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11 months later, a new motorized tracking mount, and better result. Smile
avatar December 27, 2019 10:52PM
I did research on star tracker mounts for astrophotography pretty much for the past year. What I finally bought this month was a Sky-Watcher AZ-GTi "goto" mount. It has it's own tripod, is fairly compact in size, and is controlled with a smartphone app. After aligning during setup, it will automatically aim at targets selected on the app. But it was designed for altitude-azimuth tracking with a lighter-weight telescope, not the higher accuracy of an equitorial tracking mount that astrophotography kind of needs. But with some extra parts adapted from one of it's equitorial mount cousins, and an unsupported alternate firmware, it can be converted to equitorial mode. That includes an adjustable wedge to angle the mount up to match your latitude, a counterweight kit, and a dovetail mount with a correct photography tripod mount screw so a camera can be mounted.

So when the mount first arrived, I gave it a tryout before the extra parts arrived. Not good results, there is tracking error leaving star-trails before and after stacking the multiple exposures.



But that was a learning exercise anyhow. The last of the needed hardware arrived today, and I had mostly clear skies to work with early that night. Orion Nebula, Take 3.

(Edited to update images after applying some additional filters and adjusting color. More detail in each as a result.)



Before the nebula, I was aimed at Andromeda. However clouds moved in and obscured for a while. I only got 4 usable exposures of 90 seconds each that I stacked to make this photo. Very underexposed, I need upwards of 20 exposures to do right. But no star trails to speak of for those 90 second exposures.



When I get out to a country park away from city lights a bit, this will get even more interesting. Smile



BF Hammer - the new and improved screen name of Chris L



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/01/2020 08:01PM by BF Hammer.
Subject Author Views Posted
My first "deep sky" astrophotography attempt: Orion Nebula Jpeg Attachments BF Hammer 502 February 10, 2019 08:00PM
11 months later, a new motorized tracking mount, and better result. Smile Jpeg Attachments BF Hammer 124 December 27, 2019 10:52PM



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