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Some Issues

Its been a long time since I added anything to the site.

I’ve also not maintained it in any way for about 4 years!

Some technical issues with the site has meant that I’ve had to restore from a back up! I doubt anyone will notice lol

SH2-101 The Tulip Nebula

Fairly obvious why it has its name.

8 x 5 minutes
10 x 10 minutes
10 x 20 minutes

Same as usual setup (ST102, Heq5, SX FW/OAG, Lodestar/PHD for guiding and SXH9/Maxin for capture).

Stacked in DSS, post processing in PSCS5

SH2-101 Tulip Nebula

Jupiter 20/12/2013

First time out with the scope for around 18 months. Needed to get out again and make sure that the mount still work after the fall – pleased to say that everything worked flawlessly.

Seeing wasn’t too bad, but the wind was a big problem even in my sheltered location. The FLT98 is really a wide field DSO imaging scope, but shows that it can still produce a nice high powered planetary image.

This was around a 40 second AVI at 60FPS captured using the FLT98 and DMK21 with a TV 2.5 powermate, giving a FL of 1543mm – aligned and stacked in AVI Stack, wavelets in Registax 5 and some final tweeks in Photoshop.

Next time I’ll use the Skymax 127 – using the same camera and barlow will give a FL of 4762.

Ganymede, Europa and Jupiter

Ganymede, Europa and Jupiter

I cannot wait :)


Horsehead and flame

Well the lodestar is working well! Firstlightoptics.com are spot on 🙂

I had excellent guiding all evening, the lodestar is really REALLY sensitive – cannot really get over just how sensitive it is. I decided to take a 30 minute test exposure, but actually set it for an hour by mistake. At the end of the hour I waited for the image to download and found that a plugin in Maxim had crashed and the image was lost.


But restarting the software I took 2 x 10 minutes and 1 x 30 minutes. The result is below. Again very happy – not just to be out under the stars but to have things working for a change.

So tonight I saw… Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn. A nebula (the Flame) a dust cloud (horse head) and two galaxies containing 100’s of billions of stars… Really can it get much better than that!

NGC3628 – Leo triplet galaxy

Out testing a new guide cam tonight. Seems to be working OK, had a few small hickups but that was down to a dodgy USB lead – bloody thing was brand new.

Here is NGC 3628 a unbarred spiral galaxy in Leo. This image is 3 x 30 minutes with bias and flats (although the flats weren’t quite right). But for the purpose of tonight I am very happy.

Found some images :)

Decided to look through some of my image directories and have a little tidy up – found these images from March 29th 2011.

There were 6 that were OK, and about 50 that were rubbish. So stacked 6 of them and processed in Registax and Photoshop. Followed some instructions from here http://www.colormoon.pt.to/ about processing the image to show the differing minerals on the moons surface!

So here it is, the image I didn’t know that I had!!!

False colour to show different minerals.

False colour to show different minerals.

Don’t fall asleep!

I fell asleep while the scope was doing it’s stuff – I did plan too but shouldn’t have. Woke up at 1am, went out side to find that the filterwheel was touching the tripod 🙁

3 x 10 minute subs wasted, no damage to the mount or filterwheel though – which is good news 🙂

Comet Geradd 2009P1 – finally

Finally got the stack to work. Big thanks to FraserClarke from SGL for tips on the settings that I needed to change in Deep Sky Stacker.

Quite happy with these images, looking forward to a clear night (soon) with less moon so I can have another go.


Local Fishing Lake

We went for a little walk earlier today and found and lovely tranquil fishing lake – well under a mile from our house and we had no idea. Extremely well kept with picnic area and generally very well looked after. I’m going to ask for permission to go up there at night as I think that there is a lot of scope for some star trails over the lake – I think it’ll look nice.

Here’s the lake. The picnic area is over to the right of this image. North is in the same direction. Jamie took these images on his ipod and I stitched them together in MS ICE.

Fishing lake in Coates

Fishing lake in Coates