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Hello All.


banjo
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Hi Everyone,

As stated on my first post, an introduction is de-riguer, so here goes...

I'm Steve. I have had an interest in astronomy since I was eight when I won second prize in class at the end of the second junior school year and was given a book on science as a prize (which I still have!) In it were two items that stick in the mind: First, a description of Newton with a prism, and secondly (amongst much else) another of him with his reflecting telescope. I always wanted an eye on the universe just like that. Best beloved bought me a Meade 4504 goto about 15 years ago and I was pleased that it was a reflecting 'scope, but it was just too large and basically unstable. I bought a Philips Planisphere and together with some Zeiss Jena 10x50s, (what a great gal!) I learned to identify those asterisms which were visible through the Heathrow fug about 4 miles away to the north.

About 4 years ago, she bought me a Skywatcher ED80 to which I added a gimball, Telrad, Giotto tripod and many EPs, but Heathrow remains a killer in the northern approaches, I can only see my roof in the south and the gimball doesn't shoot upwards!

I have modded the Meade go-to equatorial to carry the ED80 on the Giotto, but it's unbalanced. I bought another balance weight but haven't tried it yet due to concerns regarding stripping the Meade's cast Mazak and plastic gears.

I religiously take the ED80 on my multi-annual trips to Cumbria and the Lizard, but either the weather, the outline of the fells or the lighthouse generally has its way! My eureka moments are watching Saturn and Jupiter.which I never tire of. I guess I'm not in a minority there actually.

I have tried imaging, but the Sony Alpha 350 is too heavy and the Baader compact camera mount with the Fuji X20 is too awkward and gives an excessive tunnel view. There's no mirror lockup on the Sony anyway. I also bought the infamous converted Philips webcam but not much luck with that yet either, it does seem to hold some promise for planetary work though.

Even after all these decades, I am not experienced enough to make particularly worthwhile contributions to the forum- I recognise that much from the outpourings of armchair experts everywhere on other forums (fora?). I will just keep watching and maybe, with a tail wind, that may change over time.

Oh, and I have what used to be known as a class A "Ham" radio licence before they abolished the morse requirement. It's all related.

Steve.

e&oe...

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Hello Steve and welcome. Thanks for the interesting story/history. Please don't under estimate other members interest in your exploits. I live on the outskirts of Milton Keynes so also don't have pristine skies. We just do what we can with what we've got! 

If you can get the web cam running on the planets you should be able to get some worthwhile results. As you'll have found, they are pretty much unaffected by light pollution.

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Welcome to EMS Steve. :)

 

A very interesting and we'll written intro, so I hope you will be contributing more to the forum. :thumbsup:

 

It's good to talk at whatever level, so please do, whether asking questions or telling of your experiences. We will be interested. 

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Welcome to the EMS club Steve.

your intro post is well written and interesting ?

Dont be too shy to make a few comments to other people's posts either Steve, they will be welcomed!

have you thought about joining a local Astro club? Meeting like minded people is fun and very worthwhile too!

cheers!

 

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Hi Steve, a warm welcome to EMS.

Great intro, it's nice to see what floats folks boats and what got them hooked. 

It's a shame about your light pollution, but there are one or two rare spots of darker sky down your way, have a loo and see on here if there is anywhere within a decent travelling distance of you.

Enjoy the forum.

 

http://www.lightpollutionmap.info/#zoom=10&lat=6944596&lon=-108724&layers=B0TFFFF

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Hi Steve and welcome to EMS :)

 

Nice intro - and don't be afraid to contribute if you want - we have members at all levels and you're bound to be helping someone for sure. :)

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Well I would just like to say "thanks" for those sentiments. As I said, there's not a great deal of informed comment that I can make, but I'll continue to check on the activity and familiarise myself with the contributors and the threads.
Cheers everyone.

e&oe...

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That's true. I have several old Zeiss 35mm screw thread primes from the Jena factory. Always thought them to be pin sharp (although probably just a bit contrasty fooling my eyes?) A couple of newer ones too in PK mount, both zooms but still very good. I read somewhere that the Allies just divided the Zeiss factory and the output quality was indistinguishable. Was! That's just it though- read on the interweb...
Best not to start on lenses. Just reminds me of all the wonderful glass and brass stached away upstairs, now unused.

e&oe...

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