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Thread: Solar Eclipse Glasses

  1. #1
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    Solar Eclipse Glasses

    It's never too early to buy some, I suppose.

    Amazon is awash in inexpensive glasses, supposedly "CE and ISO" certified. Ehhh....

    On the Orion Telescopes site I'm tempted by a pair of filters that would fit over the objectives of binoculars but not sure I would get much use from them after the eclipse.

    Short of buying a scope, any recommendations from the CQ universe?

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    The binocular filters willo allow you to track sunspots. I have always found that fascinating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Mendenhall View Post
    The binocular filters willo allow you to track sunspots. I have always found that fascinating.
    Whoops on my part. On a closer look the filters are designed to fit an 80mm objective. Guess that means I need to buy a new set of binocs!

    In any event I had been thinking of buying an inexpensive solar filter (made with Baader solar film) for my 10-inch Dob and the Orion site also offered a five-pack of cheap solar eclipse glasses ($12.95). So I reckoned they would be a fairly safe bet. I'm not expecting much but the glasses only need to work during the eclipse for an hour or two for myself and others hanging out with us.

    I'll report back when the kit arrives.
    Last edited by schlaugh; 2017-Apr-10 at 07:10 PM. Reason: eclipse

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    #14 welder's filter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noisy Rhysling View Post
    #14 welder's filter.
    Now why would a sightless, itinerant troubadour need welder's glasses?

    But it's a good suggestion. I just wouldn't have any need for their original purpose.

  6. #6
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    The BA, in his new blog, has a review of Celestron solar binoculars. Sounds interesting, and not excessively expensive. Very much a single-purpose item, of course.

    Meanwhile, I already bought some eclipse glasses through Amazon. Now if I only remembered where I put them....
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Mendenhall View Post
    The binocular filters willo allow you to track sunspots. I have always found that fascinating.
    Oh. wow. This was something i had no clue of! I must be sleeping. Thank you for sharing this, i honestly had no clue that you could in some way track sunspots.

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    I tried out my eclipse glasses yesterday. They work, but dang, the sun looks small. I'm going to look into the binocs.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I'm going to look into the binocs.
    And a thousand people will post "No, don't do that!!!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    In any event I had been thinking of buying an inexpensive solar filter (made with Baader solar film) for my 10-inch Dob and the Orion site also offered a five-pack of cheap solar eclipse glasses ($12.95). So I reckoned they would be a fairly safe bet. I'm not expecting much but the glasses only need to work during the eclipse for an hour or two for myself and others hanging out with us. I'll report back when the kit arrives.
    Well the eclipse glasses work just fine. I had forgotten just how small an apparent image the sun and moon have at one-half degree. I'll try the dob filter this weekend. Unfortunately sunspot activity is almost nil as we're near the bottom of the 11-year cycle. From Wikipedia on Sunspot Cycle 24:

    As of April 14 there had been 28 days during 2017 on which there were no sunspots.

  11. #11
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    This isn't related to safe solar observing but the Postal Service is coming out with a new stamp to commemorate the upcoming total solar eclipse. It's a heat sensitive postage stamp that turns from the eclipse to a full moon when pressure from one's thumb is applied to it. I'm stocking up ;-)

    https://phys.org/news/2017-04-presto...ipse-moon.html

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    Any astronomy magazines think to have them as inserts? A bit late to ask.... I've been working seven days a week and haven't checked bookstores

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noisy Rhysling View Post
    #14 welder's filter.
    #14 welder's glass is fine for simply looking at the Sun unmagnified, but it doesn't magnify well. So if you use it with binoculars or telescopes, you get a distorted image.

    I ordered 2 square feet of solar filter paper from Thousand Oaks Optical. Now I can make hundreds of cardboard glasses.
    I used a 3d printer to make binocular lens covers with an opening for the solar paper. It's for a 10x50 Meade. If anyone wants the stl file so you can print your own, let me know.

    The trouble with observing the partial phases is that you should be dark-adapting your eyes so you can see finer details during totality. So I've been considering getting some large dark sunglasses and fixing some solar filter paper to the tops, kinda like bi-focals. That way I can dark adapt and still walk around without tripping, and glance up at the partial phases.

  14. #14
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    Not binocs - SUNOCULARS. Fraser mentions a couple of times, most recently in AC #448. See https://luntsolarsystems.com/product...s-mini-yellow/

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    I just received a solar filter for the camera so went outside to try it. First thing I saw, not at all unexpected, was that the auto-focus system doesn't work. Second was that the auto exposure doesn't work well either -- sun is overexposed. I think I'll go back out and try reducing the exposure by a couple of stops.

    I've got solar binoculars on order.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  16. #16
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    The filter for my dob works well although the sun still produces a bright image which causes the secondary mirror vanes to show up.

    Now if the sun would just oblige with some spots.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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    -5 stops on the exposure made for a nice clear disk. Still rather small with the 250mm zoom, but that can be cropped. And yes, spots would be nice!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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    Looks like a modest group had cleared the western limb.

    https://sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov/sunspots/


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    I'll have to pull the memory card from the camera and see what it looks like on the computer screen.

    ETA: Ok, did that. Featureless white disk. May still be overexposed but -5 is the farthest the easy adjustment on the camera will go. I'll have to play with more advanced settings.
    Last edited by Trebuchet; 2017-Jun-03 at 03:01 AM.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  20. #20
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    BTW - I recently talked with the Kitt Peak filter custodian. Out of curiosity, he took the film from one of these commercial "eclipse glasses" and tested its transmission with theeir spectrophotometer. He said it is indeed well blocked from below the 3000-A atmospheric cutoff well into the infrared (although I did not get numbers on how far into the IR; but he's an IR astronomer by training and probably would have checked fairly far out).

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    It's never too early to buy some, I suppose.

    Amazon is awash in inexpensive glasses, supposedly "CE and ISO" certified. Ehhh....

    On the Orion Telescopes site I'm tempted by a pair of filters that would fit over the objectives of binoculars but not sure I would get much use from them after the eclipse.

    Short of buying a scope, any recommendations from the CQ universe?
    Here's an interesting thing to try. Poke a hole in a piece of cardboard with a pencil or pen. Then hold a second piece of white paper a couple of feet away, on the opposite side of the eclipse. You should see a small white dot on the piece of white paper. It's the eclipse. Then give a friend the piece of cardboard with a hole in it and have them slowly move the piece of away from you until they are about 20-30 feet away. Make sure to keep that white dot on the piece of paper as they move away. That white dot will grow to be a decent sized picture of the eclipse. You've in effect created a large camera. You could try using clear colored plastic sheets (red, blue, green) to bring out different details as well. Pretty cool and safe way to watch the eclipse.
    I know that I know nothing, so I question everything. - Socrates/Descartes

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaCaptain View Post
    Here's an interesting thing to try. Poke a hole in a piece of cardboard with a pencil or pen. Then hold a second piece of white paper a couple of feet away, on the opposite side of the eclipse. You should see a small white dot on the piece of white paper. It's the eclipse. Then give a friend the piece of cardboard with a hole in it and have them slowly move the piece of away from you until they are about 20-30 feet away. Make sure to keep that white dot on the piece of paper as they move away. That white dot will grow to be a decent sized picture of the eclipse. You've in effect created a large camera. You could try using clear colored plastic sheets (red, blue, green) to bring out different details as well. Pretty cool and safe way to watch the eclipse.
    Yes, that method works well and even improves as the sky darkens. Using a box with one side exposed also works well since the box provides some shadow.

    In the 1972 eclipse I projected an image from a 6-inch Newtonian, but I'm reluctant to do so with my 10-inch Dob since the heat can cook the optics (live and learn).

  23. #23
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    Got this for Boss Lady's birthday (today). Celestron EclipSmart Solar Telescope 50 with Tripod and Backpack

  24. #24
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    I've got Celestron solar binocs on order. Hope they get here in time. Failing that, I'll hope for some sunspots to make their appearance in the next few years.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaCaptain View Post
    Here's an interesting thing to try. Poke a hole in a piece of cardboard with a pencil or pen. Then hold a second piece of white paper a couple of feet away, on the opposite side of the eclipse. You should see a small white dot on the piece of white paper. It's the eclipse. Then give a friend the piece of cardboard with a hole in it and have them slowly move the piece of away from you until they are about 20-30 feet away. Make sure to keep that white dot on the piece of paper as they move away. That white dot will grow to be a decent sized picture of the eclipse. You've in effect created a large camera. You could try using clear colored plastic sheets (red, blue, green) to bring out different details as well. Pretty cool and safe way to watch the eclipse.
    If you look around a bit, there may be quite large natural examples of pinhole cameras. This picture from 1991 shows a piece of white poster board on the ground under a large oak tree on campus. By chance, the spaces between leaves include some small enough to act as decent pinholes, now with a longer distance to the ground than could be conveniently set up by hand. They gave ~8-cm images of the partially eclipsed Sun.

    I suspect that such images of a narrowing solar sliver could be the first hint of an eclipse for people who hadn't heard about the event.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  26. #26
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    I seem to remember a Nat'l Geo article that had such patterns on the ground.
    Similar
    https://ecmreviews.files.wordpress.c...nt-shadows.jpg
    http://geotripper.blogspot.com/2012/...s-come-to.html
    Last edited by publiusr; 2017-Jun-09 at 06:45 PM.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    I seem to remember a Nat'l Geo article that had such patterns on the ground.
    Similar
    https://ecmreviews.files.wordpress.c...nt-shadows.jpg
    http://geotripper.blogspot.com/2012/...s-come-to.html
    There's a great link in the blog of the second article for determining when and where to watch the eclipse. Thought I'd pull it out for everyone to enjoy.

    Eclipse
    I know that I know nothing, so I question everything. - Socrates/Descartes

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    Last edited by publiusr; 2017-Jul-01 at 06:27 PM.

  29. #29
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    Nice of them to do that. Well done.


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  30. #30
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    Glasses also here in Sky & 'Scope
    http://www.shopatsky.com/sky-telesco...FUkdgQodY58CEQ

    Speaking of..is is safe--during totality--to look at the Corona through this?
    https://sc01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB15.oqK...orona-Beer.jpg

    Great party....

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