Bill Magee`s Journey


         Observations Page 5

   Aug.22nd 2010

Tried out 21mm Orion stratus 68deg.AFOV on almost full Moon.Not too bad but moon features washed out and only craters visible at edge of moon at the terminator.Only viewd for  about an hour.Pic taken with panasonic DMZ FZ28 on auto handheld to 21mm Orion stratus eyepiece on Dynamax8 SCT.


Observations Aug.30th to 31st 2010

Middle  Pic of Jupiter and moons Europa Io and Callisto Taken through 21mm Orion stratus eyepiece on Dynamax 8 SCT afocal with panasonic DMC FZ28 digital camera.Large Moon Pic at bottom through same eyepiece at 100x.Top pic of moon through 32mm plossl at 65x


Set Scope up on newly built and erected pier in corner of back yard.Had to do very little rough polar alignment .Will refine the alignment at a later date as I just wanted to observe.(Still need to attatch a fine adjuster for azimuth I have not built yet.)Using an angle finder I set up the base level and set the Declination on the wedge before hand.

Started observations with:(Only using 21mm Orion stratus eyepiece 68deg.AFOV -100x and 32mm televue plossl eyepiece 50deg AFOV-65x) at 10:30 PM MDT
Used telrad to roughly find M-57
M-57 the ring Nebula in Lyra. Mag.9 .Was in the field of view right away.What a beautiful  sight .Very very nice at100x .I could see a fuzzy donut shape that at some times during viewing I could see a hint of color and if my eyes didn`t decieve me I am sure I saw the central star but very dim.Set RA to its coordinates on scope. Declination setting was right on the money.No better a way than to start off observing with a celestial donut.                    MMMMMMMMM Donuts ("Homer Simpson")
Used setting circles for the next DSOS.

M-13 The great Globular cluster in Hurcules. A nice revisit at 100x  Mag.5.9.Brighter than last obsevation and could make out some individual stars as I continued observing.
Set scope on Jupiter using Telrad.Watched at 100x as Ganymede started dissapearing behind Jupiters shadow (Dimmed out before my eyes)(Did not expect this) and Io was emerging from behind the planet. Looked like Jupiter was growing a spike.Very nice cloud bands on the planet at this power.No detail though.I watched this for quite a while(Probably a half hour or so)12:00 PM to 12:30 AM MDT?.Did not check my watch.
Now onto some more DSOS. Hair Dryer time on eyepiece and corrector (Dew Shield on).(Very Humid conditions and getting colder)
M-29   A nice open cluster at 100x Mag.6.6
M-27 The Dumbell Nebula. Very faint fuzzy nebulosity at 100x Mag.8.1
M-71  Faint fuzzy globular cluster at Mag.8.3 -100x
M-39  Nice bright open cluster of stars at Mag.4.6 -100x
M-2    A little fuzzy faint Globular cluster at 100x Mag.6.5
M11 The Wid Duck Cluster. Fairly nice not too bright open cluster of stars at 100x (68deg.AFOV) Mag.5.8
Set scope coordinates to find Uranus and then Neptune.Very small star like objects (No definite disc shape at 100x)
Next I set coordinates to find the double cluster in Perseus NGC 884 and NGC 869 to see if they would both fit in the same field of view on the 21mm Orion Stratus .They Did.I did a comparison with the 32mm plossl also.The cluster pair  appeared about the same amount of stars in the field of view in both eyepieces but bigger with the stratus at 100x.
Next I tried to find M-74 .The Moon was illuminating clouds in this area of the sky.I waited till they dissipated and also did a defog with the hairdryer now for the third time on corrector and 21mm eyepiece.Clouds went but could not get a good look so I decided now to look at the moon which was now in line of site of my scope.

The Moon which is now getting to last quarter was very stunning at the terminator with the21mm Stratus eyepiece at100x.I Have not viewed the moon very often with the sunlight striking it from this direction.Took a few handheld afocal pics with the 21mm and 32mmplossl to compare .A lot harder to square up with the 21mm.
Spent quite a bit of time viewing the Moon.Clouds approaching and another hairdryer blast on corrector and eyepiece and called it a night after one last view of Jupiter and its dancing moons.Io had moved a lot farther now from the planet and I took a couple of  handheld afocal shots of it.No detail at all on Jupiter (just a bright light) but the three moons Europa Io and Callisto do show up.
Quit Observing at 2:48 AM MDT.Packed things inside and off to bed by 3:15 AM MDT

                             Observations Page 6