Archive for July 2015

Phillip Ivester Drag Racing

July 25, 2015

My brother, Phillip has had excellent success in drag racing, winning “an amazing” 164 events.  He’s also built many race engines and race cars over the years.    Roger Ivester 

Race Car Wheeley


Sharing a Dodge SRT Hellcat, owned by James Caserio, MD. from Hendersonville, NC   


Dr. Caserio (better known as Dr. C) has been working with Phillip…to properly stage at the starting line and other drag racing tips.  He made some fabulous runs, Thursday night at Shady Side Drag strip, near Boiling Springs, NC.   

This is not just a Hellcat, but a (Demonized Hellcat) which indicates the car has received performance modifications, and now has well over 1,000 horsepower!   

Dr. C had some 0.0200 reaction times which is worthy to win most any bracket race.  This means that the car moved forward an amazing 2/100th  of a second after the green light! Leave too early, and a red-light, which is automatically a disqualification.  

Thursday night, October 22nd 2020 at Shady Side Dragway in Boiling Springs, North Carolina:

Jim Caserio ran his fastest E.T. (elapsed time) and miles per hour, with an incredible 6.41 seconds, at 111 mph (1/8th of a mile.)

Supplemental:  Sunday November 21st 2011:  New time, 6.34 seconds @ 117 MPH.  This was after the installation of a new supercharger.  

Screenshot 2020-07-08 at 5.27.40 PM

Burn-out complete 

Screenshot 2020-07-08 at 5.33.23 PM

After leaving the drag strip,  Dr. Caserio treated everyone to a nice dinner at a local restaurant.  


NGC 6503 – Galaxy in Draco

July 17, 2015

Observer’s Challenge link:  JULY 2015 OBSERVERS CHALLENGE – NGC-6503

NGC 6503 – Galaxy in Draco – Magnitude 10.2

Telescope: 10-inch f/4.5 reflector Magnification: 183x FOV: 0.38º Transparency: Fair to poor Temperature: 85º Humidity: 55% Dew Point: 67º NELM: 5.0 A surprisingly clear sky summer sky for the foothills of North Carolina.

However, the humidity was very high, reducing the transparency considerably. Very easy to locate and see at low power, but lacking detail. The seeing was good, therefore allowing the use of 183x. The galaxy is well concentrated, but appeared fairly dim due to the poor transparency. Highly elongated with the NW being much brighter than the SE. When using averted vision, the texture is uneven with mottling. A very subtle elongated brightening in the central region, but no core. A semi-circle of five faint stars lies just south, making a curve toward the west and going well beyond the galaxy.

The following is a “rough field sketch” using a No. 2 pencil and a blank 5 x 8 notecard.  Colors inverted via computer. 

Rogers NGC-6503

NGC 6503
Dr. James R. Dire

NGC6503 is a 10th magnitude spiral galaxy located in the constellation Draco. The galaxy is relative easy to find. The stars Chi Draconis (magnitude 3.6), Omega Draconis (4.78), 27 Draconis (5.1) and Aldhibal, aka Zeta Draconis (3.2), all lie roughly on a line. NGC6503 resides on the same line between the stars Chi and Omega. It is roughly at the midpoint between Chi and 27 Draconis.

Because of its northerly declination, NGC6503 is circumpolar for most northern hemisphere observers. Even here in Kauai it doesn’t set; although it is only two degrees above the horizon at its lowest elevation. I first spotted NGC6503 this month with my 6-inch f/6 achromatic refractor. Since I used a GOTO mount in was in the eyepiece with little effort. With the 6-inch scope, the galaxy was very faint and looked like an faint elongated patch.

Pointing the red dot finder on my 14-inch f/6 Dobsonian at the correct location, I could not make out the galaxy in the adjacent 8×50 finder. But it was dead center in the scope’s eyepiece. Finding it was actually just as quick star hopping with the Dob as it was with the GOTO mount with the refractor. The Dob revealed a tiny bright spot in the nucleus, but not much detail in the galaxy beyond that. A red giant star, HD163465 (magnitude 8.6), lies in the same field of view as the galaxy providing some good contrast.

NGC6503 is a member of the local group of galaxies. It lies 18 million light years away. The galaxy spans 30,000 light years making it roughly one-third the size of our Milky Way galaxy. The galaxy is 5.9 x 1.9 arcminutes in size with the major axis running northwest to southeast. The apparent elongation is because the galaxy is closer to edge on than face on.

My image of NGC6503 was taken with a 10-inch f/6 Newtonian with a SBIG ST-2000XCM CCD camera. The exposure was four hours. The image shows a very bright but compact core, indicative of an Sc classification galaxy. Even though not very open to our vantage point, the tightly wound spiral arms with large dust lanes are readily apparent. The bright spot to the left and slightly below the core is a large star-forming region easily identified on HST images of NGC6503. Below that, near the apparent bottom edge of the galaxy is another bright spot containing hot young blue stars not obstructed from our viewpoint by dust lanes.  James Dire 


M83 – Galaxy in Hydra – Difficult Due Only to its Southerly Location

July 3, 2015

M83, NGC 5236:  Galaxy in Hyra

Observer’s Challenge Report:  JUNE 2015 OBSERVERS CHALLENGE – M-083

Telescope: 10-inch f/4.5 Newtonian reflector

Sketch magnification: 57x;  FOV: 0.50º – 30 arc minutes 

Conditions:  Poor transparency at ~4.5 NELM. 

April 9th 1997:  Very bright, stellar nucleus, brighter elongated central region, oriented NNE-SSW, with a faint mostly round halo. With patience and averted vision, a very subtle curving arm, ESE of the core. This was very surprising considering the sky glow and southerly location of this galaxy from my backyard. Despite the light pollution, and haze, this galaxy was fairly easy to locate using my 10-inch reflector at 57x.

May 1992:  10-inch reflector @ 57x:  Faint, mostly round, but with a subtle elongated shape when using averted vision. Very difficult due to unshielded street lights in very close proximity to my backyard.  

The following pencil sketch was made using a No. 2 pencil, blank note card with the colors inverted: 

Rogers M-083 A