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Found 35 results

  1. Here is a EEVA-style image of Neptune and apparently its largest moon, Triton. I had been trying to image planetary nebulae before aiming the gear at Neptune, and noticed a faint smudge below the severely over-exposed planet. It was possibly easier to see at the time than on the processed image attached (between planet and arrow). It seems to match the position given by Sky & telescope's Triton Tracker. At around mag 13.5, Triton would normally be beyond the reach of a C8 used visually even in ideal conditions. Image is inverted, taken 12Aug at 22.40 UT. CPC800,ASI224MC, flip mirror. Gibbous moon.
  2. An image of Jupiter taken late evening, 27 June. Not as good as some other people's efforts, but one of my best Jupiter images this year. The planet was low (around 15 deg) and the seeing was not great. CPC800, ASI224MC, ADC, captured in Sharpcap, processed in Registax6. Best 20% of 5000 frames IIRC. One of the images here is a random raw frame, to show what I had to work with. Io should be visible on left in the processed image.
  3. An image of Jupiter taken early morning, 16 June. Not as good as some other people's efforts, but the planet was low (around 15 deg) and the seeing was not great. CPC800, ASI224MC, ADC, captured in Sharpcap, processed in Registax6. Best 15% of 7000 frames IIRC. One of the images here is a random raw frame, to show what I had to work with. Ganymede should be visible on left in the processed image. GRS coming into view on left.
  4. It is not often in the UK that we have a bank holiday weekend, a new moon and a clear sky at the same time. Last night was one of those rare occasions! The forecast (Clear Outside) was not very definitive about the cloud cover, but from looking at the satellite images and from experience, I thought this could be a magnificent sky as we were on the backside of the last weather front. So, I thought – let’s give it a go, we could be rewarded. By 9pm the car was packed with the C8 and my trusty Vixen SP-DX. A quick check on my friend Steve, and yes, he was up for it, too. Steve is a beginner, so I offered to show him some of the objects I am familiar with and should give a decent view under good conditions. I also wanted to see some of the fainter galaxies which populate the spring skies. The spot we were planning on using is in Southern Cambridgeshire – and compared to light polluted London and St Albans, this looks like “Deep-Sky-Country”, although it actually isn’t perfect. It’s the improvement from the home conditions that count! On the way, I cranked up the aircon to maximum (lowest temp) to pre-cool the scope. This was going to be a chilly night… Arrived at the spot just after 10pm, Steve parked up five minutes later. Thankfully the wind that had battered the South East the whole day had eased off and the remnants of daytime clouds soon hurried to disappear. I spent some time building up the scope and polar aligning while the last bits of twilight disappeared. The sky was now fully dark and really quite impressive considering how close to London this place still is. To the South the capital’s light dome stretched to about 20° above the horizon. Cambridge cast its lights in the North-East although to a much lesser degree. The spring constellations were up to the South with Leo having passed the meridian and the plough right above us in the zenith. We started the evening with a simple target to warm up – M3. A delightful sparkle of stars filled the eyepiece. With the 15mm LV (133x) the core was starting to be resolved - the telescope was not completely cooled down yet, but this was indeed a good starter to the night indeed. Next, we changed direction and pointed at M51, which clearly showed the two galaxy nuclei and the surrounding disc of haziness with direct vision. No spiral structure visible (but that wasn’t really expected with 8” anyway). The pair was nicely framed in the 30mm NLVW (68x) with a foreground star in NGC5194 clearly discernible. As spring is galaxy season we pushed the scope over to Denebola in Leo to go hunting for members of the Virgo cluster. We started with M98, which was a fuzzy faint blob and a bit disappointing. Next object was M99, which was much more pronounced although without any detail in the 30mm. Over to M84 and the starting point of Markarian’s chain. Using the 40mm Celestron Axiom eyepiece (70° afov) four galaxies were immediately visible. There was a bright one in the bottom of the view (M84), with a slightly bigger one in the centre (M86) and a pair of two distinct but faint galaxies to the top (NGC4435/38). Slewing along a bit further, NGC4458 became visible. An incredible sight, especially if you imagine how many millions of light years these are away from us and how big these objects are! We did not follow the rest of the chain (have to revisit this again!), but instead decided to look at something brighter. M81/82 were right over head and simply amazing. Directly viewed, both fit into the eyepiece at 50x magnification (40mm Axiom). M81 clearly an elongated, lens shaped disc. M82 showed as a thick streak of light. Ramping up the magnification to 133x (15mm LV), it revealed its knotted structure with direct vision! It has been a long time since I had seen M82 this clearly. The sky was indeed rather good! To get a bit of variety, I moved the scope to the owl (M97). In went the Lumicon OIII Filter. In the 15mm LV, the sky background turned into an inky black with the stars taking on a slightly reddish colour. The nebula stood out like it was cut out of cardboard! While gazing at it for a little while longer, we were able to see some texture inside the “disc” of the nebula – hints of the owl eyes. As the filter was in, we decided look at another planetary – M57 the ring in Lyra. About 50° above the horizon, a clear ring shape with a dark interior was visible against a black sky (thanks to the filter) - beautifully defined and clear! Next up was M13, the great Hercules globular cluster and it was sparkling with the lights of millions of suns. An extremely contrasty view, resolved into the core… Suddenly we realised some clouds had started to appear, coming in from the North and beginning to cover parts of the North-Eastern sky. So we changed direction (yet again), to look at more galaxies. The whale (NGC4631) was faint, but clearly defined in shape, really resembling a maritime. Unfortunately, we did not look out for NGC 4627, the whale’s companion. NGC4656 – the hockey stick, was faintly visible with averted vision, but no clear shape discernible. NGC4565 – the Needle was starting to get blocked out by a thin layer of high clouds at around 11.45pm. A slightly disappointing sight. By this time, the finder had already dewed up and the first patched of haze were forming on the corrector plate of the C8. The sky was now also covered over more and more, so we decided to end the evening at this point. We packed everything back into the car in about 20mins and drove off at around 12.15. While driving I noticed my feet were actually deep frozen already! The car showed a temperature of just 4°C, no wonder it felt chilly. Thankfully the wind had not picked up all night. Overall a wonderful session with many old favourites and some new additions as well as some targets left over for the next galaxy season. Have to revisit Markarian again and scan the full extent, also missed the black eye and sombrero galaxies this time. Let’s hope for more clear skies soon!
  5. Here is an image of Jupiter, taken around 6am on 15 Feb with my C8, ASI120MC, +ADC, processed in Registax6 from around 30% of 3000 frames. I am fairly pleased with it considering that the altitude of the planet was only about 12 deg. and the seeing looked bad when I tried to focus on a star. And it shows the Great Red Spot.
  6. In between doing jobs at work I've been trying to find some reviews of the Baader Zoom MK3 being used on a C8 or a 127mak. With no luck I thought I would put it out there on SGL to see if anyone of here can confirm if it is any good on any of these 2 scopes as I'm planning to sell off my collection of BSTs to fund it. I do like the idea of having the one eyepiece which I can just stick in my pocket meaning less to carry around with my my grab and go setup. What do people think then? Is the Baader good on slow scopes? Clear skies.
  7. Hi all. Sharing my capture of Jupiter from 19 April 2017. The video comprises frames from 1622UT to 1718UT and shows the GRS traversing the planet. Video can be viewed at either the youtube or attachment link below. https://youtu.be/8M7d3m34c5I 2017-04-19-1622_1-RGB_pipp_x264.mp4 Equipment used: Celestron C8, QHY5L-II-C, GSOx2.5barlow
  8. Whilst carrying out a star test I have noticed with a friends C8 that one side of focus appears to be collimated and the other side of focus its off, is this a common problem? Is his best option to collimate as an average so its slightly off either side?
  9. Found an old (apparently USA model) celestron C8 SCT a while back, its a bit hit n miss with collimation and the optics - (some very strange star test shapes :P) but when it works it works well Here is a couple images from a couple months back. Thanks for looking. This particular night seeing was reasonably good, and collimation wasn't too bad either. Celestron C8 / ASI120MC / 2X barlow - captured in sharpcap2, stacked in autostakkert!2, wavelets in registax6
  10. From the album: Deep Sky Imaging

    This is a reprocessed image of the Helix Nebula Data I captured and posted previously. This image has been exposed across 4 nights, 2 nights through a HAlpha filter and 2 nights through a OIII filter using my modded 40D. Helix nebula is fainter than I thought it was going to be, I had to image it at ISO800 30 minute HAlpha subs and ISO1250 OIII 30 minute subs, total of 8 hours through each through my 8" SCT at F10. I just wish I captured more clearly the comet shock waves visible in the Hubble images... But overall I'm happy with how it came out... As always there is room for improvement...

    © Mariusz Goralski

  11. DoctorD

    Catalina

    From the album: DoctorD's Photos

    Comet Catalina 2013 C8 F3.3 using Lodestar-C - 30 second exposure (15-01-16)
  12. DoctorD

    Catalina

    From the album: DoctorD's Photos

    Comet Catalina C8 F3.3 taken with Lodestar C and StarlightLive 15-01-16
  13. First night in back garden for what seems like forever, had an interesting session. Set the C8 on Jupiter while I dabbled with the star adventurer mini / Nikon D5300 / 105 2.8 macro. Tried too many things as failed miserably on focus with the D5300, Jupiter was just clearing neighbours roofs ... Got quite disheartened by 3am so took cameras off and had a peak at M13 before packing up. Absolutely beautiful ! C8 with ES 14 mm. Thought I'd try imaging it but only had the Nikon with William optics flattener attached ... Managed 20 x 15 seconds as hadn't polar aligned for Jupiter. Good luck all with opposition on the 8 th
  14. Mars imaged around 1.30 AM BST. Seeing poor, altitude about 12 deg, Mars just above a roof, had to wait for gap in cloud. Using: C8 SE, ASI120MC, ADC, best of 2000 frames, processed in Registax6. Some surface detail and a polar cap can be made out, confirming visual observation.
  15. Hi. I have a baader zoom ii and 32mm plossl which i use loads with my c8. Just for visual and 1.25. A WO dialectic diagonal just because it was really cheap second hand and a Barlow which I never use because the magnification is high enough with a focal length of 2000mm. Is there anything I'm missing that might be really useful? I'm thinking about the 6.3 reducer and or a 40mm plossl, but I'm not really sure if I'm going to feel the benefit or not. Advice welcome please. It's so easy to own seldom used kit in this hobby. Thanks TimB
  16. I've been thinking about upgrading my SW 127 Mak for a long time now and have been looking into going for a used Celestron C8 recently. My main interest is in imaging DSOs for which I use a SW 150pds with an Atik 314L+ on a HEQ5 mount. However all too often the only clear nights are during full (or nearly full) moons and on these occasions I like to image the moon or the planets. This is why I bought the 127 mak to try and improve on what the 150pds gives me when imaging lunar/planetary. I use my guide camera a ZWO ASI120mm to capture video for this type of imaging. On a few evenings I've compared both my scopes for lunar and planetary and while the mak gives better results on Jupiter there's very little in it when it comes to lunar imaging. On the Mak I can't use a barlow for lunar as it gives a ghost image (like the mysterons circle) but the 150pds performs quite well barlowed when lunar imaging. In essence the difference between the two scopes isn't enough to warrant owning the 127mak. So my question is will there be a significant improvement if I upgrade from a SW 127 mak to a C8 for lunar and planetary imaging? I know I'll gain about 35% in focal length and I'm hoping I'll be able to use a barlow to increase that. I'm also hoping the extra aperture will make a big difference. There's also the added bonus of using the C8 with a reducer to image the smaller DSOs like M57 if I ever get my guiding good enough. I guess I'd just like some confirmation that a C8 is the right scope before I take the plunge.
  17. Just took a look at the inside of my SCT and there appears to be a lot of dust and what appears to be manufacturing debris on the inside. Its a Celestron C800 CPC and I've no experience on internal cleaning. I don't think I want to chance it either. Does anyone know of a commercial cleaning service?
  18. First time out of back garden since damaging shoulder in December ( thankyou @Blazar ) took this at around 01:30 so really 29th not as in title. Seeing was way better than my back garden but still pretty poor due to low altitude. Roughly 4 minute 8000 frames, Pipped to 80 % then Autostakert best 25 %. Fairly aggressive wavelets in Registax. Thanks for looking.
  19. Celestron 8" SCT with StarBright XLT coatings, Hyperstar compatible with vixen style dovetail bar. Including finder, screw-on weights to help balance when imaging, flexible dew shield & bahtinov mask. Due to size and weight collection only (from Bedford) £400
  20. The postman, well DHL delivery guy, bought a few sizeable packages this morning. After waiting a month for an AYO II from Switzerland, only to find out it was going to be another 4-5 weeks lead time, I had to cancel the order as I am currently mountless and booked in for the SWAG Star Party end of March. Instead, I placed an order for an Altair Sabre V2 with dual vixen saddles from Harrison telescopes which were all in stock. I also took advantage of the Celestron spring sale and thanks to the guys @FLO for splitting out a C8 Evolution OTA for me. I could have had a standard C8 but I lke the silver OTA colour and "Evolution" sounds, well...cool. To go with it I added an Astrozap Flexi-heat dew shield and SCT adapter for my 2" Altair diagonal. The Sabre, saddles, C8 and dew shield all arrived safely together this morning I already have a Celestron CG5 2" tripod waiting at home so hope to be building up a nice manual alt/az, dual scope setup this evening. Initial impressions of the Sabre are good. The clear anodised finish is not quite as nice as I'd hoped, it's rather dull, but the machining is very nice. Both axis are smooth although there's a little stiction, but I'm sure that will vanish with the weight of the scopes. It's quite a lump to handle, more so than I'd imagined. I don't think it will qualify as grab and go with a C8 and ST120 mounted and attached to the CG5 tripod. The Altair vixen saddles are very nice indeed, finished in black with the Altair logo machined in. The clamp knobs are chunky and when turned, the clamp glides smoothly in on a Teflon washer and is sprung out, for removal of OTA without having to slide the dovetail through the clamp. I would apologise for the impending cloudiness, but quite frankly someone else must have made one hell of a purchase a few weeks ago to bring on the current permacloud Watch this space for pics.
  21. Hi, Can anyone tell me whether a C8 will accept a 5xpowermate for planetary imaging? I have seen a number of great images with similar combinations to the above, and recently tried 3x barlow with the C8 and it seemed to be pushing the scope a bit, but ive no idea whether the scope can handle 5x easily or whether its depending on seeing conditions being good. etc. The actual scope is in need of better colimation so that might be a factor affecting the test using 3x barlow. Any ideas hugely welcome
  22. From the album: Deep Sky Imaging

    This is a reprocessed image of the Sculptor Galaxy Data I captured and posted previously. During the week when I was imaging the Helix Nebula, I was exposing it when it was east of the meridian. So as it hit 15 degrees past the meridian and the meridian flip happened, there was no guide star in the OAG FOV so I had the option to pack up and continue imaging another day or try for another object and hope for a guide star. As the sculptor galaxy was close to the location I slewed to it (with favour western horizon selected in the CGEM settings) and to my joy when the sculptor galaxy was framed a 1/3rd of the frame to the edge there was a guide star in the OAG... WOO HOO :grin: ... and so a second object imaging continued. After getting 3 nights worth of ISO400 10 minute RGB subs, I found that after processing the image was very amber at best.. almost sepia... and no matter what I done to it it always looked too green or purple at certain parts... just didn't look right. When I eventually got a chance, I was going to image some pure blue subs to add to the image to correct for the amber look, but as luck would happen, forecast was for at least a week of clouds and rain... this week was no better BUT I did see a break in clouds the other day with a 3/4 FULL MOON!!!! :mad: I couldn't afford to let this opportunity go to waste so I imaged NGC253 through a Halpha filter to cut out the moon glow... remembering that when imaging through Halpha in the 40D there is a lot of data in red (of course) and about 30% as bright in the blue channel.... I thought that I could use that added to blue as well as add some halpha to red and perhaps reveal some nebulosity. I only managed 8 x 15 minute subs before clouds started coming and 4 out of those were usable.

    © Mariusz Goralski

  23. For once I set up my two catadroptic imaging scopes together to see how they compared, and how well the smaller one cut through the crud. C8 SCT on SE mount, ASI 120MC, ADC, processed in Registax6, 3000 frame video. Celestron 127mm Mak on Nexstar SLT mount, wood tripod, ASI120MC , ADC, processed in Registax6, 3000 frame video. The 127mm images are slightly smaller, placed second. The bigger scope seems to do better. I thought that Saturn did not change much and was just a seeing test target, but the shadow of the planet on the rings is now distinctly asymmetrical. The dark smudges in the C8 Mars images correlate well with real features. Mars altitude about 11 deg. The dust storm seems to be over. The seeing was better than it's been for a while.
  24. Dusted off the scope last night to check if everything is working ok, aimed for a quick bash at Jove, then some fiddling with the OAG setup using M13 as target. Attached is Jupiter at around 1030 with Io bottom left. I was quite pleased as only had 2 runs of 3 minutes before moving onto the guiding practice which went 'badly'
  25. Having a bit of a clear out. For sale an ADM mini dovetail system for attachment to a C8 but can be used for other telescopes, after the right mounting blocks are purchased - same as this one here - https://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/adm-mini-dovetail-system-guidescope-kit.html Asking £75, new price as its unused - a couple of scratches when fitting to test it but never used in anger - retail is £147. Both sold Revelation Astro 8 inch losmandy plate, with all the required holes for mounting a myriad of rings and scopes - games as these ones here - https://www.telescopehouse.com/revelation-7-9-inch-losmandy-style-d-plate.html Asking £22 for it - again unused and aside a few marks never used - retail is £32. Postage included in all items. Paypal, cheque (items posted when cleared) accepted, bank transfer etc. Please contact me if you have any questions. Clear skies, Neil.
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