#21  
Old 09-10-2010, 01:51 PM
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Paddy (Patrick)
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Originally Posted by Rob_K View Post

a less 'technical' report that communicates your impressions, enjoyment or the like can be just as valuable. After all, that's what drives us to do it, and keeps us going through shared experience!

Er, what I think I'm saying is that an observation report is not a test!

Good luck!!

Cheers -
Couldn't agree more, Rob!
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  #22  
Old 09-10-2010, 03:39 PM
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In fact I suspect many of the astrophotographers enjoy reading these reports too Suzy. Very few wouldn't have done at least some visual before being led astray, and it does make you feel like you've shared a bit of the night (even if you've been clouded out for eternity in reality ). I promised myself when I bought my latest scope I would keep good observations, spending many hours tweaking the format I would use/used. I managed to keep that up for 6 or 9 months before the imaging bug really bit. Even now I get a lot of satisfaction making notes each night I'm out, albeit usually simple text files in Notepad now I tend to have a laptop with me all the time - a text file for each night saved into the directory along with all my raw image files. I like to record more than object/exposure times/filters/etc though - is nice to read back about people you were with, visitors, or even how noisey the neighbours or dog next door have been. It certainly evokes more memories when you're reading back later.

Ron, you're not wrong about that carpet - I have fond memories of grovelling on it while chasing a couple of very low galaxies on the northern horizon.

Hmmm, in fact, digging back through the archives, have found the text file for that night, with extract for latter part of night below!:

Sat 28/2/09 - 2nd Feb visit to Ron's, 130am:
Focus soft all night. First time used red cellophane on screen, and really wasn’t careful enough checking focus. Particularly disappointed with my first extra long exposure efforts on the Sombrero – mount really was tracking poorly.

Visual: M97 - Faint puff ball in Ron’s scope, kneeling on the ground, but clearly visible, like a ghost…

M51 - Beautiful twin galaxies. Ron says he can see M101 from here too….

NGC 4565 - Beautiful dust lane visible, with faint star like supernova below and brightish star away on other side of galaxy. Very nice in the dob!! Last object for the night before retiring to tent about 3am!!

I think my observation notes could use some work, but I can still vividly remember the scene, the dew and the objects reading that. +1 for obs reports

Last edited by RobF; 09-10-2010 at 03:56 PM.
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  #23  
Old 09-10-2010, 04:11 PM
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astroron (Ron)
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Originally Posted by RobF View Post
In fact I suspect many of the astrophotographers enjoy reading these reports too Suzy. Very few wouldn't have done at least some visual before being led astray, and it does make you feel like you've shared a bit of the night (even if you've been clouded out for eternity in reality ). I promised myself when I bought my latest scope I would keep good observations, spending many hours tweaking the format I would use/used. I managed to keep that up for 6 or 9 months before the imaging bug really bit. Even now I get a lot of satisfaction making notes each night I'm out, albeit usually simple text files in Notepad now I tend to have a laptop with me all the time - a text file for each night saved into the directory along with all my raw image files. I like to record more than object/exposure times/filters/etc though - is nice to read back about people you were with, visitors, or even how noisey the neighbours or dog next door have been. It certainly evokes more memories when you're reading back later.

Ron, you're not wrong about that carpet - I have fond memories of grovelling on it while chasing a couple of very low galaxies on the northern horizon.

Hmmm, in fact, digging back through the archives, have found the text file for that night, with extract for latter part of night below!:

Sat 28/2/09 - 2nd Feb visit to Ron's, 130am:
Focus soft all night. First time used red cellophane on screen, and really wasn’t careful enough checking focus. Particularly disappointed with my first extra long exposure efforts on the Sombrero – mount really was tracking poorly.

Visual: M97 - Faint puff ball in Ron’s scope, kneeling on the ground, but clearly visible, like a ghost…

M51 - Beautiful twin galaxies. Ron says he can see M101 from here too….

NGC 4565 - Beautiful dust lane visible, with faint star like supernova below and brightish star away on other side of galaxy. Very nice in the dob!! Last object for the night before retiring to tent about 3am!!

I think my observation notes could use some work, but I can still vividly remember the scene, the dew and the objects reading that. +1 for obs reports
Hi Rob,for one who has gravitated to the dark side It was a great report.
It seems like a lifetime since you where here in Cambroon
I hope when the weather fines up we will see you again
Cheers
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  #24  
Old 09-10-2010, 04:31 PM
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Me too Ron - would love to sample the clear Cambroon air and cruise your skies again. In the final weeks of study/exams now, so should get my freedom back in time for the perfect skies Nov will bring...
(nothing wrong with eternal optimism! )
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  #25  
Old 09-10-2010, 06:11 PM
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Rob F, wow! I really enjoyed reading that report - and this from a dark sider. Fantastic! Okay, well - if HE can do it, I can.

You're right guys I don't need to make it too technical, I see. I get a big buzz myself even out of the most simple obs.

Thank you Rob K & Rob F for the great advice & encouragement. RobF I hope to be at Ron's in November (weather permitting and God willing), I would love so much to meet you if you are able to attend. Sounds like Ron's carpet gets a lot of intimate encounters. Do you have a plush pile version for moi? Something in pink (matches my skin tone better) .

Ron, I'm sorry about you're tape recorder - but I have to admit I laughed very very hard when you told that story. Have you thought about using your mobile phone's recorder (that's what I'll be doing)?

I'm in the middle of digging up my note scribbled maps to do my first report - I even have star sketches amongst my notes (seems I've been a closet observer - just coming out ) I better get back to it. Gosh, hope there isn't a word limit, you know what my posts can be like...!

Seeing as the weather has been miserable for most of us for some time, how about you guys dig back into some old obs and post them, as RobF did and just like I am about to do. It will help carry us over till we can observe again. "Reflection Obs" sub titling the title. Thoughts? Ideas? Maybe you have even posted all your obs already, but for those who haven't (like me).

Err, sorry Ron, appears I have hijacked your thread.
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  #26  
Old 09-10-2010, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Suzy View Post
Rob F, wow! I really enjoyed reading that report - and this from a dark sider. Fantastic! Okay, well - if HE can do it, I can.

You're right guys I don't need to make it too technical, I see. I get a big buzz myself even out of the most simple obs.

Thank you Rob K & Rob F for the great advice & encouragement. RobF I hope to be at Ron's in November (weather permitting and God willing), I would love so much to meet you if you are able to attend. Sounds like Ron's carpet gets a lot of intimate encounters. Do you have a plush pile version for moi? Something in pink (matches my skin tone better) .

Ron, I'm sorry about you're tape recorder - but I have to admit I laughed very very hard when you told that story. Have you thought about using your mobile phone's recorder (that's what I'll be doing)?

I'm in the middle of digging up my note scribbled maps to do my first report - I even have star sketches amongst my notes (seems I've been a closet observer - just coming out ) I better get back to it. Gosh, hope there isn't a word limit, you know what my posts can be like...!

Seeing as the weather has been miserable for most of us for some time, how about you guys dig back into some old obs and post them, as RobF did and just like I am about to do. It will help carry us over till we can observe again. "Reflection Obs" sub titling the title. Thoughts? Ideas? Maybe you have even posted all your obs already, but for those who haven't (like me).

Err, sorry Ron, appears I have hijacked your thread.
Yakity yakity Yakity yak
I don't mind one bit Suzy
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  #27  
Old 09-10-2010, 06:50 PM
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Great job Ron, enjoyed the read!



Just as a matter of interest, seeing as I had good dark skies tonight, I had a go at NGC 7424 and IC 5332 with my 4.5" f8 Tasco with 21mm EP (43x). Both were extremely faint, hard to hold, and not the sort of objects I would ever pick up in idly scanning through the fields - but I had their positions well nailed down in the field. NGC 7424 was a shapeless ghost-of-a-ghost, while IC 5332 was a little easier to see. I got the impression it has a slightly brighter core than 7424 - in fact that was pretty much all I saw of it I think. By contrast, the mag 11.3 NGC 7410, just a field away, was an easy spot, a nice little edge-on. A similar distance away from 7424, the faint mag 12.2 NGC 7462 was also visible, but only in averted vision because of a bright little star at one end.
I tried for 7424 last weekend and saw exactly nothing. Not a target for suburban skies.

Quote:
Two good lessons - good skies are everything, and magnitude on its own doesn't mean much! I'd love to see all these galaxies in a 10" or 12" under skies at my place. The door's always open fellas!

Cheers -
Agreed. Sometimes the improvement going from the city to the country is the equivalent of doubling your aperture.
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  #28  
Old 09-10-2010, 10:12 PM
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That's a great idea Suzy to have a "reflection on past observations thread". You should do it! I'd like to hear what notes people dug up and lessons learned along the way. You should certainly write up some of your notes as reports. Do those bits of paper have lots of emoticons all over them.....

Would be great to catch up with you at Ron's some time if that works out. You couldn't hope for a nicer crowd of observers. Wife has been minding the kids for so many weekends I'll be working hard to scrounge enough brownie pts to get away, but wouldn't it be great to get a clear new moon before the Christmas break.....

Yes, sorry to nattering over your obs report Ron, but it really was a stimulating read on a wet rainy afternoon
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  #29  
Old 09-10-2010, 10:53 PM
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No worries Rob I am enjoying the interaction
I am hoping the weather will be kind to us next month
cheers
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  #30  
Old 10-10-2010, 11:11 AM
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shelltree (Shelley)
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It's great to hear you had some good weather for observing Ron and you found a heap of goodies too Reading your report made me excited about getting out there again when this rain goes away!
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  #31  
Old 10-10-2010, 11:24 AM
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Thanks Shelly that green carpet is getting plenty of use, me on bended knee praying for this rain to stop
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