Saturday, 22 December 2012

Tasco 1603EF focus motor on SkyWatcher SK1309EQ2 telescope

Since I was having trouble with astrophotography focussing my telescope via the webcam, I decided to try out a motorised focus control - sometimes misleading called an automatic focuser. I found the Tasco 1603EF for about £20 all in on eBay, which seemed worth a try with my SkyWatcher Explorer 130M, also known as the SK1309EQ2. I was expecting a little tinkering might be needed but fitting it was extremely straightforward. SkyWatcher do sell their own focus motor at about £50, but it was unclear if this would fit my telescope.

Tasco 1603EF focus motor on SkyWatcher SK1309EQ2 telescopeTasco 160EF manual focus clutch button

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Webcam telescope image of Jupiter & Moons

It is winter again, and the upside to it getting dark before 5pm is many more chances for astronomy. This week I had my SkyWatcher telescope out again, and captured a few images of Jupiter and its moons using the XBox Live Vision webcam.
Wednesday 28 November 2012, Jupiter and four moons.
640 × 480 pixel uncropped image from Xbox 360 webcam,
No filters, prime focus, SkyWatcher SK1309EQ2 telescope.
Single snapshot using wxAstroCapture under Linux.