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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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Thursday 15th May 2014 - DSLR imaging using the "Wilkinson" interface

On March 1st 2010 I tried out the Cable interface provided by Ross Wilkinson of the Bolton Astro Soc for the first time. Taking images with such a wide field of view certainly brings home the extent of light pollution in Leyland - even before the Moon rose!

My Sony DSLR (mounted on my piggy backed 102 mm Meade refractor) was linked to the computer by this device and used the free software "DSLR Shutter" to specify the length and number of exposures.

A bonus was that there was no difficulty in running the software at the same time as my SBIG CCD camera on my 12" Meade OTA which meant that I could start a sequence of DSLR exposures remotely from my study - although of course I could not see the results coming in. However it meant that I could use my SBIG camera as an autoguider which I did. I did not exceed 10 minutes as an exposure however as by that time the Moon was just above the horizon and images were beginning to white out!

The first diffficulty was focusing. The DSLR has a rotatable viewing screen which I thought would make   it possible to see a bright star so I slewed to Procyon which was just east of south. I set a 1 second exposure which gave this image - my first DSLR image of a star!




 I tried again after racking out the focus




and again


 and finally



Other images were taken of M44


 and NGC 2419 the globular cluster.