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Everything posted by laser_jock99

  1. I discovered by accident that my observatory site is not only 'dark sky' but also 'radio quiet'- owing to it's remote location (no mobile signal here....haha!). Combined with the high elavation (1500 feet) it makes a good location for receiving faint SW radio signals from around the globe. With this in mind I started looking for a budget SW reciever to test the theory and found not one but two in the local 'junk shop' in Machynlleth. The larger receiver is a 1980 Realistic (Tandy) DX-302 in very good condition. And a smaller Philips 1971 portable in almost mint condition. The number of different stations I can recieve up here is amazing- way better than in the Midlands mainly due, I think, to the lack of local radio noise/intereference. And this is without a decent antenna- just a piece of wire dangling out the obsy. I hope to set up a half decent long wire antenna and get even better reception. The observatory is in danger of becoming a radio shack!
  2. Might be too late- but there was a public consultation back in May https://www.dorsetcoasthaveyoursay.co.uk/weymouth-promenade-lighting/faqs#613
  3. I'd be worried about something like that starting a fire.......
  4. An outside pier is a good start - mine is a 6" diameter steel tube bolted to a concrete block. When not in use - I remove the scope and cover in BBQ type covers.
  5. Came to power up the 12V to the EQ6 and dew heaters the other night, nothing - no power to either device. This forced an end to the planned observing session. I pulled up the obsy floorboards the following morning to find this- rats (or something else able to bite through 2.5mm sq copper) had cut the 12V lines in several places and had a good go at the USB's too. The 240V cables to the pier had not been touched fortunately. The cables in question were pinned to the joists but not in any kind of conduit- they are now! It has taken the best part of eight years for this attack to occur- but in future I will put all rodent accessable cables in some kind of trunking. And just in case Mr Rat decides to make a return visit - I left him a present.....
  6. Mines probably too substantial to move- it would be less effort to start from scratch and do all the things I right that I should have done on the first one! I have made both piers so they can be unbolted from the conrete mass though- so at least all the astro hardware can go.
  7. Remember it very well- 20 years old and had just built my first tracking mount, so got some okay pictures for the time.
  8. Lots of Baader filters mainly too!
  9. The standard solution is to drill an 'owl hole' or 'owls nest' in the side of your steel tube. It just has to be big enough to get your hand and a socket wrench in. Can also be used to bring your cabling up and out of the pier! Owls nest for nut access/cable management. Alternatively- if your pier adaptor puck is a nice, rotating fit in the top of your steel tube, you can just rotate the puck within the steel tube and lock it off with grubscrews through the tube. No need for any access to the main nut needed. This is what I ended up doing on my second pier.
  10. A good, clear southern horizon is the main requirement.
  11. Yes- make sure you haven't booked during a full moon!
  12. I found it fairly easy to 'knock up' my obsy- don't think I had aything other than basic skeches and a few ideas in my mind. The main focus was efficient use materials. For example- the wood beams came in 3m lengths, so the obsy & deck is 3m x 6m! Less cutting, lees waste. The steel wall panels and roof panels were 1m wide x 2.5m- a perfect fit for my 3m x 3m frame..... You might want to consider siting the secondary pier outside? My so called 'widefield pier'. I use this for small scopes and camera lens work. Good for times when I don't want 'fire up' the main obsy
  13. Laptop for capture. Desktop for editing. A relatively cheap laptop will be all you need for guiding & capture. A nice powerfull desktop makes editing less painful. Reserve a good chunk of money for a decent monitor. Working with a good sized, calibrated monitor is better tha n struggling on a 15" laptop screen. You can sometimes tell on SGL that pictures have been edited on poor screens- to everyone they have odd colour castes etc!
  14. Great images. A bit more time in time in post processing and they could be really good. Here's my 30 second re-process version of your Pleiades image minus the gradients and with a neutral grey background for instance:
  15. I use a company called GFM in Wellingborough for my subcontract water jet cutting work (mainly 6mm stainless but also aluminium). Could be worth a try?
  16. Knowing what I know about coma correctors- it is going to be a case of trial & error. Going through the steps- f3.9 is a fast scope, is the collimation spot on? Check this before doing anything else. Then try different back focal lengths. I have found that the manufactures recomendations are usually not that far off give or take 1mm.
  17. Very sad to learn this. Never met Maurice personally but we had many long correspondences on SGL and other media over the years probably going back to the early 90's. Truely gutted. RIP Maurice.
  18. Very stable air - although the air between the moon and the mountain seems less stable. Amazing all the same.
  19. Astronomy magazine in the 1980's.......Jack Newton, David Malin etc. they were my heros.
  20. .....or worse still cut the negatives in half when sleeving them up!
  21. I used this stuff- Onduline Corrugated Bitumen Roof Sheet - Green (2000 x 930mm) https://www.roofingmegastore.co.uk/onduline-green-corrugated-bitumen-sheet.html Been good for the last eight years or so 1500 feet up in the Welsh mountains ans some fairly extreme conditions..... My approach was to see what the locals use to build agricultural buildings and copy that!
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