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Hello from Loughborough


Orion
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Hello


 


I've just registered to the site. I first saw your details in the Loughborough Mercury at Christmas.


I'm 52, have been interested in astronomy on and off since I was a kid.  For various reasons, I haven't done much practical astronomy for ~17 years apart from occasionally looking at the sky and making some simple photos with a tripod mounted Canon Ixus II.


 


In 1982, I bought an 8.75" Fullerscope Newtonian reflector. The mirror is a David Hinds mirror and is still shiny without tarnish. RA and Dec are driven with mains syncronous motors (and a Beacon Hill Telescopes VFO unit), so cannot be controlled by modern PC's.  I have a ~3" refractor that can be mounted piggyback, originally intended as a guide scope.


 


In the 1970's, I developed in interest in black and white photography and soon become interested in astrophotography. The Fullerscope equatorial mount was not very good for easy polar alignment - the worst part was a course polar axis nut which had no slow minor incremental adjustments - unclamp that nut slightly and the mount could slide out several degrees and undo any close alignment. Same with the W/E.  I basically gave up doing any long exposure work because of polar alignment difficulty, though I have a Celesctron 8x50 Polar finder (bought in the 1980's so the nomogram will be out of date for the pole star now, I'd need a new one). I have not been able to succesfully try the finder, but I think even with the course N/S movement, the pole star could drop into position (perhaps by luck after several goes of clamp/move/unclamp/clamp), and the main scope could be used as a guide scope with a camera piggybacked.  And with digital and CCD imaging, shorter exposures compared to film, it would be less demanding on exposure time due to taking multiple images of say 20s each without trailing. I've never tried digital piggyback photography on a driven but unguided mount.


 


I had some engineering done quite a few years ago on the mount. The W/E motion was made very smoothe, I could increment it by a fraction of a mm. But the N/S was still a problem. A disk with ball bearings inserted made it too slippy and I couldn't clamp it rigid. I had to remove that. I think I paid ~£160 for the mods and I gave up after that.


 


I dabbled with simple astrophotography with film, lunar and planetary.  I've never got into CCD astrophotography and know little about it. In 2010 a few months after serious illness, I bought a couple of Philips webcams specially adapted for astrophotography - one with both a video and a long exposure single frame mode, the other with just the video mode. I've never had a chance to use them.


 


I notice there is a meeting in Wymeswold and would be glad if I may be allowed to call in if I am able to on Friday.


 


thanks


Orion


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


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Hi Derek, a warm welcome to EMS.


Of course you would be welcome on Friday, it's a quarterly meet, and probably a good one for you to come along to as it's got something for everyone.


 


You have some nice kit there, and it just needs getting a final tweak. There are some members who are knowledgeable in astro engineering, and might be able to offer ideas to get you kit working as you would want it.


 


Enjoy the forums and look forward to saying hello on Friday. :)


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Ohhh Fullerscope with DH optics, very nice!

We have quite a few very knowledgable members on here, so if it is clear (which early weather reports are looking promising) why not bring your kit for a spot of observing and maybe someone could help sort it (or at least have a look).

Anyway, hope you enjoy the forum, any questions just fire away in the relevant section.

Good to have you on board.

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Martyn, Caroline and Wayne, Toby, Darren, Andy, Ron, Wayne, Angus, Sheila, Kim, Alan, James, Craig, Felix, Damian, John, Damian, Pete.


 


A big thank you to all for the warm welcomes. As I hardly go anywhere and often get up late and leave work late; with such a routine, I'll have to remind myself I have somewhere to go on Friday and need to leave for tea first ha. The last time I went to any astro venue was several years ago at the National Space Centre in Leic for the BAA out of London meeting. Possibly 2005/6? ish.


Darren, I'm unable to bring the kit - not really portable and I can't lift well.  It really needs some kind of observatory/run off shed/lid off box thingy built and I have no skills for sheds.  I think I'll have to get something that is portable to try out with my web cams.


Weather permitting, I'll look forward to seeing some of your astro kit. 


I'm an analytical chemist by discipline, so if there is anything I can help with in that area, I'll try my best.  [i use various spectrometers, electron microscope/energy dispersive x-ray analyser, FTIR microscope].


 


Derek

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Derek, it will be good to meet you. You can help me in my quest to try and get planetary images to rival felix's :)

If you are thinking of getting a more portable scope there are always things being advertised on www.astrobuysell.com

Analytical chemist, sounds interesting. I used to do HPLC when i did some research in cell biology but i've forgotten it all now, but i did love the lab environment.

I'm sure you could find plans and ideas on how to make an observatory at home online, and probably use some of the guys on here for help and inspiration, and maybe their muscles!

Hopefully see you friday.

James

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Derek, it will be good to meet you. You can help me in my quest to try and get planetary images to rival felix's :)

If you are thinking of getting a more portable scope there are always things being advertised on www.astrobuysell.com

Analytical chemist, sounds interesting. I used to do HPLC when i did some research in cell biology but i've forgotten it all now, but i did love the lab environment.

I'm sure you could find plans and ideas on how to make an observatory at home online, and probably use some of the guys on here for help and inspiration, and maybe their muscles!

Hopefully see you friday.

James

Thank you James. I will try my best to help on the planetary imaging, but I'm sure I'll be learning from you chaps.  Yes, if I find the right observatory, then help would be good.  Just had to throw away a HP1090 HPLC :(

Let's hope the skies are clear for Friday

Derek

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