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Posts Made By: Alex McConahay

January 8, 2005 05:27 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Comet passes through Pleiades in rainy Southern Ca

Posted By Alex McConahay

I waited so long for January 7 to come so I could get this one picture.

It does not have the detail I would have liked, since it has rained for the last 72 hours, and promises to continue to do so for the next three days, too.

But with Photoshop and an imagination, anything is possible.


January 12, 2005 07:20 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

Canon D20 and DSLR Focus

Posted By Alex McConahay

I just tried to get DSLR Focus to connect to my D20. On clicking the "connect" button, it recognized that I had a D 20 out there. When I told it to connect, it said

Error putting camera in remote control Code 0x2000086

Then I clicked again and it told me

Error connecting to Camera Code 0X00002

Then I tried again and it said

Error Connecting to Camera. If this error persists, then you may need to reboot your PC. Code 0X000080

Of course it happened again and again before I decided to ask my friends here.

(DSLR release 3.0, Canon D20 Firmware 1.1.0. )


January 21, 2005 05:57 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: Effective management--advice needed (LONG)

Posted By Alex McConahay

You can't choose between tyranny and the lax attitude. You need both.

Some managers say people want to get by with as little as possible, and need constant motivation and direction. Others say people really want to do a good job and be proud of their work.

Both are right at different times or with different people. Your job as a manager is to figure out when to do what with whom.

You need to be able to do both. Most of the time I side with those who say people just need to be shown the way. Sometimes, though, I have to be very directive.

Be responsive to the situation (and always be positive....something I could use more of). Recognize when you are doing one style or the other (lax or micromanager)--and even acknowledge it to those who say "Why do you treat me like this and you treat him like that?"

And do what you feel you are best at. If that does not work, learn from your mistakes. But remember, you have to be true to yourself. To learn and adjust is one thing. To abandon yourself is not worth it.

And yes, there are lots of books about this. And no, none of them are worth more than good common sense and the golden rule.


January 27, 2005 08:59 AM Forum: Star Parties

RTMC Astronomy Expo Registration Info

Posted By Alex McConahay

RTMC Astronomy Expo has published the registration information for the Memorial Day weekend get together in Big Bear.

The direct link to the registration pdf file is

If you want to know more about RTMC Astronomy Expo in general, see


February 9, 2005 04:05 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Size of Meade tripod Top

Posted By Alex McConahay

How big is the top of the Meade Field Tripod that is normally used with an 8 inch LX200?

Is it flat on top?

Would a rectangle of steel 6 inches by 5.5 inches simulate it well? (That is, if I had holes drilled in the right places, could I mount an LX200 on a steel plate 6 x 5.5?)

Are all the Meades (at least up to about 12 inch) capable of fitting on this surface)

And I understand whatever can be said for the telescope could also be said for an equatorial wedge for the same scope. Does that sound right?

Can a Celestron of approximately the same size use a Meade Tripod?

(I'm building a pier that needs to hold a variety of scopes, depending on who is using the pier that night, and want a "universal" base that can hold almost anything. I figure if I make it look like the top of a Meade Tripod, I am most of the way there.)


February 15, 2005 03:36 PM Forum: Politics

Privacy and the Low-Jack

Posted By Alex McConahay

I read a rather interesting article the other day that raises an interesting issue.

It sems the police were investigating a pedophile case, and "interviewed" a local judge who was alleged to have engaged in the act.

The judge got emotional, and was not taking it well. The police stopped interviewing, apparently. The judge took of in his car. The police, realizing he was despondent, decided to find him before he could hurt himself. They found him by "activating his automobile's anti-theft device." The article does not say whether they did this on their own or if they were requested to do so by the family of the judge.

(They did find the man, who apparently pulled a gun and shot himself to death just as they arrived......)

Yes, there are lots of things to say about this sad situation. But among them were--Do the police have the right to turn on a Low-jack anti-theft system and locate your car in the absence of a reported theft (or some other request on the owners part to do so)? Do they turn on the thing and listen in to where you go?


February 22, 2005 06:22 AM Forum: Politics

Re: Good for the Goose is not good for the Gander?

Posted By Alex McConahay


Your "Goose for the Gander" is not exactly proven. Yes, the guy was the owner of several homosexual websites, and yes, he was a "special friend" of the White House, and did get a special pass to look into the press conference.

But there is no clear proof that he actually had to goose anybody on the White House staff to get his gander.


February 24, 2005 08:37 AM Forum: Beginning Astronomy?

Workshop Series

Posted By Alex McConahay

I've been asked to organize a series of presentations to help Astro-Beginners. Let's say about ten 45 minute presentations.

What, as a beginner, do you want to be told about? What topics would you want covered. What is most mystifying?

You who are not beginners should pitch in here and make suggestions also. What do you get asked most? What do you wish you would have known?


March 3, 2005 06:34 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Liability Issues

Posted By Alex McConahay

A buddy of mine and I were having an argument about liability and the need for insurance.
I know some clubs carry insurance, but I have never heard of any being sued or actually having to use their insurance to pay a claim.


How many clubs out there have liability insurance?
Who has ever been sued?
Who has had to pay a claim?

What stories do you have?


March 13, 2005 04:34 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

Lens (?) Flare

Posted By Alex McConahay

I'm getting strange lens flares or something using my 20D. I do not get in all photos. However, If I have a long exposure or high ISO on a bright object (so far only M 42) I get arcs or someting on other parts of the frame. I have done what I consider the obvious (looking up the tube, etc. for uncoated or bright spots). It does not happen with my Canon lenses or apparently with my TV 85. It has happened only on Orion nebula so far. I have tried to get it to happen with Sirius (another bright object). It happens with both my Celestron 6.3 reducer and Lumicon Easy guider.

The "flare" is not always there, even with the same object.

Here it is on an M42, notice just up near the top in center of frame.

Any ideas?