Re: (IAAC) Creating a detailed deep-sky log... (LONG)

Owen, Kim,

I live in the North West of England, in Lancashire. In 25 years of
observing, dew has almost never, ever been a problem to me. Dampness
occasionally, but nothing worse than that. I guess I'm just lucky.


----- Original Message -----
From: Owen Brazell <owen@mail.red.net>
To: <netastrocatalog-announce@jovian.com>
Sent: Sunday, June 03, 2001 9:23 PM
Subject: Re: (IAAC) Creating a detailed deep-sky log... (LONG)

> I would be interested to know which part of the UK you observe from where
> there is no dewing problem ! Most nights I finish and the telescope is
> running with water or covered in ice if it is cold enough.
> At 16:51 31/05/2001 +0100, you wrote:
> >Lew,
> >
> >Yes, very good questions. I'm sure there as many answers as there are
> >deep-sky observers! Each observer develops his or her own preferred
> >technique over the years, so the only all-encompassing answer to the
> >question of how to make observing notes is "whatever works for you".
> >this is true, it is pretty unhelpful to the poser of the question. This
> >the method I have developed over 25 years of deep-sky observing: Firstly
> >dew. As I live and usually observe from the United Kingdom, dewing is not
> >generally a problem, so I'm afraid I have evolved no defences against it
> >that I can pass on, though use of a hand-held dictaphone (wrapped in a
> >plastic bag if necessary) has served me well for other purposes in the
> >I have a clipboard to which I attach sheets of A4 paper pre-printed with
> >three circles each about 3" - 4" in diameter. When I have located the
> >target, I spend a few minutes just looking at it. I find this very
> >important, because it's amazing how much detail can become visible if you
> >just take the time to *look*. Once I am content with my detail gathering,
> >draw what I see on the paper, generally using a fine tipped felt pen
> >see why in a minute). Where detail is too fine to show to scale, I will
> >the relevant section of the object outside the circle on the blank paper.
> >Like you, I have evolved a shorthand, based on NGC code, so for example
> >means "bright middle",  "gbM" means "gradually brightening towards the
> >middle" etc. In addition to raw NGC code, I have my own abbreviations and
> >squiggles. They make sense to me, my suggestion to new observers is to
> >experiment with your own code, and see what makes sense to you. Once the
> >star field and the main target have been drawn, I search carefully for
> >other faint objects that might lie within the field. As my main targets
> >faint galaxies, it's always worth searching for fainter companions or
> >galaxies.
> >
> >Once the observing session is over, I write up my observations as soon as
> >possible (preferably the morning after). That way, the image of the
> >is still fresh in my mind, the sketch and notes serving as memory-joggers
> >I produce the finished drawing. A written description is added to the
> >drawing, and is basically a distillation of the shorthand notes. I
> >my sketch with the same field on GUIDE, to make sure I have the
> >correct for the final drawing, and also to identify any other objects
> >in the field.
> >
> >One final point: the observer should always be totally honest about what
> >s/he has seen. Sometimes "very faint smudge" really *is* the best
> >description you can make!
> >
> >Clear Skies All!
> >
> >Patrick.
> >
> >
> >----- Original Message -----
> >From: Lew Gramer <dedalus@latrade.com>
> >To: Internet Amateur Astronomers Catalog - Discussion
> ><netastrocatalog-announce@jovian.com>; Pro-Am Astronomy List
> ><amastro@yahoogroups.com>
> >Cc: Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston <atmob-discuss@jovian.com>; North
> >Shore Amateur Astronomy Club <nsaac@jovian.com>; NHAS Chat List
> ><nhas@yahoogroups.com>; <SoNewEnglandAstro@yahoogroups.com>
> >Sent: Wednesday, May 30, 2001 11:17 PM
> >Subject: (IAAC) Creating a detailed deep-sky log... (LONG)
> >
> >
> >>
> >> A fellow deep-sky observer and IAAC reader asked the following
> >> which seemed like they were worth addressing before a wider audience...
> >>
> >
> >...etc.
> >
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> >
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