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About stevenlouth

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  1. Hi. I am trying to find an camera adapter that can take a single filter, either 1.25" or 2". I have an ED80 with the camera T adapter to attach my astro modified Limux GF1 and it all focusses perfectly. The problem is I need to put a UV-IR filter somewhere in the light path to avoid star bloat. I have looked around on FLO website and elsewhere, but am not sure if anything will do the job. Anyone had experience of this problem.
  2. Hello I hope you are still frequent visitor to the SGL website, because I am trying to align the reticule in my polarscope. The reticule came out when I unscrewed the eyepiece lens, the whole thing was out of focus and couldn't be adjusted with the grub screws. It had stuck itself to the eyepiece-lens with the nasty oil they install at the factory). Anyway, how did you do get it back in the right orientation? Is it all about the transit of Polaris and certain dates/times? Regards, Steve
  3. stevenlouth

    DSLR imaging

    DSLR imaging with Meade DS2102, Skywatcher Heritage 130P and Canon EOS 400D & 550D
  4. Resurrecting this old thread because I need to recommend an M42 lens. The following image of NGC7000 was taken with a Canon550D and a Tair-3S 300mm lens. The lens comes from an old Russian "Fotosniper" kit which originally came with a Zenit camera and, due to its heavy weight, was mounted on a gun!! No kidding, look it up on google. I am very impressed with the sharpness of this lens, even at the corners of the frame. Wide open, there are some internal reflections which produce some odd double images of the brightest stars in this picture. Next time I must remember to close the aperture more.
  5. That is a fantastic image Gina. I wonder if you've tried imaging without an accurate tracking mount; then maybe you can sense my jealousy. Last night I had a go with my 50mm f/1.4 Takumar. With aperture wide open the chromatic aberration is awful (this disappears at about f/5.6). On the up side, the wide aperture is great for locating objects within the small dim viewfinder on my Canon 550D. So is the f/1.4 Takumar worth the cost compared to the much cheaper Helios 44M-4? Well on an APS-C camera the crop factor increases a 50mm lens to an 80mm lens, and so exposures times are limited to abou
  6. I have been watching eBay for M42 lenses and there are plenty of 200mm on there. Some are poor quality (I am lead to believe), but you can pick up a Takumar or a Pentacon for under £100, some around the £50 mark. They are rated as good quality, but I don't have one myself. The best in that focal length are the Zeiss which are £200 - £300. Too much!
  7. Following the advice of Michaal Wilkinson (above) I went and purchased a Pentax SMC 50mm f/1.4 (bargain price too!). Here are some pictures I have taken using the lens with my 550D. http://stargazerslounge.com/uploads/gallery/album_1440/gallery_9225_1440_156483.jpg http://stargazerslounge.com/uploads/gallery/album_1440/gallery_9225_1440_362777.jpg http://stargazerslounge.com/uploads/gallery/album_1440/gallery_9225_1440_369148.jpg Apparently the lens was made with a radioactive thorium glass element which causes the lens to take on a yellow tinge over time. Whilst problematic for film photograp
  8. Yes the Soligor does focus, but it is not as sharp as the EFS 18-55mm or the Helios lenses. I have posted a picture using this lens here:- http://stargazerslounge.com/gallery/image/13883-iss-small/ In my mind the wider angles 28mm should be easier to focus at infinity, so it is strange you are struggling. Can you focus it in daylight?
  9. Had a go with the Helios 44m-4 last night and it has the same problem as the other Helios. With the aperture wide open you get a lot of distortion away from the centre of the image (stars appears as stretched lines rather than pin sharp points of light). Stopped down to f/8 or more it was fine, but then I am loosing fainter stars and nebulosity. This means longer exposures, but then I get star trails. Looks like I also need a tracking mount.
  10. Hi. I have myself also just got a 550D, and have an adaptor with a couple of cheap M42 lenses. I don't have a tracking mount, so wide angle short exposures are all I can do at the moment. Star trails are easy enough. The first lens I bought was a Helios 44-2, which is 58mm f/2. Cost only £25. With the aperture wide open it produced very obvious distortion at the edges of images, not good. This is a common problem with wide aperture lenses; apparently they perform better stopped down. I have yet to try the lens stopped down a few notches, but I wouldn't recommend it. The focus wheel is narrow
  11. I had exactly the same dilemma a few months back, but I went with the 550D for the greater pixels and the larger LCD screen. The live view (available on both models) allows for much easier focussing. Just switch to live view, zoom in to x10 and manually focus. It is so easy compared to my old EOS 300D. You are lucky to enter the hobby at a time when this technology is included on the basic models. I begin to wish I had got a 1100D and spent the extra on a top quality wide angle lens. The 18-55mm kit lens is already showing it's limitations.
  12. Four members of the Leicester Astronomical Society ventured out, hoping the clouds would clear. And they did, but only just, half way through the grazing occultation. The view through the scope was so amazing that I forgot to get the camera out until after the Moon and Jupiter had separated quite abit, but here are a couple of pictures.
  13. Chris Last year I went to Galloway for 4 days, enticed as I was by its dark sky status. And, apart from one single hour, it was cloudy for 3 nights. Disappointing yes, but in that hour I saw the Coathanger asterism, the bands acroos Jupiter and a few nubulea that I would never have seen in the light polluted skies of home. You just have to make the most of what you get when it comes. I understand what you say about forecasting. We can get humans on the moon and space probes in orbit around distant planets, but forecasting the weather in the UK is still a hit and miss affair. Sadly, the forecas
  14. Alas no luck with the clouds spoiling the view in Leicester. Plenty of onlookers at Beacon Hill park, but the sun wasn't visible until about 30 mins after the transit had finished. Mockingly the moon was a lovely sight, low on the opposite side of the sky.
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