May 09, 2007

Webcam astrophotography

After seeing what can be done with a webcam, I decided to try it. I asked my cousin for her webcam which she bought a while back - some generic Chinese product, with no identifying brands. macam reported it as Generic ZC031P Webcam.



So anyway I dis-assembled it (with permission of course), which wasn't too hard. Then I mounted the imaging unit on a piece of wood using a few screws (salvaged from dismantlement of the webcam casing) and hot glue. Then I used a film canisters which tapers towards the bottom slightly as an adapter - it fits snugly into a 1.25" eyepiece holder. Luckily its black. Some more hotglue and electrical tape later, I had a home made webcam adapted for prime focus use.





Unfortunately I did not have the presence of mind to take pictures while I was making it... so you will have to make do with these.



Naturally after I built this, the clouds moved in. I tried "spying" on some near by highrises to test it, but found my telescope didn't have enough in focus (back focus? Basically, I can't retract the focuser enough to focus). Maybe things will be better with a target at infinity - i.e. a planet. I will post an update when I get a clear sky.




Cheers,

Steve