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About dobblob

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    astronomy, birding
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    Upstate New York

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  1. Well the pound has recovered nicely thank you. Today at 1.38, higher than it was before C 19 struck. I hope we can now see decreasing prices because of this or is my naivety showing?
  2. I am a laptop free and neck strain free imager. As follows my setup: 1) AVX mount. Alignment using the 4 star method followed by the mount align ( Set ALT and AZ) routines. Works every time. No straining to look through a polar scope. Just perform a decent initial mount align using an inclinometer and knowing true north. Powered from a 12v battery. 2) DSLR with intervalometer. Images retrieved from camera indoors at end of session or from SD card. Also fitted with a dummy battery with 12 vdc battery supply for all night hassle free shooting. My scope is 600 mm and I have never seen
  3. Looks like coma /spherical aberration inherent to the lens. No surprise really, most long camera lenses will show some aberration but this does look quite extreme. Is this a cropped image off center ? I ask because the comas point to a "center" somewhat left and upper in the frame. Not sure there is a solution unless if the lens is new it can be proved to be defective and can be returned under warranty. Unlikely. Maybe other users of this lens can chime in on it's quality. One could try stopping the lens down to say f 8 to see if the aberration reduces. There aren't many ca
  4. Ensure the limit on your credit card is north of $3000.
  5. Not the same camera but I modded a used Canon XS. I removed both filters (confession-I broke both !) I also lost the screen view. I had to reseat all the ribbons TWICE before normal service was resumed even though they all appeared to be seated fully and correctly. I also had the black "tube" come away and it would not sit back in it's housing correctly. Not sure but I suspect the tube is a fiber carrying light to a sensor related to auto exposure setting. If so it serves no function for astro purposes as only bulb exp. is used in MAN.
  6. It's been a while ago and I made no photos of the operation but I can at least attempt a verbal description....... My R and P focuser had a similar slop. The tolerances were just too forgiving. As I racked in and out I could see out of focus stars , then in focus stars, then out of focus shift across the FOV. This was a problem as I was replacing the EP with a camera at different focus points. Very annoying having found and centered the guide star in the EP and find it shifting at a different camera focus point. Very crudely I made up some two part epoxy weld and packed the insi
  7. The Pleiades always impresses. My wife (who has no idea about astronomy and has still not figured out how many scopes I own thank god ) will often join me under the stars and always asks to be shown M 45 even in the Summer! No interest in the Moon , planets or M 42 or M 31. It's always M 45 that wows her. Perhaps it's because it's in HER star sign Taurus. Better than no interest at all I suppose.
  8. Just a little word of caution when using Stellarium----it's depictions of some of the galaxies and nebulae are rather generous. You can crank the settings under "DSOs" to reveal all sorts of objects that even with long exposure images will not equal what is shown let alone visual telescopic views. It was educational for me to attempt to image the Monkey Head neb on the basis of what Stellarium displayed. After a few hours of exposure it was barely visible. I tend to stay with Messier. Hey, if he could see it in the 1740's with an early 4" refractor then that is a good reference for m
  9. My AVX works well mounting a Canon T 3i with a 70-300 mm ES Canon telephoto even at 300 mm. Since you already have it this combo is all you should need. As for attaching , it's been a while ago but I remember drilling a clearance hole in the dovetail shoe for a 1/4 " x 20 thumb screw bolt to screw into the camera base. Great thing about using the AVX is just using a simple two or four star align with polar align to follow if that. No balancing needed. The tracking for me is fine. Only slight difficulty is getting a bright enough alignment star to show in live view or else just s
  10. I like and use StarTools also. I am a budget AP'er and a little lazy. If I can't figure out how to get a decent image within a few hours of experimenting the shine wears off. Shelling out for PI at a cost of more than my scope makes no sense when ST gets me there at the cost of a cheap eyepiece and without days of study. I tried a trial version of APP but the basic stacking process took 12 hours before I quit (at 32%) ,unfinished. To be fair I may have made some error in the parameter selections but there was nothing to tell me about it. Even when I stacked far fewer frames to
  11. Darthvader,Yes those items you link to are exactly what you need. A little more expensive than ones I ordered some years ago but you will thank yourself.
  12. Darthvader, I am surprised that no one ( OK tomato has hinted) has yet mentioned dummy battery packs for your Canon. For most (if not all) Canons there are dummy packs that replace the battery that can be powered via a Canon DC adapter from mains 220 vac ( needlessly expensive!) or much cheaper generic brands powered from a 12 vdc battery. They may need a converter to get from 12 vdc to whatever the camera dummy pack needs, often 7-8 vdc. The combo can be found on Amazon and will probably run 20-30 GBP. Really worth it to be able to operate all night for several nights without c
  13. I consider giving up as regularly as I consider giving up smoking. A typical recent night was forecast ( three different forecasts agreed) as clear with great seeing, transparency, no dew and warm from dusk til dawn. I checked the satellite images which showed no cloud within a few hundred miles. Perfect! I set up before sunset. This involves MANY carries of my imaging gear down (and later up ) a flight of winding stairs. An hour later and in a muck sweat I was done and firing off my first 2 minute DSO frame. I looked to the west and saw not a hint of cloud down to the horizo
  14. I recommend anything but a Celestron Power Tank. They are overpriced, unreliable and with features you will never need. Get a 12v battery, ANY battery, for 1/2 the price and twice the amp hours. I leave suggestions as to which one to others .
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