Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Cloudy Nights, Introduce yourself!

  • Please log in to reply
5339 replies to this topic

#5276 ricbrekne

ricbrekne

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 38
  • Joined: 27 Oct 2018
  • Loc: Bergen Norway

Posted 27 February 2021 - 12:41 PM

Back at it again with a new mount and NINA / PHD2 / Stellarium and lots of questions ! :)


  • Black bird likes this

#5277 otoole

otoole

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2021

Posted 27 February 2021 - 06:01 PM

I am new to Cloudy Nights and I just picked up a used Nexstar 6SE today. I have other telescopes in the past, but it has been a few years. This is my first time with a computerized scope. I set the red dot star finder today on the tip of a power plant smoke stack a few miles away, but it is going to be cloudy here in Minneapolis for a few days so I will have to wait to get out with it. 

 

What do people this of this 12v powering option?

Talentcell Rechargeable 6000mAh Li-Ion Battery Pack

https://www.amazon.c...uct/B00MF70BPU/

 

Thanks 

 

 


  • Hexley likes this

#5278 SouthTxGazer

SouthTxGazer

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 5
  • Joined: 24 Feb 2021

Posted 27 February 2021 - 06:39 PM

Hey all my name is Matt and I am currently in Victoria, Tx. As a kid growing up in Austin I was always fascinated by astronomy tv programming but never had much of a view of the stars. That changed when the pandemic pushed my wife and I into living with my dad in south texas with the family ranch only minutes away. I started my observations with a pair of Nikon Aculon 7x35 and my wife got me a 4.5" starblast at Christmas. I wasn't intending on posting in this thread but the MIL got a great pic of me guiding the wife through some birdwatching through the aculons so I figured why not.

Attached Thumbnails

  • IMG_0215.jpg

Edited by SouthTxGazer, 27 February 2021 - 06:40 PM.

  • Randy Spiker and CltFlyboy like this

#5279 TheRealMessier111

TheRealMessier111

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 26 Feb 2021

Posted 28 February 2021 - 12:06 AM

Hi all, young and aspiring South Florida astronomer Travis here. I became interested in astronomy a few weeks ago when I cleaned and used my parent's old refractor. Looking to get more involved in the community and buy a nicer scope soon! 


  • Augustus likes this

#5280 rsworden

rsworden

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 37
  • Joined: 19 Aug 2020

Posted 01 March 2021 - 01:01 AM

Hi, my name's Roger and I live in Orange County, California USA. A long time ago I got a Meade DS-114AT and looked through it a few times before getting disappointed by the small and dark views. My camera at that time was a Nikon DSLR which was way too heavy to even try to mount. So the scope has sat in my garage for years.

 

A couple years ago I switched to an Olympus E-M5 Mark II (mirrorless) which is so much smaller and lighter I figured it would be reasonable to mount it on the Meade and give it a shot. So last spring I started refurbishing the scope and learning *way* more than I thought I needed to to get it working. I realize it may never be wonderful for astrophotography, but it'll give me a chance to learn what to look for in a better scope. I'm not planning to spend big bucks while on furlough due to the pandemic. undecided.gif  The old story was that one couldn't do AP on an Alt-Az mount due to field rotation, but I'm thinking that should not be an issue with short exposures and the auto-alignment of modern stacking software.

 

I design and 3D print all sorts of things, so I have made my own prime focus adapter and eyepiece projection adapter to connect the camera. Read about them on my blog here. I'm uploading them to Thingiverse for others to use.

 

I learned that the 0.965" eyepieces that came with the scope were *terrible* and mainly responsible for the poor viewing way back when. I bought some Plossl eyepieces and 3D printed a 1.25" adapter and *wow* what a difference.

 

I've worked through issues with the focuser, the clutches on the mount, the power supply. I've learned to clean the mirror and collimate.

 

I learned about Bahtinov masks and printed them for my scope and some of my camera lenses. What a great invention! Read about them here.

Bahtinov mask focusing

 

But aligning and tracking have always been bad. I've had many frustrating evenings painstakingly aligning the scope and then being unable to track. To make a long story short, the encoder in one of the motors is flaky *and* there was a broken tooth on a gear. So that motor was hopeless. I have replaced it with a new-to-me used one, learned *way* too much about calibration and training (a reticle helps a lot!), and now I *think* I have a usable motor system. Just waiting for the moon to go away so I can try alignment and tracking again. Here in Southern California it's tough to find good alignment stars for part of the month.

 

I've done some non-telescope astro too. I took advantage of a visit to Kansas to try shooting the Milky Way and that came out OK with a lot of processing. I got a so-so image of comet Neowise over bright city lights.

Comet Neowise

I just built a metal piggyback bracket, and hope to use the tracking of the Meade scope mount to take wider-angle photos with my camera.

 

I've done a couple of stacks of Saturn and Jupiter with Siril and... I forget the other one I tried. I still need to choose which stacking app I like the best. This one was with my prime focus adapter, which I now realize is never going to cover enough pixels for decent size images. Looking forward to trying the same with my eyepiece projection adapter and my new Plossl's.

 

Jupiter 2020 07 21

I also need to look into light pollution filters.

 

I also want to look into driving the scope from Mac software instead of relying completely on the Autostar.


Edited by rsworden, 01 March 2021 - 01:04 AM.


#5281 Polyphemos

Polyphemos

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 28
  • Joined: 05 Dec 2020
  • Loc: Fairfield, California

Posted 02 March 2021 - 03:43 PM

Greetings fellow amateur astronomers, my name is Jim, and I live fifty kilometers north of San Francisco.  See you all in the forums!



#5282 Nineteenbirds

Nineteenbirds

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 05 Sep 2019
  • Loc: Brookfield, Illinois and Mercer, Wisconsin

Posted 02 March 2021 - 04:20 PM

Hello. I've had an account on Cloudy Nights since 2019 but have not posted until now. I live in the Chicago area, but my family has a small cabin on a little lake in northern Wisconsin, and that is where we spend our summers. A few years ago it dawned on me that I could see ALL the stars up there (very unlike here in the city) but I didn't know any of their names, so I got a book from the library and started learning the constellations. Then the next year I used my library card to check out a small, simple (but really satisfying) telescope they had and started looking at the moon. Not long after that, a neighbor told me he had a telescope in the closet, and did I want to buy it from him. It was  Meade ETX-70 in a hardshell case with some nice accessories, and I bought it for $50. Later that summer, I found an ETX-90 on Craigslist for $125 and I bought that. It fit in the case, came with a better tripod, and used all the same accessories, and I was really pleased with myself. This was about 3 years ago. Then I got some better books and a star atlas, and last summer I started star-hopping and looking for nebulas and star clusters, and one night I showed my neighbor the moons of Jupiter and she gasped. That was a great moment.

 

So last week I noticed a Meade ETX-125 on EBay, offered at a reasonable price, and was really surprised when mine was the winning bid. I hadn't seriously intended to buy it, but I did. It arrived yesterday, had been damaged in shipping, and needs repair. I started sending emails to all the astronomy clubs in northern Illinois, and at around noon today I heard from someone who has offered to help me fix it. I can hardly wait for the ice to melt up in Wisconsin so I can get back up there and see the stars again, with or without the new scope. I guess I am in this to stay, so I decided to finally get involved in the forum.

 

I am grateful for all the times I have been looking for answers and have found them on this site.


  • Randy Spiker and blakestree like this

#5283 farleysquad

farleysquad

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 4
  • Joined: 01 Mar 2021
  • Loc: Vancouver, BC

Posted 02 March 2021 - 05:14 PM

Hello all!

 

I am for Vancouver, BC. Got my first scope (8" Skywatcher Dobsonian) almost a year ago as a "COVID hobby", and I think its turning into a passion of mine. Having a blast learning visual astronomy (as much as I can under Bortle 8 skies)...thank goodness for the Stellarium app.

 

Fiddled a bit with smartphone planetary astrophotography as well, and through that process learned about PIPP,  AS!, and Registax. Going to acquire a used Canon T2i with that movie crop mode and hopefully start getting some better photos this year!

 

Looking forward to browsing these forums and interacting with everyone.

 

Cheers.



#5284 Omega Dog

Omega Dog

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 02 Mar 2021

Posted 02 March 2021 - 09:54 PM

Hello CN.  I retired about 5 years ago.  I am a Physicist and worked advanced sensor technoogies for land, sea, air and space for 30 years.  That said, it has been over 40 years since I have done anything in astronomy/astrophysics, so will be looking for a little advice here and there because things have changed quite a bit since I put my eye ball on a telescope (plus I can afford better toys now).  I live in a very remote area in Colorado in the summer and on the Gulf coast in the winter.  


  • CltFlyboy and Black bird like this

#5285 Handeman

Handeman

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 10
  • Joined: 02 Mar 2021
  • Loc: Northern Virginia

Posted 03 March 2021 - 10:45 AM

Hello everyone.

I'm Jeff. 

I bought a 5" Celestron SC with a motorized EQ mount back in the late '90s.   No computerized mounts back then, at least none I could afford.

 

The scope has been stored away for a lot of years, but the interest is rekindling.  I'm not sure how much I'll be on the forums.  I spend most of my time on The Rocketry Forum, but we'll see.



#5286 Bigbadjohn007

Bigbadjohn007

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 06 Mar 2021

Posted 06 March 2021 - 10:55 AM

Hello to all,

My name is John, I am new to Astronomy. I have always been fascinated with the Stars and Planets,

Hi Guys,
I am new to Astronomy, I have just bought a Celestron 6SE, I am really struggling to align my RDf to my tube,
I have tried to align during Day light with a distance object but my RDF is to far for adjustment. I have done what someone else said put shims under the RDF. But this again the adjustment won't go the distance needed. If anyone has any ideas it would be much appreciated. Thanks J D.

#5287 MorseHomology

MorseHomology

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 05 Mar 2021

Posted 06 March 2021 - 12:31 PM

Hey guys; "Morse" here. I did a little backyard astronomy when I was a kid. Living in Lisbon, Portugal now, and have the time, moolah and inclination to get myself one of the new computerized telescopio wonders to use on my balcony and trips to the countryside. I think seeing is pretty reasonable here for a city, and possibly very good in the countryside. 

 

I actually did a Ph.D. in experimental physics, which included 2 years working in the optical metrology lab at a synchrotron light source. Almost ended up at Zeiss Humphries making Mach-Zehnder interferometers, but Silicon Valley and to a lesser extent Wall Street had its way with me instead. Considered grinding up a newt and building a mount in my shop, but honestly getting some fresh air is probably more important, and relaxing looking at moon, planets and nebula thingees sounds better for now.

My old boss back at the X-ray light source suggested a C8 on a goto alt-az for a n00b all 'rounder, so the evo-8 is high on my list. Some of the posts on here have me wondering though. My past life as an optical metrologist might cause me to chimp-out at subpar optics, and there are many reports here of fuzzy views. So I'm also considering Skywatcher Mak-180 on an EQ5 goto (not because I like the mount, because it's sold that way) or even something nuts like a Mewlon 180 on whatever I can find for a mount to match the thing. EU and the local tax authority complicates things a little by making importing things extremely unreasonable.

 

I will never, ever do AP, because enough of my life has been spent in front of a computer fiddling with IDL or whatever people use for imaging these days. Anyway, more research is in order. I figure all of my questions have more or less been answered on here by now; I just have to dig in and find them.

Thanks for providing all the great info on here! Hopefully I can contribute something one of these days!


Edited by MorseHomology, 06 March 2021 - 12:34 PM.

  • CltFlyboy likes this

#5288 IGBTQ2

IGBTQ2

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 28 Jan 2021
  • Loc: Sierra Nevada Foothills, California

Posted 06 March 2021 - 02:16 PM

Well, hello CN community,

 

When I was around 8 years old, I had a Tasco reflector telescope.  Around that same time, I saw an SCT for the first time.  Since then, owning an SCT has been on my bucket list.. and I'm now 56.  So I've finally purchased myself one.  I picked up a Celestron CGEM II and an 8" Edge HD.  To compliment it, I've managed to obtain 5.5, 8.8, 14, and 20mm Meade Series 5000 UWA eyepieces; and I'm still on the prowl for the 30.  I've added Celestron's StarSense and their 2" diagonal with twist lock to my telescope.  The twist lock works beautifully by the way.  So far, I am extremely pleased with the performance of what I have.

 

For now, I am just visual.  However, being an avid amateur landscape photographer, I look forward to AP as my skill and collection improve.  After seeing my first galaxy the other night, I'm quite excited at the prospect.  Eventually I plan on getting the focal reducer and an off axis guider to start with.  I may also end up upgrading to the 9.25 OTA.  I'd love to get the 11 inch, but I suspect it would be too big and unruly to travel with as I live within an hour or two of some very dark places and within seven or so of some incredibly dark places.  To be sure, telescope camping is in my future for the coming summer.

 

Well, that's about it for now.  Cheers all and happy viewing!


  • Randy Spiker and CltFlyboy like this

#5289 BromoGNU

BromoGNU

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: 26 Feb 2021
  • Loc: Ipswich, MA

Posted 06 March 2021 - 05:32 PM

Hi Everyone!

I'm Brent, an enthusiastic amateur currently residing in Ipswich, MA
Did some astronomy using friends telescopes when I was a teenager in Missouri, only used a trusty set of Minolta 8x40 binoculars until a month or so ago.

Then I took the plunge and have the items below on my signature.  This activity has sure changed from when I was a teenager!

Hello Everyone!!!!!! Telescope.gif


Edited by BromoGNU, 06 March 2021 - 05:49 PM.

  • Augustus likes this

#5290 IGBTQ2

IGBTQ2

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 28 Jan 2021
  • Loc: Sierra Nevada Foothills, California

Posted 06 March 2021 - 06:18 PM

Well, hello CN community,

<…snip…>

"Just another stick in the mud..."



#5291 SaskGrass

SaskGrass

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 07 Mar 2021
  • Loc: South East Saskatchewan, Canada

Posted 07 March 2021 - 08:40 PM

Thanks for letting me in everyone! I dove into this hobby head first about a year ago. The one thing I have learned is "it's more expensive than boating! That said, my goal is to get better at astrophotography. My setup includes the 925 Celestron CPC Deluxe series, pro wedge, .7 Reducer, WiFi dongle, Celestron focus motor, Orion 80mm spotting scope with Orion Starshoot Autoguider, Orion Dew Zapper pro (4 straps), QHY Polemaster, Lenovo ThinkPad running windows 10 Pro, CPWI, PHD2, BackYard EOS and Microsoft Remote Desktop to my indoor Mac. Plans for this spring are to build a dedicated shed to house the rig.

 

I've experienced some major difficulties this past year most are resolved but there are a few tough nuts I still have to crack. Looking forward to perusing all the forums finding answers or even breadcrumbs that lead to answers!  First things first tho.. 

 

Hello!



#5292 Francisck

Francisck

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 07 Mar 2021
  • Loc: Denver, Colorado

Posted 07 March 2021 - 10:23 PM

Hello Everyone! 

My name is Francisco and I'm based in Denver, Colorado. I work in technology but astronomy has always been a passion and interest of mine. Believe it or not - until recently, I haven't ever looked through a telescope myself! I've recently really gotten into understanding the cosmos and I'm very excited to get my first telescope (a Zhumell Z100 with a 2x Barlow as recommended by Telescopicwatch).

 

I'm planning on buying better gear but I wanted to get a somewhat inexpensive introduction to telescopes before diving into more expensive stuff. I'll be doing a lot of reading on the forum over the next few days and looking forward to seeing some things with my first personal telescope. 


  • Black bird likes this

#5293 Ben the Ignorant

Ben the Ignorant

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 79
  • Joined: 08 Mar 2021
  • Loc: At the center of the exploding Universe, where it is safe

Posted 08 March 2021 - 08:26 AM

Hey.

 

I'm not a beginner stargazer but the beginner forum seemed like a sensible place to say hello as I registered today.

 

Like so many others, I've been reading the forum for years and finally decided to join in.

 

Looking forward to discussions, and also, selfishly, I was anxious to see if my profile picture would show up well in this tiny format.

 

grin.gif

 

 


  • Augustus and Francisck like this

#5294 Augustus

Augustus

    Fly Me To The Moon

  • *****
  • Posts: 10,665
  • Joined: 26 Dec 2015
  • Loc: Stamford, Connecticut

Posted 08 March 2021 - 09:00 PM

<...snip...>

I'm Brent, an enthusiastic amateur currently residing in Ipswich, MA
<...snip...>

Welcome Brent! My grandma lives in Ipswich, I'll have to say hello the next time I visit her.


  • BromoGNU and Francisck like this

#5295 Mph100

Mph100

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 14 Jan 2021

Posted 09 March 2021 - 05:16 PM

Hello everyone long time lurker fist time poster ,pauls me name and im from the uk I'm in the process of building a 131mm fl1200mm achromatic refractor similar to whats sold on surplus shed but was bought from aliexpress,still a little way to go before first light .This site has been a wealth of knowledge and answered many questions I've had will post a build thread with pics in atm forum when i get a little closer to finishing all the best paul
  • CltFlyboy, Black bird, stefanr and 1 other like this

#5296 Eye_Robot

Eye_Robot

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 19
  • Joined: 09 Mar 2021
  • Loc: Wild and Windy Casper, Wyoming

Posted 11 March 2021 - 06:30 PM

Hello All from Casper, WY.

 

Land of big sky, long winters, and an abundance of stargazing opportunity.

 

My 2nd post to introduce myself.

I have realized that this is not a hobby. It is a curse.

 

Shopping for better binos so I can watch Andromeda collide with the Milky Way.

 

I gave my son a 6" Dob many years ago. He's not using it, so I took it back and training myself to star hop.

 

I'll try not to bother too many folks here.



#5297 Joe1950

Joe1950

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 10,698
  • Joined: 22 Aug 2015

Posted 11 March 2021 - 07:07 PM

Welcome to CN Henry.

Sounds like you are in a good location to enjoy the sky. 

People here love share their opinions, so don’t feel you’re bothering anyone. 

Enjoy.

joe



#5298 Ben the Ignorant

Ben the Ignorant

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 79
  • Joined: 08 Mar 2021
  • Loc: At the center of the exploding Universe, where it is safe

Posted 12 March 2021 - 05:37 AM

I have realized that this is not a hobby. It is a curse.

Yes, and so much so they made this song for us. grin.gif

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=kjY8uSCJVL8



#5299 asquecco

asquecco

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 6
  • Joined: 17 Sep 2020

Posted 13 March 2021 - 11:53 AM

Hi, my name is Adriano, I live in Italy and I am not new to Astronomy.
Last September, as my new Covid hobby, I started using my old Dobson 10" Syscan with a ZWO ASI camera and I'm still having lot of fun with it.
I already posted a couple of pictures in this forum but I forgot to introduce myself!
Clear Skies to everyone.


  • CltFlyboy likes this

#5300 PaulHinthe808

PaulHinthe808

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 5
  • Joined: 19 Jan 2021

Posted 13 March 2021 - 05:47 PM

I’m Paul, I live in Honolulu.    Recently picked up a z10.  Still figuring stuff out but I’m having some fun with it.  Needing some clear sky.




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics