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May 2011 Blog Posts (18)

New Guide Train

I bought a Meade DSI Pro mono and a William Optics 66mm Petzval scope along with some 90mm Losmandy guide scope rings all off of A-Mart. I've reduced the size and weight of my rig and my first test run of the guide train last Sunday/Monday was very successful, I think. The wind was so strong that I had bad star shapes and the PHD graph looked like my EKG the last time my wife said "I'm pregnant". Need more clear skies for testing!

Added by Bill R. on May 31, 2011 at 7:44pm — No Comments

Cool album type picture things.

Thought I'd add a blog post here about this cool thing (at least I think) I use to display my pictures. is the free client. You collect/organize your pictures into an album and you have the ability to upload it to a unix box. In my case I'm simply using a Linux VM I keep with VPSLink in Boston.

I turned BobW onto it… Continue

Added by Jeff McFarlin on May 26, 2011 at 8:19am — No Comments

Hope everyone in twister window is ok

How did everyone do in the Midwest in twister zone? That storm looks outrageously bad, hope everyoe is ok.

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 25, 2011 at 11:02pm — No Comments

New document: How to intelligently select a camera (preliminary cut)

this is work in progress. I keep getting asked questions by users as to what camera they should buy. Of course there's no single answer.

so I am preparing a monograph to examine the various factors involved in sensors and cameras appropriate for use in astro-imaging (and other imaging as well).

the first section of the work is in a pre-release form but may be useful for discussion so I am posting it here today.

The idea is to add to this work each week and to… Continue

Added by Richard Crisp on May 24, 2011 at 8:39am — 19 Comments

Something Old and Something New

It is always fun when you realize that you have actually accomplished something…I don’t mean the obvious stuff that you notice right away like scoring in a sporting event, or completing a work project early and under budget…no, I mean the types of accomplishments that you are not even immediately aware of until some time after the fact. Usually these types of accomplishments come at the end of a long learning process and it is not until you take the time to stop along that road and look back…


Added by Trevor Woodrow on May 24, 2011 at 12:37am — 1 Comment

holy moly it worked

My setup totally worked, I'm kind of in disbelief. Took a shot of M5, short exposure, not very good visibility tonight, but I'll combine and post no matter how it looks just because it's sort of monumental for me to finally have a setup working. STOKED!!!!

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 23, 2011 at 11:15pm — 2 Comments

selenology today 24

selenology today 24
On line with three articles, including a study for old TLP and three meteoroidal impacts recorded on April 2011
The issue and more is present in the webpage
Raffaello Lena

Added by raf lena on May 23, 2011 at 11:59am — No Comments

clear patch

Going into a clear patch, and begging for my computer system and everything else to be fully operational and stable. Tonight is mostly clear, and then sunny until next week. holy moly. I'm on it!!! Need that computer system to work out.

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 23, 2011 at 10:01am — 1 Comment

Computers computers

windows 7 64 bit uinstable for me. IT guy thinks I might have a bad peice of RAM, will figure that out next week. But for right now, I went to work on a laptop that was sitting around the office, 32 bit XP pro, we installing windows now and will reinstall all my software once again.. Kind of a lot of work actually. oh well, I'm on it!! Just want CCDware to be stable and working without issue, it's an amazing program when coupled with SkyX pro and CCDsoft. :)

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 21, 2011 at 5:05pm — 1 Comment

Planet Nabu

Tomorrow is the end guys, been nice knowing you, think I'll go visual scoping tonight, and find the planet Nabu crashing into us to destroy humanity.

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 20, 2011 at 2:09pm — 1 Comment

A Post I Sent To The Stark Labs Group on PHD Settings

I thought some folks here may find this helpful. This is the response to a person's request for help with his PHD Brain settings because his graph was all crazy and his stars misshapen after making some changes and not being clear on what he was changing.

On May 20, 2011, at 1:56 AM, Neil Heacock wrote:

1) RA aggressiveness at 120 means that you are going to apply 120% of the correction to the RA movement. This is probably too much. Anywhere from 80 to 100 should…


Added by Neil Heacock on May 20, 2011 at 3:00am — 3 Comments

My first astrophoto............

My first digital photo of the moon was taken in 2006, but I actually started many, many years earlier.

In 1957, comet Arrend-Roland was bright in the sky. A friend of mine had a decent camera......can't remember exactly what it was. But we set it on a tripod and started clicking away with B&W film. Both of our dad's had… Continue

Added by Barry Brence on May 16, 2011 at 9:30pm — 3 Comments



I've just joined AstroGab on the recommendation of a friend. Here's some details on my interests and techniques.

Photography has been my primary hobby for the last 20 years. I got interested in astro-photography somewhere along the line and did some experiments with a film camera on a barndoor tracker, but didn't start seriously pursuing it until 6 years ago. Although I like science in general and astronomy in particular, it has always been the aesthetics of deep-sky… Continue

Added by Greg Marshall on May 14, 2011 at 12:12pm — 3 Comments

How did you get started in astrophotography?

And......if you knew then what you know now, would you do it all over again?

I think I probably started like most of hand-holding a point & shoot, cheapo digital camera up to the eyepiece of your telescope, at the moon. In my case it was a 6" Dob. I think I shot 30 or more frames that first time. Most of them were out of focus or not centered right, but a few just knocked my socks off. I was amazed it could be done!

That lead to some ill-fated attempts to… Continue

Added by Barry Brence on May 13, 2011 at 3:47pm — 7 Comments

New Ambry commercial


Added by Charles Dunlop on May 11, 2011 at 11:52pm — 3 Comments

So i finally get my setup working...

and it goes cloudy. lol. couple days next week look promising. Still had one issueon my mock runs I'll investigate tonight, and that's likely a video driver error as the whole screen went blue and the computer rebooted in the middle of an image, so I'll investigate that if it comes back up which it likely will, but I managed to work out all the computer issues last night and take some shots of clouds. lol. Was just happy to get the components all speaking to each other and… Continue

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 7, 2011 at 10:41am — 1 Comment

computer issues are the worst

I've had it, so many computer crashes and programs not working correctly, I've got my IT guys at Ambry installing XP pro and wiping the hard drive. Last night for instance I was fixed on a star cluster and CCDautopilot crashed... then I restarted and did the same cluster but just with CCDsoft and SkyX running, and it crashed again. Something is wrong, and I'm tripping out. So I wiped the drive and am starting again with XP, which we know works well with all of these programs.

Added by Charles Dunlop on May 3, 2011 at 9:23am — 7 Comments

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