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KevS

Anybody Playing Tonight?

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Posted (edited)

Third night on the trot doing lunar with the binoviewers on the 200p, learning the names of some of the craters and various features, etc. Best lunar views I've had!! 

No DSOs sadly, way too bright. 

I figured out a way to use a 1.6x GPC and reach focus in the 200p - I screwed the 1.25" barrel in the adaptor from the back and ground down a few mm off the tops of the screws with an angle grinder - no messing about 🤣 so it will fit inside the drawtube. Of course I have to attach it to the binoviewer nose first and tighten, then insert into drawtube, but no big deal.  It works really well by moving the binoviewers in as far as possible towards the secondary mirror.

I've also been playing with a new pair of Revelation 40mm EPs  in the BVs. These are actually intended for use with the big dob due to low mag and exit pupil for attempts at viewing fainter DSOs with the binoviewer (only 80x at 2000mm focal length with 1.6x GPC and 5.5mm exit pupils due to the 'false exit pupil' factor @jetstream kindly pointed out), but the 40s been working great in the 200p with a 2x barlow for lunar. The 1.25" 40mm EP's FOV is something ridiculous like 40 or 45deg plus some vignetting, but to be honest, the view is perfectly fine and I don't notice it. A mile of eye relief - can wear glasses and get rid of astigmatism and not lose any precious FOV, haha. Actually the quality isn't bad for the price either. 

Supposed to be clear here all night, so setting alarm for 2:30am and will pop out and see if moon is low enough to chase DSOs. Astronomical darkness starts around 6:20am when the sun reaches 18deg below horizon. Working on the computer tomorrow, so gallons of coffee.  

Twin 40s.jpg

Screenshot_20200109-215351.png

Edited by Ships and Stars
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The clear sky only lasted an hour.  As it turned out, that was enough to try out the new 800mm F/L and get everything working.  I wouldn't have wanted to do this on a good dark night in case things didn't work out.  Things worked out quite well and I now have all my new configuration files (platesolving, autofocus V-curve and some new flats).   I managed three 10m subs of SH2-171 before the cloud returned.  The resolution is clearly better than at shorter focal lengths, but I suppose that the exposures will have to be longer.

This is 3 subs of sh2-171.  It will need at least 2 hours to make a decent image, but this is a good start on a night that would otherwise have been completely wasted.

 

 

 

Sum f8sh171 scaled.jpg

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I reckon this is a pretty decent image already!  I'd be pleased with that, particularly with a full moon in the sky!!

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12 hours ago, Gina said:

I reckon this is a pretty decent image already!  I'd be pleased with that, particularly with a full moon in the sky!!

That was binned (in software) 4x4 to make it look decent.  At full resolution it really looks awful.

You are absolutely right about the "moon in the sky".  I've been trying to get a feeling for what is possible when the moon is around, and I think that it is possible to do more than most people think.

If nothing else, the full moon is a good time to try out new kit or methods.

 

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2 minutes ago, don4l said:

If nothing else, the full moon is a good time to try out new kit or methods.

 

Done the same myself, got SGPro working, did a mosaic in H-alpha, and tested out my CCD with a Nikon lens for the first time.  Productive evening!

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I think there may be a faint possibility of imaging tonight going by the BBC TV weather forecast.  Yep - I'm a "glass half full" person.  Guess we all have to be trying to do astronomy in the UK.

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None for me unfortunately. The forecast is cloud, rain at 10PM then more cloud. 

It was clear last night from around 1 in the morning until 7AM this morning ..... but I missed it - too busy sleeping. 

Edited by TerryMcK
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I woke up in the early hours but didn't see any stars or planets or even the moon from my bedroom window which faces south.

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There was a moon through some high cloud when I went to the loo this morning about 5 o/c, enough to light my upstairs landing. Just been out to the telescope and done a second level balance. Will refine it after I've got the focus correct.

Went to the doc this morning about my back, she thinks it's an "ordinary" bad back so has forbidden me from building an obsy until it's better, and has referred me for physio.

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Don't try lifting any heavy mounts either then Dave.  Or heavy scopes for that matter.  Glad I've got a light WF imaging rig.  May have to reinstate the hoist in my observatory when I go over to solar Ha or galaxies and want to use large scopes.  Although my back doesn't generally give me much trouble, I had to stop after a while last night when I was helping with the drying and putting away of cups and saucers at the end of the WI meting last night.

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Currently sunny with blue skies and the odd cumulus cloud here.  Keeping fingers crossed.  I'd be glad if I could just get an hour or two.

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39 minutes ago, DaveS said:

There was a moon through some high cloud when I went to the loo this morning about 5 o/c, enough to light my upstairs landing. Just been out to the telescope and done a second level balance. Will refine it after I've got the focus correct.

 

I had to work early this morning. Very clear skies with bright fullish moon. Very bright in fact. A few stars visible but looked difficult for any DSO imaging. :(

Tonight looks good here for only about one hour 5pm time. After which the clouds will roll in. 

Sunday night is looking better for me.

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On 08/01/2020 at 21:23, don4l said:

I wish that I hadn't looked at that link.

 

Damn. Dammn, damn, damn.

been playing with the FoV on Stellarium with my TS 130 f/7 and the more I see, the more I like, it could be the only camera I need with the 130, and might make the 80mm f/4.4 superfluous, though it's always nice to have more than one imaging setup available to use as much of the rare clear nights we get.

Damn.

Now what can I sell? Well, I currently have two working kidneys :eek: .

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You need those!!!!

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Haha, very true.

Seriously though I'm looking at kit that I haven't used in ages and may never use, considering putting up for sale.

Not rushing things, but that 6200 is *very* attractive.

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5 minutes ago, DaveS said:

Damn. Dammn, damn, damn.

been playing with the FoV on Stellarium with my TS 130 f/7 and the more I see, the more I like, it could be the only camera I need with the 130, and might make the 80mm f/4.4 superfluous, though it's always nice to have more than one imaging setup available to use as much of the rare clear nights we get.

Damn.

Now what can I sell? Well, I currently have two working kidneys :eek: .

I don't know how much a kidney weighs, but getting rid of one wouldn't do your back any harm....

 

On a more serious note - I hate the thought of all those photons streaming past the outside of the ccd detector only to be lost forever.  The only downside is the enormous amounts of data that would need to he processed, and stored.

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Bin 2 would still give 15+ mp, and respectable resolution, with improved dynamic range. Wonder if it can do ROI?

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I would think so the 1600 can.

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Do you have filters big enough for full-frame imaging?

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Huh!!!  The clouds are coming in!  Now I've got back into proper imaging, I really need some more clear skies!

Edited by Gina

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5 minutes ago, Gina said:

Do you have filters big enough for full-frame imaging?

I have some Baader LRGB and Ultra-narrow band for the G3-16200, but bog-standard Baader are quite reasonable, even in 2", which would cover 36 x 24 in the ZWO wheel.

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Half-way there then.  3nm Astrodons cost a fortune!!

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Hmmmmmm...  The amount of clear sky is rapidly diminishing!!  Groan!  Wonder if there's a meteorological reason for clouds moving in tor the night.

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18 minutes ago, Gina said:

Half-way there then.  3nm Astrodons cost a fortune!!

3nm Chromas only cost half a fortune!

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30 minutes ago, DaveS said:

Bin 2 would still give 15+ mp, and respectable resolution, with improved dynamic range. Wonder if it can do ROI?

Have we checked availability yet? 

 

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