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A start on the Moon


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Having been struggling with DSO ambitions for a while, I swapped target for the Moon, here at 98% from last night.

It's a simple stack - newbie style - of 12 images ISO 200 at 1/15th sec using an Orion 13% Moon filter and an EOS 600D. I used Registax5 as V6 kept saying out of memory. (12GB i7 machine...:icon_salut:)

Inevitably, looking at the amazing work by others here in the Lunar section I want to do better next time, and a few questions struck me:

Is it favourable to guide to keep the target centered? I ended up with a 'ghost trail' where I reckon I was drifting. Like a band of dark grey sky.

Using the 120ED I thought it might be clever to 'stop' it down by keeping the larger portion of the dust cap on - do or don't?

For more detail is the Canon + Televue 4x PM a good option or do webcams totally rule this territory?

With the Televue, I could do a six panel mosaic - not to attempt too much here, but how do you go about laying out the panels? Do you create a image with criss cross lines as an aiming reference?

I am greatful for any input from you all.

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Edited by Jessun
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Hiya Jesper

Nice image - exposure looks pretty well spot on - but you could improve the focus a little in my opinion. In answer to your questions;

Is it favourable to guide to keep the target centered? I ended up with a 'ghost trail' where I reckon I was drifting. Like a band of dark grey sky. - I can't see any benefit in guiding at all - your shutter speeds are way too fast for guiding to be a benefit

Using the 120ED I thought it might be clever to 'stop' it down by keeping the larger portion of the dust cap on - do or don't? - DON'T - keep the biggest aperture you can on the scope and increase the shutter speed to take more subs

For more detail is the Canon + Televue 4x PM a good option or do webcams totally rule this territory? You'll certainly get a larger image scale (i.e. more magnification) but in my experience you'll struggle to focus the thing! - You'd also be more exposed to turbulance / seeing etc. so I'd go the webcam route but, if you already have the TV there's nothing to loose - have a go!.

With the Televue, I could do a six panel mosaic - not to attempt too much here, but how do you go about laying out the panels? Do you create a image with criss cross lines as an aiming reference? Have a go - there's nothing loose (again) - there's no point in laying down cross hairs (you'd only have to get rid of them later (somehow?!)) just try to frame each pane with plenty of overlap then assemble them in GIMP / Photoshop

Hope this helps

All the best

Steve

Edited by Steve 1962
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"It's a simple stack - newbie style - of 12 images ISO 200 at 1/15th sec using an Orion 13% Moon filter and an EOS 600D"

Don't use a filter, this only cuts down the amout of light reaching the sensor, which is why you needed to shoot at 1/15, shoot at a faster speed without a filter.

Peter

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Looks like a good start... I do agree with the others... there is no point using a filter for imaging the moon with an SLR. Same goes for guiding to be honest... your shutter speeds are way to short for that to be of any use. By all means give the 4x a try and do a mosaic with the SLR, but, a webcam is a far better tool for that, the higher frame rates and ability to capture a sequence of video helps to deal with the seeing conditions far better.

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Thank you guys for all helpful hints, very useful information.

The criss cross idea was to have a full frame with this pattern as an overlay just to use as reference for framing each panel so no gaps would appear. But I gather that you just start at one end of the Moon and then just go for instance RA, RA, RA, RA, RA - DEC, -RA, -RA, -RA, -RA, - DEC etc? Like a zig zag. Perhaps wiser to do rows going the same way...

I noticed that you need extreme disciplin with keeping order of the shots once they are on the hard drive. I ended up with Moons scattered everywhere in various stages of my simple processing. Lost track of it all to be honest and started from scratch haha!

It turned out that the crescent trailing after my Moon was a couple of frames that were off by literally miles and miles.

OK, I'll work on all your advice and will get my Lifecam hooked up for next time, and ditch the Moon filter. (An IR/UV block on tho?) More software to learn for AVI stuff...

Again thanks for pointing a newbie in the right direction.

The image below is pretty much the same one with all subs aligned this time. Tiny improvement in detail, but perhaps a tad dark now.

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