FW: Question about stopwatches.

From: Brierley David (DMBRIERLEY@dera.gov.uk)
Date: Tue Jun 06 2000 - 01:03:24 PDT

  • Next message: Brierley David: "95-66A observed Jun 5-6"

    > How do you people time flashes of satellites seen in binoculars?  You
    > have a stopwatch in one hand, binoculars in the other hand.....?  I
    > would
    > think that almost any useful pair of binoculars would be too heavy to
    > hold with one hand, steady, for more than a few seconds.
    > Could someone illuminate me?
    > Jonathan Wojack
    As other observers have noted, the secret is to sit in a reclining
    garden chair (deck-chair in the UK) on its lowest setting.  That way
    both your head and elbows are supported.  For years I used 11x80s with a
    limiting mag for satellites around +9, and for the last four years have
    used Orion 20x80s which give another half mag under good conditions.
    I find I can hold the 20x80s steady for only about 3 minutes, but I'd
    never go back to the 11x80s even though they're lighter.
    If I have to stand up, to see over a house or tree, I support my head
    against a wall.
    I click the stopwatch with my left thumb, using the other fingers to
    hold the watch against the binoculars.
    Happy viewing, and timing!
    David M Brierley
    Malvern, Worcestershire, UK
    Station 2675, 52.1358N 2.3264W 70m
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