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Old 05-05-2021, 01:12 PM
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pmrid (Peter)
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Street lighting screens

In a new home deeper into suburbia, Iím finding it harder than ever to work around street lighting.

So I recently purchased a bolt of a 300gsm cotton material - some call it ďCommando clothĒ. It is used in making theatrical backdrops too. Comes in a 3 metre wide roll and I purchased a 2 metre length.

My initial plan is to make 3 screens of about 1 x 1.8 metres each and form them into a free-standing U-shape wall I can place between me and the more intrusive lights.

I was wondering if anyone has any better ideas to tackle this problem.
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Old 05-05-2021, 01:27 PM
glend (Glen)
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A good row of Leighton Green Conifers. And patience as they take time to grow. I planted a row of seven behind my observatory as I was building it. Those trees are about 7 metres high now and filled in between to form a nice hedge.
I did use temporary black tarps hanging from extendable long tent poles, as block outs , before the trees got big enough to do the job. The good thing about the black tarps is that they are quick to put up and take dow, no need for permanency. I used the quality tarps which are silver on one side and black on the other. You want the black side on your side and the silver side to reflect light back yo the source. I also had a light shield flap on my sliding roof, which could be adjusted to block light entering the observatory.

I think Allan M tried making a light wall across his backyard to shield his gear from a neighbor that likes to leave security lights on all the time. People seem to be afraid of the dark.
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Old 05-05-2021, 02:57 PM
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pmrid (Peter)
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Glen, when I say "deeper into suburbia" I really mean it. I'm in one of those cheek-by-jowel neighbourhoods of McMansions where every effore has been made to maximise land use and minimise fencing setoffs. Also, I just had to spend 4 grand cutting down 11 palm trees and rebuilding the fence they had pushed over as they grew - thanks to some idiotic landscaping ideas from past owners. So while I would love a wall of happy conifers, they are not workable for me. So It's either sell everything astronomic and take up stamp collecting or make some imaginative use of temporary screeens. Hence my idea of PVC frames and dark cloth. Wish it wern't so but if wishes were ... you know how it goes.
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Old 05-05-2021, 03:03 PM
Startrek (Martin)
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Peter,
When Iím in Sydney imaging under Bortle 8 skies with both side neighbours having 2 story homes with a zillion exterior lights all over them plus floods blasting their backyards until midnight and no one in the backyard ??? ( donít ask me why , thereís these devices called motion detectors been around for 30 years ) I use good old poly tarps from Bunnings with bungy cords etc ( sliver on one side and black on the other , total blockout ) I just tie a few 20mm x 3m wooden poles to my pool fence and span across to the back of my house where I have a few screw hooks, takes me 5 to 10 mins to set up my anti light screens ( things you have to do to image from a big City suburban backyard

Photo of my one neighbours lights at 11pm during a mid weeknight
The other sides not much better
Talking about light pollution, come to my place and bring your lux meter , it would go off the scale
Cheers
Martin
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Old 05-05-2021, 03:22 PM
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multiweb (Marc)
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Peter,
When Iím in Sydney imaging under Bortle 8 skies with both side neighbours having 2 story homes with a zillion exterior lights all over them plus floods blasting their backyards until midnight and no one in the backyard ???
That looks exactly like my backyard. Minus the pool.
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Old 05-05-2021, 06:54 PM
DarkArts
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Originally Posted by pmrid View Post
I was wondering if anyone has any better ideas to tackle this problem.
No, that's pretty much the best I could come up with, too. You could use a cheaper but more flimsy material: weedmat, for instance, which you can get in a 1.8m wide roll at various lengths (10, 25, 50, 100m long).

Other than that, there are some privacy screens in a spring-loaded dispenser - for mounting to a wall or post - that's if you want a quick, convenient but expensive solution.
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Old 05-05-2021, 08:12 PM
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pmrid (Peter)
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I found this - and itís pretty much exactly what I need.
https://youtu.be/D4mAPCD0H1g
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Old 06-05-2021, 06:24 AM
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Wow that is pretty intense, what about a decent Air Rifle sorry I know what you are going through, I used to life in an area where the light glow was pretty good, now the area is covered in houses, totally ruined for Astronomy

Leon
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Old 06-05-2021, 07:45 AM
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mura_gadi (Steve)
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Hello,

Seems like a heck of setup unless you can run it around on a trolley.

What about the old home movie screens? Just the stand and a pull down blind x3.


Steve
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Old 06-05-2021, 01:38 PM
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Peter
I found a baffled long dew tube helped greatly...see my reply in Equipment Discussions..thread "Light Scatter"...
Try a piece of rolled up cardboard say 2 foot painted black inside to give you an idea of the effect..if it seems to work make a tube of greater diameter and put in baffles...I sincerely believe it works but have no before and after shots to illustrate my presumed effectiveness...
Also I like to cover the camera and focuser with some black cloth just in case there is a "light" leak.
Alex
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Old 06-05-2021, 03:43 PM
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pmrid (Peter)
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Originally Posted by xelasnave View Post
Peter
I found a baffled long dew tube helped greatly...see my reply in Equipment Discussions..thread "Light Scatter"...
Try a piece of rolled up cardboard say 2 foot painted black inside to give you an idea of the effect..if it seems to work make a tube of greater diameter and put in baffles...I sincerely believe it works but have no before and after shots to illustrate my presumed effectiveness...
Also I like to cover the camera and focuser with some black cloth just in case there is a "light" leak.
Alex
Thanks Alex. I too have found light leakages in focusers and other optical train elements. And like you, I do tend to throw a light (but dark) cloth over that end of the system. It helps a lot. I'll give the long dew tube idea a run. Flocked on the inside. Making the baffles will make the flocking interesting. I've never tried that.
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Old 07-05-2021, 10:22 AM
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Making baffles can be a pain so just go with flocking.
I plan making yet another baffled dew tube ( hopefully for a RASA 11 inch) and this time plan to have them printed and hang the expense.
I paint with black then sprinkle saw dust on the wet paint and when that coat is dry paint again.
Alex
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Old 07-05-2021, 12:22 PM
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mura_gadi (Steve)
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Hello,

For baffles I used the door trims(padded foam strips for insulation and quieting around the door frames) from the hardware store, they come in different thicknesses(heights), are self-adhesive and cheap. You may not be able to duplicate "Newt for the web" designs with it ever diminishing baffles, but certainly get either side of the focuser and the mirror done easily and accurately.

I also used the old fashion black blackboard paint for interior blackening of various bits and pieces.



Steve
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Old 07-05-2021, 07:13 PM
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AstralTraveller (David)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xelasnave View Post
Peter
I found a baffled long dew tube helped greatly...see my reply in Equipment Discussions..thread "Light Scatter"...
Try a piece of rolled up cardboard say 2 foot painted black inside to give you an idea of the effect..if it seems to work make a tube of greater diameter and put in baffles...I sincerely believe it works but have no before and after shots to illustrate my presumed effectiveness...
Also I like to cover the camera and focuser with some black cloth just in case there is a "light" leak.
Alex
I have a soft dew shield for a C-11 that fits my GSO 10" and even under Bortle 2 skies the improvement in contrast is visually apparent. I throw a speaker magnet on the bottom of the tube to fix balance. However I leave it off on windy nights - I observe on a hill with little cover.
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