So I’ve settled on using the tripod from my cg4, with the Chinese EQ5 clone. While this mash up isn’t pretty, it gives remarkable stabilization to my 8″ newt with a myriad of accessories. Because the mount uses clutches for both RA and DEC, I can more easily decluch the RA and navigate more easily. The CG4 mount has a direct coupling motor in the RA axis so you can’t manually slew at all, and the electronic movement is just too slow when searching for DSO’s… In my opinion anyway.
Seeing was moderate at best. Jupiter was super bright but would wildly swing from completely out of focus to crisp well defined bands about every 15-20 seconds. It made you feel like you weren’t standing still at the EP. A little vertigo(ish) if you ask me. Not the most pleasant of viewing, but when it was clear it was super clear and stable.
I started by getting re-familiarized with Jupiter. Again, seeing made it a bit frustrating, but over time I saw enough lucky frames to get a really crisp view overall.
Before I called it a night I decided to try and find the nearby M5, Since switching mounts and having manual control over RA, it was MUCH easier to find it. it looked good, if not really faint and smudgy as expected. I was surprisingly able to zoom WAY in and use averted vision to make out more stars. I then proceeded to find M3. It was a bit harder just because it was farther from any guide star landmarks. but again, same as with M5, feint and smudgy, but you could zoom into it and use averted vision to see a more classic view.
I failed to find M107… I think i was just getting tired, I know I found the right neighborhood, and it’s suppose to be brighter than M3 & M5, but alas I just couldn’t find it.
It was great to get back behind the EP. For anyone who actually follows this log, you might have noticed that it’s been OVER a year since I posted. That’s because it HAS been over a year since I’ve been healthy enough, and had enough time, to get the gear out and start observing. I lament the lost time, but life happens and you just can’t do anything about it. One pleasantly surprising observation is that I hadn’t lost any skill, if anything i was a bit more efficient in my efforts. I don’t recall struggling with gear at all. everything worked just as it should.