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Posts Made By: Ron Sowers

July 19, 2003 02:38 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Time Zone

Posted By Ron Sowers

I didn't know which forum this question fit, so this is the most active one I thought I'd try here,

I downloaded that Mars previewer program and it's asking for my time zone in relation to Greenwich, it says use a negative number if I'm east of there. I'm in the Pacific NW, in Idaho, now I think I can get to Greenwich by going east or west haha, anyone know what I put there? How many hours?


July 20, 2003 05:03 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Baffling isn't it?

Posted By Ron Sowers

Hey Folks :-)

Does anyone know a website that discusses how to figure out where and how many etc. baffles to put in a newt?

I want to put some in our 10 inch dob. I would rather do this than flock the inside, seems much easier and cheaper! :-)


July 21, 2003 06:41 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Re: Aperture vs. Seeing - Another Round

Posted By Ron Sowers

ED said "Note I say sharpest, not better resolution, not better
contrast. Just sharper, meaning the limb of the planet
was well defined rather than blurry..."

S&T article says "Admittedly, when the seeing (or atmospheric steadiness) was below average the off-axis mask produced an aesthetically pleasing view"

It sounds like you guys are actually agreeing?


July 23, 2003 09:48 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Mars, details, scope...

Posted By Ron Sowers

Hey folks,

Just curious as to what others are seeing at the eyepiece.
Looking at the following pictures, maybe you could list which picture represents about the level of detail your seeing, sharpness etc, and which scope your seeing it with.
The pictures go from 1-being exceptional to 6 being just noticing the dark areas.

For me,..
ETX 90- usually number 6
6 inch F5 usually number 6 but brighter than ETX
10 inch F5.6 anywhere from 5-6 but brighter of course.


July 23, 2003 07:25 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Rate my atmosphere..

Posted By Ron Sowers

Hey astro persons,.. :-)

After the Mars thread down there, it got me wondering what my atmosphere is like, here is on average what an out of focus star image looks like in our skies, how does this compare to you LUCKY people who are seeing Mars really well?

Thanks again!

July 26, 2003 01:52 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

What can you expect on Mars....

Posted By Ron Sowers

OK, here is an image of Mars, with alot of detail, I super imposed a grid. Mars is sized with the grid to represent it at opposition, about 25 arc seconds. The grids are 1 arc second square. I looked up telescope resolutions, they are as follows..
90mm= 1.3 arcS
4 inch= 1.1 arcS
10inch= .45 arcS

So in theory and perfect atmosphere, a 4 inch could discern details the size of each square a 10 inch could discern details to about 1/2 the size of each square.
Of course this also depends on the contrast of the features and scope also. This at least should give us all an idea of what we could see. After doing this I can see that the atmosphere is really a major limiting factor for most of us. I also can see why people with 4 and 5 inch apos are seeing Mars so well, as most of the time a large scope is not even getting close to it's max capabilities so the apo's crips views and high contrast are beating the veiws of the larger instruments higher resolving power that is not able to be taken advantage of.

I got started on this after all those threads about aperture and seeing, then I read Ed Tings review of the Portaball 12.5 inch, even though it had 1/27th wave optics AND more aperture, he said the two apos that were there that night still beat it on the planets, I infered from him that the ability to see lower contrast outweighed the resoving power of the portaball that night.

So I think atmosphere really is our number one enemy, not our scopes!

Take care!

August 25, 2003 01:10 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Is it possible to have.......

Posted By Ron Sowers

just ONE good quality scope and be happy with it? I am wondering this as now I have 3 scopes, and sometimes find myself wanting another, and another... etc. :-O If I lug the big dob out and look at Mars, then I wonder "How will it look in the 6 inch" etc. If I take less aperture out for viewing, then I want the bigger scope!
Portability, aperture, contrast, resolution! Calgon take me away LOL

Seems like it would be so nice to just have ONE scope, and always use that trusty friend and just be satisfied!
Has anyone ever had just one and been happy with it? What was it if so?

Take care!

August 25, 2003 04:24 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Mars again.. LOL :-) Contrast questions

Posted By Ron Sowers

Hey, me again!

When you guys are veiwing Mars, how does it look compared to the photo here. ( I edited it to have less contrast but enhaced the polar cap since it seems to stand out when I veiw it. )
This is how the contrast looks in my scopes. I know they always say (who ARE those they ppl?) that Mars takes practice and eye training. This is my first year to really look at Mars, and I do "infer" detail looking at it, but when you are just looking right at it, how is the contrast in your scope compared to this?
Or is it seeing?
Or is this just all the "contrast" you see with an untrained eye and direct vision?


August 29, 2003 07:55 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Worlds worst atmosphere...

Posted By Ron Sowers

Sheesh, Mars like sucked last night! LOL Oh man, this is the worst I've ever seen it! I edited a pic to show it, and I think the pic looks better! Anyone have it THIS bad?

Hope you guys are getting better veiws! :-)

August 30, 2003 05:35 PM Forum: Solar System Observing


Posted By Ron Sowers

I didn't realize I should have put my Mars post in here. For some reason I just kept seeing this forum as Solar observing LOL.

But, now that I've found it,,, I can't beleive the detail some of you are seeing on Mars! Man! Great sketches!