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Getting started.....again

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Well after 20 months away from astronomy it’s time to dust of the cobwebs (literally) from my scope and start again.

I looked at my last post in this forum and it was in Oct 2011 and I couldn’t believe how long it’s been since using my scope properly, I have taken it out a couple of times but only to get a quick glimpse of the moon. I suppose thinking about it we had a bad winter in 2011 which lasted until April 2012, we then had to move house in the summer, then another winter and with all the DIY and modifications to the new house I just felt too drained to get the scope out.

I have been refreshing my memory on this forum for the last few days and have set up my laptop with all the astro programs I used to use. Today I will connect it all to the mount and make sure everything still works and hopefully there will be clear skies (no dust hopefully) this weekend. I plan on doing a full collimation and try to get the dust and cobwebs out of the OTA with an air duster.

I think for the next couple of weeks/months I will concentrate on visual and maybe try to image Saturn with a webcam (is it still up?). I will try to find my spreadsheet with all the Messiers and NGC’s and start again trying to find as many as I can. Maybe then I can see how the imaging goes with my 5Dmk3 as I had a 550D before that got donated to the father-in-law.

Any suggestions for good things to look for this weekend to re-spark the interest?

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Welcome back Geno. It never really goes away does it?

Saturn is up at the moment in the evening but rather low and heading west. Jupiter is beginning to be visible in the morning along with Mars (still small). Uranus and Neptune are also lurking in the south-east.

Fullish moon at the mo but that will be a bit better by the weekend. Cygnus and Vega are high overhead so plenty of brightish objects up there to get you re-started


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Sagittarius must be good for you then. I have a rotten view to the south - at least from a position where I can put my scope. I will have to travel or bag the Messiers with the bins.

Enjoy your return to the hobby

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Welcome back to the lounge, It's been a little like Cyprus here in the UK,

observing in shorts and tee shirt, but we will only get a few weeks, it makes

a change from thermals, good job you never sold your kit. Good luck and enjoy.

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welcome back fella not a lot changed except everyone has gone tv delos and orthascopic mad :grin:

Yes, noticed not a lot has changed. I take it tv delos are new ep's from Televue.

Welcome back to the hobby. Someone pointed me towards an application called whatsup here http://www.whatsup.ricksastro.com/ which looks great. Too cloudy here to tell if it's any good but it recommends stuff to look at. You can set mag limits and so on but I've yet to dabble.


That application looks really good, will have to give that a try.

Connected the laptop to the mount yesterday and surprisingly everything worked straight away. Eqmod, PHD, APT, Sharpcap, CdC, 5Dmk3, QHY5 and SPC900 and even my cheap joypad for controlling the mount. Either I was lucky or I haven't forgot everything.

Forgot to mention I had to change jobs as well and that was before the financial crisis hit, but at least I jumped before I was pushed.

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