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Everything posted by johninderby

  1. Have a look at the Omegon eyepieces as well (WO SPL clones) as they do a bigger range than WO. http://www.astroshop.de/en/omegon-eyepiece-le-series-5mm-1-25--/p,13970 The Hyperions are very, very good, but more expensive. John
  2. Don't forget the William Optics SPL Planetary eyepieces. Every bit as good if not better than the TMB ones for sharpness and contrast and they have more eye relief. They don't do a 5mm but I've used the 6mm and it works really well with a barlow. Also used the 3mm SPL on a 250PX dob for lunar and that works really well. John
  3. I had ordered a £118.00 item from them a few months ago, and after a week had gone by and I hadn't received anything, I phoned and they said "Oh dear, it looks like we're out of stock". I cancelled and they apologised for the poor service. They also put me onto someone else who had one in stock so they actually do care about their customers. Pity their internet ordering system can be a bit hit and miss. John
  4. "We do not have to visit a madhouse to find disordered minds; our planet is the mental institution of the universe." (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe) Thought the above quote sums it up nicely. John
  5. I did see the filter up for sale recently on eBay by a UK based dealer. Thankfully the filter is not listed any more. John
  6. There is a Canadian astro dealer http://www.a-p-o.ca/index.htm that was working on a replacement for the old style Megrez 90 foot so you might try contacting them. "APO replacement collar with a removable foot" info@A-P-O.ca John
  7. The mirrors don't come from the same place. Meade mirrors are made by GSO and Skywatcher are made by Synta.There seems to be a bit more variation in the Meade mirrors, although they're usually good. However the Skywatcher mirrors seem to be very consistent, top quality (for a mass produced dob) every time. The 250PX is a great choice, lots of satisfied users. John
  8. I was in contact with Ian at Altair Astro this morning. Apparently he has been experiencing some email problems. The shop is essentially a one man business that is open Fridays and Saturdays and getting in touch with him by landline phone the last couple of weeks has been a bit of a problem as he has been out most days delivering SkyShed Pods. So Altair Astro is definitely still in business, just very busy. John
  9. There's a Televue Panoptic 24 up on eBay. Starting price £49.99 although there's a reserve of course. Don't know what it's going to go for (I'm guessing about £150.00) but it is a great eyepiece. One problem though is the seller only has one feedback. http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Tele-Vue-Panoptic-24mm-Lens_W0QQitemZ280348067202QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_Telescopes?hash=item280348067202&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=66%3A2%7C65%3A10%7C39%3A1%7C240%3A1318%7C301%3A1%7C293%3A2%7C294%3A50 John
  10. Like most observers I have both refractors and reflectors, and each have their own disadvantages and advantages and limitations. You have to factor in things such as, portabilty, colimation, central obstruction, coma, seeing conditions etc etc and so there simply isn't one "best scope" that can do everything all the time. It's a case of the right tool for the job. John
  11. Before the "APO wars" break out why can't we all be happy that these new doublets offer great performance at an incredibly low price and are bringing APO levels of performance within reach of most observers. The serious imagers will have more stringent requirements, but these doublets are good enough for most observers. John
  12. Congratulations on the new diagonal, bet that's one of the best purchases you've ever made. I never could understand why Celestron supplied such a rubbish diagonal with what is a very good scope. I wonder how many people who bought the C80 ED were disappointed and blamed the scope not the diagonal. John
  13. Please note that I said for "most observers". Serious imagers would have a different set of requirements. John
  14. While some of the newer scopes don't meet the old technical definition of an APO the important point is that they perform like an APO and aren't too expensive, which is what counts to most observers. What was that old saying "If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck then it is a duck" John
  15. For high power planetary observing, eyepieces that go up in 1mm increments are very useful. You may find for example that say a 4mm eyepiece gives good sharp views and a 3mm is too much, but an hour later the 3mm is giving sharp views and then a bit later you have to go up to a 5mm to get clear sharp views. I use a 3-6 Nagler zoom for high power observing as it's so convenient and you can get just the right magnification without changing eyepieces. John
  16. The CD80 is a great little scope and the optics are the same as the Skywatcher 80ED and it is capable of giving some great views. That 45 degree diag is absolute rubbish for astro as at anything over about 50x to 75x the view becomes so bad it's unusable. A decent diagonal will totally transform your scope, you won't believe the difference. About the best buy right now is the Stellarvue 1.25" dielectric at £55.00 delivered. http://www.bazaarbuilder.com/cgi-bin/nickaltair/myshop.php?merchant=nickaltair&prodid=598&sinprod=1 as it's absolute top quality and is the one I would buy. FLO has the Skywatcher Deluxe 1.25 Di-Electric Star Diagonal at £59.00 and it's pretty good. http://www.firstlightoptics.com/products.php?cat=61 The William Optics 1.25" is about £15.00 more, but I've used both and couldn't see any difference. John
  17. As the CD80 is sold as a "spotting scope" they supply a 45 degree prism that is only fit for terrestrial low power use. For astro use you need a proper star diagonal. One of the 1.25" dielectrics isn't too expensive, although a 2" one would be a good idea if you're thinking of getting any 2" eyepieces later on. A great buy at the moment is the Celestron 2" XLT 1/10PV diagonal at £73.40 delivered. http://www.telescopesplus.co.uk/moreinfo.php/Accessories/Clearance_Accessories/Celestron_2-inch_XLT_Diagonal_(Refractor)/3278 John
  18. SGL isn't the conspiracy theories forum, enough already! Quote "This is either a cynical business decision where they realised they'll have a big seller with a tracking Dob even without Goto and rather than offer Goto as an upgrade for this version, they will offer a new version with the goto built in, in a year or three and flog the new version to same people who bought the tracking version." John
  19. The curious thing is that they started advertising the GOTO upgrade with a firm price and then pulled it just as it was about to be released which means they must have started production of it. Looks like some sort of problem with the production units that was too big to just result in a delay while they sorted it out. Perhaps needs a re-design of the hand control? Hopefully it will get sorted out eventually, but when? John
  20. There are field de-rotators that can be used with the camera, just be sure you're sitting down when you see the price. John
  21. Further to FLO's anouncment a while ago about the GOTO upgrade not being available, I now see that OpticalVision has added this note to their website. Skyliner FlexTubeTM AUTO Dobsonian Telescopes "(Please note: There will NOT now be a GOTO upgrade available for these models)" All sounds a bit official now. John
  22. If you want to make your own counterweight setup for the LB16 it's quite easy to do and not too expensive. Takes three each of Counterweights, Tommy Nuts and M12 bolts Unscrew the three plastic feet from the bottom of the scope and drill out the holes to 12mm. There's plenty of room to do this without removing the mirror. Just stuff the gap between the tube and mirror with cloths of some sort and then use masking tape to seal the gap between the mirror and tube wall. Do however protect the back of the mirror with a small piece of plywood when you drill the hole just in case. There is enough room to insert the bolts with one washer from the back. Put several of the large washers on the top side so that the counterweight clears the rim. Add the counterbalance weights and the Tommy Nuts and tighten and that's it. I recommend adding some 25mm diameter felt pads to the Tommy nuts as this cushions the shock when you set the tube down on the ground. You may need a bit of extra weight. I used a 1kg Go Cart lead weight. You can just see the edge of it poking out from under the bottom rim near one of the counterweights. I cut a notch to fit around the bolt head of the counterweight bolt and attached it with Velcro. Parts needed From Telescope House: - Counterbalance Weight 13mm Bore http://www.telescopehouse.com/cgi-bin/sh000001.pl?REFPAGE=http%3a%2f%2fwww%2etelescopehouse%2ecom%2facatalog%2fTeleVue_Ethos___Zooms%2ehtml&WD=counterweight&PN=Counterbalance_Weight_13mm_Bore%2ehtml%23aBC055#aBC055 From WDS Ltd: - Tommy Nuts http://www.wdsltd.co.uk/Fixings,%20Torque%20Screws%20&%20Knobs/Nuts/WDS613%20Tommy%20Nut M12 stainless hexagon head bolts (50mm I think) and 12mm "body repair" or large diameter washers Felt Pads (Focus DIY etc.) John
  23. The Televue Parracorr has a small barlow effect but that's just there to change the amount of outfocus. The Baader MPCC has no barlow effect at all and doesn't alter focal length. The higher the magnification the less obvious coma is so a barlow will reduce noticeable coma a bit but it's not actually correcting the coma. To second the comments in earlier replies you need good quality eyepieces with a coma corrector to get good results. What a lot of people mistake for coma is actually caused by the eyepiece so there's not much point in curing coma if that only allows you to see the defects in your eyepiece. John
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