Friday, October 18, 2013

The Equipment

My telescope is a fork mounted Celestron CPC 1100 HD Computerized telescope on a heavy duty tripod and equatorial wedge, which are in turn mounted to a custom dolly from JMI telescopes which is bolted with 1/2" bolts into 1/2" nuts concrete permanently epoxied into my driveway. This is as close as I can get to a pier, (a permanent mounting) in my current situation. For various reasons, there is no place to build a home observatory in my yard, so for now this will have to do. The mount is rock-solid, I just have to re-align each time I observe.

The after-market customizations include a Celestron 80mm guide scope (the smaller telescope piggy backing on the larger one). Attached to the guide scope is an Orion G3 color CCD camera. This secondary scope and camera will autoguide the main telescope while it is taking long exposures. The main scope and camera will track objects as they move across the sky well enough for visual observing, but not with enough precision for long exposure photography.