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Everything posted by MikeP

  1. Hi there, You need something like this ... Camping Site Mains Supply Unit - 3 Outlet: Amazon.co.uk: Sports & Leisure ... the round plug will fit into the EHU on your pitch (they are all the same) and as you can see there are three sockets on the other end for you to use with normal domestic plugs. Most importantly, it has a circuit breaker built in to protect you from any nasty accidents. As for a heater, I normally take a cheap electric fan heater that has 1KW and 2KW settings and turn it on a bit before I'm ready to go to bed. I've no idea what would happen if everyone on the site turned their heaters on all at the same time but I've never known there be a blackout. Make sure you buy a decent sleeping bag or take a good quilt to use with a less good one, it gets pretty cold at night. Mike
  2. Just checked - return fare to Kensington Olympia is the same as the return fare to Victoria, so in effect, I get "free travel from Victoria to Kensington". Sadly, Mrs MikeP will be coming with me on Friday to go shopping and wants to go via my old route. Since I will be going both days, I'll try the new route on Saturday. Thanks for all the very useful information you are providing. Mike
  3. Thanks Andrew, I normally take the train into Victoria and then underground to High Street Ken., never thought of changing to underground at Clapham. Mike
  4. Hello blueearthling, Sounds like I'm midway between you and JonF - I'm just outside Lingfield. Welcome to the forum. Mike
  5. Hello Fatbloke, Like the introduction. Great choice of scope too. You'll see plenty with that, especially if you can get out into the Peak District. There are quite a few members from Manchester so probably someone not too far away. Have a look at this thread, it may help ..... http://stargazerslounge.com/sgl-announcements-events/110023-where-we-all.html Mike
  6. You should be able to make out the rings but so much depends on the seeing ie how clear or turbulent the atmosphere is. If that wasn't too bad when you were observing, I'd next suspect the collimation of your scope. The supplied eyepieces aren't the best quality but they should still be up to the job. Mike PS Collimation should keep you amused for a while
  7. Welcome Andrew. I'd endorse the view that a dobsonian will give you the best views for your money but don't rush into a purchase. Mike
  8. Hello Si, welcome to SGL. If you need help with your new scope, just ask away. Mike
  9. My normal observing position is on a concrete patio and I have a morbid fear of hearing glass and concrete come into contact, so I can imagine how you felt. With Ethos eyepieces, I'd be more worried about the patio though. Mike
  10. It is normally foxes that make me jump when I'm out in the garden. I'm sure they do it on purpose. Mike PS Let's keep to the topic please
  11. MikeP

    Hello from Devon

    Hello Mark, welcome to SGL. Sad to think that you may be made redundant having just picked up a long service award. On the plus side it will give you more time to enjoy the sky .... and SGL of course. Mike
  12. Wow Sam, that was quick. Looks really good. Have you run a power line to it? I couldn't see a trench in the original photo. Mike
  13. Hi Michael, I may call in too. I'll be in the area but unsure about commitments in the evenings. Mike
  14. Hi Peter, Since I already had a serial/USB adapter, I bought this one ..... http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B000LU4CYE I'm even worse at electronics than I am at imaging so I can't say I picked it for any reason other than price and it was "on Amazon". It works perfectly for my needs though. Mike
  15. Just passing on my experience with this ... I downloaded the program to try it out. It runs on my laptop - Windows XP but not on my desktop - Windows 7 (I didn't try using any compatibility stuff or the XP mode of Windows 7 because I'll only use it with my laptop). My SCB-4000 was set to communicate via a Samsung protocol so initially the program would not work. Once I changed the protocol to Pelco-D (Communications->Protocol) which I had to do via manual button presses, it worked an absolute treat. Thanks for posting mindburner and if you are reading this Steve Uckerman, thanks for this solution. Mike
  16. Hi Gonzo, I'm not convinced by the method you are using but at the risk of making matters more complicated let me try and explain why. The end result of polar alignment is for your mount's axis to be pointing at the NCP. If you have a mount with a built in polar scope, you need to be sure the polar scope is correctly aligned with the mount otherwise when you have finished, the polar scope will be aligned but the mount won't be. The same is true if you put a camera on your mount and polar align by examining single images - if the camera is not aligned with your mount, the end result will be for your camera to be aligned to the NCP but not your mount. The misalignment may be small but it will be there. There are software based methods for aligning in this way (PoleAlignMax being one). They get round the problem of the camera being misaligned by taking an image, plate solving, slewing a known amount, taking another image and plate solving again. If the MOUNT is misaligned the second plate solve will yield results inconsistent with the first plate solve plus the slew - the difference allowing the misalignment to be calculated and communicated to the user. I'm not suggesting you try PoleAlignMax because it depends on your mount being controlled by computer - I'm just trying to use its method to explain why I believe the method you are using is flawed. When you get your HEQ5, if you do hook it up to a computer, have a look at Alignmaster. It is easy to use and very quick to execute. Good luck with the alignment experiments and your HEQ5 when you get it. Mike
  17. You'll have loads of willing helpers Tich. Mike
  18. It looks like the MPCC is for imaging only as Merlin says. There is an MPCC-VIP which is for imaging or visual. There is a link on the FLO website that shows the difference. Mike
  19. I try to do both. Here are the pros and cons as I see them: Visual - I usually use a dob which is stored at ambient temperature so I can be observing in 10 minutes or so. The peace and tranquillity is what appeals to me as I look at objects and let my thoughts drift about "life, the universe and everything". On the negative side, for me, there is an element of "train spotting" - ticking off objects I have seen (bit nerdy) but the biggest disadvantage is having old eyes and not being able to see objects very well or even find them. Imaging - there are a number of challenges in imaging, right the way from careful alignment of the mount to detailed processing of the captured subs. Life is about taking on challenges, so until I can produce images that satisfy me, I'll carry on (slowly). Certainly there is a magic about seeing an object appear on your computer screen knowing that you made it from your captured photons - especially when you know that if you look through the scope, you won't see anything. The negatives are fairly obvious - cost, set up time (if you don't have an obsy), spending hours under the only clear sky for weeks and due to errors managing to capture nothing. There are lots of other options that straddle the two disciplines - spectroscopy and observing / measuring variable and double stars are the ones that spring to mind. It comes down to what interests you, your budget and how much time you have available. Mike
  20. I'm 62 now and been fascinated by astronomy since I was 6 or 7. Didn't own a telescope till I was 57. Mike
  21. Hi Acey,I asked a simlar question before I committed to buying and received the following response. As I said previously, I don't have my platform yet so I can't confirm.Mike
  22. I have ordered one and it is ready for shipping but for personal reasons I won't be taking delivery for a few weeks yet. Mike
  23. Sorry chaps, this is an astronomy forum for all ages, we do not want references to drugs thank you. Mike
  24. Very interesting looking roof. I guess you get high winds there Ollie? You are still in danger of finishing before Gina Mike
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