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Status Updates posted by Hawksmoor

  1. Was going to image the Comet last night. My 'astro-mini-rig' was up and running by midnight and Metcheck for Lowestoft was showing 'clear all night'.?  Looked up at a sky predominantly cloudy but with an occasional blurry star just to engender that "if I stay up it just might clear" sort of feeling. I finally gave up and went to bed just after I tripped over a large hedgehog.?

    George feeling prickly in Lowestoft (no hedgehogs were hurt in the making of this post)

  2. Managed at about 1:30 this morning to clearly see and identify comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner through my big 11x80 bins.  Much less bright than I was expecting from my reasonably dark site. Must be my old eyes failing? ×




  3. Just watched the Ian Dury Biopic - excellent! Followed by learning the 'Sex and Drugs & Rock and Roll' riff and middle eight on my acoustic guitar in modal tuning. Feeling oddly 80s and punk for an OAP. Think I will give the 'hot chocolate' a miss tonight and live on the edge! ?

    1. Pete Presland

      Pete Presland

      Great band, musically and lyrically, some edgy lyrics/stories in their back catalogue. Almost "Chas n Dave" at times, then so reflective and then so caustic!

      Ian was a far cry from the dull, boring, plastic pop stars of today! "spasticus autisticus" the epitome of Ian Dury, DONT TELL ME WHAT TO DO! 

      One of my favs is "Poo Poo In The Prawn" lyrically brilliant! 

    2. Hawksmoor


      Thanks for your comment Pete. I hadn't heard "Poo Poo in the Prawn" So watched and listened on 'U Tube'- Excellent!  I love his use of 'rhyme and assonance' a phrase from which in his day, he would of undoubtedly extracted the liquid waste.  But any how -who couldn't fail to be made cheerful by ' the smile of a parrot' .

      Regards from a sunny Lowestoft by an unpolluted sea - courtesy of European Union Legislation.

  4. New keyboard now installed on laptop - £50 down but now fully operational.  George much happier in Lowestoft.

    1. Beulah


      Good stuff. :)


  5. Further to my last post from the Lake District, I'm back in Lowestoft and I have plugged an old keyboard into my Laptop and all is well.  So I haven't done anything more expensive than breaking some connections associated with the keyboard. Off to see the computer chap in Oulton Broad to see what can be done for a few pounds.  If too expensive, I will swop this laptop with the one operating my software defined radio meteor catcher - 'The LVST' at 'The Jodrell Plank Observatory' as this activity is 'keyboard light'. Thanks all for your comments .

  6. Sad o say I dopped my lapop and as a esul some o he keys on my lapop no lone wok!? On a moe cheeul noe I capued a nice wideield imae o he Milkyway and he Andomeda alaxy on 13 Au 2018 - sadly no meeos saw some u no picues - ey damp in he Lake Disic oo much condensaion.

    Autosave 9a_3small.png

    1. Geoff Barnes

      Geoff Barnes

      Oh dear! Whilst I sympathise with your predicament Hawksmoor, I still think this is one of the funniest posts I've seen! ?

    2. Beulah


      ROFL! It sounds like your teeth have been knocked out too! Thank you for the laugh - and great image.   :)


  7. Perseids -Smershieds! - 100 percent of your classic 'British Clouds' overhead. Now going to bed with the hump! -Full on dromedary!  'Remote Robotic Scopes' are looking more attractive by the minute!

    Disgruntled of Lowestoft

  8. Nice clear and dark night tonight. Spent some time in the backyard with my big bins. Watched a big jet plane lumber across the sky, lights flashing and contrails straddling Cygnus left in its almost silent wake.  Made me feel slightly sad. Not sure why?

    George about to turn out the light in Lowestoft.

  9. Ironically, tonight I watched the full moon rise serenely above the North Sea. Very beautiful but 24 hours too late.

    George eclipseless in Lowestoft.

  10. Well last night I could have photographed the Moon full on 'Lionel Richie' but tonight at 20;50 BST, no chance. Up on the cliffs at Pakefield with all my travel kit, I was nice and early at about 19:45. Clear view across the North Sea with just a little mist and some light cloud on the horizon. So I say to myself with a bit of luck I will capture a snap or two through the mist and cloud - very atmospherIc!  So we lug my kit from the car and set up. But oh no that 'e' word was about to work its magic and right on queue at 20:45 darkness fell and the four riders of the apocalypse obliterated all photons through south to east. - And then! - "hang on what light through stormed cloud breaks"? - "could that red disc be the Moon"?  A burst of 10 rapid shutter movements broke the cliff top silence.  - So, if anyone wants to see 10 images of the Saga around  the UK cruise ship heaving to off Lowestoft -  I'm your man. If you want to see a photo of me taking said saddo snaps, my wife kindly posted the one she took, on Facebook. She did not stop laughing for some considerable time after.

    George in a stormy and wet Lowestoft

  11. Hurrah! Finally captured this year's blurry image of Saturn resting on top of the ridge tiles of my neighbour's roof. My 18 year old 90 mm. Meade ETX Ra Mak riding on my Star Adventurer mount provided a video clip or two of the 'ringed one' at F12.5. All a bit ' Roger Moore' and ' noisy' but just enough 'signal' to satisfy my annual Saturn needs.

    Very nice night in Lowestoft tonight but as we have been to the Indian restaurant and have rather overdone the 'Kingfisher' I decided to give 'juggling astronomy-kit in the dark' a miss. Nice to eyeball three planets - Saturn, Jupiter and Venus - plus the Summer Milky Way.

    Nighty night all


  12. Weather looking good at the moment - tonight?


    1. Hawksmoor


      Interesting how one hobby impacts on  another. My thumb nail has grown to an outrageous length which is great for banjo picking. Turns out it is less than optimal for handling cylindrical planetary cameras. Camera  appears to be working although the uv-filter may require replacement after my rather shakey attempt to superglue it back into its aluminium bezel.  ?

  13. Stars tonight over Lowestoft. ? Realised that Saturn is too low for my big refractor on its pier. Only way to get a snap will be with my mobile rig from another site. My old 90mm. ETX RA to the rescue - now mounted on a Star Adventurer.

    George hoping for another clear night this week in Lowestoft.

  14. "and today's and tonight's weather in Lowestoft has been brought to us by clouds".?‍♀️

  15. Moon and Jupiter conjunction as viewed from our backyard tonight is a real pretty thing!

    1. Knighty2112


      Was planning on some observations tonight on both Jupiter and the Moon, but alas clouds though differently. :( 

    2. Hawksmoor


      Yes sadly the fog in Lowestoft tonight has put paid to any further observations of mine. Hopefully, there will be one clear night in June so I can capture my annual blurry image of Saturn!?

  16. Just back from a 14 day holiday in India. Had a great time. Levels of atmospheric pollution in and around Delhi and other cities visited made stargazing difficult! Many reasons not to moan about being located by the sea in Suffolk.

    George back home in Lowestoft.

  17. Last night I actually captured some photons from the old backyard. Up until 3am. waiting for Jupiter to clear my neighbours' roofs and our olive tree. Very noticeable how much smaller the GRS has become since I first viewed it through my old 90mm. ETX RA Mak some 17 years ago. Also I remember Jupiter riding high in the sky rather than grazing my southern horizon. Trouble with astronomy is that it often reminds you of the inexorable passage of time and your own brief relationship with the Cosmos.

    George awaiting the blissful sleep of the innocent in Lowestoft.:happy7:

  18. Pulling an all nighter as the clouds that were supposed to disappear at midnight have inconveniently not consulted a meteorologist. I've given up trying to obtain 4min subs at ISO800 in favour of 2min subs at ISO1600 whilst cloud dodgin' without a 'G'. Why is it that 'mainly clear' isnt and that mainly it isnt clear in front of the thing you're trying to photograph?  It is also mind numbingly cold in our Backyard - my nose has started to run and my clumsy rating has started to climb exponentially.

    Nighty night stargazers wherever you are.

    George not asleep in Lowestoft

  19. Clouds and rain yesterday but at 22:20 last night, between the clouds and just above my neighbour's fence I glimpsed a pretty crescent moon (apologies for the Jane Austen like prose). So I dashed out with my camera and took a 'lucky snap' or six balancing my Altair Astro 66mm Lightwave frac with 0.6x focal reducer - 'telescopic lens combo' on top of our water butt. The break in the cloud only lasted for five minutes. Not the best of images but I'm suffering from 'wet weather front fever'.


    Crescent Moon small.png

  20. Misjudged the weather. Set up my scopes for a night of adventure. All my kit and software working in concert. Then the clouds rolled in. I waited and waited whilst the cloud thickened overhead. I consulted Metcheck. The cloud was predicted to worsen. So at 23:45 I packed up my kit and retired to the warmth of the living room. By 00:15 the sky over Lowestoft was as clear as a bell. As protocol forbids the use of swear words and common oaths - "Oh dear, what an unfortunate decision I made"

    George currently fuming in bed in Lowestoft.

  21. Foggy tonight in Lowestoft and I'm the worse for alcohol - so no astro -imaging tonight.

    George inebriated in Lowestoft.

  22. Very clear and chilly night in Lowestoft. Spent a half hour in the garden after the street lights went out. Nice to scan the winter sky with my big bins. Lots of interesting clusters and fuzzies to see this time of the year. 

    Leo Major just about due South and at a good elevation - lots of galaxies just about visible through my 11x80 bins as tiny smudges or fuzzy stars. A bit further east and lower in the sky Virgo is now on show with a few more fuzzies on the edge of visibility.

    Had a look at Mellotte 111 in Coma Berenices - a large and beautiful open star cluster. Not far away the globular star cluster M3 was an easy spot.

    Galaxies M81 and M82 were easy to find near the nose of the Great Bear. This time of the year he stands on his tail and has moved sufficiently East so as not to be hidden by the bulk of our house.

    I finished off my session with a quick look at the Beehive Cluster, M35 and the three Messier open clusters in Auriga.

    A quick trip around the Universe in 30 minutes. Not many hobbies can offer so much in so little time.

    George in bed in Lowestoft.

  23. Cold but clear night here in Lowestoft this evening. Too tired  for astronomy as have just driven home from Sheffield via Barton on Humber. Off to bed to catch some zzzzzzzs.

    George 'counting sheep' in Suffolk.

  24. Its officially 'Spring' here in in Lowestoft, yesterday and without prior warning, I developed an irresistible urge to reorganise and clean out my tool shed. Putting up shelving is almost as satisfying as tearing out the foam rubber inserts in aluminium flight cases. Well almost! :happy7:

    1. teoria_del_big_bang


      Wish I could get the same enthusiasm to do the same in my garage. 

  25. Some of last night's images were spoilt by the gusting wind but some have turned out OK. Did manage to capture an image of Comet PanSTARRS in Taurus so mission accomplished. Very pleased that my partner has purchased two tickets to see and hear Dr Michael Foale at the UEA towards the end the month. Quite excited!

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