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Everything posted by Shimrod

  1. I use a Macallister case I bought from B&Q to hold my ZS61 and AZ-GTI mount. I don't think it would accommodate the EAF but would possibly take everything else assembled. If that doesn't work, you can get larger tool cases with foam that should do the trick - but they come at a higher price - here's an example on Amazon
  2. Looking at the listings, I expect the Apertura and zhumell will actually be the same scope - with possibly just a different set of accessories. You might get a better response on this if you continue your thread in 'getting started' - Bresser vs GSO Depending on how quickly you want to get a scope, you might want to look particularly at those that are in stock - the Telescopesplus link does not seem to have any telescopes available to buy. There is a list of in stock telescopes at firstlightoptics which includes the 8" Skywatcher dobsonian
  3. I've tried using my Skywatcher 80ed as a spotter and it really a bit too long when rotating around the axis - I've also used my ZS61 which is easier to use. It's ok for occasional use, but at some point I will buy a dedicated spotting scope instead. Weather sealing and a bit more rugged protection are attractive. There are a number of spotting scopes that take standard 1.25" eyepieces (and some that are completely modular), so it is possible to get flexibility. Some examples are: Celestron Regal M2 80ED (£650 ) Pentax PF80 EDA (approx £800, plus eyepiece) SVbony SV406P ED (approx £310) The last one looks very similar to the Celestron Regal, except the dual focus is on top of the scope instead of the right hand side (which is much better if you are left-handed!)
  4. As an update on this, FLO are going to have a look at the camera for me (and even gave me a postage paid returns label). Good Service!
  5. That's a nice compact package - I bought the Skywatcher wedge over the better reviewed Williams Optics one because I want to be able to take the mount to Iceland. For any trips like that, the case and OTA will stay behind and I will pack the mount/wedge into my camera bag. The case is too heavy to with by plane and I would have to leave my camera behind.
  6. The guidecam is an ASI120mm and the main camera is an ASI533. I've had the mount since May and the full set up since September, and this is about as much action as it has seen! I had a week in Skye and managed to get a bit of visual observing in between clouds on a couple of nights, but the weather so far this year has been awful.
  7. Thought I would add an image of my AZ GTI - I bought it as a compact travel solution for UK holidays as taking my AVX on a previous trip had proved a challenge. The case is a MacAllistair case (£41 with foam insert from B&Q) - everything else except the counterweight from FLO! The OTA is a Williams Optics ZS61
  8. It looks like I won't be testing this - my iPolar camera does not seem to be working anymore. It shows as a device in windows and the software appears to connect, but then I get a 'failed to connect message'. Testing in the windows camera app, it seems the problem occurs when trying to read an image from the sensor. edit: I've just checked and it is four days outside the warranty period!
  9. There is a new version of the software available for this polar alignment camera. Notable in the fixes below is an improved virtual pole calculation and display. Like a few people on here, I've had different alignment results when comparing iPolar to software like Sharpcap and not known which to believe. I'm looking forward to trying it out should I ever get a clear night! V2.60 November 10, 2021 Improved virtual pole calculation and display Other optimization Now only support 64 bit Windows operation system
  10. Both scopes are quite heavy (I have an 8" LX90) and as the OTA and mount are a single unit can be quite awkward to get the mount onto the tripod. While you say this will be your one and done telescope, I would suggest going for a separate OTA and mount as it would give both easier set up (less weight to move in one go) and flexibility in purchasing a new scope at some point in the future without also having to buy a new mount. You may already have done your research, but if you indicate what you are interested in viewing then there are plenty of people on this forum who can advise on suitability and possibly suggest better alternatives for your preferred targets.
  11. I haven't heard of them before and the website has only been up for a year - they don't have much in the way of stock. Looking at the website it is an offshoot of Outsideology.com who make observatories amongst other garden buildings. Outsideolgy are mentioned on SGL a few times which may give you an indication of the company.
  12. ...and check the retaining ring inside the reducer is still tight once you've removed it from the scope otherwise you risk the lens elements falling out.
  13. Do you have a reticle eyepiece you use when aligning? I have a different mount, but I was surprised at how far out from the 'centre of the eyepiece' I was when aligning with a normal eyepiece, especially if lower power. The more accurate alignment using the reticle eyepiece has improved the goto accuracy on the mount.
  14. My reducer fell to bits when I unscrewed it from the back of my Edge - the retaining ring on the inside of the reducer came undone as I removed it from the scope. Fortunately the lens elements fell out into the palm of my hand and I was able to re-assemble but it would have been a nightmare had they fallen to the floor.
  15. My ZS61 saw far more action as a spotting scope than it did pointing at the skies on a recent trip to the Isle of Skye. Small scopes are great for to use as spotting scopes indoors or in the garden, but I wouldn't want to use one as a regular spotting scope. The latter are a lot more rugged and generally have some level of water protection - plus they don't have sharp, knobbly bits that dig into you back when you are walking around!
  16. There are someADM Losmandy dovetail plates in stock at FirstLightOptics
  17. It's worth noting that the 8" EdgeHD comes with a 1.25" visual back and diagonal, so 2" eyepieces may require replacement of both of those as well.
  18. So...you could buy direct from Orion (UK.telescope.com) for the same price, and if you went through topcashback you could get a discount. The problem is that Orion have the xt8i and xt10i listed as no longer available on their website. If you bought through Amazon you would still be buying from Orion (not Amazon direct), so you may have missed the opportunity to buy new. The xt12i is still available.
  19. Looks like it will be shown on CNN (presumably US only) on 20th November. https://realscreen.com/2021/11/01/cnn-films-acquires-the-hunt-for-planet-b-ahead-of-nasa-mission/
  20. Is the camera attached to a USB hub? When I got my ASI533 I had what sounds like similar problems - it turned out the devices on the hub drew too much power when they were all active and one of the devices (normally the camera) would drop the connection. I put the camera on its own USB port and everything has been fine since.
  21. Assuming you have the same model I do (Hi Tec dew Controller) I use two of these cables for powering my ZWO cameras . Note the connectors on these cables are quite short and are not long enough to stay in the sockets of my battery pack or mounts so may not be suitable for your kit.
  22. This open evening seems to be a weekly event at the Chesterfield Barnett Observatory - Barnett Observatory You might want to check the events map on the go stargazing website to see if there is anything else relatively easy for you to access Go Stargazing Events Map
  23. It's worth noting that Svbony tends to be cheaper on ebay than on Amazon - even when the seller is the same. This is the 20mm 68 degree eyepiece at £30 on Ebay and £40 on Amazon. The only difference is if you have Prime on Amazon you can get it delivered a bit quicker, but delivery is free on both. 20mm Amazon 20mm Ebay edit: just noticed Sunshine is in Canada - price difference is certainly true in the UK
  24. Forecast is looking good for tomorrow solar wise... and probably some clear skies for a change too! https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/3-day-forecast
  25. £29 and in stock on the Opticstar website - Messier guide
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