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About Kherlis

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    Bagshot, Surrey
  1. Thanks. I thought it would be something like that, and I've changed the lower limit to 0 to try and see if it gets there tonight. I guess the thing that keeps puzzling me is why despite a successful alignment StarSense seems to have no idea how to slew to objects - the previous time I had tried that (4th June) Saturn was higher up and I still got the same warning so it felt more like an issue with positioning and alignment than anything else. Guess I'll try a different object which is definitely in range to see what I get. Could just be a variation/side effect of that first problem I had where StarSense insisted on finding objects going the long way around.
  2. Good god, I've spent my entire life thinking I was reasonably smart but this hobby is making me feel like a complete numpty. So, finally got a properly clear night and I thought I'd try and see Saturn, which I still haven't managed to catch, and is my main objective for the moment. Back in the winter I had managed to align StarSense automatically, then ask it to seek Jupiter and that was all good. But I don't know what's up with it now, it's just all over the place. I knew where Saturn was, SkyMap confirmed that. I performed a StarSense auto align at dusk, which ended up successful after a couple of attempts. Date, time and timezone were all accurate. Right after the alignment, I ask StarSense to locate Saturn, and I get a "Warning Slew Limit". Didn't sound good, so I did another alignment. Successful again. Find Saturn again. Same warning. I thought I'd ignore it and keep an eye on it, and it just basically started getting further and further away from where Saturn actually was. And ended up looking like it was indeed going to just rotate the wrong way and hit the base, so I stopped it. Tried another alignment (successful), then manually (using the motor) moved the scope to be really close to the estimated position of Saturn, asked it to find it again... same warning, and again started rotating completely the wrong way. The frustration of watching cloudy/rainy evenings go by one after the other, only to fail miserably when I finally get a clear chance to look at something is starting to make me wonder if I shouldn't just pick up knitting as a hobby instead. (On the plus side, while waiting for dusk to settle I made friends with my garden's hedgehog and helped him out with his tick problem, so the evening wasn't a complete waste).
  3. @Racey Gotcha, thanks for the clarification. I'll get SkySafari and have a go at importing those.
  4. Thanks ! I've seen your list on the sticky topic as well, would like to check those out. Can I assume I can open them in SkySafari, or do I need SkyTools ?
  5. So, I'm getting to grips with the equipment. My solar filter just arrived, now all I need is some sunshine (hello, England, my old friend...). I'm happy locating the usual planetary suspects, but what I seem to be missing is some source of information to tell me what to look for on a specific day, in the region where I am. I seem to remember one of the app I've got on the phone came up with a pop up at some point (either SkyMap or the Celestron app, can't remember). But since I'm now using StarSense instead of the app to control the scope, doesn't have to be anything more complicated than a list of names I can input into StarSense. Basically feels like I'm missing some important software tools, here. And some knowledge, of course.
  6. Yeah, I think that might be an issue if we get very hot nights where they might want to keep the windows open, but I'll cross that bridge once I get to it.
  7. So, despite the rubbish weather, I've managed to do a few more evenings of observation. The firmware update seems to have helped with reliability (thanks for that advice), however turns out cord wrap was already turned off, and the scope still does the whole "long way around" thing, so bit stumped about that. As for the noise, well, no complaints from neighbours so far, and getting it to do the bulk of the job at dusk also helped (thanks for that advice as well). In short, if there are any other theories regarding the "long way around" when seeking, I'd be interested. Really thought cord wrap was the culprit, hmpf.
  8. Hello, Considering the weather isn't so great at the moment in the evenings, I've been wondering about trying my hand at solar observation. I know I need a special dont-get-blind thing, and it looks like for my Nexstar Evolution 8, this is the thing: http://www.celestron.com/browse-shop/astronomy/solar-observing/eclipsmart/eclipsmart-solar-filter-for-8in-sct But... I just can't find it in the UK. And even in the US, it looks like it's barely out (in fact, it's still in preorder in a few places). So, I'm not sure whether: I'm looking at the wrong thing entirely There's nothing available at the moment and I just need to wait for this to be available in UK resellers There's another product I can use instead, potentially not Celestron-manufactured Any ideas? (Also, if observing the sun is just a terrible idea because I won't see anything interesting, do let me know - I must say I'm not sure what to expect)
  9. @noah4x4 Yeah, I've given up on the WiFi a while ago - I always saw some small lag, which meant precise centering was just difficult. Much more in control with the HC. Good point about the firmware, I'll see if there's an update available. As for the setting up at dusk, I've been thinking about that, but I might keep that for the months where I have higher confidence that a surprise shower won't rock up while I'm having dinner
  10. Thanks a lot for the link to the Guildford society, I'll have a look at the website this weekend. And yes, the weather has not been kind to stargazers. Last june was driving me mad, knowing Saturn was in a nice spot but hidden behind so many clouds.
  11. Hi Filroden, and thanks a lot for the answers - yes, I did mean "manually" using the arrows rather than the clutches (but you're right to clarify, I did say I was a complete newbie ). Sounds like this might help solve my noise problem. It looks like the Nexstar 8SE does have cord wrap turned on by default, so that may very well be the cause of my first issue. Will check that out when I get home. Thanks a lot, you may just have solved everything in one fell swoop.
  12. As I said in my introduction post, I'm a complete beginner when it comes to making good use of a scope, so apologies in advance if anything makes you wince. A year ago, I bought a Nexstar Evolution 8 with what I would call a "standard" set of eyepieces - I had good fun with it over the summer, looking mainly at the biggest objects (Jupiter, Moon etc) and getting frustrated at the weather that prevented me from having a good look at Saturn when it was lined up with my garden. I realised that I was spending a bit too much time doing a manual alignment every night I took the scope out, and in the colder months it wasn't super pleasant. So at Christmas, I bought a StarSense autoalign (and a patio heater, but I'm ok with that one) which I finally took out for a spin recently. It falied to align the first two times, but then it finally worked, and I was mighty pleased with the result - I just pointed it somewhere random, asked it to find Jupiter, and it did with almost perfect accuracy (Jupiter wasn't centered, but close). So I know I've got to adjust the accuracy, but that's not my biggest "problem" at the moment. There are a few things I wonder: 1. When I made the scope search for objects, it seemed intent to take "the long way" around - what I mean is, if it was pointing only 30 degrees from Jupiter, instead or rotating clockwise to bridge that gap, it would turn around the other way for 330 degrees. Is there a way to control that with some settings ? 2. A problem that is made worse by #1 is the noise produced by the motor when searching - it's not horrible, but I do have neighbours and they do sleep with the windows open over the summer. I saw that there's a "motor speed" setting, but that seems to only control the speed when using the arrows to move manually. Any way to make it search a bit slower to make it less noisy ? 3. As an alternative to 1 and 2, I'm pretty sure this is not possible and would defeat the point of the AutoAlign, but would it be possible to manually (and quietly) point the scope in the general direction of what I'm looking for, and use the search function just to cover the ground that's missing ? Hope the questions make sense - although I'm pretty sure #3 doesn't. And if you have any general advice on making the most of my setup, I would obviously be eternally grateful. I'm really enjoying the few successful evenings I've had, but I would be lying if I said the frustrating ones don't outnumber them
  13. Hello everyone, After finding many bits of helpful information on this forum via Google while I was doing my research to purchase my telescope, I thought I'd finally sign up - mainly because, well, now that I've actually purchased a scope, being the complete beginner that I am, I need help I'm from France originally, and I've been living in the UK for just over 10 years, currently in Surrey in a place where the light pollution is low enough to allow for some rather nice skies on clear nights. Therefore, a year ago I took the jump and got a Nexstar Evolution 8, with a few accessories. Although I've had my nose up to the stars for as long as I can remember, this is my first attempt at turning it into a proper hobby and building up some knowledge around all that. I'm a photo enthusiast, so the long run objective (pun intended) is to try my hand at astrophotography. But to start with, I just want to marvel. Hope to have some interesting exchanges here, and I'll start by making the way to the beginners section to beg for the help I desperately need...
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