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Posts Made By: Dave Erickson

November 26, 2012 06:29 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

M31

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Louis,
Another nice image, and great manual guiding...
Dave

December 8, 2012 02:44 AM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

M 45 deep field

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Maciej,
Beautiful image! Very nicely processed retaining the delicate M45 nebula structures while bringing out some of the background nebula, and a nice wide field that displays the entire cluster. Best, Dave

December 8, 2012 03:52 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

Pegasus galaxies

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Roland,
Beautiful image, NGC 7331 shows good detail, Stephan's Quintet shows nicely, and lots of little galaxies sprinkled about. I think that image scale is close to ideal for most sites, about 1.3 arc seconds per 9 micron pixel. Did you use a filter?
Regards,
Dave

December 12, 2012 08:04 AM Forum: Telescope Making

Large Glass

Posted By Dave Erickson

Check out Newport Industrial Glass in Stanton CA. They have large thin blanks up to 40" as catalog items. I have purchased a lot of blanks from them over the years, although nothing that size.

http://www.newportglass.com/angwcat.htm

Best,
Dave

December 15, 2012 02:51 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Fungus -- Arghhh!

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Louis,
Agreed not good. I’d get a recommendation from the manufacturer first or better yet get them to do it for you. Are you sure its fungus and not ice crystals? I’d get it dry right away using silica gel or a small low wattage light bulb 5-15 watts or a Dew Buster. Carefule not to thermal shock the elements.

Before doing this yourself get an OK and recommendation from the manufacturer because of the chemical and environmental sensitivity of anomalous dispersion glasses used in APO’s.

Anytime you touch an optic you run the risk of damaging it, no matter how experienced you are…I have used a mixture of hydrogen peroxide, ammonia, isopropyl alcohol, and RO-distilled filtered water with a small amount of surfactant to clean fungus from more robust glasses like BK7 or F2.

When you clean the lens start from the center out toward the edge and only wipe it once then discard the wipe. Final wipe can be done using an ultra pure reagent grade solvent like isopropyl, methanol or if you can get it spectrophotometric grade acetone, the alcohols are easier to use. Use little or no pressure when wiping and a bright light in a darkened room so you can see residues on the surface. Use a thick soft Tyvek clean room wipe, it will take a lot of them to clean the objective. Be sure you mark the elements spacers and housing so you can get everything clocked and orientated correctly back in the housing. Use the same care cleaning on the housing and be especially careful with surface blackening as they are often very sensitive to solvents and wiping. Be sure you have a lot of space to carefully handle the elements and keep things organized and a soft dry place to set the optical elements. Make sure the room and work surfaces are clean.

Again I’d suggest getting the manufacturer to do this for you… Best of Luck and Regards, Dave

December 16, 2012 02:59 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

M 42 Great Orion Nebula deep field

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Maciej,
Another lovely image. Very nicely done!...
Regards,
Dave

February 20, 2013 09:36 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Weather Stations

Posted By Dave Erickson

Hi Louis,
I have both the Peet Ultimeter and the Vantage Pro 2. The Ultimeter has served me at home for more than 15 years with no issues. I added the Vantage Pro to my Sierra Chaparral Observatory more than a year ago and it has operated flawlessly. See hbastro.com observatory page for weather, and other data that is updated every 10 minutes..

Of the 2 I think I like the Vantage Pro better.

Hope this helps.
Best regards,
Dave

February 20, 2013 06:15 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Deep Sky

Windows 8 and imaging

Posted By Dave Erickson

A short add on to prior posts...I am still using XP and have 5 computers at the observatory. One for the site, network, FTP server, weather, security, etc. One for the seeing camera, one for the Dome 1 camera, and (2) for dome 2 cameras. I am using 12Volt Stealth computer machines compatible with the solar power system, and custom written C++ software in addition to CCD soft, the Sky, CCD Commander, PinPoint, etc. I purchased additional XP licenses from Microsoft and will use these going forward for planned add-ons. I am looking into as a replacement for XP. The issue is I have a lot of time invested in homemade C++ software to run the observatory remotely and don't want to learn another operating system or variant. Whats the message, get prepared for the industry to leave the hobby high and dry...Best regards, Dave

February 21, 2013 05:58 PM Forum: Comets

Comet ISON in Gemini

Posted By Dave Erickson

Jim,
Nice work, I am hoping its as good or better than C/1965 S1 (Ikeya-Seki) it was spictacular, my dad and I visited the local SF Bay Area foot hills Mount Umunhum for early morning views and images...

Best,
Dave

February 21, 2013 08:37 PM Forum: Camping and Outdoors

Moonlight Manor

Posted By Dave Erickson

Not a Moonlight Manor but a transport manner...Sometimes getting there is all the fun. Such a great response from everyone with their favorite vehicle for astronomy, I had to add mine from a few years back...