View Full Version here: : 11th Annual ASV Messier Star Party - Saturday 5 March
It's on again.
Details are posted on the ASV website: http://www.asv.org.au/
I hope to see a few you there.
28-02-2011, 10:20 PM
Hoping for good weather as I am hoping to come along. I sent in my ASV membership application a couple of weeks back so it would be good to meet some members.
The weather is looking like it might clear up for the weekend.
btw there is 240V power available out on the observing and astrophotography fields in case you need it for your scope. Just bring a extension cord.
01-03-2011, 11:19 AM
I was wondering about bringing my own scope out but I suppose it would be silly not to.
I should not need 240V, I am using one of the car jump start packs as a 12V supply so apart from anything else it would be interesting to see how far through the night it gets me. I reckon it should run the mount for days. I just need to get some red filter film for it as it has an inbuilt light, handy for setup and packup but it is a white lite so I will have to filter it red or remove the globe.
As for a personal light, any tips? I have a mini maglite with a single CREE LED instead of the normal incandescant globe and I was going to get a red filter for it before the weekend, do you reckon that will dim it enough or should I layer it with some neutral density film as well to cut the intensity further?
I just put red insulation tape over the end my my torches and any white lights on my gear - it seems to work ok and I haven't had any complaints yet. If it's too bright, I just put another layer of tape.
Don't forget to bring something to keep the mossies away.
02-03-2011, 09:38 AM
The weather is looking very promising for Saturday night so it should provide an excellent chance to hunt for those deep sky objects!.
See you there.
02-03-2011, 11:29 AM
Here is hoping!
03-03-2011, 06:33 PM
Back on the subject of 240V. I may need some after all. I really need a heater band to keep dew at bay (As I found last night, hoping for a glimpse of Saturn and that is all I got, a glimpse as the dew set in) but I am not going to have a chance to get one before the weekend. I was thinking of bringing an extension cord and the hair dryer to waft a bit of warm air around as required to keep the corrector plate clear during the night.
The big question, what sort of extension cord length will I need?
There are a few outlets around the field, so it doesn't have to be too long - just long enough so we can spread out a bit. I use a 30m yellow and red one from Bunnings. Bring 2 Power boards - one for each end.
03-03-2011, 06:40 PM
Can do, I will only need one socket at my end as the hairdryer is about all I can see myself bringing but am happy for anyone who needs to to piggyback off a powerboard at my end.
Hmmm, I probably still have my old homebrew heater belt, wonder if that would work. Might bring it and try it out.
04-03-2011, 02:11 PM
Weather is looking good, though we'll need our freezer suits yet.
04-03-2011, 02:21 PM
Hope all at the Party have a great time! :thumbsup:
07-03-2011, 07:48 AM
The weather cleared up and stayed clear! Well, it was clear when I went to bed at 2am, and still was at 7.30, so I presume it was the whole time... :lol:
First time at the ASV's dark site, and I was impressed with the organisation and the facilities in general. I set up my solar scope (well away from the bigger one that would have shamed my little PST!!), and had a good look at the sun for the first time in ages - awesome clump of sunspots happening - and got to show it off to a few other people.
It was great fun hanging around on the observation field with everyone else, waiting for dark... I wandered down to the photography field, where there were heaps of brothers to my Tak! I was surprised by the number of people who were clearly not members of the ASV, many of whom had never looked through a telescope; I don't know where the ASV advertised, but they did a very good job of evangelising the uninitiated. I heard a few kids very excited at the prospect of getting to borrow one of the society's loaner telescopes!
I didn't have a plan for the night - except look at a few Messiers - so I ended up showing a lot of people Saturn through the Tak 128; it was a bit mush until it got a long way above the trees, but for people who didn't realise you could see it naked eye, any view of the rings is a good one, I think! I also got awesome views of M42, AND!! I finally got to see the Horsehead and Flame Nebulae, through jamespierce's 16" Dob. Brilliant.
Full report over here (http://skyoyster.blogspot.com/2011/03/asv-messier-night.html).
07-03-2011, 07:57 AM
Here's my version of events - http://upsidedownastronomy.com/2011/03/06/astronomical-society-of-victoria-annual-messier-star-party/
07-03-2011, 02:36 PM
It was interesting to have a peer through your PST (Even if it did lead to eyepiece envy) and I had hoped to come over later on in the night and see about a look both through the Tak and the Dobson, but with the social nature of the night and my own scope turning out to be fairly popular for onlookers to have a peer though I did not end up getting back to you. So thanks for the chance of looking through the PST anyway and it was good to meet the both of you!
The only issue I found through the night really was the brightness of many lights being carried around and the occasional flash of headlights as people left, some of which really were a big bright flash from HID headlights striking the arc on switch on. I suppose that really is going to be an issue at any public event where most of the attendees are not experienced in the field, it just would not occur to many of them what the headlights and other bright lights would do to people observing.
All in all it was still a very enjoyable night for me and a good introduction to some ASV members (The laminating on my membership card is just about still hot) even if I would not recognise many of them unless they spoke! I was still up at 3:45 peering through eyepieces when the muscles gave up, I think the next investment will have to be an observing chair, my backside still hurts!
Hopefully I will find some time and find my way to the dark sky site for a some more solitary sessions as even in Kilmore the sky is noticeably brighter than at Heathcote.
07-03-2011, 02:43 PM
I should be on comission for these guys - skyoyster (Alex) and I both have these chairs - A much better investment than any eyepiece or scope for astronomical enjoyment ! http://www.catseyecollimation.com/cperch1.html
We have a regular observing spot out of Ballarat, but Heathcote is a bit darker and it is nice to be out with other folks sometimes. If the weather is clear later in the month we'll probably try and head up again on the 25th and 26th evenings.
07-03-2011, 02:53 PM
I am pretty well out for the rest of this month. My other budget drain is motorsport! I have a sprint meeting this weekend coming, attending (And possibly helping out a team) at the Phillip Island historic meet the following weekend and then the F1 Grand Prix the one after that! Then I get a breather so I might be able to head to Heathcote again.
Will definately have to look at a chair though, I did admire yours.
We had wonderful weather again this year, and good turnout on both the visual and astrophotography fields. Thanks to the organisers for putting on a well run event and the lions club for the catering Saturday night.
07-03-2011, 03:49 PM
I was hoping to come down and have a look at what you were doing as well James, but same as for getting back to skyoster and jamespierce I just did not get away from my own gear much all night. The furthest I got was a peek through the 25" Obsession at the tarantula nebula, can't sit there all night near a 25" and not at least have a look though it!
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