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Old 30-12-2010, 04:25 PM
jamespierce (James)
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jamespierce is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 243
Originally Posted by Rodstar View Post

James, I tried in vain to snare some detail in some of the Fornax galaxies, but there was a constant passage of clouds meandering through the sky on the central coast, reflecting all of that ambient light and washing out any detail. I will have to wait for some darker skies to enjoy such deep skies wonders.

I also have no chance of seeing the Horsehead under suburban conditions. You are doing well to see it with a 16" scope, it is one very elusive target! I have to work very hard to see it under dark skies with 20".
It's really dark out here, not the inkiest I've ever seen but close - Makes me inspired to get out here for the Vic South Star Party (Astro Society of Vic's Big Bash) - significantly darker than Loststock. It's clear again tonight too - night 2 of hopefully 6 for this trip. We are in the same boat as you, between weather and life we've only really been out 2 or 3 times seriously since IISC - last night was play time, tonight I'll be more diligent about working through some constellations like Fornax before they disappear etc. You've just added a few things to my 'must see' list - keep em coming !

Oh BTW, when Peter put on the Argo (on the way home from IISC), he insisted on doing a Servocat too - this thing is cool as - The GOTO is neat of course, but it's just as quick and easy to PUSH-TO ... But, especially on the really faint stuff it makes a huge difference having the tracking, you can really just focus on viewing - or changing eye pieces or checking a chart etc without ever loosing your place, it's a real asset looking at something large and complicated like the LMC also.

Oh yeah, I just found AstroPlanner too today - seems like it would be right up your alley - well worth a look, can build custom Argo Navis catalogs.
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