Friday, March 16, 2018

set up in backyard

Started reviewing my set-up list from Evernote while listening to ambient Aes Dana.

Already had a list of celestial targets ready in SkyTools on the netbook computer. Actually, it was a list I prepared for the evening 22 Feb. Refreshed the open local weather pages. Updated the "Current" lists in the planning app.

Put some AAAs in the charging station.

Plugged in the first of two electric hand warmers.

Dug out the old "desk" lamp that I hacked years ago. It was in an astronomy box of infrequently used items. I don't recall when I last used this light, converted to 12 VDC. Jury-rigged it to a multi-voltage wall-wart. I still think it is too dim.

Inspected the eyepieces. All looked very clean (don't remember when I did that). Moved the old Celestron 26 from the ETX back to the case.

Activated red lights in the man cave. Activated red mode in SkyTools. Prepared red film for office tower computer.

Started staging things to go outside.

Grabbed the GFCI power bar.

Reprogrammed the OneWorld weather station as it seemed to have reset. Verified the units. Set the altitude, time, date, and local weather.

Located a Celestron data cable. Grabbed my old Prolific-based USB-serial adapter.

Previewed the sky in Stellarium.

Sent Rhonda a simulated image of the backyard just after sunset. The Winter Football will be prominent. She noted it is going to be cold...

Put the red film strips back on the router.

Tent pitched. Once again I wondered where the poles go... Three different lengths. 212.5" and 213.5" and the other. Forgot, at first, that the silver on the fly goes outside. Should officially sort this out.

Goofed on the shed lock although I think it was truly frozen. Should track down my deicer.

Power supplied. Moved the power cord already in the back yard after using it to run the heat gun. Connected the GFCI. Connected the red Xmas lights.

Mount installed on tripod. Two counterweights installed. Tested power to the mount and motor operation.

Cold out. And windy...

Tried to work a dovetail plate for the C8 to the CGEM... Installed an old Vixen plate to the OTA. It wasn't working. I inverted it after finding some short hex head bolts. Finally sorted it in the CGEM saddle with, ironically, with a thin metal plate for a Edmund Scientific telescope.

Checked the RA balance. Needed three counterweights. Used two from the Vixen SP and one from the Edmund. Sandwiched. Still tail heavy...

Installed rho's red mini LED light string. It works well on the ground in a triangle marking the tripod footprint.

Rhonda arrived home and peeked in.

6:56 PM. Done. Done the set-up... Whew. I'm pooped!

No comments: