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What Classic did you use to see Shoemaker-Levy 9

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#1 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:25 PM

All these recent posts about the past has reminded me of a few special events.

Twenty four years ago this past July a comet slammed into Jupiter! A one of a kind event that brought me back into the hobby after a decade of barely observing.

I still had my Meade 628C but it was rough, at least the mount was. I kept the OTA inside but left the mount outside for a few years since I lived in a small studio apartment at the time. I was determined to see this event so I restored the mount and had the little 6" mirror recoated with enhanced aluminum. All I could afterwards is pray for clear skies!

The seeing cooperated and the time had come to see if I could detect the impact site. Set my scope and got my old Meade Series One MA25mm, MA12.5mm, MA9mm, 6mm Or. & 4mmOr.

WOW! there it was clear as day! Dark markings on Jupiter looking like bruises! I got my Minolta SRT201 Camera body with cable release and Meade Eyepiece projection camera adapter with the 4mmOr. inside. It sure was difficult focusing with all that extra weight but I managed to get a picture of the event. Its not much but it shows the impact areas. I probably used Kodak ASA400.

 

Here's iPhone pic of the original film picture.

 

 

 

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#2 George Bailey

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:32 PM

My old orange C8, of course !!!

 

No photos - only sketches in my observing book.

 

BTW  David Levy gave a talk at our Eastern Iowa Star Party this Sept - we really enjoyed it !!!


Edited by George Bailey, 21 October 2018 - 07:36 PM.

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#3 Bomber Bob

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:35 PM

I used my D&G 5" F10, when I wasn't observing, I had my Panasonic VHS-C camcorder on a tripod, and pointed that into the eyepiece.  My daughter saw a bit of it, but at 5 years old, she was easily distracted...


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#4 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:37 PM

My old orange C8, of course !!!

 

No photos - only sketches in my observing book.

 

BTW  David Levy gave a talk at our Eastern Iowa Star Party this Sept - we really enjoyed it !!!

Hi George, You wouldn't have any of those sketches would you?


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#5 Defenderslideguitar

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:40 PM

Cool question. I had kind of taken a break from astronomy then but I did dig out my Meade 2080LX2 and it was fun to see how the impact spot grew on Jupiter. My daughter was only 6 but I asked her to have a look and she told me she saw it. Later at bedtime she told me ... dad  I saw Jupiter's stripes but I really not the spot you wanted me to see...


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#6 pbealo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:51 PM

My AP 152mm F9 blue-tube Starfire.

 

When that 1st scar rotated into view a shiver ran down my back. It was scary!


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#7 The Planetman

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:51 PM

1981 Orange C-11. 
That's one of those events that is forever etched in the minds eye.
I do remember the first evening of observing the event was very humid.  Fighting dew, sweat, and mosquitos!


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#8 Ishtim

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:53 PM

1990 Starfinder 10" Eq.  MA25 & MA 9.  Interesting to say the least...


Edited by Ishtim, 21 October 2018 - 07:55 PM.

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#9 Richard O'Neill

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:56 PM

AP 180 F/9. An eyegasmic experience..


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#10 bbqediguana

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 07:58 PM

I had a EQ-mounted Newt: 4.5 inches f/7.9 (Bausch & Lomb Pro 200). It came with a 25mm and 9mm Kellner eyepieces. I used it for Jupiter as well as the two great comets of the '90's: Hyakutake and Hale-Bopp.

 

Bausch & Lomb Professional 200

 


Edited by bbqediguana, 21 October 2018 - 08:22 PM.

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#11 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:04 PM

1990 Starfinder 10" Eq.  MA25 & MA 9.  Interesting to say the least...

That event got me back into the hobby and shortly thereafter I got my first 10” Newtonian a Meade Starfinder! Loved that scope! 


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#12 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:06 PM

My AP 152mm F9 blue-tube Starfire.

 

When that 1st scar rotated into view a shiver ran down my back. It was scary!

Y’all had some nice classics for the event. I don’t know if I was scared but I did wonder if it could happen to earth!bombdrop.gif


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#13 Sketcher

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:08 PM

10-inch Newtonian -- home built around a Coulter f/5.6 primary.  Not sure what the scope looked like at the time.  It's undergone a few re-builds.

 

No photos/images -- just sketches.  Some of my SL-9 observations/sketches were made in the daytime.  I wanted to be watching at the time of some of the impacts, just in case!


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#14 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:11 PM

I would sure love to see a sketch of that event!


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#15 J A VOLK

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:20 PM

A very nice black-tube C11. I saw it the first day in full daylight by using setting circles. I was shocked - hadn't yet heard the impact was that dramatic.
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#16 GoFish

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 08:36 PM

6” f/7 homebuilt Dob. 

 

I recall the impact evening well!  Had my WWV-synced watch on my wrist, counting down the minutes/seconds. My thought process went something like this:

  1. The impact site is going to be on the back side of Jupiter, out of view, so nothing to see tonight
  2. Compared to gargantuan Jupiter, the comet is a fly speck
  3. Absolutely nothing is going to happen tonight, nothing to see, not a chance
  4. But if Jupiter does split apart when that rascally comet hits, I’m sure as he** not going to miss it lol.gif

 


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#17 oldscope

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 09:56 PM

I was in the SF bay area, planning a convention for the Antique Telescope Society. Dr. Mike Reynolds, Director at the old Chabot Observatory invited me up to view the event with the 20 inch Brashear refractor. I recall seeing one or two small dark marks. The next day, I had lunch with Mike and Dr. Don Osterbrock, Director Emeritus of Lick Observatory. Don thought I was seeing things and that it would take Hubble to be able to see anything. But over the next few days and weeks, confirmation of visual sightings came in by the droves and I viewed the spots again several times, once with a friend's C-8 and then later, on a good night, with my own little 3.5 inch Brashear, after the "black eye" marks had really grown large.

 

Epilogue: Don and I were good friends in his later years and I never had the temerity to tell such a distinguished astro-physicist, "I told you so!" We need more comets to hit Jupiter.

 

Bart


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#18 Pete W

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 10:32 PM

My homebuilt 8" f/6 newtonian from my backyard.  Was able to sketch it.   I was shocked over how obvious the impact was...

 

Pete

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#19 rolo

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Posted 21 October 2018 - 10:52 PM

Pete, thanks for posting those sketches!



#20 k5apl

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 07:43 AM

I used a Russian MAK of 150mm aperture.  I think it was 603 model.  I looked at it some time after the impact, and saw a large

smudge (not individual impact spots).  In fact, I had forgotten about the impact and was surprised to see its remnants.  At that time I was working day and night 24-7 trying to make a living (no time for astronomy).

Wes


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#21 Chuck Hards

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 08:30 AM

Home-made 10" f/5.6 Dob, Coulter optics from 1980.  I shot some VHS video, you can clearly see the impact sites.  One of these days I'll transfer it to digital.

 

My daughter was still a baby, so I had the baby monitor with me on the back patio as she slept and I tried to pick my lower jaw up off the ground as I saw the impact sites clearly.  

 

One of those "wow!" moments in astronomy for me, right up there with seeing a fantastic aurora, total eclipse, Venus transit, and comet West.  You had to be there.


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#22 Terra Nova

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 09:53 AM

Telescopes come and go with me and that was during a time when I was telescope poor, so I used the only thing I had available and it did quite well actually, considering it’s limited aperture- my Mayflower model 814 (60mm x 700mm) by APL, 1965), of which I am the original owner. I used three 0.965” eyepieces- a 7mm Unitron Symmetrical, a 6mm RAO Huygens-Mittenzwey, and a 5mm APL Symmetrical Ramsden, along with orange, green, and pale blue filters. So magnifications ranged from 100X to 140X. I was actually quite amazed at the detail I was able to see. I followed the development and dissipation of the plumes for around six weeks it seems. I still remember the images clearly in my mind. It really is something what we can see sometimes with a little persistence, patience, and making do with what we have. Over the last fifty-three years, I have seen many wonderful things and shared them with my kids with that humble little scope, most recently the Great American Solar Eclipse. Like a Timex watch, “It’s taken a licking and it keeps on ticking”!


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#23 Exnihilo

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 11:09 AM

C8 Super Polaris.
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#24 Defenderslideguitar

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 11:53 AM

Great thread.....................These are great recollections  and they help me to  now focus my memory that  we  had the 2080lx2 at the end of my driveway for several nights and it seems we saw the impact sight, as I recall it seemed like dark spots one bigger than another, over the course of that week or so...The neighbors came out to see what I was up to...it was a happening of sorts...

 

A few years later there was  Comet Hyakutake  and although we were distracted by life, work, raising our daughter and not doing any viewing, the comet called me out...and it seemed like we had the scope set up in the garage for quite sometime

 

Then there was Hale Bop....Maybe those two comets need their own thread?


Edited by Defenderslideguitar, 22 October 2018 - 02:10 PM.

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#25 Terra Nova

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 12:06 PM

I had (and still have) a tripod-mounted earlier Orion (Vixen?) Japanese pair of 20x80s that I used for both of those comets. Very memorable views!


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