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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: haytor]
      #4621815 - 06/05/11 07:58 AM

The other night my skies were clear, but the view through the EP was not as bright as it normally is and last night there was a heavy haze in the air. Heavy enough that I didn't even bother setting up. This also was a good lesson on seeing & transparency. The "seeing"(steady air) was good, but the transparency was horrible.

While driving to town this morning, I could is a heavy blanket of smoke. When I arrived at the store I asked someone if there was a brush fire near by. She explained that there are three large fires within 8 miles of where I live.(I don't watch any TV news, so I'm usually the last to know) It's been so dry here that my grass actually crunches when stepping on it.

Well it looks like we're going to be in for a bad fire season until we get some much needed rain.

Edited by flboy (06/05/11 08:00 AM)


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ac1
sage
*****

Reged: 01/12/11

Loc: Utica, NY USA
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4622020 - 06/05/11 10:54 AM

We've always had problems with fires here too, John. None yet, but they're coming. Been brutally hot all week long. I actually pulled a late night maneuver last night, setting up around 11:30. We're in a cul-de-sac at the end of the road, and we've had some trouble with break-ins and late night shenanigans lately, so I brought my trusty sidekick out with me, LOL. Stayed out until 2:30 or so, and had my first look of the season at Deneb and Altair, and the contents of the Northern Triangle. Got Albireo for the first time, and the "celestial traffic light" was a great sight. Caught several DSO's in Ursa Major- best of the night was again Bode's Nebula, with the Black Eye Galaxy a close second. By the time I started, Coma Berenices was off to the far west of the horizon, and the view was not so sharp over there- transparency was off a bit, so the Coma Cluster of galaxies largely avoided my eyes. M13 was the best I've ever seen it, and I learned another lesson about eyepieces and darkening of the FOV as you move up in magnification. Probably looked it's best in the 25mm Plossl. I really need to go ahead and get a 21 mm Nagler, or perhaps even a 25 mm Radian to get better views at lower power for the SCT. Overall, another nice night, but I have to move to a new spot soon- the trees and neighboring houses cut off too much of the sky as it is, and I need a wider view of the horizon.

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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: ac1]
      #4622031 - 06/05/11 11:00 AM

Hi Tony,

Sounds like you had a great time last night. I bet M13 looks awesome in your CPC1100

What is the "celestial traffic light"?

Keep on posting your reports!!!


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ac1
sage
*****

Reged: 01/12/11

Loc: Utica, NY USA
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4622647 - 06/05/11 04:31 PM

The celestial traffic light is how some refer to Albireo- yellow with a blue-green companion star. Read it in a book.

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Skip
Starlifter Driver
*****

Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: ac1]
      #4623033 - 06/05/11 08:13 PM

Also known as the Cub Scout Star. Blue and Gold.

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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Skip]
      #4623699 - 06/06/11 06:48 AM

Thanks for that info Tony & Skip!

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tsmu72
member


Reged: 04/19/10

Loc: Ann Arbor, MI USA
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Skip]
      #4627386 - 06/07/11 11:58 PM

We like to call Albireo the Maize and Blue Star in Ann Arbor <grin>.

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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: tsmu72]
      #4629726 - 06/09/11 09:06 AM

Went outside at 3am and set-up the SLT mount along with the 85mm refractor. It was actually cool outside(had to but a shirt on)and no bugs. And the sky was clear with steady air and decent transparency. But unfortunately I could not see Polaris from where I set-up(tree in the way), so I choose Altair and Antares.

I first checked out the asterism in Draco that chemist posted and it does resemble a miniature Cassiopeia. Pretty cool stuff!

I then slewed to towards the bottom of the Milky Way, which was very prominent in the night sky. Using the 24mm Panoptic I slowly started slewing towards the north and WOW, the star field was wide and rich. I was amazed at the amount of stars and then a shooting star streaks across the FOV

I continued slewing slowly north and I could see a cluster, be it faint. So I dropped in my 9T6 and then it got richer, but still not as close as the 8SE would have produced.

I dropped the 24mm back in and continued slewing with a big smile on my face. There are just so many stars within the Milky Way that it's impossible not to be smiling the entire time

I decided to check out M13 and as I put my eye to the EP, a satellite passed through the FOV. Again, cool stuff And M5 looked good too.

I spent a total of two hours behind the EP and I had an amazing journey. It's great having two scopes with two different FOV's. Both give such different views of the same sky

PS: there was no haze or smoke last night, so those brush fires must be finally under control.


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Peter9
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/30/08

Loc: Yorkshire - Born & Bred
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4629738 - 06/09/11 09:15 AM

Thanks for another good report John. It's always nice to read what other members are observing. Pleased you are putting your refractor to good use.
We've had patchy clouds for the past two or three day's but I've managed to observe for short periods for the last three nights. That's one of the perks of having the obs.

Regards. Peter.


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Peter9]
      #4629926 - 06/09/11 11:05 AM

Peter, good to read that your P.O.D. is helping you with those short sessions

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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4629934 - 06/09/11 11:09 AM Attachment (23 downloads)

I have a tall water oak that drops a ton of leafs every Spring into the pool and I've been looking for an excuse to cut it down. I had an arborist come over and check it out. He found that it was slowly dieing and that the Laurel Oak directly behind it was about to fall over. So I hired a tree crew to remove both trees and man did it help to open the southern horizon.

Photo #1 - before removal


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4629935 - 06/09/11 11:10 AM Attachment (20 downloads)

and after

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Peter9
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/30/08

Loc: Yorkshire - Born & Bred
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4630024 - 06/09/11 12:10 PM

Good for you John. That's one H... of an improvement in both Alt and Az.

Now!!! about that big one to the East

Regards. Peter.


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Peter9]
      #4630066 - 06/09/11 12:29 PM

That big tree to the east is a 100+ yr old live oak that has lived through many hurricanes

It's a strong, healthy tree that will out live me

I have two larger live oaks out front that form a lovely, shaded canopy. And with the Spanish moss hanging from the lower perimeter, it's a beautiful site. Old Florida style


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4630239 - 06/09/11 01:55 PM Attachment (18 downloads)

The laurel oak, which was in the middle of the red cider trees, is now gone. It's nice to have more of the southern sky available.

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Peter9
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/30/08

Loc: Yorkshire - Born & Bred
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4630456 - 06/09/11 03:02 PM

That opens it up even more John and at the same time, makes the area more pleasing on the eye.

Will you be able to make use of the timber?.

Regards. Peter.


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Peter9]
      #4630516 - 06/09/11 03:31 PM

I had the guys pile the wood to the side and my buddy will take it away for his fireplace. So yes, it will go to some good use

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Midnight Dan
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Hilton, NY, Yellow Zone (Bortl...
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: flboy]
      #4631122 - 06/09/11 09:57 PM

Nice improvement!

-Dan


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flboy
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/10/10

Loc: De Leon Springs, FL
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #4631591 - 06/10/11 06:26 AM

Thanks Dan!

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ac1
sage
*****

Reged: 01/12/11

Loc: Utica, NY USA
Re: Hope some of you guys are out there tonight.... [Re: flboy]
      #4632646 - 06/10/11 06:33 PM

Saw some nice gems from Cygnus and some of the surrounding constellations last night...the standouts were the Blinking Planet and the Ring Nebula. Cat's Eye Nebula was very bright once again. Found out how much the Moon affects viewing...with the half moon passing through Virgo and heading to Leo, I couldn't make out much of anything less than magnitude 9 at all....swing to the opposite side of the sky, and the Ring Nebula and Blinking Planet just popped in the eyepiece. Also noted something odd with alignment. In another thread, we were talking about how stars near the zenith don't pop up in the HC for a manual two star align. Well, my first align using Alkaid and Polaris failed last night, but when I followed the prompt to realign, all the missing stars were on the list to choose from- Vega, Arcturus, Denebola, Cor Caroli....seems like on the second chance, the HC gives you an almost complete list of target stars to choose from. Almost worth purposely botching the initial alignment to make it easier second time around.

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