can vary widely even between very similar models in the same range. " the brain can extract more information from an image if it is presented to both eyes " seems obvious - I wonder if the different sides of the brain are extracting different types of information? I'm not too worried about closing my left eye as I do a bit of shooting (I run the .22 range for the Cadets). But at this rate I will probably end up with both! Ian
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