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M31 and the ED80 - Getting into DSO's and a new 'scope

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Hi All

Having moved to a new location in the UK with fairly dark skies, my astronomical interests have taken a turn towards imaging Deep Sky Objects.  Most of my 'kit' was geared up to planetary imaging using a 6" SCT on a CG5-GT mount.  The closest I had to a 'fast' short focal length refractor was a Jessops 80mm f5 job.  Lousy focuser, pathetic finder, poor quality eyepieces - you get the picture!  Anyway, I decided to give it a go and I coupled my unmodded Canon 450D to this 'scope.  Although it was tracking and roughly polar aligned it was not guided.  One of the first images I captured with this setup inspired me to move on.  Earlier this year, I invested in a SkyWatcher ED80 Pro - what a fabulous little 'scope.  Using this on the same CG5-GT mount only this time using the now redundant Jessops 'scope as a guidescope with an Altair GP-CAM camera and PHD2 I tried again.  Guess which of these two images is the ED80 version.


OK - still a lot to learn.  Just acquired a EQ5 Pro mount as my CG5-GT is getting a bit long in the tooth now and I'm always conscious of the racket it makes whilst slewing (always seems so much louder in the dark!) and getting to grips with the ASCOM platform and EQMOD - should be fun me thinks :-)  


2015_08_21 m31 V1 - Copy (1280x789).jpg

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Haha, I saw the title and quickly scrolled to see the second image: whoa! what's wrong with his 80ED :)

The second is actually quite a good image for a Jessops f/5 refractor, but, yeah, the other is much nicer ;)

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I can't complain too much about the Jessops 80mm refractor.  I discarded the finder, eyepieces, tripod, barlow and was left with the OTA with a wobbly focuser and extreme internal reflections.  Managed to reduce the reflections with flocking but the focuser was beyond redmption.  But, for £27, it hasn't down too badly :-)


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Welcome to the learning curve :)

You're image is a start and pretty good one at that. Keep reading, watching and asking questions and you'll be knocking out Russell Croman style images in no time!! :)


Edited by Dark Horizon

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Certainly is a learning curve! So many things to take in to consideration and, dare I say it, it is usually the simple thing that trips you up.  Spent 10 minutes the other night wondering why I couldn't see any stars from my guidescope in PHD after building a Darks Library.  Then I discovered the guidescope objective was still covered - doh! 


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