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About lukebl

  • Rank
    Red Dwarf
  • Birthday 25/08/59

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    Norfolk Astronomer, bread-maker, bug and wine enthusiast. Come to Attleborough. At least it's not Watton.
  • Location
    Central Norfolk-ish somewhere, UK, 52°N 1°E ish
  1. Hi folks, Been having terrible results capturing Jupiter this season, either through incompetence, poor seeing or poor equipment. Anyway, animations seem more forgiving to the eye than individual fuzzy images, so here's a capture from last night, 21st May. It's made from 19 separate captures taken 5 minutes apart, from 21:40 to 23:10 BST. Each capture was 2000 frames at around 11ms at 25 fps captured in Sharpcap. Amination sequence prepared in Photoshop. IMG132e camera (which, incidentally, no-one else seems to use. Probably with good reason!), 3x TV Barlow, 250mm f/4.8 Newtonian. Hope you like.
  2. Hi folks. I'm planning to be in Wyoming in August to see the total solar eclipse (my second one. I saw the 1999 one in France) Now, I know that everyone tells you to relax and enjoy the awesome experience, rather than distract yourself with annoying tech and miss the whole spectacle. However, I'm a stubborn old fool and I do want to get some captures during totality. I'm likely to be out in the sticks with no access to mains power. What's the best way of maximising the automation of it all with the minimum of equipment, so that I can still enjoy the spectacle? I'm planning to have with me: Canon 6d DSLR Canon 700d DSLR 70-300mm zoom lens 35-135mm zoom lens 8mm fisheye Possibly a Skywatcher AZ GOTO Any advice very welcome!
  3. Well, that's an hour of my life I won't get back again! Dull, populist, unscientific nonsense. And Horizon used to be one of the jewels in BBC broadcasting.
  4. Thanks for the comments. A little bit of homework reveals that there are at least two quasars in the image, which I've identified by their magnitude (measured with Astrometrica): The 17.4 magnitude one is 2XMM J121944.1+292849 and the 17.9 mag one is 2MASS J12194134+2941309, according to SIMBAD. Apart from their catchy names, I don't know anything about them.
  5. Here's the colour version with 30 x 60 second, 2x binned, R and B. Synthesised G. The colour has brought out the interesting dust lanes near the centre.
  6. I suspect that you wouldn't notice it with an eyepiece. The eye is much more accommodating than a camera!
  7. I have one which I don't use any more and, as others have said, it's better than the stock focuser. However, one drawback is that the second drawtube sags a bit with the weight of a camera, particularly if it comes out a fair way. This will result some image distortion due the sensor being tilted slightly off the axis. I used to wedge a bit of card between the tubes to reduce the sag. Not very satisfactory!
  8. I find the swirly handwriting-style fonts difficult to read, distracting and, dare I say it, unprofessional-looking. One of my favourites is Trebuchet. Neat and professional, but more interesting and stylish than Ariel/Helvetica. p.s. As my pedantic Graphic Designer sister is always reminding me, it's a typeface not a font! Different things.
  9. Hi all. I've had a couple of nights imaging this lovely SB spral galaxy in Coma Berenices. Considering the gorgeous detail in the galaxy, and its relatively large size (7.2' × 3.0') and brightness, it doesn't seem to be imaged very often. Some interesting dust lanes, and loads of faint galaxies in the background. Needs some colour which I may try and capture later. 100 x 240s exposures, Atik 428ex, 250mm f/4.8 Newtonian. There is the mother of all dust bunnies to the left of the galaxy, which no amount of flats or GradientXterminator has managed to get rid of!
  10. I expect Webster Telescopes' website has seen a spike in its hits today! Interesting marketing technique!
  11. I think that there appears to be a bit of interesting activity in the NEB right now. This is my first meagre attempt at Jupter this season in terrible seeing, over my neighbour's roof last night early evening. There appear to be quite a few dark patches in the Belt, and the paler band above it (The North Tropical Zone, I believe it's called) looks an interesting shade of orangey-pink. Worth closer examination when it's a bit higher and in better seeing.
  12. Thanks folks. I've now downloaded the latest Visual C++ software, and it's all working now.
  13. Hi folks, After dropping and breaking my obsy laptop, I picked up a second-hand one and am in the process of installing all my software again. It's running Windows 7 and has been properly cleaned and checked by a reputable computer expert. All programs seem OK, except for Starlight Live. When I try and run it I keep getting the error message 'The program can't start because MSVCP140.dll is missing from your computer...' However, MSVCP140.dll is definitely there, in the folder Windows>System32. A search on the web reveals instances of this problem occurring with other software, but I haven't found a fix yet. Any ideas?
  14. Thanks, folks. A lot of things to think about there! Looking at my EQMOD settings, I noticed that the PulseGuide Settings are at the minimum rate of 0.10. Is that too low, or would that not have any effect on the problems I'm having?
  15. No, I'm not dithering. By the way, the mount has had the Rowan Belt mod, if that makes any difference.