Date   

M27 OSC and Mono combined

Robert Chozick
 

I was working on combining data from the ZWO 2600 color and 2600 mono cameras for the first time.  I had some equipment problems and the sky was not great but I did manage to get something from both cameras to combine.  I threw out a lot of subs and the OIII and Ha couldn’t be used to the fullest as they looked pretty bad.  I just used some of the Ha and OIII in the nebula itself and not in the background or stars.   I at least found out my adapters used for the color without the filter wheel and the mono with the filter wheel did get the same size image with the AP telecompressor and my RC scope.  I was worried they would not match.


https://pbase.com/rchozick/image/171822160

Robert


How to tighten Mach2 base

yanzhe liu
 

I came to notice some backlash when I moved my telescope back and forth. Initially I thought it must have been RA or DEC, but then I realized that it was the base.

I tried to tighten the bolt underneath the base, it got slightly better but did not fix the problem. The bolt is already very tight so I dont want to tighten it any further.

Does anyone see a similar issue? It probably wont affect the imaging but it may affect polar alignment if someone accidentally moves the mount between sessions.

IMG_3107.jpg


Re: Tool for saddle clamping

M Hambrick
 

I think I see a trend here. The older dovetails (DOVE15 and DOVELM2) use the brass locking pins that Chris mentioned, and they also have plain knobs without the hex head assist feature. The newer designs of dovetail plates (DOVELM162 for example) have the wide clamps instead of locking pins and they all come with knobs that have the hex head feature.

I have a DOVELM162, and normally I will only use the little jar gripper to tighten the knobs, and if necessary I will use a hex key to break the clamps loose when I take everything down. Be careful using a hex key to tighten these knobs. I have seen several posts on the forum where members said they broke the hex head loose in the clamp from overtightening.

I do like the concept of the ADM Rosette Knob Tool though. I am going to look into getting one.

Mike


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

M Hambrick
 

Thanks Glenn and Steve. I will definitely check those out.

Mike


Re: Tool for saddle clamping

weems@...
 

I have the ADM Rosette Knob Tool, which I use with their TGAD that enables me to collimate my 6" f9 with the C14 on my tandem setup. Unfortunately, there is one knob on the TGAD that is blocked by the saddle, so I have to reach in with an adjustable wrench to turn it (which mars it up). Before I had the tool, I would turn the other knobs using the wrench and a piece of cloth wrapped around them, which gripped well enough without marring. 

Another place where AP knobs lack the hex key insert is the standard azimuth adjusters for the 900 mount, where it would be useful to have a little more leverage for finer movements. I'm still looking for one of the heavy-duty adjusters, which addressed the problem with larger knobs. The wrench/cloth technique doesn't help in that case, since it doesn't really allow for fine control.

Chip


Re: Tool for saddle clamping

drgert1
 

Hello Mike,

The part is from 2005. At th time it was called DOVELM2. Maybe AP has replacement knobs? My main issue is not tightening the knobs, but loosening after an observing sessions (maybe late at night). I have seen temperature changes making the knobs tighter.

Cheers,
Gert


Re: Mach 2 + 12.5" AGO iDK?

Bill Long
 

Circling back on this as I finally got to test this out. I put my 12.5" AGO iDK, Moonlight Nitecrawler, FLI Proline 16803, CFW 5-7, Sagitta OAG, and Ultrastar guide camera on the Mach 2. Balancing the load was pretty easy to do, and I had just enough weights on hand for the job. This is pretty much at capacity for the mount based on the specifications. Might even be a tad over. 😁

Performance was stellar. I made a 98pt model in APPM, and used 5 second guide exposures. I took 5 hours worth of 20 minute HA subs and not a single one had any trailing at all. Very nice tight round stars in all of the images. Guiding was about 0.2-0.35" range throughout the night. Graph picture below.

I'll be getting some more data over the next few nights. I'll share some subs later this evening when I'm back on the Astro PC.

Conclusion: Mach 2 is a beastly mount that easily handled this challenge and passed with flying colors. Well done AP!

image/png


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...>
Sent: Friday, April 23, 2021 5:44 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach 2 + 12.5" AGO iDK?
 
Well, I've never tried that scope, but I have loaded my Mach2 to the limit and imaged/guided just fine. Balance is critical and is easy to do.

Weight makes for larger moment, which makes the mount slower to respond to external disturbance, like wind. If your scope is open tube with no shroud, wind will not be a problem.

I will be loading my Mach2 with a 12" F8 carbon fiber Maksutov astrograph in the next couple days. Weight is about the same as your system. I expect that it will handle it fine and will post some guiding results. Will be getting ready for galaxy season.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long <bill@...>
To: AP-GTO Groups. io <ap-gto@groups.io>
Sent: Fri, Apr 23, 2021 7:07 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Mach 2 + 12.5" AGO iDK?

What say ye?


46lbs, but would need to add focuser (8lbs), TCS System (1lb), and camera/accessories (call these 5 lbs). The OTA is about 18" tall (maybe 17.5" but lets call it 18") so this puts me at 18" and 60 lbs.  This puts me right on the yellow on the Mach 2 graph AP has. Length of everything, in focus with camera gear on would be about 45". 

Seems right at the limits, but likely safe. Any ideas on this from AP or others?

-Bill 

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

Glenn
 

Steve beat me to it. Adam has two outstanding video series: the Fundamentals series for beginner/intermediate and Horizons for more advanced users. I subscribe to both and consider my subscriptions to be some of the best money I've spent in this hobby. When you consider how much an in-person course costs, the price of his videos is a bargain. He must have more than a hundred hours of video in his two offerings. What I love about his instruction is that he does not only teach the how but the why. He does not give the cookbook approach to processing. Check it out!

https://adamblockstudios.com/categories/PixInsight

Best, 

Glenn


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

Steve Reilly
 

Mike you may want to look at Adam Block’s series on image processing. It’s extensive and covers a vast majority of processes and is a subscription based service backed with an active forum.

 

-Steve

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of M Hambrick
Sent: Sunday, July 25, 2021 8:57 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

 

Thanks for sharing your techniques Glen.

I wouldn't describe myself as a beginner, but my processing techniques are nowhere near as sophisticated as yours. I have been doing all of my processing using MaxIm DL Pro, but your comments along with tips I have gotten from others have me convinced that I need to investigate some of the other processing software.

Of course having the software is only the beginning. Then I have to learn how to use it. Even with MaxIm DL I have not come close to exploiting all of the capabilities that it has. It would really be great if I could find an image processing course or seminar to attend at NEAF or one of the other astronomy conferences.

Mike


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

M Hambrick
 

Thanks for sharing your techniques Glen.

I wouldn't describe myself as a beginner, but my processing techniques are nowhere near as sophisticated as yours. I have been doing all of my processing using MaxIm DL Pro, but your comments along with tips I have gotten from others have me convinced that I need to investigate some of the other processing software.

Of course having the software is only the beginning. Then I have to learn how to use it. Even with MaxIm DL I have not come close to exploiting all of the capabilities that it has. It would really be great if I could find an image processing course or seminar to attend at NEAF or one of the other astronomy conferences.

Mike


Re: Preventing Pier Crashes

Ray Gralak
 

At present, I don't think there is a software solution. You might be able to first slew to
park 3 before doing another slew or parking to park 1.
Sure, that would work if I'm manually controlling the scope. I don't know a way of doing
that if using SGP. I've had SGP send the scope into the pier as well.
It sounds like SGP cannot handle the scope's "dead zone." So, even if a way to avoid a slew collision is made available, some slews that SGP issues could fail and ruin your session. The best solution may be to address the mechanical issue that can cause a collision.

-Ray


Re: Preventing Pier Crashes

Christopher Erickson
 

If it were me, I would be refabbing those pier plates to eliminate the conflict.

"My advice is always free and worth every penny!"

-Christopher Erickson
Observatory Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, Hawaii


On Sat, Jul 24, 2021 at 10:46 PM Alex <groups@...> wrote:
On Sat, Jul 24, 2021 at 07:43 PM, Ray Gralak wrote:
It can happen in a counterweight down position.
Can you post a few pictures from different angles of this scenario?
Ok, here the scope was at park position 1 and I've only slewed in dec.  As you can see, if I were to proceed any further vertically, the camera is hitting the pier.  You can see I've added some foam tape to that corner as this has happened before.  Perhaps I can somehow cut that corner off the pier plate.  I'd have to do the opposite corner as well as I have the same problem on the other side of the pier.



At present, I don't think there is a software solution. You might be able to first slew to park 3 before doing another slew or parking to park 1.
Sure, that would work if I'm manually controlling the scope.  I don't know a way of doing that if using SGP.  I've had SGP send the scope into the pier as well.

BTW, are you using Park 1 to fit the setup under a roll-off roof?
Yea, my roof is at a slight angle and a bit higher on the park position 1 side.  Why it's possible to close the roof while in park position 4, the clearance is very tight.  I feel much more comfortable using park position 1 as I have another inch or two clearance on that side.  Also, if the scope was to start tracking from park 1 while the roof was closed for some reason, it's the counterweight bar hitting the roof, not the scope.
 
Alex
 


Re: Preventing Pier Crashes

Alex
 

On Sat, Jul 24, 2021 at 07:43 PM, Ray Gralak wrote:
It can happen in a counterweight down position.
Can you post a few pictures from different angles of this scenario?
Ok, here the scope was at park position 1 and I've only slewed in dec.  As you can see, if I were to proceed any further vertically, the camera is hitting the pier.  You can see I've added some foam tape to that corner as this has happened before.  Perhaps I can somehow cut that corner off the pier plate.  I'd have to do the opposite corner as well as I have the same problem on the other side of the pier.



At present, I don't think there is a software solution. You might be able to first slew to park 3 before doing another slew or parking to park 1.
Sure, that would work if I'm manually controlling the scope.  I don't know a way of doing that if using SGP.  I've had SGP send the scope into the pier as well.

BTW, are you using Park 1 to fit the setup under a roll-off roof?
Yea, my roof is at a slight angle and a bit higher on the park position 1 side.  Why it's possible to close the roof while in park position 4, the clearance is very tight.  I feel much more comfortable using park position 1 as I have another inch or two clearance on that side.  Also, if the scope was to start tracking from park 1 while the roof was closed for some reason, it's the counterweight bar hitting the roof, not the scope.
 
Alex
 


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

Glenn
 

Hi Mike,
 
I am happy to share any and all of my techniques but it’s hard to give advice without knowing where you are on the learning curve. I’ll give it a shot, though.

I do all of my pre-processing and most of my processing in PixInsight. After stacking, I usually process each master image (i.e. Ha, OIII, and SII) with DynamicBackgroundExtraction. Then I will stretch the histogram with HistogramTransformation, MaskedStretch or some combination of the two. This is usually followed by a round of noise reduction with TGVDenoise and sometimes MultiscaleMedianTransformation. Then I use Starnet+ to make starless versions of each master. With the stars removed, I generally stretch the images further and enhance details with tools like LocalHistogramEqualization and HDRMultiscale Transformation. I then combine the tweaked starless masters to make an RGB image. This is refined with color saturation and color balance adjustments. When I am happy with it, I will add the stars back in using PixelMath.

is that the kind of advice you were looking for? I’m happy to talk to you about it privately, if you prefer.
 
Kind regards,
 
Glenn


Re: 92mm Stowaway 4th Run Update

Bill Long
 

I won't sign up since I already have one. :) Sharing is caring.


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Christopher Erickson <christopher.k.erickson@...>
Sent: Friday, July 23, 2021 8:22 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 92mm Stowaway 4th Run Update
 
I am going to assume that the only fair way is that everyone only gets to sign up once.

And only one entry per household.

And that cheaters will be disqualified.

I also assume that it would only be fair if existing Stowaway owners wouldn't be allowed to play either (darn!)

And that entries must have a verifiable name, verifiable email address, verifiable phone number and a verifiable physical address to qualify.

Did I miss anything? LOL

-Christopher Erickson
Observatory Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, Hawaii


On Fri, Jul 23, 2021 at 6:16 PM Jim H <jamesnhead@...> wrote:
I hope not, I'd be on the astro-physics site 24/7.

On Fri, Jul 23, 2021 at 8:11 PM dvjbaja <jpgleasonid@...> wrote:
Can you sign up more than once?  That would make it a little more interesting.  Do you have to be present to win?  ;-)



Sent via the Samsung Galaxy Note9, an AT&T 5G Evolution capable smartphone


-------- Original message --------
From: thefamily90 Phillips <thefamily90@...>
Date: 7/23/21 5:52 PM (GMT-08:00)
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 92mm Stowaway 4th Run Update

In a week. Starting July 31.

On Fri, Jul 23, 2021 at 4:28 PM Karen Christen <karen@...> wrote:

You may sign up directly on the website, Marcelo. 

Karen

AP

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Marcelo Figueroa via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 23, 2021 3:06 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 92mm Stowaway 4th Run Update

 

Chile. I have bought my Mach1 (sold) and Mach2 through my local dealer without any problems.

 

For now I'm just being curious and haven't decided anything yet ;).


--
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Preventing Pier Crashes

Ray Gralak
 

It can happen in a counterweight down position.
Can you post a few pictures from different angles of this scenario?

At present, I don't think there is a software solution. You might be able to first slew to park 3 before doing another slew or parking to park 1.

BTW, are you using Park 1 to fit the setup under a roll-off roof?

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Alex
Sent: Saturday, July 24, 2021 5:45 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Preventing Pier Crashes

On Sat, Jul 24, 2021 at 05:21 AM, Ray Gralak wrote:

Hi Alex,

Are the collision zones you mentioned in counterweight-up or counterweight-down position?

It can happen in a counterweight down position. For instance, last night, I was imaging m16 in the south on the east
side of the meridian. Clouds rolled in right before reaching the meridian so I decided to call it a night and I parked the
mount (park position one). The RA axis was essentially in the correct position so it only had to move a small amount
to put the RA in the park 1 position. The DEC had to swing the scope from pointing south to pointing north. As it
made this transition, the camera swung down as the scope rotated around and as it approached the zenith, the
camera crashed into my pier as it protrudes too much for the scope to safely reach the zenith.

What I want to do is define this zone of death so the scope will never attempt to slew through this zone.

Alex


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

Glenn
 

Thank you all very much for the kind words.
 
Best,
 
Glenn


Re: The Elephant Trunk Nebula in the Hubble palette

M Hambrick
 

Great image Glenn

It would be great if you could share some of your processing techniques. I consider myself still in the learning phase and any tips are appreciated.

Mike


Re: Tool for saddle clamping

Jack Huerkamp
 

Woody,

 

Anthony mentioned to me years ago he was working on a tool for the knobs, and with my aging hands, it has been a delight to use.

 

And the price is most reasonable when you consider the quality of the machining.

 

Yours truly,

 

Jack

 

Jack Huerkamp

Jack's Astro Accessories, LLC

38388 Pine Street

Pearl River, LA 70452-5192

985-445-5063

mallincamusa@...

www.mallincamusa.com

30.37N  89.76W

 

All of us get lost in the darkness.
Dreamers learn to steer by the stars.

………………………………….Neil Peart

 

 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Saturday, July 24, 2021 7:43 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Tool for saddle clamping

 

Jack,

 

That’s a great looking tool.  And I thought I knew everything ADM made and sold.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Saturday, July 24, 2021 4:51 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Cc: mallincamusa@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Tool for saddle clamping

 

I find that the ADM Rosette Know Hand Tool works well for me:

 

ADM Rosette Knob Hand Tool - TOOL (highpointscientific.com)

 

Yours truly,

 

Jack

 

Jack Huerkamp

Jack's Astro Accessories, LLC

38388 Pine Street

Pearl River, LA 70452-5192

985-445-5063

mallincamusa@...

www.mallincamusa.com

30.37N  89.76W

 

All of us get lost in the darkness.
Dreamers learn to steer by the stars.

………………………………….Neil Peart

 

 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Saturday, July 24, 2021 2:54 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Tool for saddle clamping

 

A small strap-wrench would probably also work.  They have lots of leverage and the rubber/plastic parts don’t mar the aluminum.

 

But I’m confused.  All my AP knobs have a hex socket in the middle of the knob.  That said, all mine are at least 6 years old.  So maybe AP has recently changed to the solid knobs with no hex socket in the middle.  Too bad.  Although I’ve NEVER needed to tighten anything that tight.  But I can see perhaps needing the hex key to loosen a stuck or seized knob.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of M Hambrick
Sent: Saturday, July 24, 2021 11:56 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Tool for saddle clamping

 

Hi Gert

Out of curiosity what is the part number of your dovetail plate ? The knobs look like those on my DOVE15 which has no hex head bolts in the clamping knobs either.

I have had pretty good luck using a jar lid gripper on these knobs. They are simple, cheap, and effective. You can find them in the kitchen section of most department stores (e.g. Wal-Mart). I have noticed something interesting about these grippers though. It seems that after a period of time they will lose their "grippiness" and you will have to replace it.

Mike

 

Virus-free. www.avg.com


Re: Preventing Pier Crashes

Alex
 

On Sat, Jul 24, 2021 at 05:21 AM, Ray Gralak wrote:

Hi Alex,

Are the collision zones you mentioned in counterweight-up or counterweight-down position?

It can happen in a counterweight down position. For instance, last night, I was imaging m16 in the south on the east side of the meridian. Clouds rolled in right before reaching the meridian so I decided to call it a night and I parked the mount (park position one). The RA axis was essentially in the correct position so it only had to move a small amount to put the RA in the park 1 position. The DEC had to swing the scope from pointing south to pointing north. As it made this transition, the camera swung down as the scope rotated around and as it approached the zenith, the camera crashed into my pier as it protrudes too much for the scope to safely reach the zenith.

What I want to do is define this zone of death so the scope will never attempt to slew through this zone.

Alex

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