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About Savage234

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    Roanoke Va
  1. I recently upgraded to a purpose made astro-camera (Atik Horizon Color). The learning curve has definitely been noticeable, but I cant figure a couple things out. For some reason the pictures are grey scale when using N.I.N.A. I have tried different binning and formats, but the image is always black and white. If I use the ATIK software (Infinity,Dusk) there is an option for 'Color Binning', and that seems to have fixed it for those programs, but N.I.N.A doesn't seem to have that option (you can not select anything for binning, or select 1x1, 2x2 ect.). But what makes it weirder is that the preview is always color using N.I.N.A. I used a pinhole lens cover to take pictures of my computer screen and it always shows up as color images. However, if I take that exact image file that previews in color and move it to pixinsight, it is grey-scale. Is this a binning thing, file format problem? At this point I am just confused, if the preview of the image is color shouldn't the image data be color as well? So far all the problems I have had with this camera have just been simple things that were new to me, but this one is really throwing me for a loop. Thanks for any help. I've attached a couple images. The first you can see the NINA preview is color, as well with the couple other I took in the bottom right. And the other in a photo of trying to color saturate the stretched image in Pixinsight, and it says that it cannot saturate a grey-scale image. I have tried this with Tif, Fits, and various binning types.
  2. So... I have been off/on tearing my hair out and nearly giving up the hobby over this unknown issue for a while now. I have gone through the list and think I have narrowed it down to one thing,...hopefully. My photos taken with my reflector telescopes never seem to be in focus. There is either of duplication of everything, or what looks like really bad coma across the whole frame, but any distortion is just about perfectly uniform across the whole sensor. I think what is happening is that the coma corrector is not adjusted properly. I have made sure the two reflector scopes are culminated, made sure the optics are clean, made sure nothing is being pinched, I have since bought a new DSLR (not for this, I just wanted a new camera anyways). I think I have covered all the bases, the only variable is the coma corrector. The corrector I use is this https://optcorp.com/products/ba-rcc-i-rowe-coma-corrector , with the required backspace adjuster. It calls for a total of 91.5mm of backspace. Assuming the camera has 55mm of backfocus the adjustment on the coma corrector is marked at 36.5mm...but that measurement does not appear to work for me. I have played around with the +- 3mm of adjustment the directions allow for, but to no avail. Now, I also have a coma corrector for an F/4 refractor that calls for 55mm of back-focus that didn't work (made all the stars triangular) until I stuck a ~1mm ziptie between the coma corrector and the T-ring. That brought the focus to being nearly perfect....But adjusting the reflector coma corrector the same distance does nothing. Because nothing can be that easy. I unfortunately don't have a reference scope that I know for sure is good. The best I know is that the scopes seem to be fine without the coma corrector, albeit with terrible coma since they are very fast scopes (F/3.9) I have tried looking up my camera specs (Canon SL2) to get an exact figure for back-focus but I have not been able to find anything (backfocus and backspacing seem to have different meanings in the normal photography world). Does anyone know of a resource where I can find these backspace specs? Or really just any advice or suggestions from a similar issue? I would really like to get to using my big scopes now that its getting colder out. I am about at the point of getting a smaller reflector just to see if the issue is my scope or the coma corrector. Thanks for any/all help
  3. No problem, I was interested in the same thing. I downloaded the software, but my laptop died so couldn't really go much further with that. Update: I think the problem was that when adjusting the secondary mirror it had spun (slight clockwise) when I loosened the main screw. I used a Cheshire eyepiece to adjust that better and a laser to center the secondary. It appears centered in both laser and Cheshire now. I do not have the ability to take flat frames so I won't be able to test that yet, but I think my problem is solved. Thanks for the help
  4. Pretty sure the laser is correct. I have another reflector that is working fine using the laser. I did a pretty extensive cleaning before I put up the scopes for storage and probably didn't put the mirrors in exactly the right orientation. Just looking through the focuses it looks like the secondary mirror is a little twisted. I messed around with it a bit, but my old laptop finally kicked it, so It'll be a little before I can really test it with photos.
  5. I will check the focuser, though I think it is fine (the problem is new, I have taken many photos where there wasn't any offset). Maybe simply taking it off and putting it back on will adjust it slightly, it has been through a few moves since last use. Taking it off and putting it back on seems to fix plenty of problems. Without the coma corrector the distortion is much less noticeable. The coma just centers towards a different point. Adding the corrector just seems to "correct" improperly. I don't have a Cheshire eyepiece, but they are fairly cheap so i'll pick one up. I looked into properly using one and it seems that is probably my problem. I was kind of under the assumption that a laser and Cheshire did more or less the same thing, I guess I was wrong. The scope is a 254mm 1000mm F/3.9. I don't know if that would make it better or worse, but either way the problem seems to be the same. Thanks for the help!
  6. Perhaps something light this might be better? https://www.amazon.com/Heater-Camera-Telescopes-Aperture-Telescope/dp/B013QGTOQU/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1529469301&sr=8-3&keywords=telescope+dew+heater It is not USB powered, but it has low/high settings. And if you are just warming one lens/scope it should work fine. If USB is a deciding factor it looks like this adapter may work. https://www.amazon.com/CableDeconn-Volt-Barrel-Power-Cable/dp/B012VLKXKM/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1529469715&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=usb+to+dc&psc=1
  7. Okay, so I recently got back into the hobby...and I have not been short of problems since. My reflector had some pretty bad pinching (which I fixed), but there still seems to be some distortion of the stars. I took an image over the past couple nights of ~10 hours and you can see the distortion pretty clearly. I think the problem is coming from my coma corrector. According to my flat frames the center of the mirror is off center. I have collimated the mirrors with a laser and they are perfect. But according to the flat frame it might be pointed in the right direction, but it doesn't seem centered. This off center mirror reflecting light through a centered coma corrector I think is the source of the problem. How do I fix this? Do I need to go in and maneuver the secondary mirror differently? Thanks. Edit: Converting the Flat frame to a Jpg really ruined it, here is a better link. The vertical lines are not present in the actual flats, just when uploaded here:
  8. Slight update: I took apart the primary mirror of my main scope and re-tightened everything. The culmination adjustment screws were nearly completely tightened, I think that is what was causing the "pinching" on the mirror. I took some test shots to see how it looked and it seemed okay, tonight I am taking ~3 hour image to see how it looks when a few hours are stacked. Didn't get a chance to test other scopes, bad weather, though after seeing the difference after fixing the tightness on the screw I am confident it is not a camera issue.
  9. Thanks for the responses ( I was not notified via my email so I didn't realize there were responses) Last night I started at the -3mm low end the company advised and worked my way up to the +3mm half MM by half MM. Around 36 it seemed to be best (just about where it says it should be) , but the stars were still very triangular. I figured I'd just forget the corrector and try taking pics without it, and that's when I realized that the distortion was there without the corrector as well. The secondary mirror is straight, scope is culminated with a laser culmination tool and there are no light leaks. As far as i can tell my scope is working fine. Tonight I am going to image with another reflector (with and without the corrector) scope and a small refractor to try and determine if it is my primary reflector or possibly my camera (its a very old DSLR). Although, I don't see how camera damage could cause this kind of distortion. The pinched optics problem came to mind after I sat on the problem for a while. But where would the optics be "pinched" in a reflector? Nothing in the corrector is tightened any more than necessary (and the mirrors are aligned). I tried uploading a picture but the upload kept failing ? I'll post an update after I troubleshoot with other scopes tonight. Thanks!
  10. So I have been out of the hobby for a while. During college I got burnt out having to set up/pack up every night/morning. I am now able to set a scope up for as long as the weather allows and am getting back into the hobby. I set everything up the other night just to troubleshoot any tracking/mount/alignment problems before attempting to actually get images and noticed that the stars come out distorted. They look more like triangles with rounded tips. I messed around with the back-focus on my Baader Rowe Coma Corrector F/3.5 -F/6 but couldn't seem to get the distortion to go away, it got worse/better but was still there. My scope is an F/3.9 and has worked in the past with this coma corrector. (I unfortunately did not mark the back-focus that it was set at ? ) Since my scope is so close to the limit of focal length do I need to adjust the back-focus rather drastically from the recommended 36.5mm (for a total of around 96mm of back-focus)? The directions say "adjust +- 3mm if necessary". So will I need to adjust to ~39.5mm or ~33.5mm? Is there a rule of thumb like; A higher f/ ratio = more back focus, or vice versa? Thanks for any assistance/advice
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