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Old 14-10-2019, 02:42 PM
AstroApprentice (Jason)
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Weather monitor for obs

Hi obs owners,
I'm considering a weather monitor so it can close up my obs in poor weather.
Does anyone have experience with SkyAlert? http://interactiveastronomy.com/skyalertindex.html

I'm also thinking about Boltwood, but it's very expensive and costs more than twice as much as the SkyAlert.
http://diffractionlimited.com/produc...oud-sensor-ii/

Plus I've come across the much cheaper AAG Cloudwatcher.
https://www.lunaticastronomical.com/...-detector.html
If anyone has one, I'd like to know your thoughts as it doesn't appear as well integrated or advanced as the more expensive options. If it closes up when it rains, then it might be all I need...
Thanks.
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Old 16-10-2019, 01:25 PM
AstroApprentice (Jason)
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Aurora

I also came across this cheaper weather monitor. Just wondering if anyone has used one?
http://www.auroraeurotech.com/CloudSensor.php
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Old 27-10-2019, 04:21 PM
jamespierce (James)
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We run a boltwood. Expensive yes, but they have been around for ages and seem very reliable. Used by many hosting facilities etc. if there is one thing to cheap out on, itís not your weather station.
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Old 02-11-2019, 10:34 PM
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turbo_pascale (Rob)
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The article below looks pretty unbiased and well researched.
Compares the Boltwood II vs SkyAlert you were looking at.

https://www.cloudynights.com/article...-sensors-r3151
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Old 03-11-2019, 02:24 PM
AstroApprentice (Jason)
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Thanks Rob,
That article has me concerned about Boltwood, given the designer passed away a couple of years ago and DL seem to have a dubious reputation for service in recent times. Iíd spend the extra $ for quality, Iím just not so sure Boltwood still has that. So I contacted SlyAlert, but unfortunately they no longer ship to Aus due to issues they had with Customs. AAG seems the best value alternative given they have a distributor here...
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Old 27-11-2019, 11:14 PM
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Paul Haese
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I've been using AAG for a number of years. The first one I had died after two years, the second one has been perfectly fine for the last 4.5 years. Runs continuously and always works.
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Old 28-11-2019, 05:54 AM
AstroApprentice (Jason)
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Thanks Paul,
AAG sounds like a good value option - I'll give it a try.
I've read about some users having issues with false closures - do you have any tips for the settings?
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Old 28-11-2019, 07:46 AM
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I occasionally get a false closure, but nothing to too annoying.
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Old 29-11-2019, 12:52 PM
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Peter Ward
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Quality has it's price...

I have used a Boltwood for approx 15 years.

Apart from the one time a spider moved in and upset the moisture readings, it has never missed a beat. The build quality is second to none.
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Old 30-11-2019, 05:20 AM
AstroApprentice (Jason)
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Boltwood

Thanks Peter,
Like your experience, Iíve read a lot of positive comments about Boltwood sensors. More recently, however, thereís a few negative ones to be found. I hope DL are still making them to the original exacting standards...
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Old 01-12-2019, 07:05 PM
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peter_4059 (Peter)
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I'm interested to know if the Boltwood can accurately differentiate different cloud cover levels. It looks like it just uses the difference between ambient and sky temperature and you have to dial in a threshold value for clear/cloudy and cloudy/very cloudy. Are the default values (-25 and -10 degC) adequate or are users tweaking these to suit local conditions and/or summer/winter operation?

I compared it to my local observations and can imagine it would report cloud on a number of occasions where I would have considered it clear...perhaps it is sensing high cloud.
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:18 AM
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multiweb (Marc)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peter_4059 View Post
I'm interested to know if the Boltwood can accurately differentiate different cloud cover levels. It looks like it just uses the difference between ambient and sky temperature and you have to dial in a threshold value for clear/cloudy and cloudy/very cloudy. Are the default values (-25 and -10 degC) adequate or are users tweaking these to suit local conditions and/or summer/winter operation?

I compared it to my local observations and can imagine it would report cloud on a number of occasions where I would have considered it clear...perhaps it is sensing high cloud.
Good day Sensei. Can you add a couple of gauges for Asahi temp and MB inventory?
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