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Astrophotography on the "cheap"

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adrenalynn

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Another thread prompted me to give some thought to this question - how inexpensively can you shoot meaningful deepspace astro-photos (planets aren't much of a challenge)?<br /><br />I've been doing the astro-photo thing for years. Big scopes, expensive cameras, fast films, etc. It seemed like a fun challenge to put together a comparatively inexpensive solution.<br /><br />I went with my least expensive scope that has tracking. Not great tracking, but it's there. A small Celestron NexStar can be had on eBay for a few hundred dollars.<br /><br />In the camera department, I chose a "retired" Canon point-and-shoot.<br /><br />A few dollars in hose clamps, I hammered some aluminum channel flat, and fitted everything together. It saw First Light earlier this evening with the first deep sky object up and visible from my backyard - M39.<br /><br />Here's the First Light picture. I'll put together a more complete build description for those interested once I work all the bugs out of the system. It's been a blast so far - version 3.0 should be tested before daybreak. <img src="/images/icons/wink.gif" /><br /><br />http://www.jlrdesigns.com/M39.png <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
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adrenalynn

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Version 3.0 is looking pretty good, if I do say so. <br /><br />http://www.jlrdesigns.com/M42-43-meteor.jpg (Minimal image processing)<br /><br />Notice the meteor trail below M42!<br /><br />[edit] A little more image processing:<br /><br />http://www.jlrdesigns.com/newastro/M42-43-meteor2.jpg<br /><br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
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docm

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Some webcams work good too. If you search around the 'net there are projects for adding a Peltier cooler to them for reducing black noise. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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