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A few astro shots off the balcony.

SeanNeedham

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Just a few shots off the balcony, first one is the Orion nebula with the Lost Jewel of Orion (just below) and the Running Man nebula just above, the second is Pleiades, and the third is the whole of the constellation of Orion with what's mentioned in the first image as well as traces of both the Heart Nebula and the Horsehead nebula; both of which I'm going to try and get in more detail in due course.

I did try twice for the M33 (Triangulum) galaxy the other night but it's just a bit too far away in terms of reach; maybe next year...

RSN_2922.jpg

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wraggtime

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Lovely shots Sean, proper dark sky where you are then?
 

rebel06

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Can you tell us what equipment you used for these great images Sean ... were they tracked .... and your settings please.
I'm waiting for the arrival of a Sky Watcher AZ-GTi Head and hope to get into this astro stuff this winter.
 

SeanNeedham

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Lovely shots Sean, proper dark sky where you are then?
Depends on the time of the night, Dave! On one side there is the village where it's possible to see the milky way from the middle and ten minutes on foot up the other way it's nearly dark sky on the other side of the mountain. Added bonus is the municipal council turn off 70% of the lights in the area at midnight only leaving street lights on.

Can you tell us what equipment you used for these great images Sean ... were they tracked .... and your settings please.
I'm waiting for the arrival of a Sky Watcher AZ-GTi Head and hope to get into this astro stuff this winter.
It's just my home brew barn door, Paul. First was 59 minutes of 30 seconds + 10 darks, same for flats and biases; ISO 1600, 200mm F:/4 (really should have masked the lens not used the aperture), stacked, registered with 2x drizzle in SiriL (freebie, heavy learning curve, very featured as a stacker and processing engine). Nikon D300

Second, 140 (binned four) at 20 seconds a piece (one of the neighbours had left the balcony light on so couldn't get slower without issues), same amount of darks, flats and biases as before, 200mm F:/2.8. Nikon D300

Third was 59 * 62 second subs on the D700, 135mm focal length, ten flats/biases/darks on that at ISO 1600.

All were finished a bit in Photoshop, just tidying up things like colour cast, star reduction.

All in, I could get (with compass/drift alignment, as I've not seen Polaris since about March, except when I'm on a run) about 5 minutes per sub at 200mm over about 75 minutes on the rig at the moment (to get any longer and I'll need to go buy some longer guide rods for the drive!) but longer the sub then most likely getting a neighbour turning the light on, no guiding or any fancy like that!

That Skywatcher does look a nice head, I've been looking at the Fornax Lightrack II for a bit further down the road, but at the moment I'm still working through some plans to build a more stable unit instead of a couple of boards clunked together.
 

rebel06

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Thanks Sean, can we see a pic of your set up?
 

SeanNeedham

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Thanks Sean, can we see a pic of your set up?
I'll sort one out later on as I've not got it set up at the moment, but if the forecast is to be believed, I'm planning on taking another run around Orion tonight. Probably the last chance to do anything at reasonable hours until next month what with moon glow.
 

SeanNeedham

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@rebel06, I just remembered I've posted the rig on here the other day (I had the first day off call in six months yesterday and the brain didn't know what had hit it). It's going to get a few changes as now the moon is up I can't really get much until the end of next week, so I'm building up a controller to do something similar based on what this fella has written up here just to see how that gets on... After that, it'll probably end up with me sorting the budget out for a "made" product, with a guider (probably PHD2 on a RaspberryPi).
 
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