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About Icesheet

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    Star Forming

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  1. Thanks folks, some looping subs and a Captain Obvious checklist on my next venture out!
  2. Thanks all, seems the consensus is the mount was not tracking for whatever reason. I guess I’ll need to double check everything again next time I get a chance to get out. Thanks!
  3. Sorry, didn’t see this. It was tracking yes, but I didn’t check it was sidereal to be honest. Didn’t think of that at the time. I hadn’t changed anything on the mount from my previous session though. I’ll check what the tracking mode is tomorrow.
  4. That was one of my thoughts. I’m not sure how to diagnose that though?
  5. Hmm, ok thanks for letting me know. It’s playing on my phone but I’ll upload it again on my laptop when I get home. Sure, sorry about the equipment. That night Inwas shooting with a Samsung 135 and ZWO ASI1600mm on an HEQ5. No guiding as I presumed at such a wide angle I wouldn’t have any trouble 🥴 I suppose it’s even more worrying that at a focal length of 135mm there was noticeable trailing in 10sec exposures.
  6. This has been a nightmare imagkng season for me and I’ve actually gone backwards. So much so that I couldn’t even get polar alignment the other night and I have no idea why. I use a polemaster and other than getting used to the process it’s been great and I’ve never had any issues once I get everything set up. However, the other night I couldn’t even get exposures longer than 10sec without trailing. In fact I could see the stars were actually jumping between exposures. I didn’t do anything differently than I did before so I’m at a bit of a loss. I even took the mount off the tripod, levelled it, double checked balancing etc. Nothing helped, same outcome. I’ve uploaded the video here, if you look closely you can see trailing is evident (10sec exposure) and the stars ‘jump’ position between exposures. Has anyone experienced this before? Could it be something to with the gears of the mount? B57992B6-9D37-49BA-9B66-CBD184D525B3.MOV
  7. Thanks @symmetal and sorry @Waldemar! I just seen the 29mm and assumed it was the one I had. Ok, I think your suggestion re sorting the issue on a partly cloudy or moonlit night sounds best. The ball bearing method seems like..well a ball ache! Good effort though
  8. Thanks folks, this all makes sense and what I was hoping might be the case. I'll remove from the telescope side to allow focus to be achieved and optimise the spacing towards sensor for round stars Was just worried there was perhaps some spacing requirements from the element to the flattener that would make it unsuitable for my scope. I actually have that extension tube but due to the filter wheel and M48-T2 adapter in the image train, the minimum 29mm of the Baader takes me over unfortunately. Seems like I have some frustration ahead of me though! Is there any way to sort this out indoors rather than waste valuable imaging time with it?
  9. I had my first introduction to the world of spacing last night and like most people's first experience with this it was a nightmare!! No images for me last night I have a SharpStar 60ED F5.5. This is one of the many variants of the TS, Altair, AstroTech compact refractors available on the market, although a tad faster at F5.5 compared to the usual F6 (TS sold the F5.5 version for a while). Anyway, I couldn't source a flattener for it but TS offer the Flat60 which is designed for their F5.5 and F6 versions. That flattener seems to be the same one offered by AltairAstro, so I plumped for that. The optimal working distance on the camera side is stated to be 54.8mm. Typically I couldn't get that with the spacers I have. It was either 56mm or 53mm. So I plumped for 56mm to see how it turned out but try as I might I could not get an image at all. Finally I realised I didn't have enough inward focus, so I switched it out to 53mm from the reducer. Still not enough inward focus! This confused me a until I realised that there were attachments at the telescope side of the FF. So I fiddled about with them and lo and behold I was able to get focus...of sorts. The best FWHM I could achieve was 17! At 100% crop the stars were like sausages :(. Try as might nothing would improve this. Before I go and spend more money on spacers has anyone experienced this? Should i be messing around with the adapters at the telescope side? If I get the spacing right now should I expect to see round stars or is there something else at play here? I always read about people having issues with spacing from FF to sensor but never read anything about issues on the other side. Edit to add. My camera is a ZWO ASI1600mm.
  10. Yes, it would be something else! The closest I have been to an active volcano was viewing Etna from some miles away spewing ash. My wife will be thrilled when she hears what I have planned. Stars and lava
  11. Thanks, looks stunning! I work as a geologist so it’s two birds with one stone I guess Either way way it will be the trip of a lifetime!
  12. Yes, I had a read about it and cloud cover can be a problem at lower levels particularly in the south and east. The NW coasts and inland seem to be the best according to this figure but still have cloud cover 30-40% of the year. That’s still better than where I am now though Apparently it’s <10% chance of cloud above the inversion layer.
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