Monday, June 29, 2009

20090629 Waiting for blue sky

Patches of blue sky are around, but just not in the direction of the sun. Telescope was setup but waiting... finally I gave up since the wind was getting strong. I only managed to get the scope roughly focused.

Equipment time:-

1. I pulled out my Ranger to reinforce the connection to the 410 head quick release plate, by removing the original focuser, I also removed its dovetail for mounting, I've yet to find a better way to mount my Ranger. I measured it to be 3" in diameter. Time to hunt for good mounting rings or clamshell.

2. TG-SP II mounted on window frame: this is just a test of concept. I found that the L bracket for locking the window frame pretty suitable for a test, so I mounted the TG-SP II wedge on it, it's simple. Of course, this thin plate is insufficient to support the whole mount plus the telescope, etc.

What I learned from this proof of concept is that, I probably need a thicker plate for this purpose, and I probably need a longer plate so that I could use the 3/8" hole rather than the 1/4" hole. Time to put the mount on the wedge, and this is a test shot:-

Guess what, the whole thing keeps vibrating. And as I can see from this test of concept exercise, I would still need an offset plate in order for the Ranger to reach far enough outside to catch some sunshine during the summer.

That brass gear is part of the undergoing project about motorizing the DEC, I still need to figure out how to mount the motor in a suitable position. By handhelding the motor in the position, I found the small motor is just enough to drive the DEC knob, the bigger motor should be far better but the gear is not big enough so that there is insufficient room for the motor body plus the gear box.

3. TG-SP II project: the newly ordered gears do not match well with my existing one, and none is big enough to allow me to use the big motors. Now, I could:

- fall back to use shaft coupler, but this would cause balance issue
- order some more gears and two more small motors... so I would use all small motors

The first option is cheaper, and the second option is neat but more expensive (need to sink $50 more just for the hardware)... both would need assistance from "the" local folk


I have just finished my dinner and saw the moon hanging outside, so I setup my Ranger in the hope to have a look of the moon, and mabe take some snapshots... Unluckily, after I pointed to my target, it was soon covered.

Finally, I got around 100s of cloud free moments...

Ranger at prime focus, DMK 31AF03.AS, everything on Meade LXD55.

And I'm very happy since Registax runs much faster than before, and dual core CPU really allow you to multitask... before that, when I was Registax'ing, I could only turn off my LCD and wait, and now I can still do something else without any noticeable slow down.

No comments: