Date   

Re: Silver Dollar Galaxy from Hawaii

Robert Chozick <rchozick@...>
 

Roland, I never do this galaxy because it is so hard to make look good.  This is one of the best I have ever seen.  You nailed the colors better than I have seen.

Robert

On Nov 15, 2021, at 9:48 PM, Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...> wrote:

Hello Astronuts,

This is the first of several images that I was able to glean from my dark Hawaii site couple of weeks ago. This is one night's work during testing of the 1600 encoder mount modeling. I know it isn't APOD quality, but represents only one night of dark skies and decent seeing. This galaxy needs about 60 hours to do it justice.


Rolando

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Silver Dollar Galaxy from Hawaii

Joel Short
 

Roland, that IS APOD quality.  Amazing.  I'm not sure I've ever seen this object in such detail.  Wow.
joel

On Mon, Nov 15, 2021 at 9:48 PM Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
Hello Astronuts,

This is the first of several images that I was able to glean from my dark Hawaii site couple of weeks ago. This is one night's work during testing of the 1600 encoder mount modeling. I know it isn't APOD quality, but represents only one night of dark skies and decent seeing. This galaxy needs about 60 hours to do it justice.


Rolando

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Silver Dollar Galaxy from Hawaii

Roland Christen
 

Hello Astronuts,

This is the first of several images that I was able to glean from my dark Hawaii site couple of weeks ago. This is one night's work during testing of the 1600 encoder mount modeling. I know it isn't APOD quality, but represents only one night of dark skies and decent seeing. This galaxy needs about 60 hours to do it justice.

https://www.astrobin.com/sh5dgf/0/

Rolando

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: No longer lost in space...but the pointing....

Peter Nagy
 

If your C14 is not an EdgeHD without mirror locks, then it may be mirror flop flexure.

Peter


No longer lost in space...but the pointing....

Astrobob
 

Roland was correct (no surprise there)! After regreasing my AP1200 mount It lost the ability to know where it was pointing.

The answer was to match the computer location and time with the keypad even though it was on the External setting.

That allowed me to do a recal on a star and start the modeling process. My imaging telescope is a C14 at f5 has a 1950 mm

focal length. The imager chip  FOV is 19.6X29.1 Arcmins. I made a 40 star (so far) model using TPoint in The Sky 6 pro. I am

able to put a star on the imager chip every time but rarely in the center even though I recentered the star every time.

 

Would any of you call that pointing good, OK or needs work?

 

Thanks for any suggestions,

 

 

Bob

 

 

Sent from Mail for Windows

 


Re: APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

W Hilmo
 

No rush at this point.  It'll probably be a few days before I get the rig up and running again :)

-Wade

On 11/15/21 6:18 PM, Dale Ghent wrote:
I don't have anything fresher than that video at the moment, but I have been working on this Advanced Sequencer plugin quite a bit lately. It has turned into a project between Ray and myself, with some new features in APPM that allows external thingies such as this plugin to interact with APPM better.

The backend of the plugin is kind of exploded on the floor at the moment so it's not a good moment to hand something off to try, and the code will require a beta version of APPM that I don't think is generally available. But, what I can do right now is whip up a better video to explain things in a clearer manner.


On Nov 15, 2021, at 16:48, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:

Do you have any links to an alternative description of how this works?

The video on the first link is, as you say, in potato mode. The YouTube link has legible video, but both videos are missing audio for me. I may have a clear night or two this week and I would like to experiment with integrating creation of the dec-arc tracking model into my sequence.

Thanks,
-Wade

On 11/7/21 12:47 AM, Dale Ghent wrote:
Ack! I didn't realize that imgur reduced the video resolution to potato mode. Here's a better view:

https://youtu.be/OoJCp6sZhuo

On Nov 7, 2021, at 02:38, Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:


I meant to get this rolling sooner, but life threw me a curveball last month. Thanks to Ray's additions to the upcoming APCC Pro 1.9.1.x, there's now an easy way to programmatically feed model creation parameters to APPM so that it can produce a model plan using that also considers the other things you might have configured in APPM - horizons, limits, ordering strategy and so on.

So I created a new sequencer instruction for my AP mount plugin for NINA called "Create Dec Arc Model". It will get the RA and dec of the current target and have APPM create a model plan based on that info. You would place this instruction at the start of a target's run so that a dec-arc model is created and put in place prior to getting down to business.

It'll currently create 3 arcs - 1 centered on or (or at least very near) the target's declination, and 2 additional arcs - one on the north side and the other on the south side of the target's declination, separated from the center arc by a configurable number of degrees. Point density along the arcs, in the RA, is another parameter that can be tuned. The arcs will begin (ie, their eastern-most extent) slightly before the target's current hour angle and extend to the configured minimum altitude or the western horizon limit, whichever is hit first. Obviously it's quite advantageous to use your local horizon limits in order to cut down on pointless (ha ha) map points.

Below is a short video of me futzing around with the new code. In it, I select a target in Stellarium (the CA nebula) and import it into NINA's Framing Assistant. I then create a target session using a small sequence template I made that has just the "Create Dec Arc Model" instruction in it. I then run that sequence. With debug logging on, the APPM configuration gets quoted in NINA's log file, so I copy and pasted that config into its own text file and loaded it into APPM to look at the point map. Presto, there's a 3-arc wide dec model based on the CA nebula's location at that time. Obviously this would all be automatic in practice, with a temporary config file being made and fed to APPM directly... this just lets me debug at each step as I work on the code.

I'll put some more polish and testing on it over the next days. If any NINA user here is interested in trying it out, see me on the NINA Discord chat.

https://i.imgur.com/jU1UQTa.mp4

On Nov 6, 2021, at 15:35, Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:

Hi Linwood,

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?
You could do a simple test to find out! Specifically, you could do a Verify run in APPM with a much smaller number of points than your model. That is, a Verify run does not have to use the same points as your active model. When you do this, take a look at the measured pointing errors in the table that APPM creates in the verify run.

BTW, in case anyone is wondering, there are two main differences between a normal APPM run and a verify:

1) The Verify run keeps the active model on, while a normal run would have modeling off.

2) The Verify run will not replace your active model. That is, APPM won't ask to load it into APCC, and APPM will even warn you if you try to load a verify run.

Also, a verify run will probably be much less useful if you are checking a few Dec Arc rows, because it wouldn't take much longer to create new Dec Arcs.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of ap@...
Sent: Saturday, November 6, 2021 8:33 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

The discussion on refreshing reminds me to ask this.

I set up and tear down nightly, but fairly precisely in the same setup (example: I usually land within 5' of polar
aligned after I put things together).

I have built a nice model of the sky, but for just time constraints (and I guide) I do not build a new model each
night, and because I worry the model is no longer good, I generally do not use one at all.

I know that APPM has a verify process, that will check each model point for consistency (presumably to flush
out equipment variability that may be invalidating it from run to run).

Would it be possible to have a similar process, perhaps a "model sanity check", which would take 10% (or
some specified number of model points), and check just those. The idea is to see if your model is still good
but in far less time than a complete verify run (which basically takes the same time it would to build a model).

I am not sure how to interpret it, but some kind of correlation calculation could tell you if it looks good or bad,
and is worth using. The idea is spending 10 minutes to validate a fairly large model rather than 60-90 minutes
to build a new one.

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?

Linwood













Re: AP1600 Down

W Hilmo
 

Thanks for the suggestions to build the pier now.

The issue is that I have the temporary site near the house.  The observatory is going to be further out in the property.  Right now, I can control it all over WiFi.  At the permanent location, it will be far enough off that I will want wired networking to it.

Also, right now in our area, concrete pours are super expensive.  I was looking at a 240 square foot apron in front of our garage.  I got several bids that all came in around $10,000.  Seriously.  If the pier was going to be near the house, I'd do that now, but I'm not quite ready to deal with the observatory pad yet.

As for the wind and imaging (with regard to Dale's comment), wide field imaging in the wind works out fine, as long as I can block the wind.  If the wind hits the mount directly, it vibrates enough that the images are unusable.  My suspicion is that the turnbuckles have enough flex that they vibrate in the wind.  Maybe I can do something to the turnbuckles themselves to make them more stable.  I have some very stout, spring loaded turnbuckles for my slide in camper.  I thought about giving them a try on the mount, but the camper is set up over in the Seattle area for the winter, and those turnbuckles are with it.  I wonder if it would help to wrap the turnbuckles in weighted bags...

-Wade

On 11/15/21 6:16 PM, Mike Dodd wrote:
On 11/15/2021 8:15 PM, W Hilmo wrote:
...or set up a concrete pier set deep into the ground, except that it would be temporary, as I have plans to build an observatory next year.
I vote for building the pier now, then build the observatory around it next year.

I've built two observatories, and the concrete pier was the first thing constructed. Here's our latest observatory project if you're interested: <http://house.mdodd.com/project_obs.html> Scroll down for a table of links to the construction steps.


Re: APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

Dale Ghent
 

I don't have anything fresher than that video at the moment, but I have been working on this Advanced Sequencer plugin quite a bit lately. It has turned into a project between Ray and myself, with some new features in APPM that allows external thingies such as this plugin to interact with APPM better.

The backend of the plugin is kind of exploded on the floor at the moment so it's not a good moment to hand something off to try, and the code will require a beta version of APPM that I don't think is generally available. But, what I can do right now is whip up a better video to explain things in a clearer manner.

On Nov 15, 2021, at 16:48, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:

Do you have any links to an alternative description of how this works?

The video on the first link is, as you say, in potato mode. The YouTube link has legible video, but both videos are missing audio for me. I may have a clear night or two this week and I would like to experiment with integrating creation of the dec-arc tracking model into my sequence.

Thanks,
-Wade

On 11/7/21 12:47 AM, Dale Ghent wrote:
Ack! I didn't realize that imgur reduced the video resolution to potato mode. Here's a better view:

https://youtu.be/OoJCp6sZhuo

On Nov 7, 2021, at 02:38, Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:


I meant to get this rolling sooner, but life threw me a curveball last month. Thanks to Ray's additions to the upcoming APCC Pro 1.9.1.x, there's now an easy way to programmatically feed model creation parameters to APPM so that it can produce a model plan using that also considers the other things you might have configured in APPM - horizons, limits, ordering strategy and so on.

So I created a new sequencer instruction for my AP mount plugin for NINA called "Create Dec Arc Model". It will get the RA and dec of the current target and have APPM create a model plan based on that info. You would place this instruction at the start of a target's run so that a dec-arc model is created and put in place prior to getting down to business.

It'll currently create 3 arcs - 1 centered on or (or at least very near) the target's declination, and 2 additional arcs - one on the north side and the other on the south side of the target's declination, separated from the center arc by a configurable number of degrees. Point density along the arcs, in the RA, is another parameter that can be tuned. The arcs will begin (ie, their eastern-most extent) slightly before the target's current hour angle and extend to the configured minimum altitude or the western horizon limit, whichever is hit first. Obviously it's quite advantageous to use your local horizon limits in order to cut down on pointless (ha ha) map points.

Below is a short video of me futzing around with the new code. In it, I select a target in Stellarium (the CA nebula) and import it into NINA's Framing Assistant. I then create a target session using a small sequence template I made that has just the "Create Dec Arc Model" instruction in it. I then run that sequence. With debug logging on, the APPM configuration gets quoted in NINA's log file, so I copy and pasted that config into its own text file and loaded it into APPM to look at the point map. Presto, there's a 3-arc wide dec model based on the CA nebula's location at that time. Obviously this would all be automatic in practice, with a temporary config file being made and fed to APPM directly... this just lets me debug at each step as I work on the code.

I'll put some more polish and testing on it over the next days. If any NINA user here is interested in trying it out, see me on the NINA Discord chat.

https://i.imgur.com/jU1UQTa.mp4

On Nov 6, 2021, at 15:35, Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:

Hi Linwood,

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?
You could do a simple test to find out! Specifically, you could do a Verify run in APPM with a much smaller number of points than your model. That is, a Verify run does not have to use the same points as your active model. When you do this, take a look at the measured pointing errors in the table that APPM creates in the verify run.

BTW, in case anyone is wondering, there are two main differences between a normal APPM run and a verify:

1) The Verify run keeps the active model on, while a normal run would have modeling off.

2) The Verify run will not replace your active model. That is, APPM won't ask to load it into APCC, and APPM will even warn you if you try to load a verify run.

Also, a verify run will probably be much less useful if you are checking a few Dec Arc rows, because it wouldn't take much longer to create new Dec Arcs.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of ap@...
Sent: Saturday, November 6, 2021 8:33 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

The discussion on refreshing reminds me to ask this.

I set up and tear down nightly, but fairly precisely in the same setup (example: I usually land within 5' of polar
aligned after I put things together).

I have built a nice model of the sky, but for just time constraints (and I guide) I do not build a new model each
night, and because I worry the model is no longer good, I generally do not use one at all.

I know that APPM has a verify process, that will check each model point for consistency (presumably to flush
out equipment variability that may be invalidating it from run to run).

Would it be possible to have a similar process, perhaps a "model sanity check", which would take 10% (or
some specified number of model points), and check just those. The idea is to see if your model is still good
but in far less time than a complete verify run (which basically takes the same time it would to build a model).

I am not sure how to interpret it, but some kind of correlation calculation could tell you if it looks good or bad,
and is worth using. The idea is spending 10 minutes to validate a fairly large model rather than 60-90 minutes
to build a new one.

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?

Linwood















Re: AP1600 Down

Mike Dodd
 

On 11/15/2021 8:15 PM, W Hilmo wrote:
...or set up a concrete pier set deep into the ground, except that it would be temporary, as I have plans to build an observatory next year.
I vote for building the pier now, then build the observatory around it next year.

I've built two observatories, and the concrete pier was the first thing constructed. Here's our latest observatory project if you're interested: <http://house.mdodd.com/project_obs.html> Scroll down for a table of links to the construction steps.
--
Mike

Mike Dodd
Louisa County, Virginia USA
http://astronomy.mdodd.com


Re: AP1600 Down

Dale Ghent
 

If you know where you'll site your observatory, put your pier in now and then build the obsy around it when the time comes for that. Once you nail down what you want for pier height, it's never too early to put it in the ground. You'll be building the deck or concrete slab flooring around it anyhow. There's also the added bonus of it allowing you to figure out how you want to bring data and power to the pier without a floor or slab in the way in case you want to change things.

In the meantime, I would definitely lay sandbags over the field pier's legs to keep the whole thing from being pushed over. As for the aeolian vibration, would you actually be imaging if the wind is hitting your pier that much in the first place?

On Nov 15, 2021, at 20:15, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:

That's kind of my assumption.

I'm actually thinking now about what to do for wind mitigation. I would either put up a very sturdy fence around the mount or set up a concrete pier set deep into the ground, except that it would be temporary, as I have plans to build an observatory next year.

I bought some sand bags a while ago, but the wind break has been working so well that I've not done anything with them. I'm using an Astro-Physics portable field pier, and I think that my problem is that wind is vibrating the turnbuckles. I'm thinking that if I fill the pier with sand bags, that it will dramatically change the resonance frequency of the entire thing.

Do you think it's worth trying the sand bags?

Thanks,
-Wade

On 11/15/21 4:41 PM, Roland Christen via groups.io wrote:
The mount will survive a fall.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: W Hilmo <y.groups@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Mon, Nov 15, 2021 5:47 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] AP1600 Down

I've been keeping my AP1600-AE set up outdoors under a cover almost since I got it in 2012.

I lived in Western Washington most of that time. Our property was surrounded by forest and we never got the full force of the wind at ground level. I've been on the east side of the mountains for the last year, in an area with high winds. 50 mph winds are pretty common.

The wind over here often continues all night long, and it can wreak havoc on imaging (to say the least). For the last couple of months, I've had it surrounded by a wind break, comprised of a 6' high square metal frame, 10 feet on a side, with tarps to break the wind. This has been remarkably effective at allowing me to image in the wind.

I was sitting in my home office today and heard the wind howling (not unusual). The house made kind of a groaning sound with a particularly large gust. I looked out my window just in time to see my wind break pull up the anchors and move across the ground. When it got to the mount, the mount stopped it momentarily until the wind break climbed up and over the mount. As it went over, it pulled the mount over. Fortunately, I removed the scope and accessories from the mount last week, when it became obvious that we'd not have any imaging weather for a while (and even if the scope were still mounted, I've been doing wide field stuff, so it would have been my SV80 and not the AP130). We have a couple of clear nights forecast this week, so I was thinking about putting the scope back on. Now I'm glad that I didn't.

The wind break was completely destroyed. I live in a good sized chunk of property, but the wind was taking the structure towards the road (a few hundred feet from the mount's site), so I went out and cut the tarps loose so that it would (hopefully) stay on my property.

It's still far too windy to attempt any clean up. It was dangerous enough getting the wind break broken up so that it's not still heading across the state to the east. The mount was tipped over to the west, so I'm hoping that the dovetail saddle, or any part of the declination axis made contact with the ground. It's still under the cover, so I need to investigate that once the wind calms. My neighbor has his own weather station that is connected to Weather Underground. It claims that the winds is 34 mph, gusting 38. I don't think that's remotely correct. The gust that took everything down was much stronger than the sustained wind.

I have my fingers crossed that there is no damage to the mount...

-Wade



--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: AP1600 Down

W Hilmo
 

That's kind of my assumption.

I'm actually thinking now about what to do for wind mitigation.  I would either put up a very sturdy fence around the mount or set up a concrete pier set deep into the ground, except that it would be temporary, as I have plans to build an observatory next year.

I bought some sand bags a while ago, but the wind break has been working so well that I've not done anything with them.  I'm using an Astro-Physics portable field pier, and I think that my problem is that wind is vibrating the turnbuckles.  I'm thinking that if I fill the pier with sand bags, that it will dramatically change the resonance frequency of the entire thing.

Do you think it's worth trying the sand bags?

Thanks,
-Wade

On 11/15/21 4:41 PM, Roland Christen via groups.io wrote:
The mount will survive a fall.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: W Hilmo <y.groups@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Mon, Nov 15, 2021 5:47 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] AP1600 Down

I've been keeping my AP1600-AE set up outdoors under a cover almost since I got it in 2012.

I lived in Western Washington most of that time.  Our property was surrounded by forest and we never got the full force of the wind at ground level.  I've been on the east side of the mountains for the last year, in an area with high winds.  50 mph winds are pretty common.

The wind over here often continues all night long, and it can wreak havoc on imaging (to say the least).  For the last couple of months, I've had it surrounded by a wind break, comprised of a 6' high square metal frame, 10 feet on a side, with tarps to break the wind.  This has been remarkably effective at allowing me to image in the wind.

I was sitting in my home office today and heard the wind howling (not unusual).  The house made kind of a groaning sound with a particularly large gust.  I looked out my window just in time to see my wind break pull up the anchors and move across the ground.  When it got to the mount, the mount stopped it momentarily until the wind break climbed up and over the mount.  As it went over, it pulled the mount over.  Fortunately, I removed the scope and accessories from the mount last week, when it became obvious that we'd not have any imaging weather for a while (and even if the scope were still mounted, I've been doing wide field stuff, so it would have been my SV80 and not the AP130).  We have a couple of clear nights forecast this week, so I was thinking about putting the scope back on.  Now I'm glad that I didn't.

The wind break was completely destroyed.  I live in a good sized chunk of property, but the wind was taking the structure towards the road (a few hundred feet from the mount's site), so I went out and cut the tarps loose so that it would (hopefully) stay on my property.

It's still far too windy to attempt any clean up.  It was dangerous enough getting the wind break broken up so that it's not still heading across the state to the east.  The mount was tipped over to the west, so I'm hoping that the dovetail saddle, or any part of the declination axis made contact with the ground.  It's still under the cover, so I need to investigate that once the wind calms.  My neighbor has his own weather station that is connected to Weather Underground.  It claims that the winds is 34 mph, gusting 38.  I don't think that's remotely correct.  The gust that took everything down was much stronger than the sustained wind.

I have my fingers crossed that there is no damage to the mount...

-Wade



--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: AP1600 Down

Roland Christen
 

The mount will survive a fall.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: W Hilmo <y.groups@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Mon, Nov 15, 2021 5:47 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] AP1600 Down

I've been keeping my AP1600-AE set up outdoors under a cover almost since I got it in 2012.

I lived in Western Washington most of that time.  Our property was surrounded by forest and we never got the full force of the wind at ground level.  I've been on the east side of the mountains for the last year, in an area with high winds.  50 mph winds are pretty common.

The wind over here often continues all night long, and it can wreak havoc on imaging (to say the least).  For the last couple of months, I've had it surrounded by a wind break, comprised of a 6' high square metal frame, 10 feet on a side, with tarps to break the wind.  This has been remarkably effective at allowing me to image in the wind.

I was sitting in my home office today and heard the wind howling (not unusual).  The house made kind of a groaning sound with a particularly large gust.  I looked out my window just in time to see my wind break pull up the anchors and move across the ground.  When it got to the mount, the mount stopped it momentarily until the wind break climbed up and over the mount.  As it went over, it pulled the mount over.  Fortunately, I removed the scope and accessories from the mount last week, when it became obvious that we'd not have any imaging weather for a while (and even if the scope were still mounted, I've been doing wide field stuff, so it would have been my SV80 and not the AP130).  We have a couple of clear nights forecast this week, so I was thinking about putting the scope back on.  Now I'm glad that I didn't.

The wind break was completely destroyed.  I live in a good sized chunk of property, but the wind was taking the structure towards the road (a few hundred feet from the mount's site), so I went out and cut the tarps loose so that it would (hopefully) stay on my property.

It's still far too windy to attempt any clean up.  It was dangerous enough getting the wind break broken up so that it's not still heading across the state to the east.  The mount was tipped over to the west, so I'm hoping that the dovetail saddle, or any part of the declination axis made contact with the ground.  It's still under the cover, so I need to investigate that once the wind calms.  My neighbor has his own weather station that is connected to Weather Underground.  It claims that the winds is 34 mph, gusting 38.  I don't think that's remotely correct.  The gust that took everything down was much stronger than the sustained wind.

I have my fingers crossed that there is no damage to the mount...

-Wade



--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: AP1600 Down

Karen Christen
 

😲

 

In contention for bummer of the week, Wade!

Karen

AP

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of W Hilmo
Sent: Monday, November 15, 2021 5:47 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] AP1600 Down

 

I've been keeping my AP1600-AE set up outdoors under a cover almost since I got it in 2012.

I lived in Western Washington most of that time.  Our property was surrounded by forest and we never got the full force of the wind at ground level.  I've been on the east side of the mountains for the last year, in an area with high winds.  50 mph winds are pretty common.

The wind over here often continues all night long, and it can wreak havoc on imaging (to say the least).  For the last couple of months, I've had it surrounded by a wind break, comprised of a 6' high square metal frame, 10 feet on a side, with tarps to break the wind.  This has been remarkably effective at allowing me to image in the wind.

I was sitting in my home office today and heard the wind howling (not unusual).  The house made kind of a groaning sound with a particularly large gust.  I looked out my window just in time to see my wind break pull up the anchors and move across the ground.  When it got to the mount, the mount stopped it momentarily until the wind break climbed up and over the mount.  As it went over, it pulled the mount over.  Fortunately, I removed the scope and accessories from the mount last week, when it became obvious that we'd not have any imaging weather for a while (and even if the scope were still mounted, I've been doing wide field stuff, so it would have been my SV80 and not the AP130).  We have a couple of clear nights forecast this week, so I was thinking about putting the scope back on.  Now I'm glad that I didn't.

The wind break was completely destroyed.  I live in a good sized chunk of property, but the wind was taking the structure towards the road (a few hundred feet from the mount's site), so I went out and cut the tarps loose so that it would (hopefully) stay on my property.

It's still far too windy to attempt any clean up.  It was dangerous enough getting the wind break broken up so that it's not still heading across the state to the east.  The mount was tipped over to the west, so I'm hoping that the dovetail saddle, or any part of the declination axis made contact with the ground.  It's still under the cover, so I need to investigate that once the wind calms.  My neighbor has his own weather station that is connected to Weather Underground.  It claims that the winds is 34 mph, gusting 38.  I don't think that's remotely correct.  The gust that took everything down was much stronger than the sustained wind.

I have my fingers crossed that there is no damage to the mount...

-Wade


--
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics


AP1600 Down

W Hilmo
 

I've been keeping my AP1600-AE set up outdoors under a cover almost since I got it in 2012.

I lived in Western Washington most of that time.  Our property was surrounded by forest and we never got the full force of the wind at ground level.  I've been on the east side of the mountains for the last year, in an area with high winds.  50 mph winds are pretty common.

The wind over here often continues all night long, and it can wreak havoc on imaging (to say the least).  For the last couple of months, I've had it surrounded by a wind break, comprised of a 6' high square metal frame, 10 feet on a side, with tarps to break the wind.  This has been remarkably effective at allowing me to image in the wind.

I was sitting in my home office today and heard the wind howling (not unusual).  The house made kind of a groaning sound with a particularly large gust.  I looked out my window just in time to see my wind break pull up the anchors and move across the ground.  When it got to the mount, the mount stopped it momentarily until the wind break climbed up and over the mount.  As it went over, it pulled the mount over.  Fortunately, I removed the scope and accessories from the mount last week, when it became obvious that we'd not have any imaging weather for a while (and even if the scope were still mounted, I've been doing wide field stuff, so it would have been my SV80 and not the AP130).  We have a couple of clear nights forecast this week, so I was thinking about putting the scope back on.  Now I'm glad that I didn't.

The wind break was completely destroyed.  I live in a good sized chunk of property, but the wind was taking the structure towards the road (a few hundred feet from the mount's site), so I went out and cut the tarps loose so that it would (hopefully) stay on my property.

It's still far too windy to attempt any clean up.  It was dangerous enough getting the wind break broken up so that it's not still heading across the state to the east.  The mount was tipped over to the west, so I'm hoping that the dovetail saddle, or any part of the declination axis made contact with the ground.  It's still under the cover, so I need to investigate that once the wind calms.  My neighbor has his own weather station that is connected to Weather Underground.  It claims that the winds is 34 mph, gusting 38.  I don't think that's remotely correct.  The gust that took everything down was much stronger than the sustained wind.

I have my fingers crossed that there is no damage to the mount...

-Wade



Re: Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

Luca Marinelli
 

Good point, Michael. I did use the extension to connect the CP4 to the mount so it clears the tripod as well.

Luca 

On Nov 15, 2021, at 3:23 PM, Michael Kelly via groups.io <Michael@...> wrote:


Linda,

I use the AP Q6280KIT bracket that attaches the control box adapter with the Mach1. I would suggest calling them and speak with George, he is a wealth of information and loves sharing his intel!

Best,

Michael

On Monday, November 15, 2021, 03:16:46 PM EST, Luca Marinelli <photo@...> wrote:


Hi Linda,

Congratulations on the new telescope! I have used the Mach 1 with an Avalon T-Pod 110 and you will not even need the flat surface adapter. The bolt pattern on the T-Pod is compatible with the ADATRI adapter for the Mach 1. The T-Pod is a fairly rigid tripod and it should be a good match for your optics. I used the Mach 1/T-Pod combination with a 10in f4 Newtonian for about a year until I moved the telescope to a AP1100 on a Losmandy tripod. Obviously the bigger mount and beefier tripod made for a much more substantial platform but the Mach1/T-Pod was no slouch either. If you have that equipment in your hands, no reason not to give it a go. The only limitation will be how much wind that system can tolerate.

Cheers,

Luca


-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Linda Thomas via groups.io
Sent: Monday, November 15, 2021 2:28 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

I recently bought a new-to-me but pristine TOA-130. I hadn’t planned to buy a larger telescope until I upgraded my mount from the current EQ6-r I’ve been using but this was too good an opportunity to pass up. The EQ6-r has actually done better than I expected but it’s really asking quite a lot of it for it to handle this  beast of a telescope.

I’m actually on the waiting list for a Mach2 but a friend with an older Mach1 is kindly going to lend me his mount in the meantime. I have an Avalon T-Pod 110 that I was thinking of mounting it on. Is that a good option for this combination? I won’t be traveling with this setup but it will have to set up/tear down periodically. I’ve got a scope cover I can use if the weather isn’t too scary but when the bigger storms come through it has the option to stay outside for longer periods.

I know I’l need the Flat Surface Adapter to attach the mount to the tripod. I’m also guessing I’ll need a pier extension to raise the mount up for the long telescope. I’m at 39N lattitude. Would an 8 inch extension be the right choice?

I might need a bracket to attach the control box to the tripod…not sure how he currently has his attached to a wood tripod now though I have that question out to him. If his current bracket isn’t suitable, what would I need for the T-Pod 110?

Thanks in advance!

Linda










Re: APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

W Hilmo
 

Do you have any links to an alternative description of how this works?

The video on the first link is, as you say, in potato mode.  The YouTube link has legible video, but both videos are missing audio for me.  I may have a clear night or two this week and I would like to experiment with integrating creation of the dec-arc tracking model into my sequence.

Thanks,
-Wade

On 11/7/21 12:47 AM, Dale Ghent wrote:
Ack! I didn't realize that imgur reduced the video resolution to potato mode. Here's a better view:

https://youtu.be/OoJCp6sZhuo

On Nov 7, 2021, at 02:38, Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:


I meant to get this rolling sooner, but life threw me a curveball last month. Thanks to Ray's additions to the upcoming APCC Pro 1.9.1.x, there's now an easy way to programmatically feed model creation parameters to APPM so that it can produce a model plan using that also considers the other things you might have configured in APPM - horizons, limits, ordering strategy and so on.

So I created a new sequencer instruction for my AP mount plugin for NINA called "Create Dec Arc Model". It will get the RA and dec of the current target and have APPM create a model plan based on that info. You would place this instruction at the start of a target's run so that a dec-arc model is created and put in place prior to getting down to business.

It'll currently create 3 arcs - 1 centered on or (or at least very near) the target's declination, and 2 additional arcs - one on the north side and the other on the south side of the target's declination, separated from the center arc by a configurable number of degrees. Point density along the arcs, in the RA, is another parameter that can be tuned. The arcs will begin (ie, their eastern-most extent) slightly before the target's current hour angle and extend to the configured minimum altitude or the western horizon limit, whichever is hit first. Obviously it's quite advantageous to use your local horizon limits in order to cut down on pointless (ha ha) map points.

Below is a short video of me futzing around with the new code. In it, I select a target in Stellarium (the CA nebula) and import it into NINA's Framing Assistant. I then create a target session using a small sequence template I made that has just the "Create Dec Arc Model" instruction in it. I then run that sequence. With debug logging on, the APPM configuration gets quoted in NINA's log file, so I copy and pasted that config into its own text file and loaded it into APPM to look at the point map. Presto, there's a 3-arc wide dec model based on the CA nebula's location at that time. Obviously this would all be automatic in practice, with a temporary config file being made and fed to APPM directly... this just lets me debug at each step as I work on the code.

I'll put some more polish and testing on it over the next days. If any NINA user here is interested in trying it out, see me on the NINA Discord chat.

https://i.imgur.com/jU1UQTa.mp4

On Nov 6, 2021, at 15:35, Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:

Hi Linwood,

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?
You could do a simple test to find out! Specifically, you could do a Verify run in APPM with a much smaller number of points than your model. That is, a Verify run does not have to use the same points as your active model. When you do this, take a look at the measured pointing errors in the table that APPM creates in the verify run.

BTW, in case anyone is wondering, there are two main differences between a normal APPM run and a verify:

1) The Verify run keeps the active model on, while a normal run would have modeling off.

2) The Verify run will not replace your active model. That is, APPM won't ask to load it into APCC, and APPM will even warn you if you try to load a verify run.

Also, a verify run will probably be much less useful if you are checking a few Dec Arc rows, because it wouldn't take much longer to create new Dec Arcs.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of ap@...
Sent: Saturday, November 6, 2021 8:33 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] APPM Model sanity check (suggestion)

The discussion on refreshing reminds me to ask this.

I set up and tear down nightly, but fairly precisely in the same setup (example: I usually land within 5' of polar
aligned after I put things together).

I have built a nice model of the sky, but for just time constraints (and I guide) I do not build a new model each
night, and because I worry the model is no longer good, I generally do not use one at all.

I know that APPM has a verify process, that will check each model point for consistency (presumably to flush
out equipment variability that may be invalidating it from run to run).

Would it be possible to have a similar process, perhaps a "model sanity check", which would take 10% (or
some specified number of model points), and check just those. The idea is to see if your model is still good
but in far less time than a complete verify run (which basically takes the same time it would to build a model).

I am not sure how to interpret it, but some kind of correlation calculation could tell you if it looks good or bad,
and is worth using. The idea is spending 10 minutes to validate a fairly large model rather than 60-90 minutes
to build a new one.

Or... am I just crazy to consider reusing a model after a tear down and reassembly?

Linwood









Re: Tripod mounting of 1600GTO

Roland Christen
 

For the 1600 nothing beats an ATS for rigidity. I have found that wood tripods like the Berlebach will twist slightly with variable moisture in the atmosphere, and thus change the polar alignment. Not my choice for a permanent setup, but fine for portable use.

Our portable piers are also great for backyard setups and don't cost as much as the ATS.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: Howard Ritter via groups.io <howard.ritter@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Mon, Nov 15, 2021 2:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Tripod mounting of 1600GTO

I have been hoping to put my 1600GTO mount, due in February, on a pedestal in my side yard. This is looking like it may not be feasible, and I’m thinking again of the idea of tripod mounting. I have a Meade Giant Field Tripod for my 16” LX200 that I could have an adapter machined for, but that tripod may be too much to deal with easily.

I have a spare Berlebach Planet tripod rated for 120 kg, but I don’t know whether it’s adequate for the 100 kg of mount, scope, and counterweights that I have in mind (PlaneWave 14”, or failing that, a C14).

If the Planet is marginal for astroimaging with this setup, what’s a good option? Berlebach makes a bigger tripod, the Graviton, rated for 220 kg, but it’s 5x the cost of a Planet. The listing fo the A-P Eagle doesn’t mention a mount as big as the 1600. That leaves the Bisque Pyramid.

Any thoughts? Experiences?

—howard







--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Tripod mounting of 1600GTO

Howard Ritter
 

I have been hoping to put my 1600GTO mount, due in February, on a pedestal in my side yard. This is looking like it may not be feasible, and I’m thinking again of the idea of tripod mounting. I have a Meade Giant Field Tripod for my 16” LX200 that I could have an adapter machined for, but that tripod may be too much to deal with easily.

I have a spare Berlebach Planet tripod rated for 120 kg, but I don’t know whether it’s adequate for the 100 kg of mount, scope, and counterweights that I have in mind (PlaneWave 14”, or failing that, a C14).

If the Planet is marginal for astroimaging with this setup, what’s a good option? Berlebach makes a bigger tripod, the Graviton, rated for 220 kg, but it’s 5x the cost of a Planet. The listing fo the A-P Eagle doesn’t mention a mount as big as the 1600. That leaves the Bisque Pyramid.

Any thoughts? Experiences?

—howard


Re: Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

Michael Kelly
 

Linda,

I use the AP Q6280KIT bracket that attaches the control box adapter with the Mach1. I would suggest calling them and speak with George, he is a wealth of information and loves sharing his intel!

Best,

Michael

On Monday, November 15, 2021, 03:16:46 PM EST, Luca Marinelli <photo@...> wrote:


Hi Linda,

Congratulations on the new telescope! I have used the Mach 1 with an Avalon T-Pod 110 and you will not even need the flat surface adapter. The bolt pattern on the T-Pod is compatible with the ADATRI adapter for the Mach 1. The T-Pod is a fairly rigid tripod and it should be a good match for your optics. I used the Mach 1/T-Pod combination with a 10in f4 Newtonian for about a year until I moved the telescope to a AP1100 on a Losmandy tripod. Obviously the bigger mount and beefier tripod made for a much more substantial platform but the Mach1/T-Pod was no slouch either. If you have that equipment in your hands, no reason not to give it a go. The only limitation will be how much wind that system can tolerate.

Cheers,

Luca


-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Linda Thomas via groups.io
Sent: Monday, November 15, 2021 2:28 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

I recently bought a new-to-me but pristine TOA-130. I hadn’t planned to buy a larger telescope until I upgraded my mount from the current EQ6-r I’ve been using but this was too good an opportunity to pass up. The EQ6-r has actually done better than I expected but it’s really asking quite a lot of it for it to handle this  beast of a telescope.

I’m actually on the waiting list for a Mach2 but a friend with an older Mach1 is kindly going to lend me his mount in the meantime. I have an Avalon T-Pod 110 that I was thinking of mounting it on. Is that a good option for this combination? I won’t be traveling with this setup but it will have to set up/tear down periodically. I’ve got a scope cover I can use if the weather isn’t too scary but when the bigger storms come through it has the option to stay outside for longer periods.

I know I’l need the Flat Surface Adapter to attach the mount to the tripod. I’m also guessing I’ll need a pier extension to raise the mount up for the long telescope. I’m at 39N lattitude. Would an 8 inch extension be the right choice?

I might need a bracket to attach the control box to the tripod…not sure how he currently has his attached to a wood tripod now though I have that question out to him. If his current bracket isn’t suitable, what would I need for the T-Pod 110?

Thanks in advance!

Linda










Re: Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

Luca Marinelli
 

Hi Linda,

Congratulations on the new telescope! I have used the Mach 1 with an Avalon T-Pod 110 and you will not even need the flat surface adapter. The bolt pattern on the T-Pod is compatible with the ADATRI adapter for the Mach 1. The T-Pod is a fairly rigid tripod and it should be a good match for your optics. I used the Mach 1/T-Pod combination with a 10in f4 Newtonian for about a year until I moved the telescope to a AP1100 on a Losmandy tripod. Obviously the bigger mount and beefier tripod made for a much more substantial platform but the Mach1/T-Pod was no slouch either. If you have that equipment in your hands, no reason not to give it a go. The only limitation will be how much wind that system can tolerate.

Cheers,

Luca

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Linda Thomas via groups.io
Sent: Monday, November 15, 2021 2:28 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Takahashi TOA-130 on a mach1

I recently bought a new-to-me but pristine TOA-130. I hadn’t planned to buy a larger telescope until I upgraded my mount from the current EQ6-r I’ve been using but this was too good an opportunity to pass up. The EQ6-r has actually done better than I expected but it’s really asking quite a lot of it for it to handle this beast of a telescope.

I’m actually on the waiting list for a Mach2 but a friend with an older Mach1 is kindly going to lend me his mount in the meantime. I have an Avalon T-Pod 110 that I was thinking of mounting it on. Is that a good option for this combination? I won’t be traveling with this setup but it will have to set up/tear down periodically. I’ve got a scope cover I can use if the weather isn’t too scary but when the bigger storms come through it has the option to stay outside for longer periods.

I know I’l need the Flat Surface Adapter to attach the mount to the tripod. I’m also guessing I’ll need a pier extension to raise the mount up for the long telescope. I’m at 39N lattitude. Would an 8 inch extension be the right choice?

I might need a bracket to attach the control box to the tripod…not sure how he currently has his attached to a wood tripod now though I have that question out to him. If his current bracket isn’t suitable, what would I need for the T-Pod 110?

Thanks in advance!

Linda

5161 - 5180 of 88034