Author Archives: Geoff Dryland


Just thought I’d put this in before I loose M27 behind the wall!

This is a big crop of the image because I am only using 2 sets of data, Ha and L. The L was taken in September and the Ha last week. Between the two sets,

Lee has realigned the two scopes so there is a 45 degree rotation between them. Hope to get out tonight to get RGB and maybe some new L.

There is 1hr 25mins of L and 45mins Ha. To get the colour I’ve used the Ha as red and the L as both G and B. Seems to have worked reasonably well.



Took this last night after Lee had adjusted the alignment of the two scopes last week, so that they actually look at the same thing!

Forecast last night was for a clearance at 2200hrs. So at 2015 I looked outside to see clear skies. Rushed out and set up. After 2 restarts and guiding aligned 3 times I was ready to start at 2200hrs. Guess what? Total cloud cover! So I decided to wait a while and 40 minutes later the skies cleared. However my target was to have been the dumbbell but it was now dropping in the West below the obsy wall. After a quick search on SkyMap Pro I found this at a nice angle with 1hr 50mins to the Meridian. Also noticed that it is small at 6 minutes so just right for the new scope FOV at 16×22 minutes. This is taken in Ha with 19x 4minute subs. There seems to be a bit of a controversy about whether the object is an Ha one or if it is a reflection one that is shining through the dust layers. Anyway, this is the full FOV image with the 6inch RC.



Forgot to mention this object is called “The Northern Trifid” because it resembles the famous trifid nebula in the celestial south




Happy with my previous image, I thought I’d have a go at the galaxy next door to it—-M31, Andromeda.

This is the same set up as the M33 image so the same FOV. Just shows how big M31 is! This is 6×5 minutes in RGB and 3×5 minutes in L. 1hour 45 minutes total. You will notice some odd shapes in the stars. This is down to me not refocusing between filter changes. Still I know better for next time.



Decided to change my guiding system. Instead of using either the Takahashi or the RC I’ve bought a new dedicated guide scope. It’s a 50mm f3.8 guider/ finder scope. Searched the internet and found a brand new one for less than £50. I’ve teamed it up with the Atik 450. I haven’t imaged M33 for some time so I thought I’d test the guiding on it. Setting the scopes up to be in the same FOV proved more simple than I expected. Having quickly focused the Tak I set up the imaging for 5 minute exposures and took 12 guided images. Stacked in DSS processed in Fits Liberator and PS6, this is the result. This is the best guiding I have ever achieved. The stars show no sign of trailing so I am hopeful that I’ve solved a lot of my previous problems.


Pegasus Dwarf Galaxy

Hi All.

This is the first attempt at the Pegasus Dwarf Galaxy. Believe me it is there! It’s very faint just to the right of the ring file re-enforcement ring in the middle.

I couldn’t work out where the dust bunnies had come from as I had cleaned the filters and the the camera.

I then took the filter wheel apart and cleaned it all over again, plus the filter and the camera.


The second image is 2 hours of luminance in 5 minute subs.

There are 2 other galaxies in the image, one at 16.5 mag, the other at 16.7 mag. Can you spot them?



This is really a test for alignment of my “new” scope with my Takahashi two nights ago whilst trying to get the two telwscopes to point at the same object. I completely messed it all up and lost the RC image. So last night after some 2 hours of fiddling, I managed to get it back so that i can see it. The focus is off but I’ve just got a new Bhatinov mask so hopefully it should be a bit better in future.

So this is M57 (the smoke ring). Although out of focus you can still make out the 3 stars in the centre. Also in the 3.30 (clock face) position is the galaxy IC1296. This has a magnitude of 14.3 and size is 1.1′ x 0.8′, so I’m impressed with what I have achieved (just have to do better with the focus!).




Well it’s not as good as I would have liked, but given the conditions over the last few nights with the”seeing” not too great and my first attempt at RGB with the new scope I have to be fairly pleased I haven’t wasted my money!

Focus is a little out but I’ll get used to the small adjustments eventually.

The technical details are: as before for the scope and guiding.

Red:17x 5 minutes

Green: 18x 5 minutes

Blue: 18x 5 minutes

Luminance: 24x 5 minutes