Monday, August 5, 2013

My wife Sheree and I arrived at our darkest local site on Sunday night (8/4) at dusk under a very clear and tranquil (very light gentle breeze) skies.

As darkness settled in the Milky Way was awesome, giving a heavily mottled look, and expanding into southern Ophiuchus and eastern Scorpius. M-13 and easy naked eye target.

We had the ES 6" f/6.5 refractor and the 22" f/4.5 Telekit dob
Then the issue started for the 6" refractor's Celestron AS CG5. Seems like an issue in the RA drive. This was the start of a bit of a frustrating night.

Now the 22" was letter perfect in collimation (something I strive for), and the early on images showed that. Since we added what I call a shroud baffle (it's a piece of heavy black fabric that Sheree made, that fits around the upper end of truss poles), seems to have increased contrast at the eyepiece of this big scope. The Astrosystems shroud is a bit more shear then I like, and use another down by the mirror box also.

Anyway, I first observer Ngc 6217 in UMi at low power just to take in a first galaxy. Nice bright stellar core with a bit of arm structure was very evident.

Worked a bit more with the big refractor's mount, but there's an issue, so manual would have to be the way to go tonight. Great view of M-13 (with August GL's Ngc 6207).

Then it started to cloud a bit, but would dissipate, but was the harbinger to come.

Did the SN in Ngc 7250 which was a great view in the 22" (with Ngc 7248 to the west). The galaxy was nice and bright in the 11mm T1 Nagler (an old friend of the 22"), with the supernova standing out very well.

I "found" it also in the 6" refractor, and Sheree took a little time to sketch it. Tough to do as the mount was not cooperating real well.

Did some Galaxy Logging for large scopes with the 22" for September, since It's in the same area of the sky as Ngc 7250.

Unfortunately around this time the sky went to crap, and stayed that way.

I was not happy at all, for the night looked so promising early on.

So we packed up the two big scopes, and went home.

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