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My Telescopes

My Main Telescope - C14 and Paramount ME

My new Paramount MyT and 8-inch Ritchey-Chretien Telescope

MyT Hand Controller

My Meade 12 inch SCT on a CGEM (Classic) Mount

My 4 inch Meade Refractor with Sky Watcher Guidescope and ZWO camera on a CGEM (Classic) Mount

Skywatcher Star Adventurer Mount with Canon 40D


My Solar setup using a DSLR and Mylar Filter on my ETX90

DSLR attached to ETX90. LiveView image of 2015 partial eclipse on Canon 40D

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About the Site

 I try to log my observing and related activities in a regular blog - sometimes there will be a delay but I usually catch up. An index of all my blogs is on the main menu at the top of the page with daily, weekly or monthly views. My Twitter feed is below. I am also interested in photograping wildlife when I can and there is a menu option above to look at some of my images. I try to keep the news feeds from relevant astronomical sources up to date and you will need to scroll down to find these.

The Celestron 14 is mounted on a Paramount ME that I have been using for about 10 years now - you can see that it is mounted on a tripod so is a portable set up. I still manage to transport it on my own and set it all up even though I have just turned 70! It will run for hours centering galaxies in the 12 minute field even when tripod mounted.


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« Day 56 Count the galaxies in the Coma Cluster | Main | Day 54 Setting up my old MX916 camera. »

Day 55 Hot day and hot under the collar with my old MX916.

A really hot today- the cafe next door has opened for the first time this year and was packed out at lunchtime with everyone enjoying the day.

I was out on the terrace setting up the ETX90 on the 4"refractor. It took a while but I finally managed to get the MX916 to link to CCDSoft via the 30 metre powered USB cable. I think one of the connections must not have been seated properly. I had set up the focus last night but disturbed this unfortunately so will have to do that again tonight.

Here is the " final " setup. If the trial works I will try to get a more rigid method of attaching the ETX.

 The camera is getting old now - you can see the adaptor mounted below the ETX - this is a parallel to USB2 interface that allows me to use the camera with a USB2 lead to the netbook.


I tested the camera using Capella - which was the first guide star for the CGEM - with disappointing results. Strange rows of dots running diagonally down the image with very odd shaped stars. I think perhaps it is time to replace this camera. It may just be me not remembering how to use it but I do seem to remember having a lot of hassle with it. I may try again one more time just to see if I can crack it. Probably much simpler to use my DSLR. The MX916 is an open loop cooled camera so does have that advantage over a DSLR. The aim was to use this camera with an SA100 spectroscopic grating or alternatively with B or V filters - all of which just screw into the camera 1 1/4 inch nosepiece. A simple approach? Well maybe not.