View Full Version here: : The Hooded Observing Jacket has landed! (Photos)
13-01-2012, 02:22 PM
Dear fellow visual observers,
Greetings to you on behalf of the Order of the Hood! :nerd:
I am the first initiate that I am aware of in Australia, my hood from Dark Sky Apparel (www.darkskiesapparel.com/hooded_vests.html )having arrived yesterday.
I placed an order for three; I ordered one for Xstream and one for Anna as well. I will deliver theirs to them when we meet up in Coonabarabran in the next few months.
You will see that I have immediately put two sew-on badges on the vest – courtesy of Peter Read from SDM. I also put a badge from the AAO at Coonabarabran. I expect more badges of astronomical significance will make their way to my jacket over time. I am also considering having “Rodstar” embroidered on the back….
13-01-2012, 02:26 PM
The jacket is very comfortable. I ordered the regular size, which is intended to fit all except the very large. I am a little tubby, about 5’10”, and it is quite roomy on me. Last night I observed with it, over a singlet, a long-sleeve shirt and a leather jacket, and I did not feel at all restricted in my movements.
The material reminds me of a graduation (academic) gown, it is a very strong heavier type cloth material, jet black in colour.
It has a total of 11 pockets.
On the left chest, it has two slim pockets at the top (suitable for pens or laser pointers), two mid-sized pockets in the middle which would comfortably fit a T6 Nagler sized EP, and two large pockets at the bottom which would each comfortably house a large EP such as a 13E.
On the right chest, it has one pocket at the top (suitable for reading glasses), and the same two mid-sized and large-sized pockets below.
13-01-2012, 02:29 PM
The hood is massive.
It sits back comfortably like any hoody in the retracted position. It does not feel heavy or offputting.
When pulling it forward, it can be placed so that it comfortably rests just at the brim of your forehead, or brought further forward to a point where it forms a full tent over your head.
When in the full “tent” position, the underside of the hood can be pulled around the chin, and held there with one hand, creating an entirely enclosed blackened cave around the eyepiece.
13-01-2012, 02:32 PM
The stitch work is first class. This vest is built to last!
The vest has a loop of material on the back of the neck, which means the jacket can be hung on the hook for storage. The jacket also comfortable fits on a standard coat-hangar, if that is your preference.
The two front halves of the vest are joined by a simple non adjustable clip.
13-01-2012, 02:34 PM
In the field
I observed for about 90 minutes last night before moonage became too much of an issue. In a short, this garment is FANTASTIC.
I observe from moderately light polluted skies on the NSW Central Coast. I have a lot of interference from neighbours’ lights. Last night I immediately experienced the benefit of being able to shut out the world of lights around me. Contrast was massively improved with the hood on. It had the same effect as if I was observing within an observatory structure. A neighbor on one side had some lights coming through their upstairs windows; this problem was almost completely eliminated with the hood in place.
With the hood on, the darkened effect was so good that I was able to observe with my non-observing eye open. I have never been able to master this before, but with the hood it is easily done. The benefit of having the non-observing eye open is that your face is far more relaxed, and so facial soreness or headaches that can be induced by squinting the face, are entirely avoided. I would estimate that my observing perception was improved by half a magnitude with the benefit of the hood.
The only major criticism I have at this stage is that the reading glasses pocket is too tight to fit my usual spectacles, and so I ended up putting those in one of the large bottom pockets during the observing session. The top pockets are set very high up, and are a little awkward to put things in/pull things out of.
One reality of observing with the hood is that you need to move the hood out of your way to use a head-lamp, or to look at star maps / the Argo Navis screen etc. An observer’s dark adaption is also still vulnerable if there is a sudden flash of light during the time that the hood is up.
The other reality is that if you walk in on someone who is not expecting a weirdo in a monkish hooded vest, you are likely to freak them out!
13-01-2012, 02:44 PM
When we visit Stonehenge we certainly won't look out of place! :lol:
Looks great Rod, I'm sure they'll improve our observing skills. I can't wait to try mine out in Coona, "Bring it on"! :D
13-01-2012, 02:48 PM
That was quick! Very cool :)
13-01-2012, 09:06 PM
John, we will look like three druids! Pity the locals.:rofl:
Mishku - yep, delivery was uber quick. Very impressive service. :2thumbs:
13-01-2012, 11:15 PM
i think it will look very nice in your wardrobe Rod
of course, it will never replace your freezer suit ;)
14-01-2012, 12:29 AM
I was actually going to make a similar comment about the "Druid look"...or thinking of "Animal House" say "Thank you sir may I have another"....
14-01-2012, 08:01 AM
Geoff, I was thinking that perhaps we could design a modified freezer suit, with large black hood. What do you think??? Actually, the observing vest is so roomy, it should comfortably fit over the top of my freezer suit.
Thanks, Scott. Yep, it would look pretty spooky to someone who came across a group of observers, not knowing what they were doing!
14-01-2012, 10:13 AM
The Pagan rituals & fertility rites will be awesome. ;)
16-01-2012, 04:21 PM
Lucky for you it's not in white :P
17-01-2012, 07:03 PM
I could not resist....I have had my name embroidered in gold lettering on the back of the vest.....looks better in real life than here, but what do you think??!!:P
17-01-2012, 07:09 PM
:D Looks great.
I think I'll make myself one for when I do Solar imaging. It would be great not to have a towel draped over my head when focusing on the back of the camera.
17-01-2012, 07:15 PM
You clever thing!:thumbsup:
17-01-2012, 07:47 PM
:rofl::rofl: yes so spot on. love the look egor! looks to be very effective:thumbsup:
17-01-2012, 07:49 PM
is that some reference to some movies sold in Canberra?:P
does look cool :help:
The next time we observe together, I hope you don't expect us to have to wear a tie.
Oh, I get it! It's for cleaning eyepieces, right? :thumbsup:
That explains why you didn't go for the cravat.
17-01-2012, 09:06 PM
One has to look one's best, Gary, when observing with the Stars.
Thanks HOughy, I reckon you'd look good in one.
17-01-2012, 09:11 PM
i'd look like a genetically modified John Belushi:P:rofl: its a pretty good idea Rod, and i do agree with JJJ that it would be great for solar work:thumbsup: as well as the shiny thingys at night:D
26-08-2012, 09:31 AM
Does anyone want to do a group buy, they are $75 each?
Delivery for 1-2 is $37, for 3+ it's $45, if we ordered quite a few of them we could ask them for a discount...
I am based in the Sydney CBD and could be persuaded to mail a few of them also.
26-08-2012, 09:42 AM
I actually picked one up at NEAF...I picked a white one with mesh back. I really like it a lot and highly recommend them.
26-08-2012, 12:52 PM
Oo la la.
(Very Da Vinci Code.)
I like it!
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