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Everything posted by johnfosteruk

  1. Speaking of pics, here's mine for reference Neil. It is like looking into a black hole
  2. I just did my 130 and despite a certain amount of pre flocking dread it was quite easy. I gave it a hoover and a brush first, then nicked some of The Present Mrs Foster's hairspray to hopefully help prevent fuzzy mirror syndrome. Then I removed everything from the tube, rolled the material up backing side facing outwards pulled an inch or two of the backing off and worked away from the seam, pulling a little bit of backing off at a time. As Mark said, the glue is quite forgiving. I did have a few bubbles and creases come the end, most of them ironed out with a bit of massaging, and the rest I just poked with the scalpel to let the air out and then flattened them down. I have to say it's an astonishing difference, it's like peering into a void in spacetime and I'm looking back at me!
  3. Excuse my stream of consciousness/thinking out loud, this may well be considered nonsense I've just realised this should have gone into tips, tricks techniques - I don't know if a mod wants to move it. I have a Skywatcher 130 on an EQ2 and my trusty Nikon D3200 and am very much engaged in an 'astronomy on a budget' project, because otherwise, as I may have commented elsewhere I'll surely go bankrupt. So, I've got tracking pretty well sorted with an economy motor and I've taken a few impressive (to me anyhoo) images of the moon so far, but what I'm hoping to achieve at some point is good size images of individual craters. I've been able to view this level of detail with the 10mm and 2xBarlow quite well, and I'll be doing some sketches of what I observe, but I'd like to image it as well. Now don't get me wrong, if I'm pushing the limits of my gear I'm not upset, I do intend to upgrade bit by bit as time goes on but it's a big old universe and there's lots of details to pull out of the data with the wider field images. Plus I'm learning all the while as I study what I've got which is what it's all about. I think the moon alone is enough to occupy me for half a lifetime before I even move on to galaxy hunting However, I like a challenge, and I like to get the most out of what I've got. I've also got myself an adapter to allow me to do afocal, having previously used prime focus with the barlow and a T-Adapter and last night after a session of observing I quickly tested it and although there was a fair amount of CA, I achieved focus through the camera's live view. This was with the Barlow in the EP holder, the 10mm in the adapter, connected to the lens mount on the Nikon. So onto my questions... Am I best optimising my technique, camera settings etc to pull the best quality I can at prime focus? Or, are there steps I can take to overcome the inherent challenges of afocal that will pay off and give better results? Obviously I need to take the resolving power of the scope into account and really I understand that most of the imaging we see here is with significantly more capable equipment, but if anyone has played around at this level and achieved results I'd like to know what you did. Camera settings, equipment setup, processing settings are all fair game. Clear Skies
  4. I found the attached a great help when I got mine. Page one covers putting it all together which I guess you've probably nailed already so I've linked straight to page two. It covers the basics of polar alignment and usage once you're setup. Mine's an SW 130 and while at the start I'll admit to a little envy looking around the boards at some of the gear people have, but I've been nowt but delighted overtime I've used it. Also worth noting they're not demonstrating with an EQ2 but it's all the same, R/A, DEC, knobs etc. S@N Equatorial Setup Guide
  5. Nice first effort. Took me a load of images before I had anything I considered post worthy. On the software side I've just been introduced to ImPPG for processing and sharpening after stacking. Looks awesome so far
  6. Thanks Michael, I've just been having a play with ImPPG. You can easily go over the top with that can't you....
  7. Good idea but I put it back together and collimated it. No harm dismantling it again next week when the stuff arrives. Now to earn credit with Wifey so I can upgrade anyway.
  8. Top Tip, close this thread and make it a sticky, on all man hobby related forums.
  9. That's very good news, just think of all the extra science the space agencies can fund once the savings start rolling in from reusing rockets.
  10. I've had a mental week and had a nice little weekend project planned. I removed the primary from my SW 130 as I'd had a little rain related slow reaction based disaster the other week and despite everything drying out nicely I was left with a great big smudgy ring! So I've cleaned it nicely, and centre spotted it and I planned this weekend to flock the tube and seeing as that means taking out the spider it's inevitable I'd be collimating it after as well. I've ordered a laser collimator to play with, but have also made a DIY collimation cap in case that's a load of old rubbish. I also ordered the flocking material and was expecting it in the last few days. I had some little red cards of delight from my friend the postie, so off to the sorting office I went, joy and happiness with a dead badger on top, no flocking material for me, it was all stuff for the wife!! Post arrived just after I got back and nothing. What am I going to do this weekend now? Ideas on a postcard please.
  11. That is brilliant.. Loving your Obsy too
  12. I took this on 12th March this year. It's 30% of about 2000 frames captured with my Nikon at ISO 800 on the SW 130, processed in Registax. It's not the best, and probably not processed as well as it could be but I'm pleased with it, it's the first image I'd been able to capture where I really had a handle on what I was doing since getting the scope. Since getting the motor I'm sure things will improve by orders of magnitude as I don't have to worry about tracking objects, so I can concentrate on the image. I particularly like Langrenus, and Cleomedes/Tralles in this image. I don't know why, they just stand out to me. It was an eventful night for me too, my brother in law and 16 year old niece were with me and blown away by Jupiter, and I broke my mount!! Clear Skies
  13. Lovely Image Alexei. Cleomedes is one of my favourite craters I've observed so far.
  14. Just reread the first post in the thread and noticed the aperture limit of 102mm... Post deleted! Loving everybody else's images though.
  15. I'm moving to Surrey. 2 Hours I was out on Monday and the seeing was terrible. Barely any detail at all. Not disheartened though, fingers crossed for clear skies this weekend
  16. Good tip, I made a mark with a sharpie before I took the outer ring off the tube, so it should all be good in that respect. I'll do the same with the main cell section before I take that out to reattach the outer ring to the tube. And as I'm flocking the tube I'll be taking the spider off so collimation will be inevitable now that I think about it out loud. cheers both Clear skies.
  17. ah right, I didn't want to disturb the collimation screws or locking screws, just to make life a little easier when I was done. But I suppose a little bit of collimation required isn't that much easier than a lot of collimation required..
  18. So I've whipped the primary off the SW 130 to centre spot it and flock the tube, I'll also obviously be removing the secondary as well. The 4 screws around the OD of the cell are affixed to nuts on the inside of the tube which was easy enough to get off - I just did a little light prising to as I unscrewed the screws, but I don't anticipate it being an easy job to get the nuts and screws talking to each other again when I'm done. I could hold the bolt in grips with my arm down the tube while someone else does with the screw end of things, but I don't anticipate that being very easy to achieve and if I drop the grips..... I also thought of glueing the bolts in place for complete ease but obviously glueing a flat surface to a curved surface would prove difficult. Anybody here got their primary screwed back onto their SW 130 easily? If so how?
  19. But isn't that a slippery slope? Before you know it you'll be buying bigger boards with higher resolving power, one each for planetary, lunar, DSO etc ?
  20. Added to my ever growing and probably unattainable target list!!! And to boot My brother's a massive trekkie so he'll be very interested!!!
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