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Equipment Discussions >> Electronically Assisted Astronomy

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rwiederrich
Goldfinger
*****

Reged: 11/17/05

Loc: Always Dark skies of Belfair W...
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: Astrojunk]
      #2237496 - 03/05/08 11:34 AM

Quote:

They are both b/w Rob. I do have a cheap colour cam which is fun, but I really like the increased resolution and much finer detail in the b/w.

The setup is primarily deigned for asteroidal occultation timing; the video stuff is a fun spin-off.

The whole scope is servocat/argonavis driven, and can be controlled remotely (all except for the focussers which I haven't done yet). More about the scope here: http://www.sdmtelescopes.com.au/SDM006.html

Regards,

Jonathan




Sweet set-up Jonathan. I am running two B/W cameras seporately on my rig...one through the schmidt, and the other through a 4"f/5 telephoto conversion scope on the side.

They run through a single 4 sub screan monitor..so I can keep track of both views simultaneously or individually.

I wish the cool down wasn't such a problem with the schmidt. My views are a bit (mushy) at times of thermal activity. OH well... Other then that, I am pleased with what I'm playin with at this time.

What I love about video, is, if the image is upside down due to the scope, you can simply turn the camera upside down, and correct....and make the images upright...
I also like to use a video camera for guiding. Just hook up to the guide scope, and watch the image on the screen, and adjust. No more sitting there looking through an EP any more. I manually guide.

Thanks for posting.

Rob


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StarStuff1
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/01/07

Loc: South of the Mason-Dixon Line
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: Astrojunk]
      #2242411 - 03/07/08 03:43 PM Attachment (331 downloads)

There are lots of pics of cameras here but nothing on image intensifier eyepieces. So if it is not violating a rule or something I would like to post a pic of my equipment and a short observing report.

Observing Report 3/6/08
My wife and I spent March 1-3 at a house on the beach at Folly Beach, SC. This house is located on the north end of the island, right on the ocean. The deck on the back of the house faces due South. Because this is a Sea Turtle habitat no lights are allowed on the beach itself most of the year. Since this was off-season there were very few other houses in the area that were occupied. All this combined with a very dark, clear Moonless sky made for near perfect viewing conditions for the southern half of the sky globe.

That was the good news. The “bad “ news was that because of space concerns in the car I had only taken a 8X32 roof prism binocular and a 62mm f/5 spotting scope. This little scope works decent as a low power spotting scope but struggles with anything over 40X. However, I had a secret weapon system, my home made IIE ( Image Intensifier Eyepiece) and .6 focal reducer.. Still, my expectations weren't all that great using the system with such a small optic. I had used this combination a couple of months ago at one of my astro club members back yard. It was pretty light polluted and there was some haze and thin clouds that night. The 62mm refractor with IIE and focal reducer was underwhelming that particular night.

At the beach house I mounted the scope on a lightweight tripod. Using the IIE without the focal reducer I scanned several open clusters and could easily see 2-3 times as many stars when I compared the view with a 25mm plossl. M3, the large globular cluster in Canes Venatici was just a faint, small smudge at 12X with the plossl ep. With the IIE it was easily 3 times larger in diameter and brightness and some edge granularity was starting to show. Hmmm, promising.

The real fun was began when I used the scope in spyglass mode. This is hand holding it without a star diagonal so with the IIE it gives a correct image right side up. I also added the focal reducer so the magnification was about 8X. And TFOV close to 6°.

First I looked at Orion. All 3 belt stars and M42 fit into the fov. The Orion Nebula was a brilliant, diffused beacon. The Flame Nebula was easy and the notch of the Horsehead, although small, was distinct. For grins I decided to look for the Witch Head Nebula.
Although I did not see that object the SW arc of Barnard's Loop was visible! This was not plotted on my S&T Pocket Sky Atlas! Up to the west of Meissa, the giant's head, I could see a large but dim nebulosity that was also not plotted on the Pocket Sky Atlas. I have since found out it is the Meissa Ring (thanks, Doug!) It was beginning to look like this was the little scope that could, under the right circumstances.

Slightly to the west the California Nebula was surprisingly bright and detailed, filling about 2/3 the fov. In Perseus IC 1848 and IC 1805 were huge, diffuse objects. NGC 281, the Pacman Nebula was a small but definite object in Cassiopeia. The Pacman's “mouth” was barely detectable.

Back over to almost due south I found the Rossette Nebula to be surprisingly bright with some details visible. An almost perfect sphere of nebulosity. At the edge of the fov was NGC 2264, the Fox Fur Nebula. This also is the area of the Cone Nebula and Christmas Tree. This was much larger than the Rosette. Further south I picked up Gum 1 and Thor's Helmet in Monoceros. Just above the southern horizon I could see the brighter portion of the Vela Super Nova Remnant.

All of these observations were made on the night of March 1 and repeated the next night. Of course I also observed many other objects that were not as spectacular. If someone told me two years ago that I could observe these objects with a hand held 62mm refractor I would have thought them crazy. Obviously, when observing with “normal” optical aid or with electronically assisted technology the conditions that the observer is operating in make a big difference.


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rwiederrich
Goldfinger
*****

Reged: 11/17/05

Loc: Always Dark skies of Belfair W...
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #2242504 - 03/07/08 04:47 PM

Awesome.....How does your *image intensifier* EP work?

Slick.

Rob


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StarStuff1
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/01/07

Loc: South of the Mason-Dixon Line
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: rwiederrich]
      #2242556 - 03/07/08 05:17 PM Attachment (248 downloads)

With the help of another CN poster I was able to find a used 3rd generation image intensifier tube. A few parts from Surplus Shed like a 24mm fl magnifier to use as an eyepiece and a threaded 1 1/4-in standard eyepiece barrel were used. The housing is PVC. The lower part of the housing is a cover for a battery pack consisting of 2 AA batteries. The round black thingie on the side is a simple rotary switch.

The IIE works as a 24mm focal length ep with a 50° fov. It amplifies ambient light 30,000+ times. Crude looking but effective. The heart is the intensifier tube and that is something I could never make.

BTW, I forgot to mention in my observing report that I was also using a photographic ha filter with all observations made with the focal reducer and the scope in "Spyglass" mode.

Here is anothe pic of the IIE before I painted it gold.


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StarStuff1
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/01/07

Loc: South of the Mason-Dixon Line
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #2242577 - 03/07/08 05:29 PM

Just realized that maybe I did not answer your core question. Here is a site that explains the technology far better than I can:

http://www.atncorp.com/HowNightVisionWorks

This is a company that sells these eyepieces commercially:

http://www.ceoptics.com/misc/technical.html

Hope this helps.


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michael
Vendor (Starstructure Telescopes)


Reged: 01/24/04

Loc: Trinity Florida
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #2248807 - 03/10/08 06:35 PM Attachment (268 downloads)

Hi,
Thought I'd post in with some pics of a 22" F4 Starstructure That we've been playing with.
Michael


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michael
Vendor (Starstructure Telescopes)


Reged: 01/24/04

Loc: Trinity Florida
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: michael]
      #2248811 - 03/10/08 06:36 PM Attachment (238 downloads)

Next pic showing mallincam set up.

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michael
Vendor (Starstructure Telescopes)


Reged: 01/24/04

Loc: Trinity Florida
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: michael]
      #2248815 - 03/10/08 06:37 PM Attachment (216 downloads)

Showing screen attachment.

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michael
Vendor (Starstructure Telescopes)


Reged: 01/24/04

Loc: Trinity Florida
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: michael]
      #2248817 - 03/10/08 06:38 PM Attachment (231 downloads)

Another...

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michael
Vendor (Starstructure Telescopes)


Reged: 01/24/04

Loc: Trinity Florida
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: michael]
      #2248819 - 03/10/08 06:39 PM Attachment (203 downloads)

Last...

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Chris Schroeder
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 12/11/04

Loc: N.E. WI Sky Glow
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: michael]
      #2248842 - 03/10/08 06:49 PM

Sweet setup

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Bill Cowles
MacGyver
*****

Reged: 04/16/06

Loc: Utah
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: smokin oakum]
      #2334663 - 04/17/08 08:24 PM Attachment (213 downloads)

Now all I need is the camera and I have been invoiced for the MCHP.

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donnie3
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/15/04

Loc: bartlesville oklahoma
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: Bowmoreman]
      #2358829 - 04/29/08 01:38 AM

sdbodin: what did you do in order to remote the on screen display. i had the same camera(dx-9263sl) from polarisusa and really liked it but the small control buttons on the back of the camera were really hard for me to see in the dark, so i sold it about 2 years age. if there was a way to remote this i sure would purchase another one of these cameras. a great price for a camera like this. thanks, don

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smokin oakum
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/24/07

Loc: Wilmington, NC
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: midway199]
      #2360493 - 04/29/08 08:27 PM Attachment (239 downloads)

Here is my coverted Dob, which is now a Newt I guess. The mount is so nice, Ican't get over it. I keep finding reasons to go out and stare at it.

Neil


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HendyPhoto
Sith Lord
*****

Reged: 08/09/06

Loc: Bountiful, Utah
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: smokin oakum]
      #2360562 - 04/29/08 08:55 PM

Now you need a ladder like those big dob users! Congrats Neil, that looks AWESOME!

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Bill Cowles
MacGyver
*****

Reged: 04/16/06

Loc: Utah
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: HendyPhoto]
      #2360666 - 04/29/08 09:45 PM

Jon,

We want pictures of your new setup,MCHP, Marshall,the works.

Bill


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Bowmoreman
Clear enough skies
*****

Reged: 09/11/06

Loc: Bolton, MA
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: Bill Cowles]
      #2361055 - 04/30/08 12:40 AM

This is really cool! We're all upgrading at same time due to MHCP!

Neil: that looks awesome (and big!). You need to update your sig now! Show that CGE proudly!

Jon: can't wait for your pics

my pics will come when I get it working... getting there

BTW: how come nobody told me that a CGE was like, 20 times louder than a Vixen Sphinx??? sheesh - sounds like a freaking can-opener!
clear enough skies


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HendyPhoto
Sith Lord
*****

Reged: 08/09/06

Loc: Bountiful, Utah
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: Bowmoreman]
      #2361467 - 04/30/08 09:30 AM

LOL Dave!! You should hear a CG5!!

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bigdob24
super member


Reged: 04/19/08

Loc: Central Illinois
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: HendyPhoto]
      #2361607 - 04/30/08 10:33 AM

Neil
I guess you weren't kidding when you said you were on the deck. Now you have to pour several yards of concrete for an isolated peir!!Nice setup, shoot between the trees.
Dan


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Bowmoreman
Clear enough skies
*****

Reged: 09/11/06

Loc: Bolton, MA
Re: Post a picture of your Assisted Visual Setup. new [Re: bigdob24]
      #2362319 - 04/30/08 03:46 PM Attachment (237 downloads)

So, here is "first photos" of my newly upgraded Rig. I only just completed initial balancing. Will have to do alignment and Polar, etc tonight, followed by hooking up the Camera, monitor, Telrad, etc...

It *just* balances with 36# of CW right now, I have another 11# CW on its way, which will likely be needed (closer in?) when I add EP, Camera, Telrad, Monitor, anti-dew stuffs, and assorted cabling.

The ADM plates are wondrous, btw! Love em!

It really looks kinda cool all pier mounted and all! Now I'm glad I didn't go with the SN10; the SN8 is a lotta load to hoist up there and get mounted!

Enjoy these two views!

SN8, and TMB80SS, ADM Tandem Bar, ADM Dovetails ADM CGE SBS adapter, and ADM 125 Rings, all on my new CGE!

Now it looks like a "real" observatory!

Oh, and if ya look carefully, you can see a "forlorn" Vixen off on the side where she's been shunted until I can pack her safely away in her case for some lucky buyer out there!

Clear enough skies


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