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Posts posted by Bizibilder

  1. A swift Venus image from this evening - 200/5000 frames using the ED120 APO, 2.5x Powermate and ASI120mm mono camera in truly awful seeing!*  But it is my first Venus image for a few years so I'm happy with it.


    * The seeing was really bad as I had several laptop crashes which I eventually found to be caused by a dodgy USB cable.  It meant that by the time I had sorted everything out Venus was down on the neighbours rooftops with the resulting severe boiling and heat haze.

    • Like 3
  2. How many revolutions will your EQ6 do in its lifetime?  I suspect your generic bearings will be good for a few thousand rpm for many hours running time.  If you install your bearings (any type) correctly and with the correct preload (i.e minimal play) and keep them properly lubricated, they should outlast the mount by a considerable margin.

    • Like 3
  3. My first "Moon" for almost a year!  (last one was 10th Feb 2019!!!).  Been a bit busy lately.  Also surprised myself that I could (almost) remember what to do to control the scope, camera and get an image - there were a few naughty words spoken getting everything working properly.  The kit was fine - it was just me being a bit rusty :) 


    Seven mono panes with 200 from 1000 frames stacked in each.

    • Like 8
  4. Personally I would steer clear of inverters to run laptops (or any other Astro grear) - much easier to use an "in car charger" to run direct off 12v.  If you use an inverter you are fighting the inefficiencies of both stepping up the voltage and then stepping it back down again.  

  5. Just add up the total Amps drawn by your equipment and then multiply by the number of hours you expect to use them.  For example: Mount 2 Amps, Camera 2 amps, Laptop 4 amps and Dew heaters 2 amps is a total of 10 Amps.  If you run for 5 hours then 5 x 10 is 50 Amp hours.  This would work on a 100 amp hour battery (it is inadvisable to run batteries down below about 50% of capacity).  Please note the numbers above are just guesses!  You will need to work out the exact values from your own equipment.

    I used to use a 100Ah battery with an EQ6, DSLR camera and laptop and never had issues with running out of power for a 5-6 hour session.

  6. They are most certainly NOT the same as standard photographic filters.

    These foil filters are used for "white light" solar observing and photography - ie they transmit all wavelengths in the visible spectrum.  An Ha 7nm filter is NOT the same as a proper Ha solar telescope.  Unfortunately a true Ha telescope (or device like the DayStar Quark solar "eyepiece") is a very expensive piece of kit!

    One safe alternative to the foil filter is the Herschel wedge diagonal - but again this is quite an expensive alternative.

    (Just an afterthought - there are "Solar Filters" that can be screwed into a normal eyepiece.  These used to be sold with cheap telescopes.  They are EXTREMELY dangerous!!  They will shatter in the heat from the Sun and, should you be looking through the telescope at the time you will be blinded. Don't even think of using one!!)

  7. I would advise you to use the Baader foil of ND5.0.  This is quite safe for both visual and photography.  The ND 3.8 foil is ONLY suitable for photography and NOT for direct visual observations.  You can make a filter holder quite easily from card and strong tape.  One sheet of A4 size should make at least two (possibly three or four if you are careful) filters.

    I keep my own filter in a plastic box with a lid.  It is about five years old now and still in excellent condition - I am always careful not to touch the foil and to check the foil is in good condition before EVERY use.

  8. Assuming you mean space around the scope inside an observatory I would suggest 18" (450-500mm) minimum all round.  That gives you just about enough room to squeeze yourself past the scope - assuming you are of at least only moderate proportions!! 😯

    It also allows room for the inevitable additions and extensions to the scope that will happen as you use it.

    • Like 1
  9. Yes - try some WD40 or similar to try and get into the joints.  Then try using something like this rubber jam-jar opener (less than £2 on the bay of fleas):


    You may be able to get things moving.  If not then try a little heat from a hair dryer (or hot air paint stripper gun but be careful!)

    When all else fails brute force may be required :) 

    • Like 2
  10. First Sun image since last August!  Clouds, lack of any sunspot activity and a very busy life at the moment are my excuses!

    Almost forgotten how to process in addition to Windows complaining about any App that I used (PIPP, Registax5 etc!!)

    Anyway - stack of 45 from 138 single frames taken with the Canon 1100D and ED 120APO.  ISO 100 and 1/4000sec (If I recall correctly).




    • Like 10
  11. In my observatory there is no door to the "warm room" section - yet it does keep the chill out and cuts any wind down to more or less zero.  Once I'm gone the air can circulate throughout the building - there are plenty of gaps around the sliding roof and I have never noticed any condensation inside the observatory.  I suggest you simply leave the warm room door open when you are not using it.

    • Like 2
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