The next major development in the backyard CCD project was
to install my pier, a Le Seuer Manufacturing professional model
painted Meade Blue to match the scope. Digging the hole was a major project
for my weak back since all I had was post hole diggers. Fortunately I did
not hit rock and dug down four feet. It took 12 of the 80 pound bags of
concrete to fill the hole. This was a full day project.
The telescope is kept covered when not in use and I would run the wiring out
to the scope when I wanted to use it. I set the ST7 up inverted so I could
image further north without running into the fork. I can get up to 76 degrees.
I can now set up in about five minutes any time the sky clears. This makes it easy to do imaging after work and then shut down when I get tired and still image about 20 or 30 galaxies to analyze later. The images are not the kind you publish, but they are good enough to detect mag 15 to 16 stars. The most recently amateur discovered Supernovae, like SN1998S and SN1998an, are well within this range.
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