What was the worst observing session that made you want to quit the hobby?
Posted 19 September 2020 - 01:35 AM
- happylimpet and Roemer_Nord like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:11 AM
If the topic is accidents while observing I've had three that really stand out in my mind. On two occasions I flipped over backwards over my own observing chair, which because it is black is nearly invisible. I solved that problem by putting it out on the driveway and spray painting it white I didn't care that it was a lousy paint job all I wanted was that it be white. And I haven't had a problem since and neither have the visitors that come up to the scope during Star parties.
During some winter observing when the temperature was near zero Fahrenheit I had occasion to use my hair dryer. This is a marine or Winnebago hair dryer it's 12 volts and designed not to exhaust your battery. So in zero degree weather it admits a stream of air that might be 15 degrees Fahrenheit. Anyhow somehow I knocked off the protective covering on the front of the hair dryer and managed to be unaware that I was using the hair dryer with its unprotected front coils exposed. And I didn't discover my mistake until I had singed my flesh. I suppose there might be some kind of corrective action for that kind of accident. Maybe I could epoxy the heat shield onto the hair dryer so it doesn't fall off which come to think of it as a good idea. Or I could do what I actually did which is improve the deployment of my heating strap so that the hair dryer is only a last resort. But I also learned a healthy new respect for the 12-volt air dryer which I now carefully inspect before I turn it on and use it.
- Jon Isaacs, Phil Cowell, ShaulaB and 6 others like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:14 AM
Edited by Droro, 19 September 2020 - 02:15 AM.
- happylimpet and Wlachenmeyer like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 05:21 AM
Edited by Voyager 3, 19 September 2020 - 05:21 AM.
Posted 19 September 2020 - 05:36 AM
I hope it wasn't a Hyperion aspheric.
13mm big and heavy...
Posted 19 September 2020 - 07:55 AM
After 50 years I have had too many to recall. I have had a scope fall out of a mount once, I have dropped
a telescope a couple of times when trying to grip a slippery tube (to this day I cannot understand why people
polish there refractor tubes with wax).
I have had several eyepieces break after rolling off a table.
- Diana N likes this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 08:27 AM
I haven't had a session that made me quit. I don't think any session could be that bad unless I was permanently injured so badly that I could no longer participate in the hobby.
- esd726 and careysub like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 08:33 AM
I've driven 200 miles to a dark site and had clouds quickly cover the sky as I was setting up, but that didn't make me quit.
- stevew, careysub and David Mercury like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 08:56 AM
Worst thing that has ever happened was like OIC, I drove to my dark site only to have clouds move in. Over my 47+ years of astronomy that has happened MANY times but it didn't make me want to quit. I take it like it is part of the challenge.
- OIC likes this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 10:44 AM
Most every time I go out, but I persevere.....
- ChancesFate and Brianm14 like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 11:03 AM
never- but increasing LP makes me think
Edited by edwincjones, 19 September 2020 - 11:04 AM.
- gnowellsct and therealdmt like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 11:19 AM
Light pollution is playing on my motivation but it's not enough to make me quit because I can always drive to a darker spot. The greenhouses with lights around my home are killing me, when you see that, it's a matter of not being perpetually angry while being outside at night.
The utter stupidity of some people.
OP, Sorry about your dropped EP and the toe.
- stevew, gnowellsct, Diana N and 2 others like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 11:46 AM
While I've had some bad session, the worst being the time when my mount's motherboard burned out, it's been the onslaught of bad weather that made me wanna quit more than anything. What's bad is that the Gulf of Mexico is south of us bringing in a steady supply of moisture and thick, sky-encompassing clouds and north of us is the Appalachian Mountains trapping those clouds here. As an experiment, I looked up the sky conditions in towns a few hours drive from here located in Tennessee and Kentucky, and the conditions are much better. They do have clear skies at least some of the time.
It was http://www.windy.com that opened my eyes and made me realize I need to move out as soon as I retire.
Here's that same map set to show cloud cover.
I'm thinking of moving out to West Texas or Arizona.
Edited by CrossoverManiac, 19 September 2020 - 11:47 AM.
- gnowellsct likes this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 12:40 PM
Any time I park my truck or set up my gear near a fire ant den. I haven't quit the hobby but I have learned to spend more time staring at the ground instead of the sky when I first arrive at a site.
- ShaulaB, happylimpet and BruceNewEngland like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:54 PM
None. I have been weathered out, forgot my truss tubes 60 miles from home and had to return, one night the the skies were clear and beautiful, but seeing was horrible because the jet stream was directly overhead. Astronomy is the one hobby that has stayed with me from age 2 when my grandmother in Minnewaukan N. Dak told me to look up into Mag 7 skies out her back door, to my current age of 77. Throughout my life, I have had numerous hobbies come and go, but astronomy has been a constant thread keeping everything hooked together no matter what challenges I was facing.
- doctordub, bumm, happylimpet and 3 others like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 03:03 PM
Maybe the only time was when I was running the telescope at the Northern Arizona University Campus Observatory back in the mid 90s. We had a marvelously clear winter night, a dome full of people, and I simply could. not. find. the Crab Nebula. I've rarely had a problem with it, before or since. But that particular night, with a bunch of people waiting for it (after giving them the long spiel about its origin)... I couldn't find the **** thing. I eventually had to use the setting circles, which I hated doing when I could just star-hop to an object. Massive embarrassment.
- Jon Isaacs, WStewart, GeneT and 2 others like this
Posted 19 September 2020 - 03:07 PM
When I dont get out in a long time, I start thinking why do I have the stuff if I can’t use it. Then when I get out it’s worth the months in between. Finally moving to first shift so that should help a little.
I have said before that if I had to go somewhere else, besides backyard, I’m not sure I could stick with it. In all the 35+ years of observing I’ve only observed from home so I think that big of change would take getting used to, but I hope I wouldn’t give up.
I guess if my wife said something like observing or me.... I would give it up, reluctantly, then.
- gnowellsct likes this
Posted 20 September 2020 - 01:56 AM
Oops that would hurt ... Get well soon and as you said don't quit this wonderful hobby ◉‿◉ , I know you will not 😉 ... See how others suffered lol.
13mm big and heavy...
Edited by Voyager 3, 20 September 2020 - 01:57 AM.
Posted 20 September 2020 - 05:28 AM
I'm not quitting, I was half joking, though the thought crossed my mind ,at least in my toes mind at the moment.
Speaking of toes...
It was close to 20 years ago. I was out in the backyard on a nice summer's evening. I was barefoot and in shorts. Something you only do where mosquitoes are very rare.
Anyway, I decided to go inside to get another eyepiece. The closest door was a sliding glass door. The good news is that the sliding glass door was open. The bad news is that the sliding screen door was closed.
I stepped right into it, the force of the impact drove my right foot straight down into the concrete sill and it lacerated my big toe right where it joins my foot.
Blood was everywhere. It as a nasty jagged cut. It was a fast trip to the emergency room They cleaned it out and sewed it up the best they could, (it still got infected), three weeks on my back in bed..
I didn't quit but that was three weeks without stargazing.
- ArizonaScott, GeneT and bumm like this
Posted 20 September 2020 - 06:51 AM
Posted 20 September 2020 - 09:17 AM
I guess I am still new enough to the hobby that giving it up hasn't seriously occurred yet... circumstances however have put the kibosh on my observing way more than any desire to retire the equipment...
Keep looking up!
CB, waiting for a clear sky to line up with a night off...
Posted 20 September 2020 - 09:43 AM
Never crossed my mind to give up a lifelong hobby! I was out last night with pleasant conditions and near 5/5 seeing. Got to watch the transit of Ganymede and Mars is showing a lot of features now; it's huge with a greatly diminishing SPC.