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JimothyC

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  • Content Count

    125
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About JimothyC

  • Rank
    Star Forming

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    UK
  1. JimothyC

    A dream come true

    When I think of the dream observatory I hope to be able to build in a few years, I picture something that looks an awful lot like what you've built there. An excellent piece of craftsmanship and design. Have you worked out how much the project has cost in total?
  2. JimothyC

    M33 Pinwheel

    You should be please with that, looks great to me. Well done.
  3. Is your spacing correct? The Altair site states a backfocus of 66.78mm, although the image on their site implies it's more than that. Maybe worth playing around with some spacers.
  4. JimothyC

    Altair Astro ?

    I spent £1800 with Altair on a new scope and accessories at the IAS a few weeks ago. However I don't think I'll be buying any more Altair products. They were very friendly and helpful when they're in front of you, but since then they've totally failed to provide any customer support at all. If I get a reply to an email at all, it along the lines of, 'I'll get right onto it' or 'I'm just sorting it for you now' and then you hear nothing. It's a shame, some of their products are great, but they just don't provide the same level of service as I've had from other Retailers.
  5. Hi, I've recently acquired one of these and so far I've been reasonably impressed with it optically. I'm getting much better SNR on guide stars than before. However there are a couple of things that could be better. The focus lock screw doesn't hold focus position that well and after breaking down and setting up again the focus can be well off and take some time to find again. Also the mount has a finder base which is fine if you want to mount it on a finder point, but that put's it off centre which can make getting a good balance tricky. I wanted to mount it directly on-top of my tube rings and I couldn't line up the holes in the base of the rings with anything, so I've swapped it out for some Primeluce rings and vixen dovetail. Oh and she's a bit of a dew magnet as well.
  6. JimothyC

    Power Tanks

    I’m running an 8th gen i5 with Iris 655 happily on 12v. One of the advantages of a Lifepo4 battery is that the voltage is very stable and stays above 12v for 99% of the run time of the battery. My total power consumption for an iOptron CEM25P, 2 Dew heaters, a Nikon D7500, Pegasus FocusCube and the PC is around 30w. This gives me about 9 hours run time with my setup from a 22ah lifepo4 golf trolley battery. Just enough for an evening’s session. I’m a setup and breakdown every evening user and the lack of wires running across the garden is a real improvement. It also means I can keep the same setup if I head off to a dark site. I looked at 12v power supply or even a feed from the leisure battery in my camper van. But the voltage drop you get on a long cable run means using pretty heavy gauge wire to get good efficiency. Having the power source and the pc at the mount makes things a lot simpler for me.
  7. JimothyC

    Power Tanks

    Most of the Intel NUCs will run off of 12-20v, so can feed them 12v if that's all you've got.
  8. JimothyC

    Power Tanks

    I’ve been using a 22ah lifepo4 golf trolley battery i previously purchased for another project. They’re about £150 to buy but give a nice stable voltage and lifepo4 batteries are very safe compared to lipo and have an increased number of recharge cycles. Mine will give me about 9 hours run time powering a mini pc, dew heaters, mount and dslr. Total draw is about 30w. So it’s giving it’s rated capacity without issue. A built in BMS cuts off power before it gets to damaging levels of discharge.
  9. JimothyC

    Computer resources (how to access them)

    I would second the suggestion of moving over to SQL Server express. Although you might want to check your data has appropriate primary and foreign keys and you should also look into indexing. Adding these in will help Access deal with the large number of records more efficiently.
  10. I third that. Tried all sorts of ways of extended usb, but a pc next to the scope is the best option I've tried so far. The Intel NUC range will fit in a little waterproof cable box and run from 12v.
  11. JimothyC

    Oh God is this the Future?

    As expected, Scott has summarised it well and put it all into perspective.
  12. JimothyC

    M45 Pleiades / Merope Nebula

    Thanks, any idea where the halos are coming from? Do you think it the Baader Neodynium filter? Or is it just the bright stars getting over exposed? Thanks for that. I think the screen on laptop needs calibrating. I didn't realise the background was so blue to start with. Yours looks much better thanks.
  13. The Pleiades have always been one of my favourite objects, and since I got into astronomy and astrophotography earlier this year it's been right at the top of my list of targets. Last nights beautifully clear night with no moon gave me my first chance to have a go at it. I had to wait till about 1am for it to clear a tree and for my neighbour to turn off his new and alarmingly moon like led outdoor lights. Looking forward to capturing more data over the coming winter. This taken using a Nikon D7500 with an Altair Starwave 70ED mounted on an iOptron CEM25P. I've used the Altair 1.0 flattener and a Baader Neodymium filter. 30 x 180s @ iso800, wtih darks, flats and bias frames. Stacked in DeepSkyStacker and then tweaked, stretched and prodded in Photoshop. Feedback, questions and particularly, constructive criticism more than welcome. I've added the original autosave.tif (195Mb) in case anyone else wants to have a fiddle with the raw data. Cheers Jim Autosave.tif
  14. I've got one that came with my Altair 70ED travelscope. It's pretty nice quality compared to the one's you get with some Starwatcher telescopes. It also keeps its alignment well. I've not felt the need to upgrade it. Presuming you mean this one https://www.altairastro.com/Starwave-Red-Dot-Finder-Kit-RDF-Skywatcher.html
  15. I do hope Tring Astro didn't have to pay to much to get there name included against some products. It's good that they've mentioned an Independent retailer rather than Argos or Jessops, but I doubt they did it out of the goodness of their hearts and I'm not sure it helps TA's reputation to be associated with such bad advice.
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