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Thread: Eclipse Anyone?

  1. #1

    Default Eclipse Anyone?

    Just thought I'd start a solar eclipse thread here. Anyone traveling for it? Weather looks great for Casper, Wyoming where I'm headed. Going to be camping at Green Acres there, where they have a corn maze. Eastern Oregon looks good too, for all my old observing buddies headed that way. And possibly into Nebraska. I'll have my portable heliostat mounted H-alpha filtered telescope with recently replaced blocking and trimming elements, and a newly installed controller for the filter heater with me to watch the four contacts up close. Had it out today in the driveway to configure the controller and verify everything is working properly.

    Scope With Cannopy.jpg

    Here's a closeup of the controller. I'll eventually mount it into the electronics box, but in the meantime, look at how well it sits between the rails!

    Filter Controller.jpg

    First total eclipse I tried to get to was in '79. My brothers and I piled into a van and headed from Lockport, IL to Minot, ND. We were late, the van broke down on the way, and so we only made it to see the "diamond ring" effect. Second time I tried was to Zambia in 2001. Made it that time, and enjoyed the show while at a trance festival there. Hope to be around for another in 2024.

    I've been a solar observer since first seeing the sun through a H-alpha filtered telescope in 2000. The mount I built, and the system around it is described in this Amateur Astronomy article I wrote a few years ago.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Cherry Hill, NJ


    Yes! I am taking the family (me+wife, 4.5yo, 2.5yo, 2mo) to South Carolina from Philadelphia. This will be my first as I was born in '79. We managed to get a hotel room in the path of totality, even with my late planning. I am fully prepared to drive as far as Tennessee or further if the weather forecasts indicate clouds/thunderstorms.

    I had purchased some cheap-o no-name solar glasses in kids and adult sizes, but then did my research and realized they are probably no good. So I got some Thousand Oaks solar film and refitted the kid size glasses with new filters and made some filters for my 25x100 binoculars. I also got some Meade Eclipseview glasses for my wife and me.

    20170814_155028.jpg 20170814_155053.jpg 20170814_155545.jpg

    We got notified by Amazon that they are offering refunds for bogus (AND non-bogus!) solar filters. My wife got an email about the first set of glasses we bought, and I just got an email about the EclispeView glasses (which are on the AAS and NASA approved lists, AND I got them from an AAS approved vendor).

    Here's a link to the Amazon story:

    My wife was at the Franklin Institute last week with our son, and she was talking to the guy running the telescope in the observatory. He's from Africa and saw an eclipse when he was younger, said he remembers it being a big deal with drums being played and stuff. Wonder if it was the same one.

    Thanks for the heads up about 2024, should probably start planning for that now.

    BTW, nice setup!

  3. Default

    I've got my pinhole camera ready, no special equipment needed.
    Once milk has been poured over corn flakes, the clock starts ticking.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Raleigh, NC


    I have my glasses ready to go. Should be a relatively decent viewing from here in Raleigh, I guess. I don't really care about looking at the sun. I just want to see it get dark in the middle of the day.

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