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About Swoop1

  • Rank
    Star Forming
  • Birthday 25/07/62

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    Cycling, reading, films, travel
  • Location
    South Bucks
  1. Telrad finder

    I struggled to use the straight through finder supplied with my scope, particularly at higher elevations. I therefore upgraded to a right angled finder with higher magnification. I then struggled to get the scope pointed at the right bit of sky. Cue adding a Telrad. I stuck the mount to the OTA using the front ring of the scope as a rough guide to mount alignment. Once the Telrad was on the mount, a bit of attention to the adjustment and it is now an easy task to get on target. I have even added a vinyl covered pad to my kit to keep my knees dry if I need to get low to sight.
  2. The Sky at Night

    I enjoy TSAN but sometimes wish they would do a bit more for the amateur amateur astronomer (if you know what I mean)- more 'lessons' in the art of stargazing. The recent programmes that involved the Vatican observatories were good though!
  3. Has AR2670 got a micro neighbour?

    Thanks Moonshane. It does.
  4. Observing this afternoon and, whilst viewing AR2670 through the 10mm plus X2 Barlow, I thought I saw a pinprick of black in very close proximity to the spot. Thinking it may have been dirt somewhere in the optical path I adjusted the scope using the slow motion controls. The pinprick remained in exact association to AR2670 throughout. Being the complete doughnut I am, I have no images to examine as, after packing the kit away discovered that the ISO was set to 1600 on the DSLR so everything is washed out....
  5. Just, is my answer. I have been waiting for my first opportunity to deploy the Astrozap clad SW150P to catch a sunspot and, having seen reports and images of AR2670 (or is it AR2665?) I was hopeful on seeing clear skies outside my bedroom window on waking this (yesterday) morning. Mrs Swoop1 had other ideas however. Before I could go off to work I had to do my share of the chores By the time the chores were complete, the time to leave for work was only 50 minutes away! I discovered that I could gather my kit, deploy it, observe, image (poorly) and clear down all in the space of 30 minutes. That gave me time to get changed and sorted and still be out the door on time During this magic 30 minutes I was able to get a look at the target and very happy I was too. One thing that solar imaging on a DSLR does is helps the imager identfy that their camera innards need some TLC cleaning wise.......
  6. Taken this morning at around 9:20. SW150P with Astrozap Baader filter on an unmoded (and in desperate need of a clean) Sony a350 attached to the stock SW X2 Barlow. Nowhere near the quality of other images of this subject on the forum but I'm only a begginer!
  7. I agonised over set up and storeage when I got my scope. In the end, I opted for keeping the OTA in the bedroom (finder left attached), the tripod and mount in the shed (counterweights removed) and the EP's and other ancileries in a repurposed cordless drill case in the hall. The tablet and star charts live in the living room. Once a decision has been made to observe, the map stuff is put on the chair by th door, the ep case is put by the door, the OTA is retrieved and put by the door. I then prepare myself (coat on shoes on hat on etc). Exit the front door with mapping and ep case. Retrieve the tripod and deploy in observing position, back in for the OTA which is placed straight on the tripod. All in all, from sitting in the front room minding my own business to eye at the EP minding ET's business- 15 minutes tops. Since this routine was established I have acquired further kit (solar filter, camera mount etc.) so prep may take another minute or so as more stuff needs gathering. I have offset this by marking the counterweight bar with tape and removing the weights from the bar which stays on the mount at break down. I have definitely got quicker with practice. I don't have GoTo. I rely on following Stelarium or star charts. For me, that is more satisfying. I have also recently purchased a Telrad which I expect will make objecty locating easier. I am awaiting delivery of a larger finder scope (RACI type) which will also make navigation less back breaking.
  8. Turn left at orion

    I recently acquired Turn Left. It seems to be such an easy read and the star charts look to be very user friendly.
  9. Books that started it all, also help!!!

    For me it would have been a Ladybird book about space exploration. As a kid I just knew that I was going to be an astronut when I grew up. I devoured everything about space that I could find. To this day, when I hear Also sprach Zarathustra, I see James Burke, receeding hair, big glasses and courduroy jacket, sat behind a desk with the like of Patrick Moore, reporting on the latest moonshot.
  10. Too late. "Tell Zed we found him......"
  11. AR-01-08-17

    And I'm two days away from my telescope
  12. Focus issues with T ring and adaptor

    Thanks for the info folks
  13. Thanks Billy. Just what I wanted to know.
  14. I recently took delivery of an Astrozap Baader film filter for my SW Explorer 150P. In addition I also got a Solar Continuum filter. EP wise I have the stock 25mm, 10mm and X2 Barlow plus a Meade 40mm. This morning was my first solar observing session and I had a nice crisp edged disc. I didn't identify anything on the surface. I don't know if that was because Sol is having a quiet day or if it is down to my inexperience. What can I expect to be able to resolve through the filter(s)? Thanks gang!
  15. Petition against Sony's Star Eater