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About cotterless45

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    " Look up at the stars and not down at your feet."
  • Birthday 18/06/52

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  1. They're great eps. great value and very pleasant to spend the night with. Watch out for the 12.4mm "Japan" one , its a cracker. The 4000s are recommended as an upgrade to supplied eps. Nick.
  2. "Too many stars" , that's just what I love to hear. First time on Skye , I couldn't find Cassiopeia . With a good chart , starhopping is very easy, with more stars up than the PSA,enjoy ! Nick.
  3. The forecasts give the most cursed weather. Sometimes it pays to look at the imagined forecast for the next day and wake up early before it all goes wrong ! I was surprised at how light it got a 4am. When I was a lad it was always dark ! ( they didn't let me out of the cellar much !) 👹 Nick.
  4. Depends where you observe with light pollution amounts. There's no point in a 10" and upwards if you can't see things like the Cygnus rift and open clusters by eye. I use an old OO 8" f6 and it's capable of getting lots of targets. Even better under darker skies. It's also kinder to eps than "faster " scopes and quite lightweight. It's collimation stays and is not so critical as shorter scopes, Nick.
  5. Up and set up under early , dark clear skies. By 4 ,pre dawn light blew the final whistle on the Summer Triangle. The Milky Way ran lightly through Cygnus, coming to a dark stop beyond Deneb. This was a decent bit of dark sky for here ! Quite surprised to catch the "Fetus nebula" (NGC 2008),as a glow. Then a cluster trip along Cygnus starting with the huge M39. NGC 7039 is a bright cluster and NGC 7063 gave the appearance of a chair with a curved back. NGC 6866 gave some dense star clouds. Rukh showed it's close +6.3 companion (2.5")as did ψ (Psi)Cygni . Σ2624 split easily at 1.9" (+7.1, 7.4). S 738 split open as a triple (42.1", 1.8"). This rate I'm going to ditch the fracs for observing binaries ! Couldn't miss the huge glow of M27 with a simple SW UHC filter. Good test for a pre loved tack sharp 15mm TV Plossl. This picked out the binaries with a x2.5 Barlow , giving a useable 6mm or x200 in the scope. The single secondary vane ( Orion Optics) makes binary observation a joy. Some detail of planetary nebulae spotted; NGC 7027, found this to be compact and bright. NGC 6905 ( in Delphinus) , the " Blue flash". NGC 7048, faint , but there. NGC 6826, the "blinking" planetary , doesn't do this with the filter in. Best of the clusters. NGC 7039 , large and bright with compact areas. NGC 6871, bright with four doubles spotted. NGC 6811, half moon size , packed ! NGC 7086, faint and compact. NGC 7083, lovely loop and chain. M29, the "shopping trolley." Don't forget the speedy "Piazzi's flying star" delightful pair (61 Cygni) and the blood red U Cygni , a pulsating and obviously red variable( +8.5 at the moment) at 21h19.6m. +47 53'42". This area is packed with interest , many many targets easily observable from the edge of town. Although Saturn was up in the south , the low Newt couldn't see it through the fence, looks like the higher frac is returning ! Cracking session, superb seeing and transparency. The frost set in hard about 3.30 under those Clear skies ! Nick.
  6. Super report. Think the only thing my brother is interested in , is sunning himself on a beach in Spain or Cyprus. There are some showpiece bits up the moment. Wait to you show him Saturn , before dawn, Nick.
  7. I started out with binoculars , a red head torch and charts. Then came a small Dob, followed by a larger Dob and a frac. Then came along more interest and I wanted to spend more time observing beyond Messier's. This clashed with our very changeable weather and unreliable forecasts, both which have worsened over the last few years. A goto mount has given many many hours of observing. It's not too easy to star hop when you have some light pollution. I still very much enjoy taking the Dob on holiday , setting up and finding targets under dark skies. I'd recommend that before anyone gets goto, they not only know the sky , but are aware of the care that must be put into levelling,polar alignment, balancing and star alignment . A guy I know just uses Vixen setting circles, there are benefits to any system, so long as you enjoy under , Clear Skies ! Nick.
  8. Stunning, but very chilly night. Went through the Draco galaxies, picking up NGC 4125 and NGC 4236. Over to Canes Venatici and from NGC 4111 through to NGC 5033 ( chart below). Hercules was up gave M13 a go. It was very sharp and contrasted with the now darkened sky in the east. Even before focusing , both this and M92 showed the bright points of the brightest stars. Tried for NGC 6207, but not enough contrast from the edge of town. NGC 6229 is worth a look being 100,000 lys.away .M53 presented a dimmer view than the other Messier's. The asterism "Webb's wreath" at 18h02m. +26 18' (SAO 85678) is worth a look. Tried for the comet 41p, not showing, but V2 Johnson was clear by direct viewing in the star field. Now in deep sky mode , found the small "White Pea" planetary nebula, IC4593 and the bigger and brighter NGC 6210. The brightest galaxy in I found to be NGC 6482. Played around with Jupiter and variously Barlow as high Misty stuff moved in. There , no binaries ! Although Rasalgethi is stunning as is the closer Sarin. It got chilly and had to warm my chinagraph pencil up before it set hard ! clear skies , Nick.
  9. Ace , managed V2 ( Johnson). But not 41p, so very close ! Nick.
  10. Ace session ! Some really beautiful galaxies there ! Cheers ! old Nick.
  11. The seeing wasn't up to much , varied around the sky for some reason. Before it got properly dark, Jupiter was very enjoyable. The GRS was very dark in it's pit. The southern belt piled up before and after. The southern belt appeared very wide ,with ragged edges and rips. X200 was useful, just don't fiddle with continual focussing, let the seeing bring it in and out. Better details at x150, so worth backing off a bit. From the Leo Galaxies , into the Virgo bowl and up to Coma Berenices. Galaxies popped out , with bright cores and surrounds. Even M51 gave a great view near the zenith. M13, M3 and M53 gave resolved globular. Light cloud and a white glow of dazzling cloud we're coming. Just time to complete some binaries in Corona Berenices. HV 38 giving a lovely starfield at x50 , with the delicate companion easy to spot. Σ1932 gave a wide open split at 1.6". First break in the clouds for a few days and a very welcome session, clear skies ! Nick.
  12. Published 9th of March 2017, so bang up to date. Includes the search , impact and recording of gravity waves. How often do you pick up a book and after a few years , it’s out of date on the quickly advancing field of cosmology ? Very clear and readable, there are loads that you can fathom. It does a very good job of summarising and tying together what the historical and current thinking is. Explains special and general relativity in a very clear way . Working from this , it goes on to tying the very small to the cosmic. The future discoveries look very exciting, we might be moving towards the theory of everything .Recommended for those cloudy nights ! Nick.
  13. The belt tension is set by adjusting the front of the plate that holds the motors. This is quite straight forward. The eq6 mod involves stripping the mount right down. The heq5 just needs the cogs taken off and the motors out , Nick.
  14. Forecasts !! Can't trust them either ! Used to have a bit of seaweed hanging up outside. You could trust that. Perhaps all these weather stations and satellites could be replaced by seaweed, Nick.
  15. Superb ! Was hoping to track this, but the clouds were much closer and bigger ! Nick.