250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

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250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 3:40 pm

Finally I'm able to say something about my 250mm Ha-RCT fitted with a full size Aries ERF. It has take weeks and weeks to get the adapter manufactured that connects my DS Lunt 35 etalons to the back end of the scope, but finally it arrived the other day along with a 50mm/-300mm corrector lens (from Laser 2000 here in the UK) to make the output light cone substantially parallel ahead of the etalons.

Today was a rare day of sunshine here, although it was mid-afternoon before I was able to give the scope its 'first light'.

The arrangement can be seen in the accompanying photographs, but basically the etalons are contained in a 'filter housing' screwed on the rear of the focuser. The housing has slots on either side that enable me to manipulate the thumbwheel tuning mechanism on each etalon and inside the housing is a refocusing lens that brings the image into focus via a 45 degree mirror onto the sensor. On the front of the housing is a black extension tube with the 'collimating' lens seated on the end. This passes through the focuser and up into the rear of the scope.

Filter housing.
ImageFilter Housing by Stuart Green, on Flickr

ImageIMG_3254 by Stuart Green, on Flickr

The ERF is housed in a custom cell manufactured from a couple of aluminium billets and bolted onto the front framework of the scope.

ImageIMG_2975-001 by Stuart Green, on Flickr

The seeing conditions were shocking (take a look at the video!). Getting anything worthwhile was a challenge. BUT the objective of the exercise was to see if the design was correct and that I could bring the darn thing into focus.

ImageSeeing by Stuart Green, on Flickr

The final image is not great by any standards, but given the seeing conditions I'm not surprised, or disappointed. The main thing for me was a successful demonstration to myself that the basics in the design are correct and that the device shows promise for when the seeing conditions allow. Hopefully this will be more than once per year.

ImageFirst Light by Stuart Green, on Flickr

It's a bit late in the season to expect much better any time soon, but I'll try! It bodes well for next spring though...... A long winter wait ahead.

If you've got this far, thanks for reading.

Stu.


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by oreoluna » Fri Sep 29, 2017 3:50 pm

Hello Stu.
This is a fantastic setup! Congratulations.

But I think they have not hit the focus exactly.

The Seeing here is also very bad, but one sees always that the focus is good.

Image

Intes Micro 150f10, Quantum + LS 50 DS

Jozef



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 4:18 pm

I think you're right, Jozef, although getting anything out of the conditions presented to me was a bonus :)

Clearer air and still air will provide a better test. The weather and general atmospheric conditions have been dreadful these past weeks.

Thanks for the feedback.

Stu.


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Radio meteor detector.
More images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarcarbon60/

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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by eroel » Fri Sep 29, 2017 5:34 pm

Stu:
Beautiful craftmanship on that new setup.
I agree with Jozef, looks like you had a better seeing but you were a bit out of focus. Funny, one gets accustomed to see that right away.
Best regards and a happy and fruitful weekend with your beautiful gear.
Eric.



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by ffellah » Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:14 pm

Hi Stu: that looks like a great set-up and first light, in my opinion, seems very promising. I can't wait to see what you are going to be able to get out of this scope. It is probably going to be one of the best scopes in the group: that coupled with your processing skills !

I am excited for you.

:beanie:

Franco

Hoping for a clear Sunday....



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by GreatAttractor » Sat Sep 30, 2017 8:06 am

I love the look of this setup, Stu. And how you keep pushing those LS35s to the extreme.


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Valery » Sat Sep 30, 2017 10:32 am

Hi Stu,

Nice to see you finally finished your high res setup.

Several things to consider.

1. Don't think that DS will be same effective as with a 150mm telescope. DS require significantly longer exposures and this makes
it less suitable for high res imaging with larger telescopes. I found that exposures longer than 6ms are possible only at at least good
to very good seeing. 7ms - for best conditions only. Anything longer will prevent high res. This is a reason I use my DS setup very rarely vs my SS setups with larger apertures.
Exposures of 3,5 - 4ms and ROI (about 1450 - 990, for Basler 1920-155) allows to record up to 5000 - 5500fr within 20sec movie cadence and then you can select 500 to 1000frames to stack and process then.


2. From April to September I never have experienced good seeing for my 11" scope after 10:30 of a local time.

3. Never saw good images above roofs.

Exact focus is absolutely necessary. I alsways spend a fair amount of time tweaking the best focus.

Hope your next ressions will be better.

BTW. Todays images here were really soaped, same or worser than yours. Except 20-30min time when I was able to catch a few
movies, hopefully good for processing.
My first five or six sessions with 11" aperture were rather disappointed and I thinked that time that larger apertures are not for
my location. I were wrong.


Valery


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Montana » Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:35 pm

Wow!! Stu, these really show potential :hamster: :hamster: well done at finally getting everything together and I really look forward to more :bow Pity that the weathermen were forecasting wall to wall sunshine here all week for this morning, so as usual it is pouring with rain. Will we ever see sunshine on a Saturday or Sunday again? it is a conspiracy!

I took delivery of a Celestron C11 yesterday although I don't have the white light filter yet. Wow the instruction manual is the most useless thing in the world, I followed every step and every step didn't exist on my new scope. It took ages to fathom how to fix the finderscope. Then all I wanted to do was look for the screws where collumation is. The instructions just say the screws, yes where? the only thing that unscrewed was a ring, then instead of a cap the whole secondary came out, so I guess I have well and truly screwed it up now. If it didn't need collumating before it certainly does now. So now I need to find a star before I test on the Sun, that might be an even bigger miracle. oh well.
Alexandra



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Valery » Sat Sep 30, 2017 2:21 pm

Montana wrote:
Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:35 pm
Wow!! Stu, these really show potential :hamster: :hamster: well done at finally getting everything together and I really look forward to more :bow Pity that the weathermen were forecasting wall to wall sunshine here all week for this morning, so as usual it is pouring with rain. Will we ever see sunshine on a Saturday or Sunday again? it is a conspiracy!

I took delivery of a Celestron C11 yesterday although I don't have the white light filter yet. Wow the instruction manual is the most useless thing in the world, I followed every step and every step didn't exist on my new scope. It took ages to fathom how to fix the finderscope. Then all I wanted to do was look for the screws where collumation is. The instructions just say the screws, yes where? the only thing that unscrewed was a ring, then instead of a cap the whole secondary came out, so I guess I have well and truly screwed it up now. If it didn't need collumating before it certainly does now. So now I need to find a star before I test on the Sun, that might be an even bigger miracle. oh well.
Alexandra
Hi Alexandra,

The collimation screws are under the cap on the secondary mirror cell. This cap is easy to open.

Valery


"Solar H alpha activity is the most dynamic and compelling thing you can see in a telescope, so spend accordingly." (c) Bob Yoesle.

Largest full size 185 - 356mm Dielectric Energy Rejection Filters (D-ERF) by ARIES Instruments.

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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Sat Sep 30, 2017 4:14 pm

Thanks for the comments everyone. Guidance is ALWAYS appreciated :)

This really was just a technical/engineering shakedown to test that everything married together properly through the threaded interfaces and that the focus point was in the correct position (although clearly achieving focus was a challenge under the conditions). Although the final image is poor by any standards I'm pleased that everything worked together as planned. Hopefully, when things improve weather-wise, I'll have a better shot of a decent image. I take on board what you're saying Valery and I did try the scope in SS mode, but couldn't get much in the way of contrast. Again, I blame the conditions under a particularly ferocious jet stream currently over the UK. Keeping the exposures short will be a key objective for the really hi-res work.

Anyhow, we'll see what I can achieve in better circumstances and deal with the conditions as best I can. As for the engineering on this, much thanks goes to a guy called Paul who I know through work. He's a professional machine shop engineer with the patience and skill to turn my drawings into reality. Thanks Paul!

Alexandra, good luck with the C11. I'm looking forward to seeing some excellent images from you. :)

Cheers

Stu.


H-alpha, WL and Ca II K imaging kit for various image scales.
Fluxgate Magnetometers (1s and 150s Cadence).
Radio meteor detector.
More images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarcarbon60/

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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by KMH » Sat Sep 30, 2017 4:50 pm

Montana wrote:
Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:35 pm
Wow!! Stu, these really show potential :hamster: :hamster: well done at finally getting everything together and I really look forward to more :bow Pity that the weathermen were forecasting wall to wall sunshine here all week for this morning, so as usual it is pouring with rain. Will we ever see sunshine on a Saturday or Sunday again? it is a conspiracy!

I took delivery of a Celestron C11 yesterday although I don't have the white light filter yet. Wow the instruction manual is the most useless thing in the world, I followed every step and every step didn't exist on my new scope. It took ages to fathom how to fix the finderscope. Then all I wanted to do was look for the screws where collumation is. The instructions just say the screws, yes where? the only thing that unscrewed was a ring, then instead of a cap the whole secondary came out, so I guess I have well and truly screwed it up now. If it didn't need collumating before it certainly does now. So now I need to find a star before I test on the Sun, that might be an even bigger miracle. oh well.
Alexandra
Alexandra,

A set of Bob's Knobs (or something similar) will make collimation MUCH easier.

http://www.bobsknobs.com/SCT/page25/C11.html

Kevin



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by FeroT » Sat Sep 30, 2017 5:35 pm

Hi Stu,
Really jealous of your spectacular gear :-) Looking forward to see some equally spectacular images soon!

Frank



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Montana » Sat Sep 30, 2017 5:54 pm

I like those Bob Knobs, thanks Kevin :)
Alexandra



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by MapleRidge » Sun Oct 01, 2017 2:55 am

Impressive modded scope there Stu, and the first light images are very promising.

Will you need longer tripod legs for summer imaging when the sun is higher...or dig a trench for the etalon assemble to swing through...wow, very long :o

Looking forward to more from this when conditions permit. WL images should do well with it too.

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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Derek Klepp » Sun Oct 01, 2017 6:30 am

Stu that really is a sweet bit of kit and the workmanship is superb.Solar nirvana is close.
Cheers Derek



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by marktownley » Sun Oct 01, 2017 8:55 pm

I love it Stu! You're going to become a seeing fisherman like me now too. It's interesting looking at your video of conditions compared to Orelunas, they're really quite different.

I'm shooting at 3ms Valery and it doesn't freeze it enough for me. Maybe if I drop back to single stack I can drop this to between 1-2ms?


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by marktownley » Sun Oct 01, 2017 9:00 pm

Montana wrote:
Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:35 pm
I took delivery of a Celestron C11 yesterday although I don't have the white light filter yet. Wow the instruction manual is the most useless thing in the world, I followed every step and every step didn't exist on my new scope. It took ages to fathom how to fix the finderscope. Then all I wanted to do was look for the screws where collumation is. The instructions just say the screws, yes where? the only thing that unscrewed was a ring, then instead of a cap the whole secondary came out, so I guess I have well and truly screwed it up now. If it didn't need collumating before it certainly does now. So now I need to find a star before I test on the Sun, that might be an even bigger miracle. oh well.
Alexandra
Ouchio! :shock:

It probably didn't need collimating tbh. Collimating is easy enough, do it on a star with a live view on the camera. Just make sure the scope has properly cooled down when you do it - atleast an hour. You will probably need a make shift dew shield this time of year too. There are plenty of details on the web.


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:04 am

Many thanks, Frank, Brian, Derek and Mark.

Finding good seeing will be the key, of course and this will be the biggest challenge! We'll see how things go over the next 12 months, through the different seasons. You never know, Mark, we might get lucky. Fishing indeed ;)


Stu.


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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by allhoest » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:06 pm

Interesting setup.
Keep going; you will get more out this scope.

CS
Alex



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by pedro » Tue Oct 03, 2017 10:28 am

Just saw this thread Stu, impressive setup. Keep the HR images coming

best regards



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:43 am

Many thanks, Alex and Pedro.

Stu.


H-alpha, WL and Ca II K imaging kit for various image scales.
Fluxgate Magnetometers (1s and 150s Cadence).
Radio meteor detector.
More images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarcarbon60/

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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Derek Klepp » Thu Oct 05, 2017 6:58 am

Stu just had a look at your Flickr stream love the eclipse pics.



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by p_zetner » Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:29 pm

That is an impressive and exciting piece of equipment, Stu! First results look very promising. Now comes the long wait for better spring / summer seeing. Looking forward to your progress.

Cheers.
Peter.



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Re: 250mm Aries ERF on RCT/DS Lunt 35

Post by Carbon60 » Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:58 am

Many thanks Derek/Peter.

A long wait indeed!

Stu.


H-alpha, WL and Ca II K imaging kit for various image scales.
Fluxgate Magnetometers (1s and 150s Cadence).
Radio meteor detector.
More images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarcarbon60/

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