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Posts Made By: Ron Hranac

September 7, 2005 08:02 AM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society monthly open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 10th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its September open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver (DU) campus. The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor telescope will be open to the public. DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the park’s lawn next to the observatory building for public viewing, too. Activities get underway at dusk.

This is a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of stargazing, the almost-first quarter moon and other night sky objects. With any luck, we’ll try to catch Jupiter and Venus in the twilight before they set.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is four blocks east of University), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Clear skies!

Ron


October 5, 2005 08:51 PM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 8th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its October open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus. This month’s event is special, since it’s being held in conjunction with Colorado Astronomy Day. Denver Astronomical Society will be hosting activities from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., including solar observing, special presentations, exhibits, astronomy demonstrations (including a radio astronomy demonstration), and telescopic observations of the moon, several deep sky objects, and Mars!

The full schedule is at the following URL:

http://www.coloradoastronomyday.org/denverschedule.html

This will be a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for a day and evening of fun!

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Ron

November 1, 2005 07:43 AM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society monthly open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 5th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its November open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus. This month’s event coincides with the current Mars opposition, which is when Mars is opposite the Earth from the sun. Mars reaches opposition with Earth about every 26 months, and this year’s opposition is the closest that Mars and Earth will be—about 43 million miles—for another 13 years.

This will be a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun! The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Things get underway at dusk.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Ron


December 5, 2005 08:12 AM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society monthly open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 10th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its December open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

This will be a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun, but be sure to dress warmly! The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Some of the night-sky objects visible during this month’s open house include the Moon, Mars, Venus (very early in the evening), open star clusters such as the Pleiades—also known as the “Seven Sisters”, planetary nebula such as the Ring and Dumbbell, and beautiful double stars like Albireo.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Ron


January 3, 2006 12:57 PM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society January open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 7th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its December open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. This will be a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun. Be sure to dress warmly, though. Denver’s weather has been mild recently—the forecast calls for continued mild weather through the weekend—but once the sun goes down the temperature drops quickly.

The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Some of the night-sky objects visible during this month’s open house include the Moon, Mars (quite small now but still visible), Venus (very early in the evening), open star clusters such as the Pleiades—also known as the “Seven Sisters”, the famous Orion nebula, planetary nebula such as the Ring and Dumbbell (early in the evening), and a variety of double stars. Saturn rises at 6:30 p.m. local time this Saturday, and will reach 20 degrees above the eastern horizon by about 8:20 p.m. That will place the ringed planet in a somewhat more favorable position to observe, which will help reduce some of the distorting effects of Earth’s atmosphere.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Ron


January 30, 2006 12:05 PM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society February open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 4th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its February open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. This will be a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun. Be sure to dress warmly, because once the sun goes down the temperature drops quickly.

The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Some of the night-sky objects visible during this month’s open house include the Moon, Mars (quite small now but still visible), Saturn, open star clusters such as the Pleiades—also known as the “Seven Sisters”, the famous Orion nebula, and a variety of double stars. Saturn is probably the most popular nighttime object this time of year. It rises at 4:28 p.m. local time this Saturday, and will reach 20 degrees above the eastern horizon by about 6:30 p.m. That will place the ringed planet in a somewhat more favorable position to observe, which will help reduce some of the distorting effects of Earth’s atmosphere.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

Ron


February 26, 2006 07:35 PM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society March open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

This Saturday the 4th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its March open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. This monthly get-together is a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun. As usual for this time of the year in Colorado, be sure to dress warmly, because once the sun goes down the temperature drops quickly.

The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Saturn is without a doubt the most popular nighttime object this time of year. It rises at 2:28 p.m. local time this Saturday, and will reach 50 degrees above the eastern horizon by about 7:00 p.m. (transits at 9:39 p.m.) That will place the ringed planet in a very favorable position for observing.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

And with any luck, my new 12.5-inch PortaBall will be delivered in time for first light this weekend (it’s scheduled to ship Monday). Of course, we all know a new telescope means the curse of clouds! ;-)

Ron



May 1, 2006 09:28 AM Forum: Star Parties

Denver Astronomical Society monthly open house

Posted By Ron Hranac

Mark your calendar! Saturday the 6th the Denver Astronomical Society will host its May open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus, starting at dusk (local sunset on May 6th is at 7:57 p.m.). This monthly get-together is a great family activity, so if the weather cooperates make plans for an evening of fun.

The historic Chamberlin Observatory and its 20-inch Clark refractor will be open to the public, and DAS members will have a variety of telescopes set up on the lawn next to the observatory building. Saturn is the open house theme for May. It rises at 11:20 a.m. local time on the 6th, and will be 57 degrees above the SW horizon by about 8:30 p.m. (transits at 6:32 p.m., sets at 1:43 a.m.) The ringed planet will be in a very favorable position for observing.

http://www.thedas.org/chamberlin.html

Observatory Park is fairly easy to find. Take I-25 to Evans, go west on Evans to Fillmore St. (Fillmore is about four blocks east of University Blvd.), turn south on Fillmore, and go about a block and a half. You’ll see the Chamberlin Observatory building in the park, near Warren & Fillmore. DAS members generally have telescopes set up on the south & southwest side of the observatory building.

My new 12.5-inch PortaBall was delivered in March and has seen first light, but it has yet to get out under truly dark skies. Even though the moon will be out and somewhat past first quarter, I plan to bring it to the open house along with the Takahashi TOA-130 refractor.

Ron


May 2, 2006 09:34 AM Forum: Reflectors

ParaCorr on a PortaBall

Posted By Ron Hranac

I recently took delivery of a new 12.5-inch PortaBall, and am enjoying the views through this marvelous light bucket. Having been spoiled by the edge-to-edge near-pinpoint stars in my Takahashi TOA-130, I had forgotten that coma is something that happens in fast Newtonians (the PortaBall is f/5).

The coma isn't objectionable by any means, but I thought I'd pursue the ParaCorr route to eliminate most or all of it. What I discovered is the PortaBall doesn't have quite enough in-focus travel to bring images to focus when the ParaCorr is installed in the focuser. It's close, but the Feathertouch bottoms out just before the eyepiece reaches focus.

My question is whether anyone on the forum has tried moving a PortaBall's primary mirror up a slight amount to move the focus point back a bit. I think this will be fairly easy to do, but I'm concerned about proper illumination of the secondary when the primary mirror is moved closer to it--say 1/8 inch or so.

Thoughts?

Ron

May 29, 2006 08:45 AM Forum: Takahashi

Reducer for TOA-130

Posted By Ron Hranac

The manual that came with my TOA-130 shows a Takahashi part number TKA31580 focal reducer (f/7.7 to f/5.6) in the system diagram. Anacortes' web site lists two reducers: p/n TKA1580 and TOA13R. The two sell for close to the same price, but I'm curious about the difference(s)--if any--between these two reducers.

One other question: The TOA-130 system diagram shows the focal reducer used in conjunction with the camera angle adjuster (Tak p/n TKA30200). Is the CAA necessary to couple the reducer to the scope?

Ron