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About TerryMcK

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  1. I too got the dreaded RA wobble on my HEQ5 Pro (Rowan belt mod) and thanks to AstroBaby's website was able to fix it. A slight adjustment of the two grub screws she mentions (after loosening the bigger cap head screws) made everything good again.
  2. The HEQ5Pro with Rowan belt mod will eat that 5 to 7 kg weight. And still under a grand! Or an NEQ6 Pro with belt mod that will give you even more capacity for future expansion. ASCOM and EQMod work out of the box with these two Skywatchers so nothing new to learn.
  3. I think you are missing the point. RealTimeSync monitors the source folder(s) and copies files to the destination folder as the imaging camera delivers the image files to your imaging computer. You don't have to set it off copying as you do with Robocopy etc, as it is all done automatically in the background. Also realtimesync, when setup to run as a batch, doesn't use the GUI overhead. It also runs on Mac and Linux as well as Windows. Old programs like robocopy, richcopy et al do copy files but you, the user, have to trigger the copying process or rely upon task scheduler to run it on a timer.
  4. Nice. I imaged Pacman too Monday night (7th Oct 2019) but in RGB also with an astro modded EOS 400D. I like that Hubble pallet I must get a few narrowband filters .
  5. Synctoy doesn't automatically monitor a folder for file changes though. It's true that Synctoy can be setup to automatically sync files on a schedule daily etc using Microsoft Task Scheduler. Whereas RealTimeSync does.
  6. I'd been looking around for some automated software which would copy images from my imaging laptop (A lowly I5 with 16GB RAM), as soon as they were taken, back into the house so I had the images instantly available on my main computer (A dual Xeon workstation with 64GB RAM). When the clouds have parted and the imaging rig is running if it gets cold I am not normally outside! I remote into the imaging laptop using RDP via a wireless connection. Anyway onto the main subject of the topic. I have been googling and found this fantastic software which is GNU public domain software that costs nowt. It is called FreeFileSync and is available from here Essentially you set it to monitor a folder, for instance your \Pictures\BackyardEOS directory and when image files arrive in that folder it is copied to the destination of your choice. In my case it is a network share on my server. So I have two copies of each image and it saves me time copying GB's of data later on! It can be configured to copy anywhere like an external USB drive for instance. The software has another module called RealTimeSync that sits in the background monitoring your chosen directories and it automatically copies the files. It is this module that I use the most. It's a bit like GoogleDrive or Microsoft OneDrive but not copying potentially large files via t'internet to some anonymous datacenter int'cloud.. The files are then available on your destination computer for processing on a faster computer with DeepskyStacker/Photoshop etc. The software can be configured to run a as service so it is always running in the background whether you login or not. Did I mention its absolutely free?
  7. Some great replies from everybody. I have reinstalled the 64bit version of AstroTortilla (was previously the x86 version) and this is noticeably faster , installed a demo version of APT, installed PlateSolve, UCAC3PS and ASPS (for APT integration). Now just have to wait for some clear skies. I think it may be OK tonight 07/10/2019 in north west England.
  8. Yes it would be nice to use platesolving for GOTO. I must say I'm also using BackyardEOS Canon version to control the camera at the moment. I note that NINA doesn't appear to have that as a camera option yet. Ultimately I will use a full astro CCD but for the time being just a DSLR. I also use PHD2 for guiding and have an HEQ5 Pro mount controlled through the ASCOM driver.
  9. This has probably been asked many, many times before but I am interested in what other members have had success with. I've installed and configured AstroTortilla and had varying degrees of success with it. However it does not always work and when I try goto image, load a TIF and let it plate solve it rarely works. Even changing the parameters to arcsecperpix works very occassionally - that seems to have been the most reliable. Having said that it is flakey probably due to my installation. I used this tutorial to install it https://www.lightvortexastronomy.com/tutorial-setting-up-and-using-astrotortilla-for-plate-solving.html I probably need to re-install it again but.... What other plate solving software tools do you use? I would prefer something offline, like astrotortilla, but if an internet connection is required I'm fine with that too. Another question on AstroTortilla - the website shows software from about 2014 and a beta from 2016 - is it still being actively developed ?
  10. Yes I did have a thought about that (having read most filters are one way only) and Hutech show in detail here https://www.sciencecenter.net/hutech/idas/lps2.htm the anti reflectance coating is on the sky side. It’s important that they are the correct way around in the imaging chain. So I’ve ordered a TS-Optics M48a-M48a gender changer. Essentially it is a M48 threaded tube 7.5mm long that converts the female thread inside the back end of the flattener to a male thread. Hence filters will then be facing the correct way around. I could only find the adapter from Teleskope-express.de or their shop on eBay. Here is the item https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p4516_TS-Optics-Adapter---continuous-male-M48-thread--as-with-2--filters-.html William Optics gear is fantastic but this particular oversight in the design of the flattener seems to be a schoolboy error. Fortunately WO are in continuous development and the next version of the flattener may allow the filters to be orientated the correct way around. Astrophotography is an expensive hobby due, in small part, to all the little bits and bobs you need to screw everything together!
  11. I've just received the WO Flat73A Adjustable Flattener for my WO ZenithStar 73 APO. I am dismayed to find that there is no internal M48 thread for filters within the body of the flattener . I think the non adjustable version has an internal M48 thread but I needed this particular adjustable version. I'm using the IDAS LPS-D2 which successfully filters out the LED/sodium lights but now have to hang a camera off the filter itself! The adjustable flattener needs to be 11.3 mm and I am assuming this is when a filter is not attached. Do I need to take into account the extra distance that the filter glass effectively moves the camera sensor away from the flattener. It is 1mm thick glass and therefore the flattener shoul;d be set at 10.3mm to maintain that correct distance to the sensor (I think it is 55mm for a Canon DSLR)
  12. I've just received by new HEQ5 Pro fitted with Rowan belt upgrade from FLO. Wow it is quiet! All you can hear is the gentle zuz of the stepper motors, no grinding of gears, zero backlash! The mount also came with SynScan version 5 (the manual is SSHCV5-F-170808V2-EN) but the manual is not currently in PDF form on SkyWatchers global website - only V4 of the manual is available. I'll have to make sure I don't drop it in a puddle. The polarscope reticule is the newer SkyWatcher one that has 3 concentric rings corresponding to 2012, 2020 and 2028. It also has 3 subdials for 2016, 2024 and 2032. So it now corresponds with the PolarAlign app from George Varros. I've also ordered an aluminium carrying case for the HEQ5 from 365Astronomy. https://www.365astronomy.com/Aluminium-Carrying-Case-for-HEQ5-Mount-Head.html anybody got one of these? Rowan belt mod is well recommended if you are thinking of an upgrade.
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