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Everything posted by Damo636

  1. Hi Stu Unfortunately mounting these 110mm brutes on a "suitable" commercially available Parallelogram will be expensive, £500-£600 from memory for the Universal Astronomics Millennium mount! The cheapest mounting solution is a DIY parallelogram mount and a used surveyors tripod off of Ebay. When I bought the 20x110, I knocked together a heavy duty aluminium affair in the garage for approx £150. The surveyors tripod in lightly used condition from memory cost £35, so all in all less than 200 quid. You could go down the road of a heavy duty fluid video head or fork mount, but again the suitable examples are pretty expensive, and in my opinion only a secondary mounting option for an instrument this size (at least for astronomy use). There's nothing like having the binocular floating in mid air and away from the tripod. Bottom line, whatever you decide to do, don't under mount it!
  2. With a budget of 3k I'd be looking hard at one of these..... http://apm-telescopes-englisch.shopgate.com/item/39393634 At €2990 you'll have change for a quality rig to mount it on
  3. Thanks for the great review Steve, the Lunt sounds excellent!
  4. These are fairly easy to align Philip. I posted a few pics in this thread which may help..... http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/258013-helios-apollo-15x70-still-ooc-after-a-trip-to-glasgow-bino-repairs/#entry2821368
  5. The hinge on these is indeed very stiff, but once you get it moving initially, it will free itself up. If you could get the binocular warmed up by a few degrees it would also help by making the grease more plyable. Maybe try leaving it in a hotpress or the like for 30mins or so, or even taking a hair dryer to the hinge for a few minutes and try again? As it looks to be stuck in the upper range of the ipd , try placing the binocular on the ground (resting on its centre post) and with a hand on each barrel, press down on the right had barrel. Unless something is badly amiss, it should release with a little effort. Good luck!
  6. Nice review of very nice instrument Philip. I have the 20x110 version and it sees a lot of use. It's odd that there are no objective covers, mine came with the standard rubber slip on affairs? The ipd adjustment is indeed very stiff and is next to impossible to adjust when mounted. On the plus side though, once set it ain't gonna move! Enjoy!
  7. Great review Steve, gonna get me one of those
  8. You've made an excellent choice! I also recently picked up the 6.5mm from a site member and have been very impressed with it. Enjoy!!
  9. I had to build one for my big bino, as the suitable commercially available examples were well out of my price range at the time. I built mine from aluminium and was delighted with the end result. Good luck with the build and I look forward to your progress reports.
  10. I agree with the previous comments, to be out that amount of money with an unsatisfactory end result is maddening. I sympathise with your plight and would be well hacked off if it happened to me! As you suggest though, it's entirely possible they've been mishandled by the carrier. For what it's worth, this range of binoculars is very easily aligned (conditionally). If you have a tripod, a clear view of a far in the distant object (electricity pylon, telegraph pole etc), it will only take 5-10 minutes tops to sweeten them up. Chances are you'll only have to adjust one side if it's any way close. My 20x110 arrived from the dealer with a very slight (but noticeable) misalignment, both vertically and horizontally. As my eyes were able to accommodate the misalignment, I never bothered until recently sorting it out. Each prism has two adjustment screws, one for the vertical, the other for horizontal. There is a rubber grommet covering each screw which you'll need to pry out with a pointy object of sorts. The trick is small adjustments, approx 1/8 of a turn at a time. You'll quickly see what's going on and adjust accordingly. I've marked the adjustment screws with Tipex in the pics below. The bottom screw (marked red) is where the binocular is purged with nitrogen, "do not" touch this. HTH
  11. Nice post Steve, looking forward to part 2 under the stars. It'll be interesting to hear how the Helios Apollo stacks up against the Lunt. I only last week managed to reacquire a 15x70 Helios Apollo (thank you FLO clearance offers ), and to be honest had forgotten just how much bang for buck it represents! I'd expect the Lunt with its built in field flattners to pull ahead in terms of edge of field sharpness, but otherwise it should make for a very interesting comparison.
  12. I've owned both the GSO/Televue 2" barlows (although not at the same time) and don't remember the Big Barlow being any better or worse than the GSO. That said, I also didn't see any real difference between the 2" Powermate and the TV 2" Big Barlow, other than a significant difference in weight, so maybe I'm not the best person to be giving advise? If you are on a budget the GSO/Revelation/TS 2" mentioned above is a great choice (obviously go with the cheapest branded), and you honestly will not be disappointed.
  13. I don't imagine sales of the Meade XWA 20mm @ £549 would be making TH up either!
  14. Personally I'd avoid the 12mm Pentax xf at all costs, it has most amount of field curvature I've ever encountered. The 8.5mm is excellent, the 12.5mm I kept for one week!
  15. I can't comment on the image stabilised offerings as I've never used them, but with that sort of budget I'll start the ball rolling and wholeheartedly recommended the Fujinon 10x50 FMT-SX. I've owned mine for less than a year and it still takes my breath away every time I put it to my eyes, day or night! The clarity and sharpness of the views is stunning, 6.5° and sharp almost right to the very edge. With £1000 you'll also have change for a decent monopod & trigger grip ball head if you feel additional support is required.
  16. Faff?? I have often observed for two hours + without ever leaving the comfort of my el cheapo reclined lawn chair. The chair has been heavily pimped out with a set of rubber wheeled castors which allow me 360° of movement without having to get up to reposition. Each to their own, but in my experience, a Parallelogram mount and recliner has proven to be by far the most enjoyable mounting solution for large aperture (straight through) binoculars. Just sayin!
  17. Nice catch Charic! I also picked up my 222 on Ebay (for a little more than you paid) and think it's an absolutely cracking little piece of kit. I use it a lot with my 10x50 but have also used it with the 15x70 Helios Apollo. The larger instrument did require the resistance on the ball to be increased slightly but once adjusted was rock solid.
  18. Very nice indeed Michael, hopefully the weather plays nice so you can test them under the stars. It'll be interesting to hear how they compare with your Helios Apollo. I find myself using my 10x50 a lot lately, the sheer convenience of no set up (other than my recliner) is hard to beat sometimes, and although I plan to reacquire a 15x70 BA8 in the very near future, I'll always keep a 10x50 for sheer ease of use.
  19. Nice report Lorne, the 14mm ES 100° is a fabulous eyepiece!
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