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I'm posting in the hope it helps anyone else considering a Daystar Scout SS60. The video's not quite representative of what one sees looking through the scope, but gives a general idea of field of view through a 24mm EP. When observing, much more prominence detail and surface texture is visible to the eye and the colour feels less red than it appears in the vid.
I'd have taken this video sooner if I'd realised that afocal video would work so well, so I'll try again next time the sun's available earlier in the day during better seeing. The video's taken by holding an iPhone against an Explore Scientific 24mm eyepiece and adjusting exposure (i.e. afocal video photography). Although I find a Plossl as easy (if not easier) to use as a wide EP for observing, it's simpler to align a smartphone with an eyepiece that has a wider field of view, for afocal video. Hence I used a 24mm ExSc (see below for detail). It seems a fairly quiet solar day, not long after the notoriously quiet 2020 and I believe is still close to the beginning of the sun's new 11 year cycle (hopefully it will become more exciting soon but not as exciting as having any Carrington Events pointing towards us).
I spent some hours, from late morning, watching these prominences form, dissipate and reform. The prom on the Western limb was very tall and bright, looking like a large rectangular tower block, which gradually split, faded as the top looped over to the north, then the top looped back again to the south. At one point this loop appeared to join - forming the outline of the head of a man, whose figure, with arms out, was clear and rather funny. Wish I'd taken this video sooner (or had the ASI183 to hand). The prom quietened and reached its current state (3pm ish) as seen in the video.
The long group of prominences to the South - 4 main and some smaller - were more dim than the prom on the Western limb initially, but they remained impressive, ranging from good to very small and appeared at one point to be as clear row of pine trees, especially the larger right hand prom, with spiky 'branches' and a distinctive triangular fir tree shape, which gradually brightened then faded to this view. The tip of the ‘sharks fin’ to the left of the group extended out to the east then receded.
I'm afraid it's not easy to see the detail in such a simple video - it's slighly more visible to the naked eye. By the time I took this video it had gone 3pm, there was more haze and a lower sun and none of the prominences were particularly impressive.
There were No sunspots easily visible, although a Plage appeared to be visible close to the Westerly limb. Little surface detail other than orange peel, despite tuning the scope (better with the SS60s dial to left of centre for this today). I still need to lots more time with the scope to get the best from it.
I'm a Ha beginner having only observed in whitelight before and only having used this scope twice before, once in combination with a ZWO ASI 183MC astrophotography video camera. Medium seeing, 6/3/21 'third light' on the Daystar Scout SS60 Scope with fixed chromasphere quark built in - 930mm f15 60mm.
Various Eye pieces used: Plossl 40mm, Meade Super Plossl 26mm, Explore Scientific 24mm and 11mm 82 and 68 degree EPs gave good clarity and contrast, but the seeing's not good enough for close viewing of proms. ioptron motor, roughly pointed north was perfectly sufficiently good to keep the sun in view for at least 45 mins at a time. I'll edit this post to add a pic or two of the equipment setup in a moment.
3 images attached are: Afocal Smartphone still image (contrast increased in smartphont), plus two shots of the setup.
I first came across the term ‘Solargraphy’ on this forum and was directed to website dedicated to the art of Solargraphy.
This is a basic photographic method of recording the path of the Sun as the year progresses. This image commenced on 22 June 2019, the day after the Summer Solstice when the Sun was at its highest altitude in the noon day sky and finished on 22 December 2019, the Winter Solstice when the Sun is at its lowest point at noon. The silhouette of the neighbouring properties can also be made out in the picture.
Using a basic pinhole camera I was able to record every clear day the track of the Sun across the southern sky, each day the Sun’s altitude was getting slightly lower.
Whilst the camera is basic, the main challenge is to avoid water damage and as you can see from the image some rain has managed to find its way inside. However, the pinhole camera is cheap to make with the following purchases made via Amazon;
100 cable ties £5.49
20 35mm plastic film canisters £8.88
100 sheets of Ilford Multigrade 4 glossy photographic paper £25.98
The remaining items were already in the house (drill bit, tinfoil, electrical and duct tape).
Given the potential for disaster I made two pinhole camera’s and one of them provided this image, the other was washed out due to rain water getting in. Making more than one camera certainly improves the chances of success. The camera's themselves were attached with cable ties to the down pipe of the guttering and facing South.
Anyone wishing to learn more about Solargraphy and how to construct the pinhole camera should check out Tarja Trygg's website http://www.solargraphy.com/index.php .