It’s been a while since I ‘ve blogged and I really wanted to get back into it. Now that there is a pretty good moon out, this would be a great time to begin blogging again. I was at the PVAA meeting and they let me borrow their 8 inch loaner scope. They also have 10 and 12 inch telescopes to loan. I was eager to try the 8 inch aperture myself because it had always appealed to me. Another reason I borrowed it is because I didn’t want the guy that brought all the way into the meeting room to carry it back to his car.
This time, I can finally post some pictures. I used it for 3 nights in a row, when I first got it. I haven’t been out in about 4 days, so the next scope outing will probabily be my 70mm. Anyway, The scope is homeade and is really easy to setup as well. There are 2 bit parts to it. The first is the mount, which was some crafty DIY work, and the tube, which I believe to be cardboard covered in fiberglass. The telescope is really beautiful, with the spacey blue colored tube and mount.
That picture is actually the the second night I took it out, but I took the picture to show the assembly of the telescope. All you do is simply slide it onto the teflon pads. The first night (day) I took it out, I took some pictures of the moon through it. I think at that point, the moon was shrinking in size. These shots were taken around 5:30 in the morning. Those pictures were taken with merely holding an inexpensive digital camera up to the eyepiece. They are not the best pictures in the world, but they are worthy of a few words.
This was a homemade telescope, made by somebody in my astronomy club. When I got the scope, I got a box which contained 3 eyepieces and a Telrad finder. The creator of this telescope also has a homemade 1.25″ focusing device. This is an extraordinary homemade instrument. Here is a close up shot of the “business” end of the 8 inch.
At first, I had a little trouble with collimation but then it was brought to rights. The best night I have had since borrowing it was one night with my dad’s 14″ refelctor. It is Orion brand and has tracking and go-to capabilities. He has started to try more advanced methods of planetary astrophotography, with an imager and the Registax program. For the first hour or so, he was just recording video and taking pictures of Saturn for processing. Later on, he quit the imaging and joined me in some memorable visual observations. That night, I was primarily concerned with working on my Messier Program, and actually hit my halfway mark with the M4 globular cluster. Much of the viewing was in Sagittarius and Hercules. Living in a heavily light polluted area, it makes this type of astronomy rather difficult, but the persistent observer will still be able to prosper in that kind enviorment.
I also took the time to make some sketches through the 8 inch, and like I said on 10minuteastronomy, I will post some of those sketches. These sketches were not very hard to make, but to require some practice. The first 2 is of M16, or the Eagle nebula. The picture on the left is my actual sketch, and the one on the right is a photo.
Notice the star cluster at the top of the sketch and it at 2:00 on the picture. that’s all I have time for today. Thank you for visiting and don’t forget to comment!