Image of the day

Captured by
Ron Masters

Messier 87

My Account

New to Astromart?

Register an account...

Need Help?

Posts Made By: Derrick Lipinski

October 7, 2003 03:18 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

First Attempt at Saturn

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hello All.

Attached is my first attempt at Saturn,
and my second attempt at astrophotography.

This is a composite of images taken Saturday
morning, October 4, 2003 using a 14" LX200GPS
at f/10. No barlow or eyepiece projection used,
just straight through the telescope. I was happy
that I picked up a couple of cloud bands straddling
the planet.


October 7, 2003 09:40 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Re: second attempt at Mars

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Great job Mike!

The features on the planet are clearly visible.


November 10, 2003 08:07 AM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Saturn from Edmonton

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hello all.

Well, the weather here in Edmonton finally cleared up after several weeks of cloudy and overcast conditions. The viewing wasn't bad on Saturday morning, albeit a bit breezy and turbulent, but I just HAD to get the scope out to take advantage of my window of opportunity for a second go at Saturn.

This is similar to an image I posted a few weeks ago, but I think I got slightly better detail this time. Again, I didn't use a barlow, just my ToUcam straight through a 14" LX200GPS UHTC. I am hoping, some day, to get an image using a barlow, but conditions will have to be right.

This was created from 552 images registered, stacked and processed in Registax 2.


December 4, 2003 07:58 AM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Latest Saturn Effort from Edmonton.

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hello all.

This is my latest image of Saturn, hopefully I'm not being too repetitive, but this is a new image taken Tuesday morning (December 2, 2003).

The seeing in Edmonton was pretty good, but frosty. I find also that since I do my observing from my deck which is facing north-northwest, that have to shoot directly over my house during the best observing times. I frequently get interference from heat waves wafting up from my house, particularly from the heater vent so I find I have to turn the heater down during my observing sessions. Even the small crack in the sliding door to my deck (to facilitate the cables to my computer) allows enough heat to escape and waft up into the line of site, ruining many a frame.

Strange problems one must overcome, but I certainly have food for thought when it will come time to build a permanent observatory!

ToUcam Pro
Stacked, and processed in Registax.

Clear and steady skies to all.


December 9, 2003 12:09 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Meade Giant Field Tripod Modification.

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Good afternoon all.

I have a 14" LX200GPS which came with the standard giant field tripod. I understand Meade is shipping the new SMT scopes with a shortened version of the tripod. I would like to modify my tripod to shorten it, as I find the tripod is a bit too high, especially if one would want to employ a wedge.

Has anybody else done this modification? I know this isn't rocket science, but I'm just curious how the legs are fitted to the butts connected to the telescope platform (or feet). Are they glued? How would one go about removing them to cut the legs down? I also realize that the support braces will have to be cut as well and I have no problem figuring that out.

Your input would be appreciated.


December 9, 2003 02:50 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Re: Saturn 071203

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Great image Alan.

It appears that the seeing was steady enough to get some decent detail. I resized the image to view it and it looks really good.

Keep posting.


December 9, 2003 04:42 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

First Jupiter from Edmonton.

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hello all.

Here is my first attempt at Jupiter.

I took some video of Jupiter on December 2nd (the same time I was imaging Saturn which I posted earlier). I didn't think much of the avi's of Jupiter, mainly because Jupiter's altitude was only 34 degrees or so and the avi's didn't look too promising.

I decided just today to try processing them and I was a bit surprised at the result. They turned out a lot better than I had expected. One avi actually captured three of Jupiter's moons along with the Great Red Spot. One of the moons (Callisto) was in transit over the northern part of Jupiter's disc. (I believe the three moons from left to right are Europa, IO and Callisto).

I used 84 images of a one-minute, 1500 image run at 25 fps. Since Jupiter has more detailed cloud structure, I wanted to capture as much as possible in the shortest amount of time.

I added the capture info to the enclosed JPEG. I had to be careful not to over-process. The seeing was pretty good, but not what I had expected for that night. I was also bothered by heat waves from my furnace vent.

Clear and steady skies to all!


December 12, 2003 07:44 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

STV+eFinder and F10 LX200GPS

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Good morning all.

I have a Meade 14" LX200GPS that I am currently using with a 416XTE. I would like to use some form of autoguider and I understand the STV is one of the best out there.

Not knowing much about telescope/guider focal ratios, I would like to know if the STV along with the eFinder/focal reducer setup would work on my system. According to the SBIG website, this setup should be able to guide to within one arcsecond. Is it reasonable to expect this kind of accuracy with my telescope? Is there anyone out there who has used the same or similar combination of an F10 LX200GPS and STV Deluxe+eFinder assembly.

Your comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Looking forward to your comments.


December 16, 2003 09:24 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Question about Laser Collimators.

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hello all.

I am just curious about laser collimators. Generally how does one use them, which are the best and must one still collimate an SCT using a star?

Could a person put a pin-point source of light (such as a laser) about 40 or 50 metres (130 to 165 feet) away from your scope and get the same effect as if you are using a star?

Looking forward to your replies.


January 17, 2004 10:08 AM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Re: A few questions on imaging

Posted By Derrick Lipinski

Hi Steve.

For a first time image with a CCD, that's pretty good. You can't expect a perfect, or even nearly perfect image the first time out as there are soooo many variables to deal with when imaging with a CCD, particularly when imaging planets.

You may want to adjust your gain setting to be lower. I have no experience with SBIG, but I do use a Meade 416XTE and the first time I caught Jupiter... same problem, until I found out how the lower the gain (which was simply using the +/- keys when the image comes up after download). Check your manual and find out how to do this and you will likely see instant results. Your focus looks really good though.

By the way, there is a lot to learn when it comes to CCD imaging. It takes a lot of time and patience so don't be too discouraged and keep in touch with the forums here, as there is a wealth of knowledge gained through trial and error (the best teacher).

Best of luck,