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About Seraph_69

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  1. Hi all, I'm not sure how ridiculous this request may be, but I won't know until I ask I guess!! I am wondering if someone would be willing to 'donate' a set of subs to me, that I could use to practice post-processing on? I want to get into astrophotography, but I don't have a DSLR yet (and won't until I've paid off my lovely eye piece set!) - but I am trying to take in as much info on the post-processing side of things right now, and watching all these videos online/seeing people demonstrate the techniques at talks I've attended - I'm now just dying to start practicing, so that hopefully by the time I get my own camera and start taking my own subs, I will know what I'm doing/have decided on some tools/software I like. If this is some sort of astrophotography taboo to ask for someone else's hard-earned subs, or people are worried that I'm going to pretend I took them (which not my intention at all)/some sort of copyright infringement - then I completely understand - just thought I'd ask! If on the other hand someone is willing to let me have some subs to practice on, preferably a galaxy, as this is likely where I'll start with DSO astrophotography, and I want to learn to balance the core region with the arms, but beggers can't be chosers! Thanks for your time guys. Steve
  2. My laptop battery is horrible - even if I got a new one my laptop is essentially a desktop replacement so it wouldn't last very long at all it 100% needs mains power. I just ddon't really understand what I need to be able to run it off of 12v power or if that's even possible.
  3. Hi Colin, Sorry to blow the dust off this old thread, but I'm starting to look into getting a DSLR soon, and I have a few pieces of software on my laptop since we last spoke, such as ASCOM drivers etc. that I want to use with my scope, hence the re-emergence of what we talked about on this thread all that time ago! I am now in my new place, and have a garden I can get out in (UK weather permitting!). I'm using a Celestron 17ah power tank thingy at the moment, but I haven't forgotten about your beautiful battery box, and after re-reading the thread, I have 1 or 2 more questions if you don't mind? 1) I want to power a) HEQ5 Pro b ) Dell XPS L072X Laptop c) Canon EOS 6D DSLR (in future) d) Dew heaters (in future) e) Charge my phone would be nice (it can go straight to USB). Would your initial *1-box* solution be able to power all this? I'm thinking more from a connections perspective rather than questioning the amp hourage of the system. 2) You mention various DC converters, to step down the voltage from 12v cigar sockets to say 8v for DSLR or ??v for laptop - *are these neccesary?* Is this only neccesary if not using the fused 12v plugs you were talking about? ie Can I just plug all items above into the 12v cigar lighter sockets using your suggested battery box fusing suggested in the 1st initial post...as long as I am using cables with 1) The right connection at the other end e.g. jack to the mount & 2) Appropriate amperage fused plugs e.g. 3A fused cigar lighter plug for my mount which pulls max 2A?? Reasons for asking: 1) I can't seem to find a DC adapter that is compatible for my particular laptop (at least not an OEM one on the Dell website). 2) I don't have a DSLR yet and have no idea if you can get 12v plugs to power them? 3) I really want to just have a single box solution and you didn't mention about these converters in post 1 where you were listing everything I might need for said solution. 4) I want it to be safe and not damage my equipment! Thanks Steve
  4. Thanks guys, but I am really n00by in the realms of electricity, so if you could provide some links/examples that would be great, because I don't know what a "traditional transformer-based unit" is! Chris - can you explain why you avoid mains outside? Is it simply the risks due to moisture etc.? And I have no idea what voltage I need for laptop etc. I just know I definately want to run my HEQ5 Pro, Dell XPS L702X laptop, soon to buy canon EOS 6D and in future, dew heater controller. I can't think of much else I would need to run off it. One elegent solution would be lovely but I fear it doesn't exist!! So Chris - are you basically kinda suggesting the same idea, except instead of trailing the AC outdoors using an extension lead to the converter, you have the AC to DC PSU in the house, and long leads taking the DC power out to the scope etc? And that for something on a voltage other than 12v ie a laptop, I would need to stick some sort of step up between the 12v and the laptop? Thanks
  5. Hi all, Seeing as I do most of my observing in my back garden, and wish to start using my laptop and other equipment which requires power, I have been pondering AC power, rather than always using my Power Tank. I know using a step up & step down converter/inverter (not sure of the difference) wastes a lot of power (although I'm on Economy 7 so not the end of the world). I found this froMaplin: http://www.maplin.co.uk/p/12v-5000ma-car-accessory-socket-ac-dc-power-supply-l25ay ...would it work? Is it basically a compact converter/inverter? I think it has inbuilt surge protection but would I need one at the plug socket in the house too? Also it has some pretty dire reviews but I don't know if people are just using it with the wrong equipment? Any alternatives people can vouch for? Ideally I want to be able to power my mount, laptop (will probably just go straight into the 240v extension lead with that), DSLR and dew heater controller (as and when I get those last two)...will this also require me to get a little cigar socket hub? Thanks!
  6. Hi, Sorry if anyone has already asked a similar question elsewhere, but this transit will be my first (OK, second) time using a solar filter (I got a baader one from astrozap). I did my research, and ensured I got one which is to be used for visual (it's this one: https://www.astrozap.com/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=35). But my question is: After testing out the filter for the first time yesterday morning (caught a nice sunspot or two), I went to change eyepieces. When looking down the scope, with the eyepiece removed, I noticed around 20 or so tiny little pinholes in the filter - is this normal upon first use?! The instructions say to cover them with a black marker? I ensured i hardly tightened the nylon thumbscrews at all (it fits like a glove and would take a small tornado to blow off) as I didn't want to over-stretch and damage the material. I must have been out in the morning sun for around 1-1/2 hours in total, the whole time tracking the sun with my 8'' Newtonian. Was I doing something wrong? Should I not try to observe for so long? Should this many pinholes appear on 1st use with filter!?! I can confirm I still have both my eyes, and it didn't seem to affect anything, however, I am a little wary about using it again tomorrow if I am doing something wrong. Any help would be greatly appreciated! (p.s. apologies if I was not supposed to add hyperlinks - just tell me and I will remove them).
  7. Hi all, I am off to Devon tomorrow, for a 3 night stay here: http://www.astroadventures.co.uk/ as a birthday present/short break They have a 20'' dob and a 10'' imaging setup. I need a list of objects to look at while I am there, and have not had much time to think about it! I am also relatively inexperienced and don't really know too many targets off-hand in the time I've been doing this. Views are unobstructed to the south apparently, and I am definitely sticking Mars and Saturn on the list, but any other suggestions of great targets would be greatly appreciated! I have an 8'' newt, so I want to try to look for things that will benefit from a larger aperture/darker skies (so that's everything I guess!!) Perhaps some good DSO's / clusters / colourful double stars? I especially would like some suggestions for good galaxies and nebulae Thanks in advance guys!!
  8. Thanks John And you are right, the click-zoom is indeed 1.25", but the heft of it up top made me think it was a 2" at first - see below (far left):
  9. Thanks! ...forgot to mention the TeleVue 20mm Plossl in there too They are new and unused so I'm smitten Would I be right in saying that the type-6's are not parfocal, but the 4's are?
  10. So I've not been on the forum for yonks now (apologies) - I've been extremely busy with work..but I'm remembering what's more important Anyway, I'm feeling a bit pleased with myself right now, as I've been looking into upgrading my eyepiece collection (not much of a collection really, just the 20mm GSO 'super' plossl that came with my scope, and the cheapy (but not awful) 9mm Revelation Astro plossl that I grabbed from Astroboot - hello eyelashes!)...and I just managed to bag the following set of *new & unused* oculars (+ other goodies) for what I consider a steal (and quite the upgrade in views!!): TeleVue 35mm Panoptic - 2" TeleVue 22mm Nagler (Type 4) - 2" TeleVue 17mm Nagler (Type 4) - 2" TeleVue 13mm Nagler (Type 6) - 1.25" TeleVue 9mm Nagler (Type 6) - 1.25" TeleVue 2.5x Powermate - 1.25" TeleVue Click-stop Zoom - 2" Celestron 25mm E-Lux Plossl - 1.25" Celestron Skyscout Personal Planetarium 93980 ...all nicely packaged in a genuine PELI 1520 hard case I paid a cool grand for the lot (or will be over the course of a few months...I'm not that rich!) Not bad ey? Especially for someone who is technically still a beginner - don't think I'll be needing another eyepiece in...a very long time!! I will of course take *EXTREME* care of these beautiful eyepieces when they arrive, and make anyone who wishes to look through them (including my gf) sign some sort of agreement not to leave a single trace of contamininent on them!! Did I get a good deal? Any particular advice/quirks with any of them?
  11. OK Colin, Thanks for the price breakdown (I think ) this does not include the battery either does it?! How would one go about charging it without the terminals? I have seen these 7-stage smart chargers for around £35. Would it be possible with your set up to charge it in the box, but with the box open? Or would it need to be completely removed from the box every time? Don't suppose you have any photos of the inside you could share? I think I'm perhaps more confused than when I started now to be perfectly honest I think what I want is just 1 box. 4 cigar/4 USB should do me for a very long time to come, but I do like future-proofing as much as the next man I am at a bit of a loss about this whole fuse thing, from what I understand, you have a fuse box fitted on the 'battery-side' of the box, and within your other boxes, you have lower Amp fuses to match the items you are plugging into them i.e. fitted between the sockets + the equipment? - is this right? You suggested fused cigar lighter plugs, however I just did a quick google, and I couldn't really find them with fuse ratings as low as I would need for say the scope (2.5A fuse for example)? How would I get around this with just 1-box setup? Sorry for being such an idiot, my brain is still frazzled from work!!
  12. p.s. Sorry for not being more active on the thread, my workplace is going through a lot of changes right now and I am extremely busy with everything! I have to juggle keeping active on here and keeping the missus happy
  13. Hi Colin, That's a lot of good information yet again - I am now hopefully moving house in the new year and have an awesome garden space to build a shed in to use as an obsy, so perhaps I will be looking more into mains power for the near future at least, but I will endeavour to build myself a battery box in the future, when I will undoubtedly and shamelessly copy everything you have done My girlfriend and I coincidentally love camping, and I guess if we ever wanted to go to a site without power hook-up, might be looking at a similar multi-box set up like you have for the purpose of being able to 'split them off'. However, I think it's going to be enough of a learning curve just doing the first one! However, I will always have my electrician friend to hand to help me (in fact he's going to help me get power to my obsy/shed when I find the money to get that done at the new place), as well as all the fantastic info you have supplied me with here - I hope you are still around on these forums in a year or so's time when I may consider taking up the battery box project - who knows, it may be sooner In the mean time, I should probably try to learn as much as I can about electrics! Could I just ask how much the battery box cost you all together (the price of the main box and then also how much the entire multi-box array?), if you have a rough idea? This would be minus the battery itself as obviously it would depend greatly on brand/capacity I end up going for. Thanks a million (again) Steve
  14. OK so a few questions: why split everything out in to multiple boxes in the first place? Is this a space thing? Is it safer electronically? Also, are you saying I should actually match the fuse to the amperage of the appliance? Surely I should go just ABOVE to avoid it blowing unnecessarily? If I was to use all the links you have provided, this is just to build the main box yes? Will this be enough to power all I have suggested and more? Just thinking of future proofing? I am looking at getting an 85Ah leisure battery, which I understand will bee more than enough to power an heq5 pro, laptop, dew heater and DSLR or webcam for an entire night's observing, or maybe more? Correct assumption? I'm a bit at a loss as to whether to get a lead acid, gel or (I believe its called) ATX? Essentially it has the electrolyte solution insulted with fiberglass. The latter 2 can be oriented however without risk of leaking acid on your toes (:/) but come at a heftier price tag, and I have to be VERY careful not to discharge them too much/neglect charging of them. Then the standard lead acid have none of the charging related issues, are the cheapest of the 3 but must be treated with more care during movement etc. to ensure they stay the right way up to avoid leakage, correct? Which would you suggest? Keep in mind I WILL want to travel to reach good dark sites from time to time, so the battery will need to be moved somewhat. Lastly, the suggestion you have given about built in fuses - why did you not choose these? Advantages/disadvantages? Thanks again!!! Sent from my A0001 using Tapatalk
  15. Fantastic CJ! Very helpful and informative. A very big thank you!! You have inspired me to actually give this a go now. I'm sure if I had all the parts bought and sat in front of me I probably could do this. I certainly won't have any problems with stripping wires I wouldn't have thought, as I work with optical fibres at work and have plenty of experience stripping them mechanically and chemically. I'm a bit confused as to the actual theory behind it all though. Am I to believe that fuses are there to 'blow' if the current goes just over what the device is pulling, if for example there was a surge, to avoid said surge from reaching and damaging the device electronics themselves? Surely 15A fuse is very high given that the mount or laptop for example might only pull say 2A max, in the case of my HEQ5 Pro? Surely I want to go just above the device's max current, at say 3A for that particular fuse? With a fuse box arrangement, can different amperage fuses be fitted for different output sockets, depending on the device I'm going to plug into it? Or do they all have to be the same? If my understanding is correct then I'd like to 'assign' particular output sockets for particular devices and match them with relevant amp fuses - would this be possible with the arrangement you have shown? Also, could you just clarify for me what would be plugged in to what? Obviously the mount would connect using the supplied 12v jack to cigarette lighter plug, but what about webcams? DSLRs? Webcams? Laptops? Etc. Thanks again! Sent from my A0001 using Tapatalk
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