Blog Tuesday September 18th 2012
Last night wasn’t clear by bed time so I got up at 4.30am for Hickson action then Jupiter at Dawn. Would you believe it after leaving the 20” and camera working perfectly after the last session a week ago on firing it up there was all sorts of problems! Had to change power leads around, monitors around and BNC cables around, finally got a bright star on the monitor & centred (Rigel), re-collimated the 6” with the 20” as it was way off with mirror movement, and went off into Cetus after HCG26 locating it wasn’t easy as I just had the RA & DEC no listing of the member galaxy catalogue numbers, found it in my planetarium software eventually (by zooming right in on a region until you see a group that matches your target, screen fov is only about 20 ’x20’ by that point so you have to be bang on it) sent goto to the point identified but by then it was 05.45am and the sky was too bright so the camera just bloomed and put up a white bright screen Waste of time!!!!
Swapped to the refractor and took a look at Jupiter, pleasant view, considerable detail, no transits, no GRS & variable seeing so didn’t sketch. Well that is the story although closer to the truth is probably that as I was a bit fed up with failure on the aforementioned HCG 26 and didn’t feel like it, so I packed up and got ready for work.
I bought a Starlight express guide camera that I couldn’t afford and has caused problems with Tray when I was at Kelling, Tom & Mike said that it would greatly improve my exposure times and image quality, I have ordered a longer USB A to USB mini B cable so I can plug it into the laptop in the warm room at £370 odd it was an expensive option but evidentially it is the only camera that works out of the Box with the AWR system as Alan Buckman doesn’t use industry standard ASCOM Drivers.