Sunday, 25 October 2015

New use for old set of telescope fork mount

Hi all,

Many people who purchase a fork mounted Schmidt Cassegrain Telescope remove the optical tube from the fork and couple it to a german equatorial mount.  However, this then leaves a vacant set of forks.

I was given one of these fork mounts, & I recommissioned it into a fabulous outreach rig.

The article can be found in Telescope Bits & Bobs page of my blog.


I hope this article inspires you to undertake a similar recommissioning of a disused bit of gear.


Monday, 12 October 2015

Sol, 11th & 12th August, 2015

Hello everyone,

Time, weather, work and family have been making time at the eyepiece very scarce of late.  Very slim pickings so far this year.  The forecast for the next month isn’t too crash hot either.  But, that’s astronomy for you…

I am very glad to have picked up a Daystar Quark solar filter now.  It allows me to indulge a little in astro sketching while the Moon and DSO’s are off limits.  Now it takes me some 5min to set up my solar kit, half hour the whole sketch process, and pack up in another 5min, and all done.  Yesterday and today I had the opportunity to do a sketch each day.

I am in constant awe at the variety and detail offered by prominences.  These can be rampaging monsters, through to gossamer soft ghostly extensions.  And always intricate and complex in detailed structures.  All powered by screaming hot gases channelled through enormous magnetic fields.

The structures I was able to sketch these two days are wonderfully varied.  On the 11th there were two ‘eruptive’ prominences, one twisted (most likely an arch or broken arch seen close to sagittally) and the other described as ‘tree’ (a type of fork prom.)  Today, the hedgerow prom had extraordinary surging bulges of plasma, whisper thin streamers, and pillars that are being torn apart by terrifyingly powerful magnetic fields.  And by way of contrast, a couple of diminutive inclined prom’s, and a small cluster of sunspots.

Object:  Solar prominences
Telescope:  ED80 f/7.5
Gear:  Daystar Quark, Prominence model, 25mm Pl, 101X
Dates:  11th & 12th August, 2015
Location:  Sydney, Australia

Media:  Soft pastel & charcoal on A5 size black paper.