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Everything posted by Langworthy

  1. My trouble is that my wife thinks I look a jerk in any headgear. I'd like to look vaguely heroic as I venture out into the cold but apparently I don't. Yet I'd rather look like a jerk in hat than come in early because I'm too cold.
  2. Thanks James - I'll follow these leads. Taunton's 45 mins away but Crewkerne's within easy striking distance.
  3. Don't apologise - I'm delighted by the number of cathedrals, beautiful towns, and National Trust properties in the vicinity, and museums - Bovington Tank Museum is a bit of a trek but worth visiting anytime. As is TE Lawrence's Cloud's Hill.
  4. Thanks Robin. I'm a bit disappointed - not to mention surprised - that a FLO search suggests there's nothing between me and Sidmouth, Bath, Southampton and Cardiff!!! Is it really such an astronomical desert round here?
  5. I have just moved to Yeovil. Are there any active groups within a 20-minute drive?
  6. Good to see Calisto emerging in front of Jupiter this evening with clear views of its shadow on J's surface. Very exciting. However I noticed that when trying to get a clear view and minutely adjusting the focus, I was able to get a clearer view by moving the scope slowly - not necessarily to follow J's path across the field of view. I found that if I moved the scope so that the planet shifted gently I momentarily got a better image. Why's that - or am I or my scope defective?
  7. Thanks everyone - that's given me plenty to chew on and I'm currently browsing the web for the sorts of bag you mention.
  8. I have a Skywatcher Explorer 200p. Any suggestions where I can get a carry-case/bag for this at a less than crippling price? Many thanks.
  9. What sort of kit and viewing conditions are required to see the N. American Nebula? With my 200P Sky Watcher Explorer Newtonian, I tried very hard tonight but no joy.
  10. I don't have a link but the tables are available in the British Astronomical Assoc. Handbook 2015. Well, yes,I can see the cloud bands and the GRS.
  11. I have no idea if this is a silly question or not, but it's vexing me so I'd better ask it. Maybe I've misunderstood something. I realise that since Jupiter is not solid but, for observational purposes, a big stripey ball of gas, pinpointing where something is on the swirling, shifting surface is not a straightforward matter. There are no fixed points like craters that are always in the same place in relation to other surface features and anyway the surface is turning at different speeds depending on latitude. I also know that to deal with this there are tables to calculate the longitude of the central meridian (the line running north-south down the middle of the planet) at any given time so that we can say at what longitude a certain feature is. What I don't understand is this: if one observes something on Jupiter that isn't on the central meridian, but somewhere off to the right or left of it, how is one supposed to calculate its longitude? Or does one have to wait for the feature to cross the meridian and then use the tables based on the time it crossed the line? I should add that I'm not an avid Jupiter watcher and don't have the kit to observe it in great detail so this central meridian issue is never likely to be of immediate relevance to me. It just irks me that I don't understand.
  12. Whereabouts in S Wales are you?
  13. Thanks for that. Still no reply from my councillor. Am joining the BAA. Had thought of doing so but your message has given me the nudge I needed. Cheers.
  14. Alas, I suspect you're right. In my email I explained the problem and suggested some alternatives regarding shielding, timing, etc. so as not to appear unreasonable.
  15. I emailed my local councillor over a week ago as per my earlier posting here. No reply - no acknowledgement. I suspect this is more typical than those councils who are quick to assist or even respond.
  16. Yes, I'd thought about that...unless you can get tents for multi-seat camper loos for the socially uninhibited. Trouble is I'm rubbish at DIY. I'll see what the council come up with and then, if needs be, get out the hammer and nails.
  17. I've emailed my local councillor about the offending lamp in particular and the whole issue more generally, suggesting a range of solutions: (i) turn off all of them earlier (ii) turn off some of them earlier (iii) dim them (iv) shield them so they shed light downwards and not outwards like a spot light as they do at present. My councillor may not have any control over the issue but will, I trust(!), pass it to someone who has. I'll report back but I'm not holding my breath.
  18. Thanks for the tips everyone. Looks like a portable camping loo tent for me. My family will think I'm even odder than they do now.
  19. This demonstrates one of the benefits of a smaller scope - unless you're the Incredible Hulk. I can barely carry mine 6ft and it's a drag disassembling it, loading it into the car, putting it together again....etc.
  20. A wonderfully clear night tonight. However, the bright street light some 80 yards away is a real pain ... as are the headlights of the odd passing car. I was thinking it would be really handy to have an easy-to-set-up screen around me, 6ft high or thereabouts, on three sides to screen me from the light. I'm sure I'm not the only person to have thought of that. Anyone got any ideas how to do it? Or are such things available for sale? Since most of my sessions are on the tarmac in front of my garage such a screen would have to be freestanding rather than something that could be stuck in the ground. All ideas gratefully received.
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