Re: tips for amateurs.

From: Peter N. Spotts (pspotts@alum.mit.edu)
Date: Mon May 04 2009 - 18:18:29 UTC

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    On Mon, 04 May 2009 19:42:12 +0200
    GERHARD GROENEWALD <bataleur@megaweb.co.za> wrote:
    
    > now for some humour and my lurking professional absolute amateur
    > friends out there. exludes the Mc Cants, Langbroek, any Roberts's etc.
    > operation iss photgraphy.
    > Do a dry run the night before and discover the exact spot.
    > Fine so far ? right! set Canon 20d to manual focus., then focus 
    > manually. do not attempt autofocus it does not work on the remote
    > shutter. with full moon at 55 mm at (iso 100)  (F11) for 30 secs is
    > fine. dressed warmly and waiting.
    > ISS pitches up as heavensat predicted.
    > BUT
    > flounders and dissapears before passing Sirius.
    > NO PHOTO.
    > WHY.
    > yours truly mixed up his longitudes and latititudes up. wrong way
    > round on heavensat.
    > ok back to drawing board. 
    > you may laugh at my expense.
    > Gerhard Groenewald
    > RSA
    > 
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    I, for one, will not laugh, but commiserate. When the shuttle docked
    with the ISS last time around, an early pass over New England lasted
    about 6 minutes just at the end of twilight. And it was an achingly
    clear night. 
    
    I went out early, identified a spot in the back yard that would give me
    the longest view, set up the tripod, came back out with the camera just
    before the duo appeared from behind out roof line, tracked it and kept
    taking long-exposure shots. 
    
    But, arghhhh! Left it on autofocus at "panorama." I got some nice pix
    of a streak about the width of our nearby interstate highway! Oh well,
    live and learn.
    
    With best regards,
    
    Pete
    
    -- 
    Peter N. Spotts | Science reporter
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