Monday, October 30, 2006

Comet SWAN


30 x 30 sec, Digital Rebel XT, 10" LX200@ f/6.3. You can just see the tail going up & to the right. I could have used longer exposures, but I don't have a way to guide on the comet.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Dobsonion Rhapsody

I came across this little ditty on Cloudy Nights.
(Sorry about the cheesy midi file--it was the best I could find.)










Dobsonian Rhapsody

Is it a real scope?
Will it allow me to see
Celestial wonders
Like M33?

I'll look in the sky,
and give it a try to seeee.

I'm just a poor boy,
Can't afford quality,
It's easy come,
easy go,
Now I have
no cash flow

Any fit my wife throws
doesn't really matter to me....
To me.

Momma, Just bought a scope
Fed Ex just dropped it at my door,
I maxed my credit card for sure
Mama, the obsession's just begun
Soon I'll be havin' lots of fun
Mama, woo-ooo
I wasn't sure what to buy,
so I gave a dob a try
I'll give it first light this time tomorrow,
If it's clear, if it's clear, that's all that really matters....

It's twilight, the time has come,
to set the scope to cool
and use a collimation tool,
Goodbye everybody, I've got to see,
If skyclock indicates good transparency...

Mama, woo-ooo
No matter how I try,
I can't seem to see anything at all-

I see a little silhouette af a man
John Dobson! John Dobson!
Will you check my collimation!

Neighbour's back porch lighting
Very very fright'ning to me
Drives me crazy!!
Drives me crazy!
Light pollution bugs me so!

But I'm just a poor guy,
Playing a rich man's hobby
Staring a lot into a real cheap eyepiece!
Finding stuff sure is tough, can I use goto?

Starhop there! No! You cannot use goto!
Starhop there!! No! You cannot use goto!
We will not let you goto! Let me goto!
We will not let you goto! Let me gotto!
No,no,no,no,no,no,no

Mama Mia, mama mia! mama mia, let me use goto!
Cloudy Nights has a thread set aside for me, for me, for meeeee!

So you think with a starchart I can find anything
Like the Hercules Cluster and the nebulous ring!
Well, maybe, but I don't see a thing baby,
Guess I gotta get a Telrad, just gotta get a Telrad for me!

Nothing else matters,
But astronomy,
Nothing really matters, nothing really matters to me...

I shoulda wore warmer clothes......

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Having a Blast in Phoenix

So here we are in Phoenix shooting a couple of videos for Corrosion Protection Products when they ask, "Who else want to give the sandblaster a try?"










File this one under "harder than it looks." The good news: there's a device on the air inlet for the helmet that cools the air about 20°, so it's pretty comfortable in there, except for the part where you can't turn your head to see, or hear anything with the earplugs in. The bad news: it's tedious. The blaster cleans a spot just a couple of inches wide. Imagine trying to paint the side of your house evenly with a can of spray paint and you get the idea. At least we were in the yard instead of a work site, where the pipe would have been in an excavated ditch.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Sunday, October 08, 2006

M57, The Ring Nebula

The Ring will always be special to me--the very first DSO I ever found myself. This is only 12 x 30 seconds (low battery), guided. 10" LX200 Classic @ f/6.3, Rebel XT

Great Late Afternoon Light


Thursday, October 05, 2006

Aristarchus Redux

A better view of Aristarchus and Vallis Schröteri. Better seeing, but I'm still not satisfied. I've got a couple of more processing tricks to try.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Aristarchus & Gassendi

I wasn't going to make any pictures last night, but I went out on the driveway about 10:30 and saw a clear, steady sky. I pulled out the little dob, looked at the moon and said, "I ought to shoot this."

Turns out the sky wasn't as steady as the small scope led me to believe--I'm guessing 3/5--so I'm a little disappointed in these.


Gassendi.



Aristarchus.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Freebirds World Burrito Rocks


I had a little freelance gig in Austin Friday, which was nice, but the best part about going into town is getting to go to Freebirds World Burrito for lunch. I got to the end of the line only to discover my wallet pocket was empty. The fellow working the register set my burrito to the side while I went out to the car to check there, but I already knew I had left my wallet at home. I came back in to ask if Trudy could call in a card number, or maybe I could pay online. Instead, he hands me the burrito, a cup for my drink, and tells me to come back when I can to take care of it.

Those guys rock!