DIY Planetary Camera

By attaching a webcam or a dash cam to a telescope using a special type of adapter, it is possible to take up-close photos of planets.

Web Camera

Replace the webcam’s lens by a special type of adapter called a webcam-to-telescope adapter. Insert the webcam with an adapter into the eyepiece barrel of the telescope’s focuser.

Mars imaged with an SPC900NC web camera
SPC900NC webcam attaches to a telescope with webcam-to-telescope adapter

Dash Camera

Polaroid N302 for planetary imaging

Polaroid N302 dash camera repurposed for planetary imaging

I repurposed my old dash camera as a planetary camera. The lens was removed and replaced with a webcam-to-telescope adapter and then mounted on to a telescope.

Related link: View posts on camera modification projects

Night Sky in Focus 
© Anthony Urbano | Bacoor, Philippines

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4 thoughts on “DIY Planetary Camera”

  1. woooow great shot sir… sana my step by step or materials needed with pics on how to do it :) newbie here kase :) thanks for this article sir so informative

  2. Is possible DIY > dash cam for Deep sky?
    TNX from Richard > from SE Italy – IK7FMO

    1. This dash camera is unable to do long exposure, thus, not suitable for deep-sky imaging. I do not know if there is a way to modify.

  3. This is the sort of cheapskate astronomy I love. I was converting webcams years ago, epoxying 35mm film canisters w/ an aperture cut out onto the webcam casing and fiddling with driver software to up the gain and take long exposures. Converted a 24 hour mechanical appliance timer into a sky-tracking mount for a lightweight point-and-shoot camera. I love this out of the box way to do astronomy.

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