Next time I get it set up I will snap a picture. This might not be until 24-Nov because my plan for the 16-Nov target date has changed now since I've run into unexpected complications with the focus (described below).hoi.polloi » November 13th, 2017, 4:03 pm wrote: wonder if you wouldn't mind also getting some kind of picture of the set up with tripod and so on
Just today I found that the "shortened" version of the adapter described at the end of my last post that omits the camera-adapter's eyepiece tube just won't work as shown (in the second set of pictures from my last post). It turns out the focal point of the telescope is just a bit closer than the camera sensor, resulting in a terribly blurred image that is impossible to bring into focus.
However I can get focus if I attach the 2x Barlow lens to the camera-adapter. While the Barlow has the added benefit of doubling the magnification, the connection to the star diagonal (that's the "L" shaped thing the camera is connected to in the pictures in my previous post and is what usually holds the eyepiece when using the telescope normally) is even more awkward than the camera-mount's eyepiece holder.
Further research has indicated I would be better off removing the star diagonal entirely and attaching the camera-adapter directly to the telescope's focusing tube. This is not without it's drawbacks, as without the star diagonal the image in the viewfinder is upside down (which makes directional aiming very confusing because up is down and left is right). It is also more awkward to look through the viewfinder if the telescope is pointed almost straight up.
Fortunately my camera includes Canon software that allows me to USB tether the camera to my laptop so I can see the image there - and also use the connection as a cable shutter release (a very good thing!). The problem is (there's always bad with the good ) I have never used the software so I still need to learn how it works. Telescopic pics will have to wait for the flybys at the end of the month while I test the focus on new adapter configurations and get accustomed to aiming with an inverted image.
I'm learning as I go, so I hope some initial missteps will be forgiven as I figure out the different ways of using the telescope's camera-adapter.
For the 16-November flyby, weather permitting, I will use only the camera on a tripod to get a couple of long-exposure (20-second shutter) images as it flies above the constellation Gemini and through Cancer. These pictures will disclose the accuracy (or lack thereof) of the plotted path shown in Heavens Above's sky-chart. This will be important to know if I am to rely on them for precision aiming.
So for now my planned schedule is:
16-Nov: long exposure pictures with the camera's 70mm lens. I'll also try to see the thing through my telescope, but I won't hook the camera up to it.
24-Nov and 25-Nov: Try out the aiming and focus with the camera-adapter and telescope sans star diagonal. Also working with camera tethering software.
26-Nov, 27-Nov, and 29-Nov: Try to get photos or video footage of ISS through the telescope.
All plans are weather permitting, of course. I'd like to practice the aiming and such before the 24th, but I want to use the Moon as a target and it's night-time visibility won't be where I need it until then.
Walnut Creek, California. Anything more specific than that I can't accommodate as I have an aversion to releasing personally identifiable information on the Internet (I don't even use FaceBook ).hoi.polloi » November 13th, 2017, 4:03 pm wrote:A geolocation we can find on Google
I use Heavens Above for everything because it is so easy. Just select your location from the map and it lists all upcoming ISS flybys in local time. Click on an individual pass and it shows the star chart with the path plotted on it. Click anywhere on the star chart and it will show a magnified view of centered on that spot. The magnified view is very useful because it shows more detail and is also less distorted than the sky chart (which is a projection of a half sphere onto a 2D plane).hoi.polloi » November 13th, 2017, 4:03 pm wrote:Do you mind also please (re)posting the web site you use for tracking time and location of the ISS?
I also use a software program called Stellarium (great software that everyone should get - its free) to check individual flybys and get a feel for exactly how it will track across the sky.