By Dave Stratton
Wednesday 7th December 2011
We were blessed with a clear sky - as usual for this area - it was not wonderful seeing but it was great for learning. The Moon was gibbous therefore not helping but it did give us something that was easy to find. It was also doing a splendid job showing off the aircraft con. trails to great effect.
Ron had the Club's 16 inch in operation showing a shadow transit on the disc and the Great Red Spot (GRS) to boot.
Roy was using an AstroTrac to guide his modified DSLR and take images which he was controlling from his laptop. Exciting stuff - it certainly got the attention of Tony - a first timer - who said this was exactly what he wanted to get into. He was demonstrating how with bright objects like the Moon care had to be taken with the aperture setting.
We also had newcomers Monique and her dad Steve along with their 200mm Dob. They were happily looking at M42 and were interested in how much the image was being magnified with the 25mm eyepiece they were using. Mike said you divided the focal length by the diameter of the eyepiece. In this case it was 1200 over 25 giving 48 times. Their other eyepiece being 10mm would give 120 times.
Wednesday 14th December 2011
We ended our year in our usual fashion by eating some wonderful nibbles at our new location.
Lots of folk brought along their own stuff to supplement Andrew's efforts so we had a bounty. It could not possibly all be consumed so willing volunteers stepped into the breech. Andrew had thoughtfully come equipped with several plastic carrier bags so the remains were swiftly vanished.
With much seasonal best wishes we broke up and went our ways - some to the pub as is our wont.