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Stub Mandrel

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Stub Mandrel last won the day on February 7

Stub Mandrel had the most liked content!

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About Stub Mandrel

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    Main Sequence

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    Staffordshire UK
  1. I don't know, but i can tell you plenty of people use old satellite dishes and their LNBs for basic solar detection, you should be able to pick one up secondhand for peanuts.
  2. On a budget? An ASI 120MM, good barlow, a manual filter wheel and a set of filters will set you back about £250. OR an ASI 120MC, barlow and an atmospheric dispersion corrector will be about the same. For the best results get the mono camera setup and the ADC for about £350. Either cam can be used for small dsos or as a guide camera if you get a bigger camera later. Neil
  3. Stub Mandrel

    Gotcha! Mercury for the first time.

    Well done, I haven't seen it since the early 1980s! (except the solar transit a few years ago!)
  4. All working now, but I have to disconnect now to do some guiding. Some SpectrumLab results! Long lasting trail: 'Hooked' trace (doppler part + ionisation trail): Another 'old hooky': And one that's mostly just the doppler part:
  5. Stub Mandrel

    Jupiter: NEB happenings

    With my 150PL I use 240x but I have to wait to the moments of good seeing. With the C90 Mak, 120x
  6. Here's an interesting observation. the SDR module I got was this 'aluminium' one: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Aluminum-RTL-SDR-USB-Dongle-RTL2832U-R820T2-0-5PPM-TCXO-TV-Tuner-Stick-Receiver/302715920328?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649 It gets quite warm, and I've noticed the noise levels were higher when used in the day than overnight, and also rose as it warmed up. I dug out a decent sized heatsink and held it against the case with a clamp. The temperature of the unit has dropped, probably by 15-20 degrees and the noise levels have fallen too.
  7. Stub Mandrel

    Qualifications in Astronomy?

    Interesting that most of us seem to have qualifications in something. Degree or not an enquiring mind seems to be essential.
  8. Yep, I see much experimentation with threshold levels ahead - I've got it counting but NOT screen capturing any small events but, I haven't had a big enough event to capture yet... I need to unplug the computer so i can use it for guiding later - I hadn't thought about this, especially as having set up two scopes I have relaised I need one for guiding and one for planetary video... looks like the vista one IS coming out of retirement.
  9. OK, I've almost got this working. I have the screen captures, far too many, a few are rather nice. Lots more around dawn, a few streaks, a few blurs and one or two good 'hooked' traces. I don't have logs, but I think I created the directory in the wrong place - it won't create a missing directory, but instead just reports an error. If my tweak works, the next steps are: Making the threshold a tiny bit lower, it missed a few small but obvious meteors (in comparison another script did the opposite). Setting a test with a higher threshold for screen captures, once I am happy with what it is counting. Thanks @SteveNickolls and @The Admiral for getting me to this point, not least by supplying encouragement and enthusiasm! Looks like I will be able to supply counts for the Perseids.
  10. Stub Mandrel

    How do amateur astronomers make money?

    Attitudes to hobbies are different in different countries. It can be easier to explain to people why you do something if you can demonstrate that it generates a reward, offers a possible career or at least contributes to its own costs. Even true in the UK/USA. From a Tasco telescope box:
  11. Stub Mandrel

    Amateur astronomer or recreational sky observer

    To bring this thread up again, I found this refgernce on Wikipedia: https://www.seriousleisure.net/ The basic concept distinguishes three forms of serious leisure: Amateur pursuits - activities which have a professional counterpart (WP give astronomy and playing musical instruments as specific examples) Hobbies - WP uses the distinctions " collecting, making and tinkering (like embroidery and car restoration), activity participation (like fishing and singing), sports and games, and liberal-arts hobbies (like languages, cuisine, literature)." Volunteering - which is unpaid work for a cause or organisation. It certainly seems the 'astronomy' is one of the perfect models for an amateur pursuit. The 'concepts' page on the website above has the following, astronomy for SGL members certainly seems to count as serious leisure: Serious leisure is further distinguished from casual leisure by six characteristics found exclusively or in highly elaborated form only in the first. These characteristics are: 1) need to persevere at the activity, 2) availability of a leisure career, 3) need to put in effort to gain skill and knowledge, 4) realization of various special benefits, 5) unique ethos and social world, and 6) an attractive personal and social identity. Casual leisure is immediately, intrinsically rewarding; and it is a relatively short-lived, pleasurable activity requiring little or no special training to enjoy it. It is fundamentally hedonic; it is engaged in for the significant level of pure enjoyment, or pleasure, found there (Stebbins, 1997). It is also the classificatory home of much of the deviant leisure discussed by Rojek (1997, pp. 392-393). Among its types are: play (including dabbling), relaxation (e.g., sitting, napping, strolling), passive entertainment (e.g., TV, books, recorded music), active entertainment (e.g., games of chance, party games), sociable conversation, and sensory stimulation (e.g., sex, eating, drinking). Casual volunteering is also a type of casual leisure as is "pleasurable aerobic activity," or casual leisure requiring effort sufficient to cause marked increase in respiration and heart rate (Stebbins, 2004a). Casual leisure is considerably less substantial, and offers no career of the sort just described for serious leisure. In broad, colloquial language casual leisure, hedonic as it is, could serve as the scientific term for doing what comes naturally. Yet, despite the seemingly trivial nature of most casual leisure, I argue elsewhere that it is nonetheless important in personal and social life (Stebbins, 2001b). Project-based leisure is a short-term, moderately complicated, either one-shot or occasional, though infrequent, creative undertaking carried out in free time (Stebbins, 2005). Such leisure involves considerable planning, effort, and sometimes skill or knowledge, but for all that is not of the serious variety nor intended to develop into such. Nor is it casual leisure. The adjective "occasional" describes widely spaced undertakings for such regular occasions as arts festivals, sports events, religious holidays, individual birthdays, or national holidays while "creative" stresses that the undertaking results in something new or different, showing imagination, skill, or knowledge. Although most projects would appear to be continuously pursued until completed, it is conceivable that some might be interrupted for several weeks, months, even years.
  12. Stub Mandrel

    Which 2” H-alpha filter based on experiences?

    It will, I save my 7nm one for moonlit nights. Hoping to use it tomorrow, I want 10 minute ha subs of M57.
  13. Stub Mandrel

    Flat Earth one line debunks

    Apparently some people have triangulated accurately timed detections of large meteors, most of them were BEHIND the Graves radar. @SteveNickolls detected the ISS west of Ireland!
  14. Thanks both. >BOGGLE< those configuration files make Windows registry look user friendly - well they don't actually, let's just be thankful they don't use the registry for the SpectrumLab configuration! I seem to have got Badger's script working by editing the original file. It's saving a screen grab for every meteor, no matter how tiny, but I think I can see how to change that. Seems much quieter today than yesterday? I've decided to leave it running overnight to see if it picks up a dawn peak. Popped out with the bat detector, seeing as it works on a similar principle (heterodyning two signals). Plenty of pipstrelles to see over eth garden, let alone detect! Three in formation at one point.
  15. Still struggling with the SpectrumLab detection scripts. I need to create some folders but I'm not sure where they go. If I edit the upper and lower frequencies in the config window, they don't seem to change. Should I edit the config files directly? Could either of you (Steve & Ian) upload your screen capture script for me to try? Thanks...

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