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Everything posted by johninderby

  1. Hi They are a genuine company with a proper shop and customers who actually go into their shop say it's a decent shop. Unfortunately their office is an utter disorganized mess and very poor at replying to emails and customer service in general. Telephoning them is about the only way to get an answer. If you do call ask for Neil as he seems to be fairly helpful. John
  2. Telescope House does them, a little bit more but at least their service is reliable. http://www.telescopehouse.com/acatalog/Orion_Winged_Rubber_Eyeguard_1_25__.html John
  3. My experiences in using a SkyWatcher v Meade dob is that the SkyWatcher cools down much, much faster. Ask the owner of a 16" Lightbridge about cool down times. While the 16" LB is an otherwise good scope it does take a long time to cool down. John
  4. The SkyWatchers consistently average a bit better than 1/4PV and are really very, very good scopes for the money. The OO ratings are conservative and the ratings given are "better than" ones so for example an OO 1/4PV mirror is actually about 1/5PV. It should be noted that SkyWatcher checks every mirror. Meade (GSO) checks random samples from each batch of mirrors so there is a bit more variation. Also SkyWatcher uses Pyrex mirrors that cool down quickly whereas Meade uses plain plate glass. OO of course uses low expansion glass. In general SkyWatcher/Celestron Newtonians are about as good as it gets in terms of mass produced mirrors. You have to go to manufacturers like OO that can supply premium hand finished mirrors to get something better. John
  5. Very nice and neatly done job. If you want a fan speed control just pickup a variable electronic speed control intended for a PC case fan. There only a few quid. I've used the following one and it works perfectly. Zalman FANMATE 2 Variable Fan Speed Controller Here's one fitted on a 16" Lightbridge. John
  6. It's from the same factory that made the 70mm scope for William Optics and so will be showing up under a few different brand names as well as the Ian King Imaging (IKI) 70ED. Telescope Service does a carbon fibre tube version http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ED-APO-Telescope-70-420-OTA-Carbon-Fiber_W0QQitemZ390120679648QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_Telescopes?hash=item5ad50128e0 John
  7. The black OTAs are simply the latest versions. No different optically though as it's only a cosmetic change. John
  8. A solid tube is actually lighter than a truss, at least in mass produced scopes such as SkyWatcher or Meade. I prefer the SkyWatcher over the Lightbridge as the Skywatcher has a Pyrex mirror that cools down a lot faster than the Lightbridge's plate glass mirror. Otherwise there's not a lot of difference in optical performance, although theres' a bit more variation in the quality of Mead's mirrors as they only test random samples from each batch of mirrors produced. But otherwise the mass produced dobs do deliver amazing performance for what they cost. John
  9. Here's reply to a question about delivery times posted by Barry Pemberton on the Orion Optics UK Yahoo group today. Quote: "Hi Josch, We are sorry for any protracted delays in shipping. The problem, if you could call it that, is simple. We are just overpowered by orders. The response for ODK and AG models is almost 6 times what we expected and it has caught us out. Currently we are training additional staff and recruiting more. All efforts are being put into reducing the backlog and getting relatively up to date. Regards Barry" Unquote: John
  10. The same 102mm triplet scope is available under the following brands so googling them should come up with a few reviews. Meade 102 Triplet Ascension 102 Triplet Astronomica 102 Triplet Omegon 102 Triplet John
  11. I've had a few scopes from OO. Two showed up within a week of the estimated delivery date. One took quite a bit longer, but that was down to problems with their supplier of carbon fibre tubes (OO have since switched suppliers). One thing I can say about their customer service is that they will put things right if you're not satisfied. Also every scope is treated as a custom order, and in the case of dobs/ newts for example you can change just about any aspect of it from the tube length, colour of the OTA, position of the focuser or if you want send them your own focuser and they will fit it for you. Also if say you can't collimate your scope just take it in to them and they'll sort it out for you. Try asking for that sort of service at SkyWatcher, Celestron etc. Also you should realise that OO's order books are absolutely full and so you might have to wait a while to get a scope. And is it such a bad thing if a manufacturers scopes are so popular that they have trouble keeping up with demand? That gives me more confidence in a manufacturer. John
  12. I've found on many items of astro gear it can be a false economy to save a bit by importing, as if there is a problem the good UK astro dealers (we all know who they are) that you bought it from will bend over backwards to sort it out for you. Yes I do import some things occasionally, mainly if it's not available in the UK for some reason, but most of the time I try to support UK dealers. Don't support you local dealer and you may find that that bit of equipment or replacement part that you desperately needed the next day isn't available because the dealer has gone under. Whats that old song lyric " You don't know what you've got till it's gone" John
  13. It will be interesting to see how well the Edge HD performs in general as it is supposed to have a very wide flat field (not so important for planetary I know). If the SkyWatcher 9.25 OTA came out at say £999.00 how popular do you think that would be? Here's the blurb from Celestron. The EdgeHD is Celestron’s latest innovation that will surely be the system of choice for the serious astro-imagers. The new EdgeHD telescope series features an Aplanatic Schmidt optical system that produces pinpoint star images all the way to the edge of the field. Some optical systems currently on the market may produce coma free images. But there is a difference. *The Optical Difference* Not only is the EdgeHD coma free, but it also has a built in field flattener to ensure sharp focus all the way to the edge of the field, producing true Astrograph quality images. This results in pinpoint, */High Definition/* star images throughout your astro photograph. Mirror Support Knobs hold the mirror in place and reduces image shift during imaging. Tube vents with integrated 60 micron mesh filter allowing hot air to be released from behind the primary mirror. Fastar Compatible optical tubes are equipped with a removable secondary mirror for fast f/2 ccd imaging Here's a couple of photos of the rear of the HD. John
  14. In case anyone is not aware the Edge HDs are different to Celestrons old familiar SCTs with different optics, three point mirror locks etc. and have been designed with imaging in mind. They're not just the old ones with a new paint job. John
  15. Here's two alternatives. I've used both and the Star Sky 90 is surprisingly good for an achro and it is a very light weight OTA and comes with a single speed crayford focuser and retractable dew shield. Star Sky 90 O.T.A. £149.00 http://www.opticstar.com/Run/Astronomy/Astro-Telescopes-Ascension.asp?p=0_10_1_6_110 Celestron C102mm Wide View - £114.00 This is being discontinued by Celestron and at this price it is a great buy. Don't know why Celestron put this one under spotting scopes as it's the same as the Skywatcher 102. http://www.telescopesplus.co.uk/moreinfo.php/Spotting_Scopes/Clearance_Spotting_Scopes/Celestron_C102mm_Wide_View/3158 John
  16. I think it has a lot to do with Celestron bringing out the new Edge HD SCT series. So now the "old type" SCTs can be sold under the SkyWatcher name as Celestron will have the better Edge HDs to themselves. John
  17. It looks like SkyWatcher is going to be selling the old Celestron SCTs under the SkyWatcher name. http://www.skywatcher-india.com/schmidt_csc279.htm They're shown on the SkyWatcher India website. Wonder what the pricing will be like compared to Celestron when (hopefully !) they are released in the UK. John
  18. Is it possible to remove all the screws and rotate the cell 180 degrees and see if the holes lineup. If the holes then do line up perhaps only putting the screws half way in until all the screws are in might help. John
  19. Hi Mark You can download the manual from here. http://www.skywatcherusa.com/support/index.php?_m=downloads&_a=viewdownload&downloaditemid=1 John
  20. Are there any indentations in the edge of the cell where the seam could fit? John
  21. Yes. I think that there may be two notches on the 12" cell, one on either side, but it doesn't matter which one you use. When you line up the seam and notch the cell should just slide into place. If you look inside the top end of the scope you should see how the seam fits into the notch in the top tube end ring. John
  22. I had added a new focuser and different finder and it was a bit top heavy but yours might need a more weight on the top, a "dew shield" to help block out stray light perhaps (in this case it would just a light shield). Here's a photo of a SkyWatcher dob (different size) that illustrates the seam and the notch. Johh
  23. The 300P is a great scope, you'll get plenty of enjoyment out of it. I used to have one and found the following helped. Fit carrying handles to the OTA. Makes it much easier to carry, particularly through doorways. Get the balance of the OTA right. The OTA should balance in the ALT axis and not move by itself even when the tension handles are loose. Add some weights to the lower end of the OTA. Put a small amount of lithium or Teflon grease on the rollers that the OTA rests on. When you fitted the primary mirror did you make sure that the seam on the inside of the tube fitted into the notch in the side of the mirror cell? Otherwise the screw holes won't line up properly. Here's a photo of the 300P I used to have that shows the carrying handles. John
  24. As you bought it second hand could the previous owner have mucked about with the tension adjusters? Changed the springs perhaps or not put them or the balls back in properly. I suppose you'll just have to remove the tension adjusters completely and see what happens. If that doesn't help then remove the locking screws and see if that has any effect. John
  25. Adjusting the tension adjusters should be enough to cure the problem. I wonder if the locking screws have been over tightened and have deformed the struts. (Edited out my comments about the location of the tension adjusters.) John
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