Sunday, June 19, 2011

20110619 Saturn

Last time I was capturing Saturn with a fixed tripod, this time, I used my TG-SP II in the hope to capture a longer AVI or even push the image scale further.

First of all, I setup everything with my Pentax SMC XL 40mm in place. I found the setup is too heavy for the original counter weight, so I've used the heavier local made counter weight and it tracks very nicely.

Saturn was barely non-stellar in this low magnification (12x). I balanced mount roughly and then I proceed to a 20mm Widescan since it's roughly parfocal with my Lumenera. With the visual view, I couldn't see any problem on the balancing but I doubt when it comes to imaging. Then I added my 5x Powermate into the optical chain and I soon realized the issue on balancing! The mount was not tracking well and the slow motion control was not working very well, either.

Since I don't want to re-balance everything, I replace the Widescan with my Lumenera and with some major effort, I finally managed to fit Saturn into the view but then I found it drifting like without tracking. I also found that this setup was a little bit too heavy for my Gitzo G106, maybe since I've a 410 head and a Takahashi wedge so that the center of gravity was higher than usual.

It's a failed attempt.

Anyway, I've still capture two clips, and the first one was at 7.5fps (i.e. 1/8s with medium gain) and the second one was at 15fps (i.e. 1/15s with high gain).

2158 (GMT+8) at 7.5fps:-

2159 (GMT+8) at 15fps:-

The lower power visual setup with Pentax SMC XL 40mm:-

The imaging setup:-

Note the large weight difference!

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