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Helen

Setting up meteor camera - help and tips please :-)

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Quite a while ago I picked up a meteor/allsky camera set up from ABS.  I bought it for the watec camera, to do lunar TLP imaging, but its nicely set up so I thought I'd give a go for its designed purpose.

Here are a few pictures.

I can't remember the spec, but it looks like a zoom rather than fixed lens (to get a look at the other side of the lens would mean unscrewing it all).  The housing may restrict some sky?

The case includes a small heater, so hopefully dew won't be an issue.  

So, I'm thinking about where to site it, which direction to point it, at what angle, and what I need to connect it to...

My house is in a housing estate, and my garden has trees to the south (the back of my house faces SSW).  I have a roll off obs with power and a PC.

I'm thinking a pole of some kind on the corner of the obs, and then connect to the obs pc (possibly with an extra hard drive?) or set up an old laptop - does that make sense?  If so, how high should the pole be?  and which direction and at what altitude might be best for first experiments?

And finally, what software are people using?

Thanks

Helen

IMG_20200218_223847.thumb.jpg.913c1ff152f2f065135e1faba2684719.jpg00000PORTRAIT_00000_BURST20200218224708988.thumb.jpg.1a199ebb530deb008906c26850a39b16.jpgIMG_20200218_224604.thumb.jpg.da6e9d995f72b5161c4ed2619f804926.jpgIMG_20200218_224004.thumb.jpg.4db53ef47abd89612b9a2d47538dda8b.jpg00000IMG_00000_BURST20200218224631458_COVER.thumb.jpg.b053727462629cb6170039db931cd0e7.jpg00100lrPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200218224637512_COVER.thumb.jpg.d2b95097ea6115245a8ccaf06e647252.jpg00100lrPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200218224805377_COVER.thumb.jpg.6c3e07a2ca9dd58039dcdec754364785.jpg

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Hi Helen.

I have a similar setup. What is the lens?

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Hello Helen,

if meteor work is your aim, contact the NEMETODE group http://www.nemetode.org

 

The website has lots of practical info on setting up. The software that everyone uses is UFO http://sonotaco.com/soft/e_index.html

its a bit pricey but works a dream.

NEMETODE can also advise which direction to point your camera to overlap with others in the network, to maximise the scientific impact of your station.

Finally there is a email list you can join to get help. Many NEMETODE members, including myself, also belong to the BAA.

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Thanks All 🙂   

I'll get the extra bits for attachment and wiring, check the guidance, download the software, and join the list too.

Watch this (cloudy 🥺) space!

Helen

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A bit of progress - I've ordered the cable 🙂 

I've also had another look inside and at the lens:

IMG_20200221_221541.thumb.jpg.0da4aaa59c8beb695cfce9ef05def44f.jpg

How does this look? (I'd rather replace before I put it outside if needs be)

I am a little concerned that there is some significant movement between the lens and the collar (not the screw part) - I think there might be a little grub screw?  so will have a better look in the light tomorrow.

When moving this about I found a loose foam disk - any idea where it should go???

IMG_20200221_221727.thumb.jpg.72485b156cb130bd50d87855ebcef518.jpg

 

Next on the list is a bracket, and downloading the software...

Looking at the weather forecast there's no rush 🥺

Helen

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9 hours ago, Helen said:

I've also had another look inside and at the lens:

It looks like the lens is for 1/3-inch chip camera. Can you check if your Watec camera is actually 1/3-inch, or the more commonly used 1/2-inch, Helen?

If there is a model number or name on it, the 1.3-inch will have H3 in it, where H2 is for 1/2-inch

Edited by JeremyS

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Hi Helen

That lens is not going to be very good. It’s F1.4 at 3.5mm, and much slower at 8mm.  This will have a significant impact on the meteors you can detect.  That’s the only thing about this type of imaging - you really need to invest in a good fast lens.  Other then that your kit looks perfect.

If you are interested in changing the lens then myself or @JeremyS could definitely give you a few recommendations.

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Thanks both 🙂  The camera appears to be a 902H, which I think means its an older 1/2 model.  So recommendations for a suitable lens would be welcomed @tooth_dr @JeremyS 

Thanks

Helen

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Hi Helen,

I have a selection of fast (f0.8) lenses that are ideally suited for meteor work. They're suitable for 1/2" sensors and come in a range of focal lengths (3.6mm to 12mm). Would recommend starting with a 6mm.

Please send me a PM if you would like more details.

William (co-founder of NEMETODE).

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