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Do it Yourself Astronomy Camera

There are several sites that discuss the use of webcams for astro photography purposes. I had an old Logitech 4000 laying around, and bought 2 more on ebay for $16. I'm looking at the different mounting options. On one cam, I installed an aluminum adapter- $19. The other got a plastic one- $22. And the third will get a black 35mm film canister with the bottom cut off and it was free. Both of the adapters went on the same way after separating the halves, and unscrewing the lens from the board. You do not need the lens anymore

If you're using the 35mm film canister, you simply line it up, and glue it on.

So far I have only played around with the camera. I am using the free program called Registax6 to improve the quality of the captures. The logitech software for the 4000 camera worked, but I had to install the 64 bit Vista version. There were limitations however to the adjustments in contrast, brightness, and gain, all of which are somewhat critical to getting the best images. I have had success with free software that will control the camera like wxAstro Capture and another which name just escaped me. I'll get back to you.

Another interesting application is adding a Star Analyzer filter. I had a student that was interested in using collected data in a PJAS project, so I bought one ($100) She was going to use R-Spec ($99), or VSpec (free), but life happened and the project was never started. Here is what we got from this set up

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