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Everything posted by John

  1. I well remember that night as well - but mainly because I arrived the following morning to find the camp still buzzing with the previous nights observing excitement I seem to recall that it mostly rained for the following nights
  2. Congratualtions ! It looks very similar to my first scope - a 1960's Tasco 60mm refractor. That is stored in a similar looking wooden case too. I dusted it off and did some observing with it last Summer, which bought back some nice memories
  3. Wow ! Fantastic scope Mark, absolutely fantastic Mine is #020 and dates from 2006. The lens bezel ring on mine says F/9 like yours does but the concensus on the CN forum is that these are 1,200mm focal length so F/9.23. Markus told me in late 2016 that they had made 114 of these up to that point so we are up to #133 3 years on so a production of around 8 per year ? Apart from saying TMB rather than APM the objective cell on mine is identical to yours. I'll look forward to reading your reports on how your LZOS 130 performs and maybe comparing notes ? Many congratu
  4. Very nice list of targets covered there
  5. You used to be able to get both 1.25 inch and 2 inch barrel adapters for the Vixen 40mm screw fit eyepieces but they are so long out of production I think you will need to try a "wanted" advert and see if anything comes up. The 2 inch adapter looks like this:
  6. To be honest with you, when I started the thread, I knew it was a very challenging double (more so that Sirius) but I did not know that it was THAT difficult.
  7. Great pic released by NASA a couple of days ago of the Ingenuity Helicopter having survived it's first night on the surface of Mars. If testing goes well it could fly on Sunday 11th April
  8. For the past few nights I've been using my 12 inch dobsonian to hunt galaxies in Leo and environs as reported here: https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/374989-change-of-horse-midstream/?tab=comments#comment-4067516 Feeling a little guilty towards my 100mm refractor that I had so rudely cast aside in favour of the "light bucket" and also that I rather disparagingly referred to as a "Peashooter" in another thread, I decided to see what just 3.9 inches of aperture could do within Leo. I did preface the galaxies with a quick look at the nova in Cassiopeia - it still looked to be hold
  9. Yes - out of production, unfortunately. The most noticeable difference between the 3-6 zoom and the 2-4 (apart from the focal length range) is that the 2-4 has click stops at half mm intervals rather than 1mm. Otherwise they feel and perform the same. I've owned a couple of the 3-6 Nagler zooms in the past. The Nagler zooms are in the same par-focal group as the 24mm Panoptic and a number of other Tele Vue eyepieces - Tele Vue call it their "B" par-focal group. It is around 8mm further out than things like the Pentax XW.
  10. I use the 2-4mm Nagler zoom very often with my FC100-DL. It is a very effective high power eyepiece IMHO. My diagonal for the Tak is the Baader T2 Zeiss Prism. I went for the latter as a result of reading this review by Bill Paolini: https://www.cloudynights.com/articles/cat/articles/mirror-vs-dielectric-vs-prism-diagonal-comparison-r2877
  11. The Ethos range have a wide range of focal plane positions. This post by Don Pensack on the CN forum gives the details but they can make your head spin a bit !: https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/490673-ethos-line-how-much-backin-focus-required/?p=6437723
  12. The older ones. I know the HD5 raises the game but at the price they are, there are other attractive options such as the Rowan AZ100 or the T-Rex which I have now.
  13. Last night I had a few goals in mind in Leo. Having had a few sessions in that part of the sky recently I know where the main hunting grounds are so I don't need charts for those. The rest I sort of decide as I go along. I'm not really into major planning for sessions but like to have a couple of ideas and then "hang" the session around those. For the new finds I use a combination of Stellarium running on a laptop and the Sky & Telescope Pocket Sky Atlas. Last night a number of targets were a bit beyond what the Pocket Sky Atlas covers so I found Stellarium very useful, particularly t
  14. Excellent stuff Luke It was a very good night, last night, to get back into DSO hunting.
  15. Another few hours in Leo with my 12 inch dob tonight. Better transparency so I could get around 1 magnitude fainter on galaxies. Quite a few of the ones already mentioned in this thread re-visited for better views this evening. New faces were: NGC's: 3162, 3187, 3222, 3177, 3221, 3547, 3507, 3389, 3412, 3655, 3691, 3681, 3684 and 3686. The last 3 listed form a line about 1 degree in length in the Lions rump with 3691 off to one side. Another Leo galactic quartet: 3rd night of Leo galaxy hunting and yet there are many more in and around that constellation still to find
  16. I've just packed in now but it's still pretty clear outside. The transparency was good tonight but I think it could be better still. Not complaining though. 28 Leo galaxies plus 13 down (or up) the Markarian's Chain plus others unidentified in the Virgo / Coma B boundary puts a smile on my face even though it's a little chilly out there
  17. Tonight I observed the nova with 11x70 binoculars. It looked around the same brightness that it has for the past few nights. With the more transparent skies this evening M52 showed quite nicely with the binoculars.
  18. I'm having a cup of something warm before going out again. So far I've concentrated on the upper forequarters of Leo and picked up 13 galaxies of which 8 are new spots, or at least I've not seen them for a long time. I seem to be able to get the ones with a surface brightness of around magnitude 13 or brighter tonight. That's around 1 magnitude better than the last couple of nights I've been out so the transparency is better tonight. I have managed to see all the Leo Quad / Hickson 44 group but NGC 3187 was right at the limit this evening and I needed to use 200x plus magnificat
  19. Better make a start. The obligatory look at Nova v1405 Cas, to see how it's doing
  20. Clear but cold here. Some interesting potential target galaxy groups in Leo covered in this Sky & Telescope piece: https://skyandtelescope.org/astronomy-blogs/explore-night-bob-king/exploring-bright-galaxy-groups-in-leo/
  21. One of my targets tonight will be to see all 4 of the Hickson 44 "Leo Quartet". I got 3 the other night but NGC 3187 eluded me.
  22. Thanks Mark Tonight is big aperture night then I'll leave the "peashooters" indoors
  23. If you got it, this is a brilliant result Geoff You are quite possibly the only living human who as achieved it ! Crack open a beer mate
  24. Thanks. I hardly ever use a mobile phone and the one I have is pretty ancient so won't run much. Plus, I find any light at the scope at all gets in the way of the finding the really faint targets. I dark adapted for about 90 minutes when I was trying for the Horsehead Nebula. I avoided any light whatsoever to really get "into the zone".
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