Travelling Solar 27th December

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marktownley
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Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by marktownley » Sun Dec 27, 2020 6:08 pm

Hi Everyone! Hope you're all having a good festive season whatever you're getting up to. We are being distinctly anti social and avoiding everyone, and as soon as we could head out on the boat a week ago that's what we did, taking cats, supplies, telescopes etc with us. We're not going anywhere, just stopping in the middle of nowhere. I was keen to try out my travelling solar kit, the usual Lunt50 etalon double stacked with a quark for Ha, and the 40mm f10 coronado for all things CaK.

Christmas eve initially dawned without a cloud (well not many) in the sky and I was optimistic;
Imagedawn by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Do need to consider when i've lit the stove though and the impact that has on solar...

Imagedawn-smoke by Mark Townley, on Flickr

So, I got all the kit out, and typically by then the sky did its usual trick and the clouds appeared... That was Christmas eve out...

Imagecloudy by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Fast forward to this morning, and after storm Bella ripped through in the night clear skies followed so I was keen to observe. Boat is pointing south now.

Imagesunny-skies by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Imagefront by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Seeing was what I expected for the time of year, and the choice of travelling scopes were correct. This spot we're moored is going to be my spot for the 8" HaT in the summer; get up at 5am and get imaging nice and early. I've used this spot for night time before and got a stunning view of Neowise through the big knockers...

Anyway, here's todays spoils.

ImageHa-FD-DS-bw by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageHa-FD-DS-colour by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageHa-Close-bw by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageHa-Close-colour by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageHa-NE-BW by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageHa-NE-colour by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageCaK-FD-bw by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageCaK-FD-colour by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageCaK-Close-bw by Mark Townley, on Flickr

ImageCaK-Close-colour by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Hope you like! Tomorrow snow is forecast all day, so. just going to sit it out... Hopefully will get some clear skies soon.

Mark


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by rsfoto » Sun Dec 27, 2020 8:16 pm

Hi Mark,

Great images and great way to escape civilization. Can you anchor wherever you want in the channels ? How many kilometers of waterways do you have in UK ?


:o :o :o

As usual when I ask a question about something a few minutes later I make a search :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: and found out there are about 3300 km of waterway ...

Waterwya-BrierleyHill.JPG
Waterwya-BrierleyHill.JPG (163.51 KiB) Viewed 432 times
Last edited by rsfoto on Sun Dec 27, 2020 8:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.


regards Rainer

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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by rcwinter » Sun Dec 27, 2020 8:24 pm

Hi Mark

Love the images great captures, and love the Barge, always fancied a trip out on a barge

Kind regards

Rich


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by Fabio_Imm » Sun Dec 27, 2020 9:22 pm

Hi Mark,
Lovely full disk images! :hamster:
How is the life onboard a narrowboat?
I have seen plenty of them when I stayed in Nottingham, but never had the opportunity to experience a journey on a waterway.

Cheers

Fabio



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by yltansg » Sun Dec 27, 2020 10:30 pm

Hi Mark,

I did a google map tour of Brierley Hill. Enjoyed that thoroughly. What a lovely country side!!

A nice and neat travelling kit you have there. Excellent solar disk details. What camera did you use?

Alfred



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by EGRAY_OBSERVATORY » Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:03 am

Hi Mark,
What a fabulous set of images telling your story of your Christmas - well away from the problems surrounding us too.

Half a century since I enjoyed a similar event from near London to the furthest-reaches up the River Thames, so brings back some memories for me, albeit, unlike your Narrow Boat on the canal, I had one of those small River Cruisers, but still so enjoyable to get away...

Well done Mark and Best wishes for the New Year...

Regards
Terry



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by DeepSolar64 » Mon Dec 28, 2020 5:30 am

Very nice Mark. That had to be really peaceful. That's a very nice place to moor up. Do you ever fish the canal?

Very nice images. I love the colorized Ha and Cak images. The Lunt 50 and CaK PST do really well.

Is it hard to keep the cats from getting out?

James


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by JochenM » Mon Dec 28, 2020 6:48 am

Nice way to get away for a bit there, Mark. Enjoy!

Nice looking results from that lightweight setup too.



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by Carbon60 » Mon Dec 28, 2020 9:37 am

Looks like an idyllic spot, Mark. Fabulous images. Your travelling kit looks like a winner. :)

Stu.


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by marktownley » Mon Dec 28, 2020 11:06 am

Thanks everyone! Whilst I live in Brierley Hill, the boat lives just outside of Wolverhampton, which is about 15-25 mins drive away. We're moored up in the middle of nowhere on the Shropshire Union canal, nearest feature of note is the M54 motorway and the Land Rover engine factory. There are designated mooring spots Rainer, but on the whole you can stop anywhere. The cats are quite territorial on the boat and are happy staying on, do lots of looking out of the windows and watching the birds / ducks etc, occasionally they do jump off but only ever briefly. I do go fishing now and then James, we have rods on the boat, but i'm most definitely a fair weather fisherman. We woke this morning to this:

Imageboat-smoke by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Imagebridge by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Imagesnow-boat by Mark Townley, on Flickr

Today is a sitting around not doing much day!


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by EGRAY_OBSERVATORY » Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:02 pm

Perhaps a skiing trip along the tow-paths ??

Terry



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by ffellah » Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:44 pm

A beautiful way to spend few days in nature and enjoy the sun at the same time, Mark. Love all the images, terrestrial and extra.

Franco



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by MapleRidge » Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:52 pm

Hi Mark...

Great images and nice to see your travel setup working so well :bow

I'm curious to know what you have for access to the internet while moored on the canal in what looks like the middle of the country side?

Brian


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by DeepSolar64 » Mon Dec 28, 2020 1:34 pm

I was thinking on your last images on how green the grass is along the canal. The cold here has it much less so. And now you have grass and everything covered in a blanket of snow. Beautiful!!


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by proky » Mon Dec 28, 2020 3:29 pm

Excelent images..



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by Montana » Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:59 pm

What a fabulous place Mark, you are so lucky to have a boat. It is something I have always wanted to do but never have done, I am nervous how you learn to drive a boat or do you not need lessons? Certainly the view from that spot is perfect for the HaT, I can't wait until the summer when you try it out. Where you are is my type of heaven and even more perfect for these times.

Terrific solar images too :bow :hamster:

Alexandra



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by LTHB » Mon Dec 28, 2020 10:17 pm

Snow and a boat and grab-and-go solar imaging - that's a nice way to spend a couple of lockdown days! And wonderful images!

Kind regards,

Frank



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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by MapleRidge » Mon Dec 28, 2020 11:34 pm

Mark, the snow looks more like around home here ;)

How well adapted to the cold is your boat? I saw a wood stove in one pic you sent (with the cats) but wasn't sure if you typically spent time on the boat in winter?

Brian


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by DeepSolar64 » Tue Dec 29, 2020 1:54 am

I don't think I have ever saw that style of boat around here. It looks well suited for canals and the inside is really nice. What motor powers it? I would guess an outboard engine?

It's a cool way to get out into the country for fishing or for astronomy. Solar or night time.

James


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by marios i. » Tue Dec 29, 2020 3:54 am

Beautiful images Mark


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by Martin_S » Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:08 am

Hi Mark, that was a great break you had on your boat, the pictures of the canals look so peaceful.
All the best to you and your family for 2021.

Stay safe

Martin


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by marktownley » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:20 pm

Thank you everyone for your kind comments. It was nice to get away, we got back home yesterday as today we're in 'tier 4' of lockdown which means we're not allowed overnight stays on the boat anymore. Booo!!!

Generally internet access isn't a problem, I just use my phone as a hot spot for laptop and other devices, only if are moored up in a high sided cutting it can be intermittent. The boat is setup for all year round use on it, we carry 400L of water and 200L of diesel on a full tank. A tank of water lasts about a week with 2 of us (and 2 cats), that's washing, cooking, drinking, showering etc. The engine is a BMC1800 from a 1955 London Taxi, as with any old engine you have to know it intimately, however with continual attention it just goes and goes, and all bar catastrophic mechanical failure can fix or mend any problems with it. It uses about a litre of fuel per hour running, we 'filled up' at the end of the summer and probably won't fill up till the start of next summer. The boat is setup with all the mod cons you would expect at home, hot and cold running water, 240v, TV, internet, fridge, cooker, shower etc. Driving is easy and self intuitive.

I need to fine tune the travelling kit a bit, the Ha scope is a tad too heavy for the altaz mount head, but I can strip some mass from the scope. I would need another mount head for the HaT, as this isn't enough for it. Mrs T also said she doesn't like the metal tripod - it's clunky - and asked why I can't have a nice wooden one - I see that as a green light for a Barlebach ;)

Sun is out here at home today so going to get out in an hour and get some shots in.

Mark


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by DeepSolar64 » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:55 pm

Mark,
An old taxi motor. How cool 😎. Hopefully the lockdown will end soon. Your adventure sounded really fun. I would really enjoy something like that!! And get that wooden tripod while you have the chance!!

I bet you took a big bin of cat food 🥘 🐈 🐈 I would have to. Ours eat like little pigs!! 😂

I hope you get a solar session in today.

James.


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by Rusted » Thu Dec 31, 2020 4:15 pm

Congratulations on a fine set of images and photos. :bow
You can probably confirm the benefits of countryside v towns for seeing and imaging.

We follow the activities of a small number of narrow-boaters on YouTube. A cruise is very relaxing on the big 4k screen.
The local canals were largely overgrown, crystal clear and teeming with fish when we walked them regularly as teenagers.
Pike over three feet long would occasionally break the surface. You needed a license to cycle the towpath. Or faced a fine.
Only steam locomotives were running alongside, on their own, parallel embankment back then.
Not a single narrowboat to be seen on the water! They only started the lock restorations and appeals for funding much later on.


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Re: Travelling Solar 27th December

Post by MapleRidge » Thu Dec 31, 2020 6:43 pm

Mark...thanks for explaining the details on your boat. Sounds like a great second home, so to speak!

I hadn't seen the inside of any till you posted the pic. Alexandra took Sandy and I on a walking tour along the canal, starting out near Bosley I believe. The narrow canals and boats look odd when compared to what we have here but the system is well built and the boats are appropriately dissensioned ;) I was most impressed with a section of the canal that crossed over a small river...pretty impressive engineering for the time it was built!

Brian


Brian Colville

Maple Ridge Observatory
Cambray, ON Canada

Photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/185395281@N08/albums

10'x15 Roll-off Roof Observatory
Takahashi EM400 Mount carrying:
C9.25 Edge + Stellarvue 110, f7 or C14
Deep Sky Work - Canon 60D (Ha mod), SBIG STF8300/FW8, ONAG
Planetary Work - SBIG CFW10, ASI290MM/ASI462+ADC

8' Diameter Dome
MI250 Mount carrying:
iStar 150mm, f8 OTA Modular Setup
Ha configuration: 2xDSII/B1800Ha/Daystar ERF as modded Ha Scope
WL & CaK configuration: Lunt WL Wedge or Modded B1800CaK Wedge
Lunt LS80PT/LS75FHa/B1200Ha
Daystar Quantum 0.45A SE, Quark Combo Chromosphere,
ASI1600MM, ASI174MM, ASI290MM, PGR Grasshopper Express

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