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Everything posted by theropod

  1. I’m beginning to think I will need to install ASCOM/EDMOD on my wife’s laptop and stop fighting the post polar star alignment. I went out last night for the first time since early December, and fought with the damned mount yet again. Even after getting those 3 stars locked down any target I pick is off by several degrees. I’m very frustrated as I bought a new 9X50 RACI finder, which is a dream come true, but the goto function seems screwed up to me. I honestly think that with only a handful of nights spent with the mount to be the real issue, but I thought I was doing everything right. Apparen
  2. Help! Is there a way to “tune” the synscan on the fly? What mean is when I enter a goto target, the mount slews and is just slightly off, is there a way to “teach” the mount that it was off and the correction then stored in the system? My DIY 60 mm refractor does very well, but I need a dang finder for it too. Ah, the list just never ends does it?
  3. Well, I’ve had a misunderstanding about unipolar motors for a while. Thanks for the info. I’ll go off and educate myself more deeply now.
  4. You might be interested in my efforts to build a bipolar stepper driven alt/az I built using a joystick input method to make the steppers speed be proportional to joystick input. Below is a link right here on SGL where I document the whole affair. The last post is the most useful version of the Arduino sketch.
  5. How do you plan on reversing the unipolar motor? Does your stepper driver reverse the voltage as a feature? This problem is one reason I tend to sick with bipolar steppers. The flexibility in drive options makes it much easier for me to use bipolar motors and simple drive boards like the Easy Driver and Big Easy Driver. These only need a step pulse signal and a direction signal, and the motors respond as expected every time.
  6. IF there ever is another clear night here abouts I am planning on targeting M1, but it’s been weeks since a night like that has come along. Nice to know it’s still out there. Excellent image, BTW!
  7. Now that’s a friend! I think my woodworking tools are about to get some use.
  8. Y’all should view my comments above in light of the fact that I’m a grumpy old man suffering from both seasonal depression disorder and nowhere near enough clear nights. It’s foggy and raining right now, and expected to stay that way for another 4 days. I’m sure good intentions are at work here, and a few nights spent with a pro wouldn’t hurt my efforts.
  9. During the Oregon eclipse the honey bees went crazy as totality approached, dashing from one flower to the next with gusto. When totality set in they had retired to their hive(s). There were no birds around where we were, so I can’t speak to that. All I know is that were I a rich man my hobby would be flying around the globe chasing eclipses.
  10. I was thinking about a tent site of around 20 X 20 foot area. That should provide for a large tent, a campfire and a portapotty. The real trouble is that we live on a very steep hillside, and finding/making campsites would be a royal pain, but something I’d undertake if several folks wanted to come here. I should have spent more time in thought about all this.
  11. Here is a map of the eclipse path across my state. The red dot in northern Arkansas, USA, just east of the path center, is an approximation of where we live. Not sure of the site where I found this, but I’m pretty sure it’s americaneclipse.com. I added the red dot. I hope to have my solar projection system all worked out by then, and the side of my house can serve as a large screen. The trip to the Willamette valley to watch that eclipse was a lifetime event, but being at home I can do all the silly things. A big foam core poster board “pin hole” camera box with a small lens, and a plexig
  12. So, I may just invite a few close friends to come hang out, and pass out eclipse glasses like candy.
  13. Hey Y’all, April 8, 2024, an eclipse of the sun will pass over where we live, directly over us. We are within a mile (2 K) of the center path, and totality will last some time. Much longer than the one we went out to Oregon to witness. My wife and I are not rich folk. We have considered renting out a couple dozen camp sites for a few bucks. NOT ADVERTISING, as there are a ton of issues with this notion we haven’t addressed (having strangers about, our venomous snakes, ticks, chiggers (might not be hatched in April) and seriously rocky/rough topography and our liability for their idio
  14. From what I understand someone used the detonation of a supernova to measure the time it took the light to bounce off a dust cloud a known distance from the subject star. Not sure about this as the mechanism, but remember reading about it.
  15. Re the above: those rights are apparently superseded the rights of others to enjoy the night sky.
  16. Superb work! So much to be said for single frame shots, and this is a stunning example.
  17. Yes, and I used that distant lone pine to make sure the crosshairs stayed true with mount rotation.
  18. Over here in hillbilly land it’s been exceptionally cold and cloudy for the past two weeks. We got almost 13mm of sleet yesterday in the wee hours. It’s supposed to be near zero° at Daylight Monday. Later in the week a “significant” snowfall (>12”) is expected. I doubt the cloud cover will break before a week has past. Last winter it was very mild here, and up until a week ago it looked like a repeat was at hand. Buying a new mount, finishing a diy refractor and buying an eyepiece camera was the prefect storm of karma for inducing long term cloudiness, at least for me. Oh well, spring will
  19. I have exact same mount, and the polar scope reticle was out of whack to me, so I fixed it. The three grub screws that lock down the reticle only need a little loosening and the reticle will free up. I set mine on a distant lone pine on a ridge a few miles away. I also pointed the reticle with the 12 o’clock straight up. I used the edge of my patio door frame as a guide to set the vertical bar of the reticle to plumb. If you do move the reticle be VERY careful about those grub screws. They are tiny and so easy to drop if backed out of the threads too much. I would also take care when tightenin
  20. Could be a spent booster stage tumbling. I get these occasionally in my wide field meteor fall hunting.
  21. Yesterday the fog was freezing, and that means on every surface. My pickup had a sheet of ice on its entire surface. Now a winter storm/freezing rain warning has been issued for my area. About daylight it is expected to set in. Accumulating predicted to be between 1/4”-3/4” (10-18mm). Snow is one thing, but a coating of ice on EVERYTHING really causes problems beyond the cloud cover creating the event. Living in a forest makes it interesting when trees start shedding limbs, or crashing down whole. Our last such freezing rain storm resulted in our forest sounding like a war was going on. It cau
  22. To be fair this work builds on previous efforts, but we learn by doing, and they’ve done it.
  23. Would those brass threaded inserts used in furniture work for the pinch bolts?
  24. This has nothing to do with scopes or astronomy in any way, BUT the interior door handle on my 1992 Ford Ranger 4x4 pickup snapped. I ordered one that day, and the USPS has no idea where it is, even though it’s supposedly tracked. Rolling down the window to open the door is a royal pain.
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