This was an interesting outing. The plan was to go to Mt.Pisgah overlooking the Indian Trail Springs site. The inital site that was chosen was pretty much swamped. The road up to Pishgah was rough and the decision was made to go to ITS.
Due to issues with one of the stepper motor's wiring (a short), I was only able to image for 1 1/2 of 3 nights. This gave me the opportunity to get in some visual observing and catching up on some sleep that was nice.
- This is a galaxy that I photographed the previous month at the Maupin site. At that time I only took one hour of exposures. The galaxy was processed (with my beginner processing skills) and ended up coming out faint with little color. This photograph is 2 1/2 hours and it came out better. This is a challenging one!
M81 & M82 -
I only managed to take about one hour of a planned 2 hours of exposure before I started having issues with the mount. Also, I had previously removed a piece of plastic covering the primary mirror of my scope to try to add additional airflow in the closed optical tube. My suspecion was that the elongated stars in the lower half of my previous images were caused by thermal issues in the OTA.
Around dusk Saturday night, the wind was blowing pretty well so I turned the mirror end up on the mount and removed the camera and the wind was blowing through the tube pretty well.... Anyway, the star shapes looked much better and I have since built a cooling fan and filter assemblies to try to cool down the mirror(s) more quickly. I am anxious to try this out and hopefully it will improve my images.