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About Zaphod360

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    Star Forming

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    Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  1. I can also vouch for the VMC110, it's a cracking little portable scope. Can't comment on the mini porta though, I've always used mine on a AZ4. I've put my vixen on ABS though as I've just not had chance to use it.
  2. I've tried a couple of different visual backs but currently use a SCT threaded 2" diagonal. My own experience (only using the integrated reducer in my earthwin powerslide (which is an amazing piece of kit!)) was that I am still restricted to 1 degree. I say restricted but it was exactly what I was expecting when I bought the scope and am more than happy with it. I'll have to do some research on this as I was under the impression that a C11 couldn't get more than 1 degree. Thanks for the info
  3. I'm a visual observer as well and in my CPC1100 I can get 1.05 degrees field of view, even with a reducer I can't get more than that without vignetting (I use an earthwin powerslide) is there a different reducer I could use to get 1.5 degrees? I use a 4" short tube refractor for the wide field objects but a little bit extra from my main OTA would be nice.
  4. You should be ok with 6.4mm exit pupil, In my first scope I used a 32mm panaview for this purpose, that worked out as exactly 6.4mm and I had no problems. I'm 32 and as you get older the maximum pupil dilation reduces so you run the risk of having dimming from the central obstruction if its too high. I will add that I always used my Telrad when I got it, it changed my observing instantly! It got to the point where a target would be in the centre of my ep even on x80+ magnifications, I'd get close with the Telrad, refine with my finder then it would be straight there.
  5. I've heard that as well, the 68s and 82s are supposed to be the ones to get, the 70s aren't getting very good feedback (relatively). Ps thanks for the kind comments, starting to feel a bit better now, just need the nipper to start sleeping and I'm set! When I get my second light I'll do a further write up as I think these eps are worth shouting about!
  6. I got mine for a steal as far as I'm concerned. I got them off Astro buy and sell and paid £155 total for both. The cheapest way to get them new is from the states and pay the duty when they get hear. The 24mm is £262 in the UK and about £180 from the states after duty, vat and shipping.
  7. I had to pop out on Tuesday to get my first views through my new (new to me) explore scientific 24 & 18mm 82 degree eyepieces. It was a very short observing session, we've a new born baby 17th December and I've got a chest infection so it took all my energy to set up my CPC1100 and my ST102. These are my first 'premium' eyepieces, but I've owned a variety of different mid range ones from TV plossls, hyperions, X-Cell LXs etc but currently mainly use panaviews, a 40mm Aero and a 20mm swan. These new eyepieces are also my first proper super wide field eyepieces. So I started with my 11" SCT, being f10 I expected it to be forgiving, but nothing could have prepared me for the view! I slewed to M37, without much thought (due to lack of sleep and having the lurgey) and placed my eye to the lens, the open cluster filled the view, it's the first time I've physically looked around a star cluster, moving your head to see the full field is quite an experience. Super sharp stars across the full field of view, lovely contrast, quite tight eye relief but I imagine it would have to be pretty tight to see the full 82 degree FOV. I then swapped in the 18mm which after a small amount of refocusing was amazed, I've never been 'in' a star field before! I'm in love! So now onto the st102, being f4.9 I was expecting a few minor problems but I was very impressed. I looked at M45 and it was amazing! Breathtaking in both eps, unfortunately the AZ3 mount isn't up to the task, the weight of the 2" diagonal plus the ep was too much for it and kept slipping slowly. Anyway when I get a bit more time I'll try and be a bit more specific but for now I'm hooked. One final thought how would you use a 100 degree ep? It was at the edge of my vision that I could just make out the nice sharp field stop, with a 100 degree ep can you just not see an end? Clear skies everyone
  8. Could be to do with exit pupil size. Take the focal length of the eyepiece and divide it by the focal ratio of your scope. So a 25mm ep in an f5 scope would give you a 5mm exit pupil which is a nice bright comfortable size. A 5mm ep would give you a 1mm exit pupil which to be honest should be fine, it's when you get down to 0.5mm I start having issues. I have personally found that some brands of eyepieces (at specific focal lengths) need more precise eye positioning to see, but never really understood why.
  9. To be honest I hate righting negative reviews, usually I'd just decide to never use them again an move on however this one goes above and beyond poor service. I placed an order for an Earthwin Optical powerswitch/filter slide described as ex-demo. I sent a few emails which weren't answered so decided to call the store. They answered promptly but we're extremely unhelpful (abrupt and a little rude) having little or no knowledge of the product. This had me worried, but as they are the only UK importer for this produce I didn't think I had much choice. I contacted the manufacturer in the states and they were more than helpful. Anyway SCS Astro described the item to me as being in 'as new' condition so I decided to go for it. Several days later (no despatch email) it arrived. This item comes in a case which was scuffed and looked very second hand, inside the 'removable' 2" nose piece was seized in place and badly scratched. The mirror in the diagonal was very dusty with small pieces of foam coming out from the back of the mirror, one of the filter slide 1 1/4" adapters were missing and this was also an older version which isn't compatible with the Earthwin binoviewers which I hoped to get later on. I called the shop and they said it was listed as ex-demo but following a brief exchange of words they accepted that it was wrong and offered a full refund including postage if I paid to return it. I was reluctant as it wasn't my fault but decided this was the easiest way. I despatched the item and it was received on the 15th of December (courier provided signature), I waited and waited and sent several emails and finally got my refund (less the postage). So I'm still owed £10 and they've stopped responding to emails, I think I've given them plenty of time to allow for the Christmas period so today I'll be taking this further with my credit card company. If only FLO could supply these, I know they're quite a niche item but they look like they'll be an amazing addition to anyone's astro equipment. I'm currently dealing direct with the owner of Earthwin in the states to get one and he is a legend! Cracking bloke, very easy to talk to and very knowledgable.
  10. It's a mixture for me, I'm usually buzzing when I get in and sit for about an hour going through my notes, updating my log and reading about what I've seen. Occasionally (not very often) I come in fuming..... blumming neighbough working in his shed until gone midnight with his football stadium lighting on, or the neighbour who's family need the loo fifteen times an hour (can you guess where there bathroom light shines?) But usually it's a great evening where I feel privileged to observe the universe and honestly can't understand why everyone isn't outside doing the same. I've always been interested in science and space, but only tried a telescope for the first time a couple of years ago, now I couldn't imagine life without it.
  11. I think you put the price for the ES68 in instead of the ES82 on the EU 24mm eyepiece (I'm in the market for one and I've been frantically trying to get the best price). The price for an EU 24mm ES82 is €229 + €18 shipping =£202, which is still a lot better than £262 UK price!
  12. I've got scope nights installed and use it everyday! Fantastic app, I've been using it for a while and had some issues early on and found the developer very helpful and responded quickly to any emails I sent. The latest version has a bar thingy which breaks up the evening and colour codes each 3 hour section for sky quality. Also shows sun set and rise times along with the moon phase.
  13. I concur, hey you look familiar?
  14. Thanks for the reply's, jabberwocky how does the horizon tripod perform? What the stability like in comparison to the az3?
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