Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Post Calstar Report

Calstar 2016 was held at Whisper Canyon near Lake San Antonio.  This was my first time at this location and the second time that Calstar was held here.  Whisper Canyon has a smaller space than the Lake San Antonio location with the advantage that people are not spread out, saving walking in the dark.  WC features a full kitchen with two stoves and several refrigerators, minimizing the need to bring a grill and cooler.  Also, there is good cell service, a good bonus over LSA.

As the end of the season star party, it had all the good stuff: old friends, new connections, camp food, hot days, cold nights, clear skies, saying good bye to summer constellations and a preview of the winter skies.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Scanner Frustrations

The scanner complained again yesterday while finishing up another film strip. 

The symptom is that the moving tray seizes and the motors whine and chatter.  Usually power cycling the scanner while holding it upside down or on its end helps unstick the tray.  However, this time, no such luck.  Once it did finally stop complaining, the film trays are no longer loaded and recognized; they pass completely through the unit, never stopping.  I think a sensor that is supposed to register the carrier must be offline.

I will speak with an FAE later today.

My first thought is to skip the film astrophotography at Calstar this year out of frustration.

I realize that this is just a temporary setback and it's better to use the film rather than waiting until next year.  I can always leave it in a binder until I'm able to scan again.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Looking ahead to Calstar 2016

Weather looks hot and clear.

Good for several days of imaging.

Haven't set up the scope since GSSP, so I'm out of practice.