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Martin-Devon last won the day on August 26 2014

Martin-Devon had the most liked content!

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476 Excellent

About Martin-Devon

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    Sub Dwarf

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    Cullompton, Devon
  1. Great to see you back 'in the saddle' again Ian, and a with a lovely rendition of M35 as well. I've always found these LRGB open clusters to be very tricky to process, so I steer clear of them, but you've done a really nice job. Your aim to image the whole Messier catalogue is a very ambitious one, but would be a wonderful achievement - good luck! Martin
  2. Frustrating - the BBC weather forecasts have been diabolically misleading for the night skies in Devon the last 2 weeks, several times clear or semi-clear nights predicted only to see non-stop blankets of cloud. I've found that the "live" cloud satellite imaging website Sat24 helps a lot, here you can see in real time the cloud situation for your part of the UK and how it's projected to move, and this may give you a much better indication of the night skies ahead rather than relying on BBC forecasts or the like. Here's the link to the website: https://en.sat24.com/en Martin
  3. Hi Ian - with Dave & your help, it's looking like 21 00 004 is likely the right CPC code. The problem now is the 'outward processing relief' form, on which this CPC code has to be entered. I've just phoned up TNT again, and apparently they cannot issue this form (typical), instead only the HMRC can do this so I'm back on the phone again shortly to them trying to see if they can send me one. Ian - the problem with my Mach1 is the RA gearbox. I had a few occasional problems with the need to re-mesh the RA axis every couple of months, so I decided to take the RA gearbox off, and strip it down, which turned out to be a silly thing to do since various springs and spur gears readily came apart but didn't go back together so easily! The net result was a very noisy RA gearbox, which doesn't sound right at all, yet remarkably it still tracks and slews perfectly, but inevitably with the noise it's making something is going to give sooner or later. So the fault is all mine in the making. I emailed George at AP, and he recommended a proper repair and service, which I'm happy about, I've had it 6 years so far and it's been a brilliant mount - just need to sort this blinking courier business out! Thanks everybody for your inputs. Martin
  4. Thanks again Dave for your inputs here, as you say it's quite possibly a CPC code starting with 21 but eventually has to be a 7-digit code, which i now find out breaks down into 2 sets of 2 digit codes and 1 set of 3 digit codes making up the final 7 digit, so there are three pieces of information built into each code! Mike - I have written an email to Astro-Physics in USA, they helped initially asking me to write "REPAIR - USA ORIGIN" on the paperwork, which I did, but they also never mentioned anything about a CPC code. I've now asked them specifically if they can advise here, but given the time difference it will be late in the day before I can expect any reply from them. I'm more annoyed with TNT to be honest. They clearly knew that i was sending a package from UK to USA, then having collected it and holding it in their depot, only now they tell me that a CPC code is needed - yet nothing whatsoever on their paperwork mentioning or asking for a CPC code, and when I contact them all they do is tell me to talk to the HMRC! Martin
  5. Hi Dave, just seen your last post with a possible CPC number - maybe this is right, but the HMRC chap did mention to me the wording "Outward Processing Relief", whatever that is (?), and that this could have a bearing on my choice of CPC code. Still completely in the dark here..... Martin
  6. Hi Dave, I did indeed phone up the HMRC, they directed me thorough half a dozen web-links and appendixes until I reached a 114 page document of complete gobble-de-gook about Custom Procedure Codes. I appealed to the HMRC chap if he could help further, explaining exactly what I was trying to send, but apparently he's only allowed to offer guidance nothing more and this stops at this huge document which reads like complete nonsense to a layman. So at the moment I'm stuck! As I mentioned, nothing in any of the TNT paperwork had a box, or even requested entry of a CPC code yet this is compulsory it seems, so I'm not impressed with them. Martin
  7. Hi everybody, I have a Mach1 Astro-Physics mount which needs to go back to the USA for some repairs. I booked up TNT courier, and it was picked up on Friday but I've just found out that it is sat in their depot since there is no Custom Procedure Code (CPC) stated on the documents - rather odd since neither TNT, nor any of their forms asked for a CPC code. Anyhow, I phoned up TNT and they just passed the buck and asked me to contact the HMRC, which I've done, but apparently they cannot give me a direct CPC number since it's not allowed - so I'm stuck at the moment. Does anybody have a clue about what CPC number should be used to send by courier a mount from the UK to USA for repairs? Bit of a long-shot I know, but any help here would be greatly appreciated! Thanks, Martin
  8. Although I've no experience with an Avalon mount I've had my AP Mach-1 now for over 6 years, and it's been a flawless performer for the demands of deep sky imaging. The engineering and attention to detail are readily apparent, and the guiding/tracking ability for imaging work has been incredible. The Mach1 just works effortlessly, I don't need to keep tinkering around with it. The Avalon could be the same, many folks also rate this highly, you probably wouldn't go wrong with either mount.
  9. Carole, this is a lovely rendition of this target, top drawer - well done. Martin
  10. That's a great image Graem, processing & colours are spot-on. Martin
  11. Actually it's not that bad at all. OK, the stars are somewhat elongated and there's a focus issue, but the causes of these can probably be fixed quite easily. You don't give much information on the subs, or whether a reducer is in the imaging train. Assuming there's no reducer, then firstly check your polar alignment (PA) - just run a 5 minute sub (luminence is fine) with no guiding, if the stars are nice and round then the PA is OK, if not, then start here with the fixes. If PA is sorted, check out the quality of your guiding since poor guiding over lots of 10 minute subs can also give poor stars. The focus definitely looks a tad out though at the moment, again I'm not sure what focusing method you use, but try racking in or out a few clicks on the focuser and see if the stars tighten up - if the stars are out of focus, then your nice wispy nebulosity will also be out of focus. Finally, if you do have a reducer in the imaging train, double-check the spacing to the CCD since if this is a few mm's out it can also cause a lot of problems. HTH's, Martin
  12. For the last couple of years I've used Pempro software for PA and had spot-on results. It's more expensive than Alignmaster though, but is a much deeper package and offers many other analytical tools including backlash measurements. Before this I did use Alignmaster though for my PA and it worked just fine. As mentioned above it can be tricky choosing two stars that are easily visible, but if you scroll down the list for each then usually there's always a good pairing to be found. It's quick to run, and a second run may well sharpen up the PA even further. For the price, I think it's good value. There's a very nice youtube video from Dion of AstronomyShed showing how to use it. Martin
  13. Dave - that's a cracking good Pelican, very well processed and framed - you're certainly not rusty at all after the gap you've had with your imaging. Martin
  14. Yes that's really nicely executed - if you add OIII now, it'll be a lovely bicolour of blues & golds.
  15. That's a glorious widefield of this region, and nice to see the much over-looked SH2-119 included as well. Processing is spot-on as well, all together an excellent image.
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