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Everything posted by BrownClaw

  1. No problem, I appreciate the questions as it helps me to learn I'm triggering the camera via a cable release button. I've locked the mirror to reduce vibration, so I'll basically be sitting nearby the set up, open the mirror, wait a few seconds, then open the shutter. If I could set the images on top of each other that would be great, but not sure how I could do that if at all, as they're just one image
  2. Thank you! IIRC, exposures were in the region of 1min30. The ISO was 1600. I polar aligned using a Latitude scale set to 52'...I'm in Banbury so I think I did that right Focusing is the real trick, I'm essentially doing it blind. I hooked up a 32mm lens to the scope to find the target, and focused it. Once I was happy I was pointing at the right thing, I'd take off the EP and connect the Canon. I got quite good at estimating the different focus for the camera, about 3/4 of a turn clockwise After a few 'test' exposures to make sure the stars were as crisp as I could get them, I'd plough on with the longer exposures. I suspect that any movement will be my fault; my scope was resting on 3 wooden boards, which in turn were on a tarp, which in turn was on a recently emptied potato patch; we're a bit short on space so I suspect even me moving the slightest bit on the tarp might cause a wobble.
  3. These aren't stacked at all, they're both single exposures But yeah, the next step is to do them properly; I just got a bit overexcited I found that to get useable shots, I had to go for exposures approaching a minute long, which has given me movement. I'm not sure how stacking is going to help...is it literally just a case of 'shorter exposures but more of them?', thanks
  4. Hi all, been a while since I checked in but thought I'd share these I got tonight before the clouds rolled in. They're not impressive, full of mistakes, but they're my first step into imaging all the same Hercules Cluster (bit blurry but first attempt!) Ring Nebula. More proud of this one, but still needs work. Thanks!
  5. Not yet Astro, no. It's the next thing I'm going to try. I realise that it would have literally taken 30 seconds to try it but as the scope is at full height and looming over the lounge like a martian fighting machine, I thought washing the pots would be less likely to incur the wrath of wife It will definitely be useful in the future having the spare 7a. I don't have any other electric requirements for the scope yet, no dew heaters or anything, but the 7a has already been massively useful at the festivals this summer...a fantastic phone/mp3 charger for the campervan
  6. Well, the 17A solved the problem. Kind of I charged it up and connected it using the original cable that came with the 7a, and things didn't improve. The handset still reset during alignment and scope motor movement was very poor. In an act of desperation I used the new cable that came with the 17a, and rejoice! Everything now works perfectly. Great handset performance, much fast scope slewing, the works. I can only guess that a previous comment about plug sizes was correct; although they both look identical I'm forced to put it down to either a difference in plug connectors, or some property of the cable. Strange eh??
  7. Ah! That *might* indicate the sluggishness if I'm running with the clutches open. It just felt very counterintuitive to run a motor when they appeared to be 'locked' - didn't want to break anything lol. That doesn't explain the handset though...I guess I'll have to try the 17Amper and find out Thanks everyone.
  8. Thanks for the replies chaps. Regarding charging, I'm pretty diligent about regularly topping up the 7a Powertank, and it's pretty new (6 months) but I admit it might be running a bit low even though the green 'charged' light is lit rather than the yellow 'charge me' one. As for the faulty cable, I'm not sure. Interesting thought but it always resets at the same step of alignment. Basically I turn the handset/scope on, and it asks for date, location, time, DST etc, and then presents me with the alignment options. I choose '2 star - Vega' and it slews to a position. Then the handset says 'Initialising...' and then begins the 'Press enter to begin alignment' phase again. Always at this point. Weird! Re:Sluggishness, well the motors don't seem to slew at a constant rate. It will slew quickly in RA, then slow, then speed up, then stop. If I manually slew, it will continue to slew for a second or two after I've taken my finger off the button. One other thing I did want to check with you experts, and it's a very noob question, but it's the first mount I've had of this quality and type; the SW mount is pretty straightforward Alt-Az, but there are RA and DEC clutches on the new one. You tighten them to lock the scope, but the manual doesn't say that I have to loosen them during use. I assume I DO have to loosen them, yeah? (afaik the scope is balanced and doesn't wobble when they're loosened off) Thanks again
  9. I'm the owner of a Skywatcher 130P and the 7amp SW Powertank. After recently upgrading to a relatively large Celestron 9.25 SCT scope, I've tried the powertank with it and it seems sluggish. Also, when trying to align the scope, the GOTO handset will restart and lose all previous settings. Is this an issue with the output of the powertank? I've recently ordered a bigger SW 17Amp powertank in the hope this will resolve the issues, does this sound possible? Many thanks
  10. After a very honest reply from FLO about my order, they kindly expedited matters for me and yesterday I received my Celestron 9.25! Thanks very much to everyone there, and I've already placed another order which has already shipped! Top marks, and thank you very much again
  11. Hi everyone I ordered a Celestron 9.25 XL over four weeks ago from FLO. Originally I was contacted immediately informing me that delivery would be about 10-14 days, which was fine. When nothing arrived, I enquired again and was informed it would be another week or two, tops. I've still not recieved anything over a fortnight later and so emailed FLO to see what the deal was. I had no reply and so tried to call twice...got the answerphone, left a message and a number to contact, but still nothing. I'm probably worrying about nothing but this is the first time I've ever known FLO to be anything other than stirling: has anyone else had any problems? Or is Steve just away from the office at the moment. I'm a bit concerned about the £1300 still sat in the ether, especially after what happened with Telescope Planet! Thanks!
  12. We could solve all the drought problems in the world by just shoving a 14" Dob on the back of a plane.
  13. LOL. Well, my Canon 500D arrives tomorrow so I'll be using it on the Skywatcher at the weekend as apparently we'll have clear skies on Sat...until I just stated that fact, naturally.
  14. I've tried to balance things out a bit by buying a nice new scope (Celestron 9.25 XLT) along with some gadgets too (Blu-Ray, Alien "Nostromo" kit, Bladerunner gun etc). I thought I'd ruined this week for everyone but the scope is delayed for a couple of weeks so get stargazing quick, you've got a fortnight!
  15. It wasn't from FLO, no; I don't need the mount as I have a new one, but I just wondered what my options were. I guess I could try to sell it as damaged, all up front
  16. Well, it was bought as new in December last year, so not that old. It's the one that comes with the SW130P; just the mount, no handset or tripod (I'm using that on my 130P) It's this one Reflectors - Skywatcher Explorer 130P SynScan AZ GOTO
  17. Holy cow, the mirror alone weighs 500lbs.
  18. I am the proud owner of an extra GOTO mount that is having a bit of trouble along the horizontal axis. Basically I think it's missing, or has slightly damaged teeth on the gear wheel, as it judders/slows down briefly before moving normally again; naturally this knocks out any hope of aligning/locating correctly, as the onboard electronics think it's pointing somewhere slightly different to where it's actually at. My question is, do you think it's worth repairing and selling on? Or should I just junk it?
  19. Thanks so much dobserver, that's really kind of you I didn't want to be one of those evangelical cancer survivors who go bonkers telling everyone about it constantly; but the thing was, I never saw it coming, and I suspect we have a predominantly male readership here so thought it was worth mentioning; just so people know what to look for, AND the fact that early treatment, however scary, is vital to the prognosis. Everyone has been so kind here with their messages, it's a top forum
  20. Hi, and thank you very much I think the obsy will be about £2k from what I've seen; I'm flexible on it though. As regards the scope, it will primarily be for observing, but if it's a decent scope then I'll definitely want to get my photo mate around with his DSLR for imaging too; the problem we found with my SW 130p is that we couldn't focus properly on DSO's due to the weird focuser set up; so any scope in the future would have to be very well designed for imaging. Budget....top end of £3k for the scope I reckon - don't want to get silly Although having said that, maybe 4k lol
  21. I know it's a travesty but I'm not taking anything with me! The chances are extremely good that come nightfall I'll be in one of the onboard pubs or clubs Plus it's unlikely I'll get my payout before the cruise too so my options are limited. I was looking at the Celestron PRO 14" HD on a GOTO mount once everything is sorted. Any opinions on this? PS. Got my first 'All Clear' yesterday from the CAT scan and bloods =]
  22. Hi again everyone I've been pretty busy going in and out of hospital for various tests/pokes etc so I've not been able to look in as often as I'd like; I just wanted to share some good news and thank everyone for their well wishes I had surgery to remove the offending nad last Monday, and was up and about 4 hours later when they finally let me leave hospital. I've been putting my feet up, playing games, and even managed some astrophotography with my friend too =]. My missus reckons I've made a startling recovery from the operation; there's very little discomfort now and I'm 90% back to normal. Before the operation I had blood tumour markers taken; these are a guide to whether cancer is present. One marker was elevated; my AFP was at 41.7 when it should be normally between 0-7. This wasn't a huge level (some people push 10,000+ with testicular cancer), but still higher than normal. Well, I had the surgery, and a week later I've recieved the pathology on the tumour - and the great news is they don't think it spread; there was no evidence under the microscope of it either getting into the blood vessels or leaving the primary site; they believe they got it all. Secondly, I had my +7 days marker test yesterday; the half life of AFP is 7 days, so if the tumour had completely been removed, they'd expect a score of 20 ish (half of 41.7). I came in at 11, well ahead of schedule. I just need to lose 4 more points in a week and I'll be within normal limits I have a CT scan on Monday to check for spread, but the specialist says this is routine only and she doesn't expect anything to light up. If I'm clear, I'll go onto surveillence (monthly checks) and can begin at last to consider myself 'cancer free' As I now have the official diagnosis of the tumour, I can also go ahead with my critical illness claim; £46k tax-free lump sum (no pun intended). I'd never ask for TC, but the payout, if it comes through, will make recovery all the sweeter....and there's a good chance my wife and I can still take the Caribbean Cruise in April that we booked a week before I suspected something was wrong. So, not out of the woods just yet, but I can at least see the lights of the village
  23. I just wanted to say a big thank you to everyone for their well-wishes! I've got my appointment with the urologist on the 18th; not sure what to expect but I pretty much assume we'll talk about the surgery and then possible follow-up treatments (if necessary). The problem is, I get paranoid about every ache and pain I get at the moment, and as I'm 40, I get quite a few After that I expect I'll be whisked into hospital for a quick op (losing one of 'the boys' only takes 30 mins apparently), and hopefully I'll be home the same day. After that comes the wait for the pathology on what the problem was; there are 'good' kinds and 'bad' kinds of tumour, and at my age it's pretty much 50/50 as to which one it could be. Fingers crossed for the good kind as the surgery alone might cure it. If it's the 'bad' kind it's not too much worse, apart from probably a bit of chemotherapy; not a huge regime of it hopefully. You can guarantee though whilst I'm on my back, it'll be clear skies at night, and when I buy the new scope, the clouds will roll back in Hope everyone is doing good! We saw Saturn through the scope the other night for the first time
  24. Thanks mate; yeah I'm in good spirits about the prognosis...I've got way too many things to do (we have a cruise booked in April!)
  25. How about a swapsies? My 130P is very portable Just kidding
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