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Egor Blimey

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Everything posted by Egor Blimey

  1. I don't know about a 4" scope, but using a UHC I saw the Owl nebula as clearly from by suburban garden as I had a week earlier from a dark sky site where the filter wasn't needed. I was using a 6" f5 Skywatcher refractor though. Apparently the UHC doesn't work on all types of nebulae.
  2. I live just north of Leicester. It is an astronomy dealer desert! I recently bought my Skywatcher telescope (online) from Rother Valley near Sheffield. Fortunately my daughter is at UEA so I can get a showroom fix in and just north of Norwich when I'm visiting!
  3. Forbidden Planet - that monster from the id was the scariest creature ever devised! I do like the atmosphere of the 50's sci-fi: Crack in the World, When Worlds Collide etc.
  4. Looks like I'm in a minority of one then. Astronomy isn't my only outdoor interest, and it would be nice if there were several more weeks in the year when there was time do something after work.
  5. Many years ago I set up my camera and tripod with a flash gun and took a photo of my eye with a ruler next to it. The idea is that the flash is so fast the eye can't react in time, so stays dilated. I think (then) it was over 7mm. I would have been about late 30s.
  6. Oh, and another thought: Why is it that it is deemed OK to have only 2 months before the shortest day, but 3 months after, of GMT? It rather destroys all the usual safety/agricultural etc arguments doesn't it? Barry.
  7. Personally I'd welcome extra light evenings. It's generally too light in summer anyway for serious observing, and I have other outdoor interests as well as astronomy. Our climate is so lousy for astronomy anyway that the number of lost hours a year due to the time change would be minimal. I'll now wait to be excommunicated!
  8. I fondly remember cycling seven miles into the countryside to an old railway viaduct so that I'd have an impressive foreground for my photos of Hale-Bopp. I hid my bike, and with my camera bag over my shoulder and tripod in one hand, leapt over the fence next to a field gate - straight into a three foot deep ditch! You can imagine how I laughed. I did get some stunning photos using colour film though. Incidentally, the year before there was another beautiful naked eye comet in the sky too: Hyukatake I think. Barry.
  9. Seeing the dark impact marks come into view on Jupiter following the impact of Hale-Bopp (or was it Shoemaker-Levy?) through my Vixen 4" refractor in the late 1990s: especially as all the experts said nothing would be visible! Barry.
  10. Just thought I'd post this to make everyone aware that Aldi are currently selling a power supply for £33 give or take a few pence. It is 17 Ah rated with 2 x 12V outputs, a 230V AC output and a 5V USB port. In addition it has a compressor and a pair of jump start leads, torch etc. A bit heavy, I estimate about 151bs or so, but compact enough. Worth buying at about £60 cheaper than the power tank? Barry.
  11. I too have an ancient Vixen mount. I believe the beefiness and material of the tripod is a much greater factor than is generally realised when it comes to stabilty. My Super Polaris mount (wooden tripod) is quoted as having a payload up to 6kg and when I recently bought a 7.5 kg Skwatcher 6" F5 refractor I assumed I'd have to upgrade the mount. However, It seems rock steady providing the tripod legs are only extended about 9". I've heard that the Celestron is much noisier when slewing but that the more substantial tripod (2" diameter legs) gives it more stabilty than the Synscan EQ5 (1.5" legs
  12. You don't say what kind of telescope you have. I tried out a 7mm 'TMB designed' planetary eyepiece earlier tonight that I'd received in the post this morning from Skys the Limit. My 'scope is a Skywatcher 150mm F5 achromatic refractor (bought to look at DSOs after 20 years of using a Vixen 4" F9.8 achromatic refractor). These fast refractors aren't renowned for lunar or planetary viewing but as the TMB eyepieces are so cheap (£36) I thought I'd try one anyway and use it with my 2" ED barlow if necessary. At 6pm Jupiter looked clear with the naked eye but was still too low for good seeing. I d
  13. I'm no expert, but as no-one else has offered I'll say that your motor could be a stepper or servo motor. If it's a stepper motor then putting a voltage across any of the wires won't make it work. I'm not familiar with servo motors, but possibly they require dancing voltages too rather than constant voltage. Try the usual set up with no load (ie no telescope or weights attached) and make sure the clutch is engaged if there is one. Try it at high speed to make sure you'd be able to spot any movement. Hope this helps, Barry.
  14. Hello Steve from Leicester. You may know Thorpe Satchville near me. I've just returned from a frustrating trip to my usual 'dark site' there. I packed up due to Twyford village church sending a beam of searchlight straight up Orion's backside! I called in and tried the door on my way back - locked of course. I realise that astronomy is a relatively minority pastime, but how many nocturnal church watchers can there be? I noticed on the way back home that all the other village churches were burning their parishiners money too. Grrr! Can anyone recommend a cheap brand of black paint?
  15. Me too, or the Skywatcher version which is more expensive. I seem to remember a post on another forum confirming that Revelation barlows were the same as gso in America, which in turn were highly regarded. I want to be sure that I'll not be beyond the focus limit using the 2" diagonal in front of this barlow though, on my Skywatcher 6" f5 refractor.
  16. Saturn. I'd been a naked eye and binooculars observer since about eight years old. I'd bought lots of film SLR equipment about 1982, including a 500m f8 telephoto lens and an attachment that converted lenses into a 10x its focal length telescope. In those days I had to work out where and when the planets were visible from an almanac. Saturn should be outside my bedroom window about er, 3am. Still, set up my telephoto lens and eyepiece arrangement on a photographic tripod ready, and set the alarm. Assuming that planets would be very difficult to spot, I spent about 10 mins using a compass to a
  17. Evening all, my first initiated post although I've been picking all your combined brains for the last two months or so for advice and reviews of equipment. I have noticed a few references to focussing problems using the direct camera adapter supplied with several Skywatcher 'scopes, including my new 6" F5 refractor. Maybe I'm missing something, but when I tried out prime focus photography the other night I found that the focusser would not quite extend out enough to focus through the camera viewfinder. Assuming that the 2" diagonal would provide the necessary extra light path, I moved the adap
  18. Lucky man! I look forward to your review as I have the 'old' Vixen SP mounted 102 achromat. The driven SP mount incidentally, seems extraordinarily accurate when properly aligned: do you agree? Roll on a clear night! Barry.
  19. Alex. I too would welcome some short-cut advice to begin imaging DSOs. I've been disappointed with my initial attempts using my digital SLR. There does seem to be a threshold for faint objects that, no matter how long the exposure, nothing records. This never seemed to be the case with the slide film I used (with a surprisingly effective but truly Heath Robinson tracking arrangement I used to use) for exposures up to about 10 minutes of objects such as M42. The images wouldn't have won any competitions but the shape and colour and surprising amounts of detail were recorded. I've had good photo
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