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Lacerta MGEN II

05 Jun, 2018 02:43
Hi Gary…   I have a William Optics FLT 132 as the main scope, with a Starlight Xpress USB filter wheel with 2” filters [Ha3.5, OIII, SII, H-beta] in front of the ASI 1600. A William Optics Star 71 Gen II f/4.9 Astrograph rides piggybacked. It has a Starlight Xpress mini fw with 36mm Ha, OIII, and SII filters, with its own ASI 1600.  Both are on a Paramount MyT in an observatory I built behind my garage.

I am going to take the Star 71 off to practice using it on a portable rig, SkyGuider Pro, in preparation for going to the Atacama this October with three buddies from my astronomy club, Longmont Astronomical Society. I’ll put my William Optics GT 102 APO piggyback on the 132 while the 71 is off; I have some Ha images I took with it that I would like to extend by gathering other filter data and processing HOO and/or SHO. Caldwell 9 is at the top of that list.

Just looking at your roll away setup…very ingenious. And you have a very fast scope, nice.

I never took the filed work, setup/tear-down route, but straight to building a dome after I retired from being a public school administrator. As I tell my Astro buddies, I am a total “dome rat.” That is, I doub t I would b e doing this at anywhere near my current intensity/level if I had to drag equipment around. Also, I have become a narrowband, refractor, nebulae guy.

Monterey…nice. I grew up in Marin County, did my undergrad at UC Davis.
05 Jun, 2018 06:01
What a great rig, Stephen. In addition to the TS f/4 Newtonian astrograph, I also have 150mm RC and a WO GT71. I exchanged a lot of emails with William when I was ordering the WO refractor. He was remarkably helpful and prompt. Looks like your a WO fan too.

Your acquisition plan sound very well thought through. I am eager to see the imagery of C9 that you create. I am also very envious of your Atacama trip. The seeing should be remarkable.

I appears that we have more in common than just astrophotography. I too did my undergraduate work at UC Davis (69-73, BS Zoology). Perhaps we were contemporaries? I did my graduate work at UCSD, Scripps Institution of Oceanography. I also work in education. I have a non-profit foundation that develops and distributes content and learning platforms for secondary, post-secondary, and adult education nationwide ( We serve districts and systems in all 50 states, but we have only a dozen or so high school and community college districts in Colorado, so I doubt you know our work. I was in the media and software business, sold my companies, retired, and started my non-profit to keep busy. That was 15 years ago and I'm still busy.

It is good to meet you. I am eager to see your Atacama imagery. Travel safely.
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