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Everything posted by KenG

  1. x375 is patently untrue. Why are they not being challenged under the sale of goods act?
  2. Have you considered "Burnham's Celestial Handbooks"? There are three of them, and for me they are standard issue. Old fashioned and dated, but totally relevant, and including lots of gems our more " up to date" authors have forgotten about. Also consider "1,001 celestial wonders to see before you die " by Michael Bakich. Lots of forward planning in all of these.
  3. The scopes you list are both excellent and your boyfriend will be thrilled with either of them. It will be very exciting for him setting the scope up and when he gets his first view of the moon you won't regret spending a penny. Hopefully the start of a very rewarding hobby - for both of you.
  4. Hi Malc, Take them off and give your eyes a rest every so often, you really need to allow a month to fully adjust to them so don't push it too hard. Slow and steady rather than fast and furious.
  5. Don't panic. Varifocals are a bit hard to get used to, even when I get a new pair it can take a week to feel comfortable with them. The head moving comes as standard. Personally, I prefere this to having to constantly change glasses. The only time I use reading glasses now Is for fine work, or occasionally if I have an unusual amount of reading to do, otherwise the varifocals stay where they are.
  6. Check out Visionary binos from Sherwoods. Excellent optics very well priced
  7. This months Astronomy Now mag has an article which may be good for you to read. Six regular contributors each select their best starter scope under £500 and give their reasons for choosing it.
  8. This is a "Dear John" letter.......you are of course 100% right. My daughter's wedding is is five days time and I think my brain must be addled. Perhaps I should leave posting for a week, or a least till after I get my speech made!
  9. Regarding John's post above regarding the suitability of Baader Hyperions for fast scopes. I personally have not used these eyepieces, but FLO have done a direct comparison test between Vixens and Baaders and they quite clearly state that the Hyperions perform best with scopes faster than F6. You might wish to check this out on the FLO website.
  10. My scope is f4 and I use Vixen LVW's which have a 65 degree FOW. At £200 a piece they are terrific eyepieces, but an alternative is the Baader Hyperion range(68 degrees)which gets very good reviews. The Baaders are half the price of the Vixens, which makes them about a quarter the cost of the Televues, so you've got to decide how critical your viewing experience is, or perhaps more importantly, how much money you have to spend. There are lots of reviews available, so I suggest you you do a bit of trawling before you leap in to spending £400 - or more - on one eyepiece.
  11. Hmmmm........well for me observing is only a small part of this hobby. I get a lot of pleasure/satisfaction out of researching what I might look at. To this end I use several different sets of charts and a lot of reading material so that when I do take my scope out, it's only the end point of a considerable accumulation of information. Approaching astronomy in this way means that the actual looking part is as easily fulfilled by a binocular as by a scope. You only need magnification for detail, so don't get downhearted. The wonder is in the knowing, not the seeing.
  12. This reminds me of the "Peanuts" comic strip where Charlie Brown stands on the pitcher's mound to get a closer view of the moon.
  13. Haven't used the Skywatcher, so can't comment on it, but would suggest you don't buy any accessories until you're actually in possession of a scope and have tried it out with the supplied bits. Don't worry if the eyepieces that come with it aren't fantastic, they'll give you an idea of what the scope can do and you'll be better able to make an informed purchase down the line. Forget about filters - apart from moon - you won't need them until you know what you need them for.
  14. Hi Chris, Mount your binocular on a camera tripod - don't hand hold it, waste of time. Buy "Sky@Night" on a regular basis, it gives you monthly observing suggestions and data as well as good articles. Books are invaluable, but the mags. keep you up to date, and really, for somebody just starting out, I can't think of a better way to get into the hobby.
  15. "Sky at night" is probably the best beginners magazine. Everything is explained in an easy-to-understand manner and you won't feel out of your depth. "Astronomy Now" is a bit more serious and thoughtful. If you're just starting out, it's probably not the best choice, although as you progress, you'll find yourself drawn to it. "Sky and Telescope" is a serious publication. Not for the faint-hearted. Buy it when you're a very experienced amateur. Hope that helps.
  16. "The Right Stuff" is fatally flawed in that it makes out that Gus Grissom was lacking the right stuff - which he most certainly was not - an unfortunate case of the author's predujices over-riding the facts. If you want a good book about space-flight, you can't get better than Michael Collins "Carrying the Fire".
  17. It may well do, but the deflection would be on a quantum scale and probably impossible to measure.
  18. I'm not a scientist, but as a retired designer I know that if things can break down they will, and the more complex they are, the more certain they are to break down, therefore I always worked on the KISS principle - keep it simple, stupid. For the universe to have lasted this long and to be as stable as it appears to be, it too must work to very simple rules. Some of the theories being expounded by cosmologists are just too complicated. It seems to me that if there was a big bang, it didn't appear out of nowhere, something was there to create it, perhaps a timeless environment, and time began with the bang, and since time has a beginning, it must also have an ending.
  19. If the universe had a beginning - and it appears that it did - then time must exist. The only way time could not exist is if the universe itself is in a timeless state, i.e. has existed forever.
  20. Doesn't matter how far you stick your head out the window, you're still going to get air currents. Warm air rises, so the air in the house is going to stream to the outside past you and your seeing will be zero. Also, whilst aperture may be king, think carefully what you're going to do with your scope. If you're going to have to move it around a lot to get decent views, aperture may well become a millstone round your neck. I refer you to the golden rule - a small scope that you use regularly is better than a big one you use occasionally.
  21. Well, viewing from an interior area just doesn't work, but if you have to, don't open the window or you'll see nothing because of air currents. Even with the window closed you'll have to use low power eyepieces. If you absolutely have to view from inside, a binocular on a camera tripod is best. Don't dismiss this idea, I have binoculars at a couple of windows in my house and on nights when I don't feel like setting up my scope, they're very satisfying to use. If you get a scope, you are ultimately going to have to move it from your room to outside, so it's going to have to be portable. 6" is a fair bit of kit to shift on a regular basis. Have you considered a small refractor? There are some very portable ones on the market.
  22. Bit of a conflict in your requirements. If you want to view DSO's you need aperture and aperture requires a good tripod which equals weight which means it's not easily portable. Could I suggest you look at a decent all-round scope for your first purchase and just start enjoying it? I have a 200mm reflector which is a beast to set up and align (although the views are wonderful and worth the effort), so recently I bought an ETX 125 which I can pick up, attached to it's tripod, carry out to my patio and have set up inside five minutes. It mightn't have the light gathering capacity of the 200, but never-the-less I'm getting far more use out of it, and if your time is limited, then that's a major consideration for you. Get something fool-proof and well sorted and if you can throw it in the back of the car, you'll still use it even if you get something bigger down the line.
  23. A long belt/strap/whatever around your neck and looped around the tube means it's secure until it's in the cradle. Simple and effective. It's the way I've done it for sixteen years.
  24. "without information...................it is impossible to enrich the experience" I think that's a pretty universal truth.
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