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Marvin Jenkins

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Everything posted by Marvin Jenkins

  1. Fair play. The undercurrent thing is that I noticed a slight tendency to justify what people are doing, although justification is not needed as I have already said it is all valid and adds to a collective knowledge.
  2. Right on bruv. Bad for all concerned.
  3. Look out for Stu, as I do. I have found his input in particular to be of great value to a beginner. Well reasoned, thought out and not pushing for the impossible with the inevitable disappointment. You will find many more like Stu on here as you have already and it will make your journey much more rewarding. I regard this place as a deep well of knowledge, just chuck in your bucket! Marvin
  4. Often the simplest solution is the best. What more do you need.
  5. That’s a shame, I would say hopefully next time but I understand it doesn’t work like that. You never know with the dob you might get one last glimpse if tomorrow is clear. Marv
  6. Nice one all. I got my one look thankfully and every night is now cloud. Nice to know the faithful ‘Africanos’ are still at it. Break out that Dob John and wave it a goodbye from me. Marv
  7. Re visiting this thread and thank you davhei for your most eloquent contribution. Something has been bothering me. This question is not intended to divide astronomers into different camps as I have respect for ep and photo. I have been reading the entries and there seems to be a slight under current of defending why we do what we do. My question is this. Is it more relevant to see an object with your own eye versus taking a picture? Photography captures so much more, but are there astronomers out there that would think it strange to photograph an object that is possible to see with an EP but have never attempted to look at. It did occur to me that logic would dictate that astronomers do visual until the eyeball becomes a limiting factor, ie seeing everything possible then moving to astrophotography to expand horizons. However I see many questions from total beginners about buying imaging setups before understanding even the basics. The question in the third paragraph could be summed up by a recent conversation about the pyramids. I showed a friend some pictures I had taken to show how amazing they were. Friend replied, “I would love to see that some day”. Marvin
  8. Early morning is a great time as all things being equal it is dark/really dark. First I think you have to ask what you want to observe, I would leave imaging for a second or third session as it will complicate things considerably. Just observing. Do your homework, and be prepared with a small list of targets of higher mag with a secondary list of harder targets depending on your aperture. Take a good look at the phases of the moon as dso is deeply effected. Unless you want to look at the moon of course. It is sometimes wonderful to cast around the heavens with a let’s see what happens attitude which can lead to amazing things, but mostly I get lost and frustrated then end up looking at my ring bound, laminated sky atlas and compare it to Stellarium on the lap top. That’s part of the prep, the atlas is free on the web but hours of printing and laminating is part of the deal. Stellarium is free too. Depending on your target, later is not always better. I did a session recently where I gambled on a comet getting high enough in the sky to view before a weather front came in at 2am. Went out early, saw the comet, fog rolled in by midnight, if I wasn’t out at 23:00hrs then I would never have seen Africano. Keep getting out there, the experience you will build is invaluable. I have been doing this less than two years, and if I can, just dream what you will see. Just post it on here so I can have a go. Marvin
  9. Thanks everyone. The best bit, I was looking right there so got to see it, the picture doesn’t do it justice. Focus is a primary problem which has been touched on before, I will be looking for a prime focus wide angle manual lense. I have to say that something is lost in translation as the picture on my pc is quite sharp but on here not so. For a comparison does anyone have a suggestion where to post for original def ? Amazing luck for sure. Marvin
  10. Work and weather rarely seem to cooperate. I knew my skies last night would be perfect, walk the dogs up the hill to the top of the lane, slowly turn round 180 degrees and the Pyrenees mountains are in full show off mode, even though they are 150 kms away and not a cloud in the sky. At this point I am considering quitting work, but it is one of those times that I just have to go to bed looking glum. My brain just wont play ball. Of to sleep in an instant, wake up at 2am like a new born into this world (without the screaming) can't sleep, I know what I am missing, my missus will be less than impressed if I go stargazing through the night before this important day. What am I supposed to do? Can't lay in bed wide awake while the skies invite me outside. Trade off…. If I just do some wide field shorter exposure non guided then it's not astronomy, I AM SAFE. Stick my Nikon on the Slik tripod, F 3.5 25 second exposure, ISO800 damb, forgot the cable release, use the ten second timer instead. Continual problem with focus, I have no idea so guess it. Being out late I see the welcome return of winter, Orion, Taurus and Pliedies. What better back drop despite the telephone line, beggars can't be choosers. Hit the shutter release and ten seconds in, a bright orange burst from left to right, I am speech less until I shout out loud. Then I realize the camera is open!!!!! I pray to the Gods CMOS but have to wait fifteen hours to see the result. I hope you all enjoy as much as me. (nothing played with, just a simple RAW image at the right time) even has a green tip to it's tail.
  11. This evening I looked back to the first entries in my observers diary. I now know I knew little to nothing of the night sky and this is confirmed by the entry... I now know I have little or no knowledge of the night sky. My second entry is ‘what does a star look like through a telescope?’ ‘Looks like a star, disappointed’. My point is that all of the above thread just shows how breathtaking the night sky is. Whether it is imaged, ep’d, sketched or wow’d at in the dark it is all valid. Sure photography is going to explode as an arm of astronomy if it hasn’t already, as kit becomes more available at decreasing prices. I saw a documentary on Edwin Hubble a month or two back. I hope my memory is correct but he did his pioneering work at the Mount Wilson observatory in California using the Hooker telescope. I was fascinated to find out that they used glass, large format negatives for imaging Andromeda galaxy. Not one image per glass plate, but the plate was exposed multiple times. In effect stacking images in the 1920’s. So this is no new thing and I feel adds to the overall. Where would be be without Hubble’s work and his name sake space telescope. I cannot tell you if I will stay visual only, but I do know that as long as I have eyes in my head I will be looking up and through an eyepiece when ever possible. Marvin
  12. Perhaps try stacking. Ten of those would be just the trick on a Saturday night.
  13. No problem at all John. Keeps it all nice and tidy in one place. Long may it continue but with speed of that thing and the clouds I may not get another look. Marv
  14. Great shots, you should be rightfully proud of those. I sometimes have opportunity to see the creases in the Maria and clear precise images such as these do those views justice.
  15. Hello from an honorary welsh man. Long way away now but just as cloudy.
  16. Thought I would return for a moment to this thread. Touched on SGL Challenges competitions heading and every entry was photography, is this a tech problem or are some people’s fears confirmed. Marv
  17. I agree with James. I use one of those jumper packs with a battery sealed inside as they conveniently have one or two cigarette sockets on the front. They work great, but unless fully charged I have had problems. Mine has a button on the front, when pushed shows level of charge. It says green full, but it is not and needs a charge to be truthfully full.
  18. I don’t use a dob so don’t flog me. However I have had strange alignment issues on big battery packs that claim max charge. If you can test your scope via a long mains cable plugged into your house supply it will indicate if you have a power issue. (Be aware of moisture dew) You don’t need to do an observation session, but it might narrow down your problem and identify or eliminate a cause. I lost three valuable nights astronomy due to major alignment inaccuracies. My large power supply said perfect but plugged into the mains all problems disappeared. A day later the battery said it needed charging! Eliminate the obvious. Battery packs are great but the light systems on the front to test charge are not very accurate. Marvin
  19. Couldn’t agree more Doug. I love visual, my eye seeing something in the heavens. I also love the images that astronomers are able to create. As for the original idea for this thread (John) with technology being easily accessible at a lesser cost each year then visual may take a back seat for a while. What I have learned in my first two years is that without direct hands on help, proper DSO photography is rarely accomplished, as new persons such as myself need to learn the basics of astronomy before leaping into photography. In that initial period I feel the seeds of the wonders of the heavens are planted. Pictures are truly revealing but seeing is the truth that cannot be denied. I am also aware on the photo side that many of the greatest and simple pictures reveal a view of the universe that is simply not possible through the eye piece. It is simply two pieces to the puzzle and they pendulum one way, then perhaps in the future the other. Nice one John, our paths have crossed a few times and I always look out for your input as I always know there is something that improves my skills, this has really got me thinking. Marvin
  20. I have only been doing astronomy for just less than two years. I am utterly hooked, obsessed my wife says. I am purely visual with the exception of a couple of ep moon shots and some wide field Milky Way pics. Money no object and I would be doing astrophotography but personally I need to see as much as I can with my own eyes for my own satisfaction. Being a ‘fanatic’ I talk to non astronomers who enquire about our pastime and run into a continual problem. Disappointment that what you see is not anything like a Hubble image! In this age of pictures before information the image has more impact and the reality for a lot of first timers is just ‘not’ graphic enough. Visual and photo require dedication and both are valid but with astrophotography you get a souvenir not a memory. A souvenir is something powerful and graphic, materially real after the event. Try getting someone engaged with the description “small grey fuzzy blob”” For me personally I am just glad some people are interested and not watching tv all day. If we need the glossy pictures as well as quiet contemplative ep work then people are looking up! That’s what matters. Marvin
  21. If it’s a bit red in colour could you not process it in photoshop or use filters for the picture.
  22. I was up till now unaware of Assassn. Any further info would be most appreciated. I would be disappointed to miss something right in front of me, especially as it looks like it is going to crystal clear tonight. Marvin
  23. I think we both need to look in the lunar observing sketching section. I have seen recently some amazing crater sketches of terminator areas. Some are so amazing they are ‘Art’ but they are also accurate so not artistic. Let me know what you find. I will likewise Marv
  24. Just been talking about the Pleiades in another observing section. Sketching in the dark fills me with fear, how do I look at the target and sketch without ruining night vision. MaHa you have to give it a go, I recognise the Pleiades from your drawing. I will too if someone highlights the basics on how this is done. Do we use black paper and chalk or something more modern? M
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