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About SlimPaling

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    Star Forming

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    Nottinghamshire, England
  1. Hi Michael .... Maybe you can make contact with Rupert Smith ... he sells a wide range of "high level" Astro Equipment here in London ... he has been VERY helpful in supplying all sorts of Astro equipemnt and helping me set it up. I do know that he is heavily involved in a sizable Robotic Observatory in Southern Spain. He seems to be going down there to set up new telescopes and equipment for remote control. As far as I know he was involved in setting the site up from very early stages. He is bound to have contacts who might be able to help you in your quest. If you decide to contact him then you are most welcome to mention my name Rupert's contact details are: Rupert Smith Astrograph Ltd 57 Allenswood Road London SE9 6RW United Kingdom Tel: (+44) 843 330 4988 Email: sales@astrograph.net Cheers .... Mike Paling
  2. Hi Adam ... Many thanks for this .... it makes sense So why does FireCapture give you the opportunity to save Flats ? .... since I sent out my last message I have spotted that the latest version of FC (v 2.6) does have some folders for Flats and Darks so that they could be used for future sessions. Yes .. I am finding all of this "fun" .... but there have been occasional times when I have thought about taking up Trainspotting Mike
  3. Hi Dave ... Now I understand .... I had been assuming it was being done to reduce limb darkening and not any vignetting .. and dust mots! Thanks Mike
  4. Hi White Dwarf ... I am using FireCapture to make my Solar Ha images ... however I am finding it difficult to understand how to apply some of the features in the program mainly due to the fact that it seems that there is no full manual out there to explain things so I am having to rely on snippets that I find on the 'net (mainly YouTube videos) or by "trial & error" by myself I seem to be spending a great deal of time simply "playing" on my home computer using the "Dummy Cam" option in FireCapture to try to understand what it is going off. So using the "Dummy Camera" ... I can see the button where I can tell FireCapture to make a flat file ... which I have done ... after which it asks me if I want to keep this file "for later use" ... but then what ??? Is this file automatically saved somewhere ?.... 'cos I can't find if it is I any case, if it is being saved, surely this flat file needs a new name/prefix so that it could be found .... so maybe it is being kept in memory temporarily ???? How is the master Flat being used within FireCapture once it has been made? Mike
  5. Hi again Dave .. I am still trying to fully understand about making and using flats in AS!2. My CCD will not fit the whole disc of the sun in it's FOV ... so in order to get enough for a full mosaic I need to do 6 separate panes around the periphery of the Sun's disc plus one in the centre. You seem to imply that I only need to make a master flat on the central one .... and then use this with all of the other panes to reduce the limb darkening around the periphery of the Sun's disc. However .... I can see that the limb darkening is in totally different positions as I look at each pane. So how does the Mater Flat, made on the central pane, manage to cope with the outer panes? Trying to be logical here (which I am not too good at much of the time!) surely I need to do a Master Flat for every pane to cope with the limb darkening being in different positions before I stich the whole lot together to make a full mosaic of the Solar surface? Mike
  6. Hi Dave .... So ... after making the "Master Flat" ... are you saying that (1) First load up the "image" AVI into AS!2 (2) Load up the "Master Flat" ... and then as you carry on stacking the video frames the "Master Flat" file automatically does it's job with any further button pushing? I had been assuming that this sort of calibration with flats, etc. would have been done in something like Maxim DL .... which is what I use for my DSO images. Mike
  7. Many thanks for this tip ... I didn't realise that the proms would need more exposure. I am still struggling to understand all of Michael's stages (from the "sticky post" at the top of this section) .... particularly how to correcting the uneven illumination across the solar disc Mike
  8. Hi Dave ... Many thanks for this ... I have just had an initial look at Michael's post and it looks VERY useful to say the least!!!! I will be taking a closer look tomorrow as soon as I get up! Cheers Mike
  9. Hi ... At long last I have managed to get some Ha images using my SolarScope SV-60 using my DMK Mono CCD camera. I am not too happy with my results and I am not too sure what I need to do to get better results. At approx. 11am this morning I used Fircapture to 5 stes of take 500 frames at 60FPS of different parts of the Sun's outline. I then asked Registax 6 to align and stack the best 30% of each video before doing some basic Wavelets (decolvolotion?) ... and then assembled these using Photoshop. I did a little bit of "blending" to get the different mosaic panes looking the same. I am attaching a cope of one of the processed mosaic panes and also my completed mosaic ... both in "grey scale" mode. I can see some detail in there .... but nothing anywhere as good as many others that have been processed on this forum I was hoping to at least see some evidence of Solar prominences on my images ... not one to be seem !!! I had seen some visually the day before ... but nothing showing up on my images. The skies here in Notts seemed to be fairly clear of the recent thin high clouds that we have been having and I had tried to get my scope accurately focused and "tuned". So what am I doing wrong? Is it my set-up ? Is it my processing? Do I need to sell my SV-60 and try a Lunt 60 (or bigger) ????? ..... or just stick to taking pikkies through my main scope? Mike
  10. SlimPaling

    Iss Transit Finder

    Hi .. I entered my decimal coordinates as follows .... Lat: N 53.10611 Long: +1.0333 Am I missing something here? Mike
  11. SlimPaling

    Iss Transit Finder

    Hi Bartosz .. I have just come across this app ... looks really good ---- BUT ... every time I put in my lat/long coordinates I get a message saying that they are not vaild. Any suggestions??? Mike
  12. SlimPaling

    Split roof thoughts

    I must admit I am the hinge links and pins out of some pretty sturdy stuff ... I probably over designed them but I wanted them to last! I made the hinge pins from 1" stainless steel bar on my Model Engineering lathe but I suppose I could have sourced some big bolts. The Hinge pins we made from 1" thick top quality marine ply. All hinge points were located on some marine plate rectangular plates ... which you can see painted pale blue on my pikkies. The position of the various hinge points had to be worked out using a CAD software program (but I could have done it using paper, compasses on pencils instead) .... I had to go through many iterations to get the best options for movement of the roof as it opened & closed. The positions of the various hinge points were very critical. If you want to drive down from Beverley to take a close look I am willing to show you .... just need to know in advance :-) Mike
  13. SlimPaling

    Split roof thoughts

    My Obsy is 2x2m square ... so just a bit bigger than 6x6'. I didn't weigh each side panel before I put them in place (actually I put the triangular side panels in place first and then added the top panel in-situ) but I can easily handle the panels as I open & close them. I arranged things so that my "inner" guide links (which are a bit difficult to see in my pikkies) run in a slot in the side walls of the shed and then hit a stop to make sure the roof panel does not quite reach the ground. No need for a bench. If you look carefully at the pickky of my obsy. , with the roof closed, you can see that I have added some short lengths of draft preventer on these slots .... same as that used along the bottom of household & garage doors in order to stop rain getting in ... this works well. Mike
  14. SlimPaling

    Split roof thoughts

    The roof panels on my obsy. as quite manageable to move by hand .... but any larger and the weight might become a problem. I had given a bit of thought about adding counter weights when I was at the planning stage ... but when I got near to completion I realised that I didn't need them. The way that I have used internal and external hinged links to lift and guide the panels as they open and close has helped get the weight distribution right. I have never really considered how I might add some sort of motorised (or simple mechanical) methods .... there must be a way of doing it. If I am still observing when I get to be 80yrs old I may put my thinking hat on again !!! Mike
  15. Hi ... I seem to have developed a problem. On Friday I took a series of LRGB images trying to find Comet 74P Smirnova-Chernykh as it passed close to M66 in Leo. My attached image shows my preliminary calibrated and stacked CLS image from a set of 20 CLS images ... I have spotted the comet (circled) on the image ... but .... my main worry is that I have started getting flares on the left hand side of the stars .... this is plainly obvious in my attached image. I can now see this flaring on all of my unstacked images. I have never had this problem before when imaging ... but recently I did some fine adjustments on the back focus distance between my flattener and my CCD camera. What is causing this new flaring problem??? Has something got out of alignment ? ... or has some dirt got onto my optics??? Mike

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