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Nothing like a missed opportunity!


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Last night (Sunday) I took out the trash and was shocked to see a clear sky! Weather forecast had rain on the way, and the afternoon cloudiness attested to that very probability.

Mars was almost directly overhead, so I scrambled to get my 80 f/7 refractor, photo tripod, and a new set of eyepieces rounded up and outside. At least, I could get the ep's tested before the forecast ten-days-of-clouds arrived.

First took a look at Jupiter, already well-west by now, and the seeing unsteady with all the optics still warm. Went through all the new f/l's, one by one, then moved over to M42 and did the same thing while everything cooled.

Now, it was time for Mars! Elevated the rig straight up and was dismayed to find the Crayford focuser adjusted too loose to hold the diagonal/ep - it slowly drifted down - too quickly to make a useful observation!

Then, I see clouds drifting my way. Yikes! What to do?!

I decided to lower the scope down to catch the Moon, at least that way I could test the ep's on a bright object,  which I did, one by one, then barlowed them, one by one, to get an idea whether the ep acquisition was a good one. It was. And, the seeing/scope cool-down allowed a fine view up to 204x.

OK, now to grab up the rig, head into the garage and find the correct size Allen wrenches to adjust the focuser. A few iterations later the drawtube now stays put. Take a look outside....cloud bottoms as far as the eye can see.


The scope I failed to optimize beforehand:





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