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Sam Bo

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About Sam Bo

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    Star Forming

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    Nantwich, Cheshire
  1. Hi all Haven't posted for years due to family life taking over astrophotography etc. Sold my CG5 mount due to money issues but would like to do widefield astrophotography on a budget. I have a Bresser Skylux reflector an an EQ2 mount but has no motors... So without going into details, can anyone suggest a good mount/tripod with motors for under £100 for attaching a DSLR for widefield AP. Can good results be achieved with a cheap tripod/mount/motor? I am aware of the EQ3 but also considering the EQ2 secondhand with motors although haven't seen any secondhand?... Has anyone used the Celestron Astromaster 130EQ with motor for DSLR only imaging (i.e. use the Newt for observing only)? Any other suggestions for increasing exposure times for widefield AP on a serious budget....? Cheers Sam
  2. Hi all Two images attached of the Orion nebula and Flame nebula. Can just make out the horseshead. 8 x 1min lights 4 x darks 200mm lens @ F4 on a Nikon D5100 tracked using Celestron CG5 ISO 1600 Stacked in DSS Next time need to reduce the ISO, and hope the clouds don't roll in to get more exposure Cheers Sam
  3. Hi all After a shot at M31 last week with my 70mm reflector, I decided to try out my non-ai 200mm Nikon lens. I am amazed at how well this has worked considering I only took 8 x 3 min subs with equivalent darks. That compares to 50 x 2 min subs last week with the scope and the final image looks considerably better IMO. I did improve the colour balance in post processing but am now considering using only my 200 mm piggybacked as my main imaging setup. Was expecting to get 5 minutes exposure on the CG5 due to the short focal length but only managed 3 minutes. Not bad for a £50 lens from ebay!
  4. Hey all Thanks for all of your comments. I had another go at M31 last night but this time with my non-ai 200mm Nikon lens piggybacked F5.6 @ iso 800. Only took 8 x 3 min subs with darks and am amazed with the result. This is partially the result of better post colour balance but I think the 200mm Nikon is an improvement on the 700mm Bresser reflector. What do you think?
  5. Hi all First shot at M31. Quite pleased considering I used a Bresser 70mm reflector with 2 minute subs. 50 x 2min lights, 5 x darks, 5 x bias. Stacked in DSS with editing using Gimp. Appreciate any comments or suggestions for editing? Be interesting to see how it compares to using my old 200mm F4 Nikon piggybacked. Cheers
  6. That's a really great image for a first go!
  7. Hi astrosathya Thanks for your comment! I have been trying everything for the last couple of months and the tracking is still out. I was told by the previous owner that five minute subs were possible. However, I have updated that Firmware and hence performed a factory reset and so all previous settings (i.e. calibrations, backlash settings etc) have been deleted. I think that is why I cant get five minutes. So I have started from scratch by doing a rough polar align with polarscope, followed by two-star alignment + three calibration stars. At this point the alignment has been way off and my feeling is that the backlash settings may be the cause (still working on this). Then I have done a Polar align followed by turning power off and realigning on two stars + three calib stars. Alignment still seems to be off. I have also tried drift alignment that actually seemed to be pretty good. However, I cannot track for longer than 2 minutes. I have wondered whether it could be periodic errors in the motors as the star trails appear like a sudden jump (i.e two blobs connected by a thin line) rather than lines. However, I know there is no PEC on the mount and I dont have a guidescope to use PEC tools. Have run the calibration routines after alignment and polar alignment but that hasnt helped. Would be great if anyone has any other ideas over what might be causing the tracking to be off? Cheers Sam
  8. Thanks Chris! If you do the alignment with an eyepiece reticle, how do you ensure the scope is balanced when you replace it with a camera, as you cant unlock the motor drives to rebalance the mount? Could you return the scope to the GOTO home position, rebalance the mount and return to home position before switching on? Cheers Sam
  9. Hi all I have been having fun (sarcasam intended) trying to GOTO and polar align my recently purchased CG5 for imaging. I have updated the firmware and recent attempts have only allowed a 1-2 minute exposure without star trails. At five minuties they were quite obvious which i have put down to using Manchester as my coordinate setting rather than my actual coordinates (i.e. poor initial GOTO alignment affected the polar alignment), bad telescope balance and possibly backlash in the motors. This evening I am hoping to reduce all of these errors and see how the polar align feature of the scope works. I would like to test it by doing a proper drift alignment. However, I was wondering whether you need to have the RA axis set at a specific setting so that only the DEC axis is moving, or whether it is ok to move to the star (in south/west) using the GOTO hand controls? What I mean is whether the procedure is different for a manual versus GOTO scope? Can you manually perform a drift alignment first followed by GOTO alignment? My initial steps would be as follows: 1. Rough polar alignment using polarscope 2. Attach telescope/camera and balance weight 3. Check backlash on motors 4. One or two star alignment 5. Polar alignment using firmware or Drift alignment (do you move the scope using the hand control, or undo the latches and move it manually so that the RA axis is in a specific position?) 6. Two star alignment with three calibration stars Hope this makes sense? Cheers Sam
  10. Hi all Whilst having issues with firmware on my recently purchased CG5 mount, I decided to attempt a manual track of M57. Nikon dSLR was piggybacked to 70mm scope with a 200mm lens. Manually tracked the scope using an illuminated reticle to take 10 x 1 min subs, with 4 x darks and 4 x bias. Stacked in DSS. Quite pleased with what I got considering the method but am a bit bugged as to the quality of the stars which look like blobs. My first thought is obviously because of my manual tracking but could it also be slightly out of focus? Interested in thoughts on this. Silly question but are stars in focus slightly back from infinity? Cheers Sam
  11. Sam Bo

    moon shot

    Thanks! Will give Registax a go
  12. Sam Bo

    moon shot

    Hi all Shot taken with Nikon dSLR at primefocus, edited in Gimp and ViewNX2 Hope you like Sam
  13. Thanks for your comments!!! Am going to attempt the Coma Berenices region sometime this week hopefully. See if the manual method can catch more than 4 galaxies...
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