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Everything posted by laser_jock99

  1. Hale-Bopp was a fantastic comet. Large, bright and 'easy' to photograph. Here's a photo I took with 10min exposure, 200mm lens and hypered Ektachrome 400 film (oh the good old days of real film!). Hyakutake was good too- but Hale-Bopp should be classed as one of the 'Greats'. Hyakutake
  2. Love the Milky Way & Clouds sequence- stunning, thanks!
  3. Unfortunaley in the larger towns of Powys (I'm thinking of Newtown in particular) enough lights (plus private lights) were left as made no difference. Still at least Powys council made the effort to save some money- the light pollution aspect was a side benefit. As has been mentioned a small, 'vocal minority' made enough fuss to get some of the lights switched on again.
  4. Thanks for posting the picture and the story. I lived in a village about 8 miles south of Coventry city centre. On later air raids the War Department used the fields around here as a 'decoy' to divert the bombers. Long troughs containing petrol were set alight and from above they looked like burning streets. The German bombers would drop thier payload on the dummy 'streets' and wasted the bombs. It must have worked because there are plenty of bomb craters still to be seen in the woods and fields around here. In one case you follow the line of an entire stick of six bombs!
  5. Spent most of today in the clouds! At 1200 feet up cloud, mist and rain are the norm. Gale force winds and hail added some interest today as well......
  6. ....and another from Wales! The sky by us is very dark but I know other parts of Wales suffer badly from light pollution. This is encroaching into the few remaining dark areas that are still left. My house is about as rural as it gets (middle of the Cambrian mountains) but the sky glow from Aberystwyth- some 20 miles south west- is clearly visible in this 2 minute exposure of the Milky Way. Our pristine, dark sky areas in Wales are a precious asset we should strive to preserve.
  7. My most expensive astronomy 'accessory' was our house in the Welsh mountains. It's dark there but frequently cloudy!!
  8. When using zooms for astro-photography you need to be aware of 'zoom creep' i.e the lens changing focal length during exposure. Most likely to happen if the lens is pointing straight up (or down). Prime lenses of course don't suffer this and also have simpler lens designs less likely to suffer from abberations.
  9. Agreed- Shaula can be easily seen from the cliffs of South Devon. We used tocome from Plymouth and set up on Rame Head to observe the 'deep south'. You would think there was no Light Pollution out to sea - but the Eddystone lighthouse 8 miles due South, out in the English Channel was a PITA! Eddystone Lighthouse, "shiptrails" & startrails (Canis Major??)
  10. I think you'll find the spectrum is pretty well continuous.
  11. I was once totaly freaked out by my own ipod! I was set up on the edge of a Welsh forest near the Berwyn Mountains miles from the nearest road. As usual I switched on my ipod to while away the hours. Unbeknown to me it was in random track mode so the first track I got hit with was unfamiliar and sounded (in my Senhieser headphones at least) like a UFO landing behind me !! For the first few seconds I really did wonder what the hell was going on- until some 'proper' instruments kicked in! The track was 'Macassens' on the album Aboriginal Beats- quite wierd if you ever get to hear it.
  12. Longest member??? Well I've never had any complaints......
  13. Here's where mine will (hopefully) be. Granted it looks a bit like a shed a the moment- but I have big plans!!
  14. Goals to complete this year: 1) Sort out new house in dark sky site. 2) Build observatory for scope. 3) Get using it! Still stalling on 1) though at the moment :-(
  15. Public country car parks are usually frequented by people 'd o g g i n g' these days (or nights). Best avoided! Get yourself a 4x4, drive up a country Green Lane and set up. Remote sites with no passing traffic are within your reach then.
  16. Thanks for the positve coments. My next 'dark sky' foray in August will hopefully take me to Dylife- 25 miles further South & West from the Midlands Conurbation! dylife - Google Maps If it's not dark here then there's no hope!
  17. A single 300 second exposure taken with a Fuji S5 Pro @ ISO 800 using a Nikon 180mm F2.8 ED lens. Red channel data. Haven't used this camera much for astrophotography yet, but for an unmodified camera the Fuji CCD looks quite promising. Anyone else used one?
  18. Taken from what I 'thought' would a dark sky site in Mid Wales- the intrusive sky glow from Oswestry 8 miles to the East can clearly be seen in this photo. Equipment- Camera Fuji S5 Pro, Lens Sigma 10-20mm zoom (at 10mm end f5.6), Exposure 5 mins @ ISO 800, Tracking home made camera mount.
  19. I'm going to stick my neck out and suggest that the (now discontinued) Fuji DSL'rs weren't that bad at astrophotography either. The Fuji chips were noted for their low noise at high ISO's but there seems to have been little astro work done with them from what I can find on the Net. I used a Fuji S5 Pro with Nikon 180mm F2.8 ED lens for this photo. Exposure was 300s at ISO 800 unguided And now check out my home made camera drive!!!
  20. Finding focus is hard- these little fellows don't keep still ! Had too shoot at ISO 800 to keep the shutter speed reasonably high. Focusing close is no problem- made an 'extender' using 2" waterpipe!
  21. .....turned the scope on some garden birds today. Anyone else tried non astro imaging?
  22. looks like something developing in the North West tonight.
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