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old_eyes

They're rubbish but I don't care!

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Through a combination of work pressure and living in North Wales with its tendency to cloudy skies :-( I have not been able to do much astrophotography recently. Some quickly grabbed (and very pleasant) visual sessions, but nothing where I could take the time to get properly set up and collect some real data. In fact checking back my last session when I captured enough data to even play with was May 2013. Something had to be done!

Nov 29th was predicted clear, no moon, I was at home and without an early start the following morning. So the best opportunity in a long time.

Unfortunately, it was so long since my last session that I had forgotten a great deal and everything had changed. New laptop, new versions of most of the software I use, forgotten processign workflows and so on. It was almost like first light again.

So I set up and polar aligned using my newly acquired PoleMaster. I have to say it is a great tool, and if nothing else stops you wasting an enormous amount of time. You know that bit with a portable rig where you are grovelling on your knees, cursing your creaking joints and squinting through the Dec axis to roughly point the whole thing at Polaris? Made more complicated in my case by wearing varifocal glasses so having to further tilt my head around to get the right bit of the lens looking up the axis adding creaking neck to creaking knees. Well it turns out when I started using the PoleMaster to polar align that I wasn't pointing at Polaris at all, but some totally different star! Doh!

So that saved me considerable time trying to sort out polar alignment.

I have to say the PoleMaster is a great tool and got me set up much faster than had been my previous experience. Probably nearly as useful for experienced astroinomers as for those who can't even recognise Polaris when they see it :sad:

Then I found I could not get my guide camera to work, but after messing around for a while ended up with my Atik 314L+ as the guide camera and Canon 1000D as the imaging camera.

I decided not to go for anything challenging; I just wanted a picture! So revisited M31 and M45.

And here they are. About 50 mins on each. I know the focus is a bit off. I know the field isn't flat and stars are egg-sheped in the corners. I know I didn't really collect enough data. I know the processing is poor (desperately trying to remember all that ollypenrice taught me). I know that there are many much better images of the same targets in this forum.

BUT I DON'T CARE!!!

I'm back doing some imaging after a long break and learning how all over again, and if feels great!!

161129-M31.jpg

161129-Pleiades.jpg

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Nothing rubbish here - You have all the relevant details showing through :) 

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1 hour ago, steppenwolf said:

Nothing wrong there and I loved the story of the mistaken Polaris :icon_biggrin:

Yep! Mega-embarrassing!

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No such thing as rubbish in this game, there are better and worse shots but never rubbish.  This two have the basis of solid imaging in them, you already pointed out the issues and challenges, I can associate with the forgetting stuff all too well :) 

These are a solid reintroduction and i suspect those that follow will improve rapidly, even by your own slightly harsh standards :) You was out there and you did it - next time you will do it better.  Look forward to seeing the progress.

Paddy

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20 minutes ago, PatrickGilliland said:

These are a solid reintroduction and i suspect those that follow will improve rapidly, even by your own slightly harsh standards :) You was out there and you did it - next time you will do it better.  Look forward to seeing the progress.

Paddy

Thanks Paddy - sometimes it seemed it would never happen, but my appetite has been re-whetted.

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